Why do most dairy products have a low GI?
The unique combination of proteins and sugars that occur naturally in dairy foods that contain carbohydrates (cheese doesn't) are the reason that most have a low GI. In case you didn't know, the primary source of carbohydrate in dairy food is lactose, which in its pure form has a GI of 46.
We are often asked about dairy goods stimulating insulin secretion. First of all, it's important to note that all protein foods (yes that includes meat, fish and eggs) stimulate insulin secretion – that's why you may see them described as being 'insulinogenic' to use the technical term. However, the proteins in milk may be more insulinogenic than other protein foods because they are meant to help young mammals grow and develop. One of insulin’s many functions is to act as a growth hormone designed to drive nutrients into cells – not just glucose but also amino acids, the building blocks of new tissue. It is thought that milk may contain a unique combination of amino acids that in combination are more insulin stimulating than any others alone. There is no evidence that this either increases the risk of weight gain or lifestyle-related diseases like type 2 diabetes.
Milk and yoghurt offer us a a wide variety of convenient and calcium-rich foods and drinks for meals, snacks and drinks that are also low GI. Adding fruits and sweeteners often raises the GI of the final product. However, provided low or lower GI ingredients are used, the end product usually still has a low GI. There are now a large range of delicious and nutritious milks and yoghurts that meet the GI Symbol Program's strict nutrient criteria for kilojoules, saturated fat and calcium.
Just Natural Malt, Honey and Chocolate (99% fat free milk)
Dairy Farmers Skim Milk
Dairy Farmers Lite White Milk
Dairy Farmers Take Care Milk
Kids Selection Milk - 300 ml, 1 litre, 2 litre
Nestle Diet Yoghurt range
Nestle All Natural 99% Fat Free Yoghurt range
Nestle Milo Energy Dairy Snack
Nestle Milo Mousse
Brownes Diet Yoghurt range
Dairy Farmers Thick & Creamy Light range
Brooklea light sensation range
Dr Alan W Barclay, PhD
CEO, Glycemic Index Ltd
Phone: +61 2 9785 1037
Mob: +61 (0)416 111 046
Fax: +61 2 9785 1037