Glycemic-Index Diet Menu & Nutrition

Sample Menu

Here’s a day of typical meals on a low-GI diet, taken from The Low GI Diet Revolution, one of many books that outlines the approach. Portion sizes have been estimated for a dieter on a 1,500-calorie plan.

Breakfast

1 slice whole-grain bread with 2 tbsp. peanut butter

4 oz. orange juice

Snack 1

4 oz. pears

Lunch

Sandwich—

2 slices rye bread

4 slices roast beef

1 tbsp. horseradish

Tomatoes

Sprouts

Snack 2

1 oz. reduced-fat cheddar cheese

8 whole-grain crackers

1 medium apple

Dinner

4 oz. whitefish fillet

2 baby new potatoes

Salad—

1 cup baby spinach

4 oz. yellow squash

4-inch carrot

1 tbsp. lemon juice

Dessert

8 oz. low-fat yogurt

Nutrition

Here’s a breakdown of the nutritional content of a day’s meals for a dieter following a typical low-GI approach, alongside recommendations from the government’s 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

The nutrition information provided below reflects a day of meals as recommended by The Low GI Diet Revolution. Portion sizes were estimated for a dieter on a weight-loss plan that provides slightly fewer calories than what’s recommended; your calorie level can be higher or lower. Nutrition data were calculated with ESHA Food Processor, a nutrition analysis program.

Glycemic-Index Diet Recommended
Calories 1,489 Women Men
21-25: 2,000
26-50: 1,800
51+: 1,600
21-40: 2,400
41-60: 2,200
61+: 2,000
Total Fat 28% 20%-35%
     Saturated 7% Less than 10%
     Trans 0% N/A
Total Carbohydrates 53% 45%-65%
     Sugars
(total except as noted)
24% N/A
     Fiber 27 g. Women Men
19-30: 28 g.
31-50: 25 g.
51+: 22 g.
19-30: 34 g.
31-50: 31 g.
51+: 28 g.
Protein 22% 10%-35%
Sodium 2,227 mg. Under 2,300 mg., under 1,500 mg. for 51+
Potassium 1,482 mg. At least 4,700 mg.
Calcium 744 mg. 19-50: 1,000 mg.
51+: 1,200 mg.
Vitamin B-12 1.6 mcg. 2.4 mcg.
Vitamin D 16.4 mcg. 15 mcg.

Recommendations apply to adults 19 and older except as noted. Recommended calories assume a sedentary lifestyle. g.: grams. mg.: milligrams. mcg.: micrograms. Because of rounding, protein, fat, and carbohydrate content may not add up to 100 percent.

Last updated by Kurtis Hiatt | December 12, 2013

Best Diets Rankings

Best Diets Overall
Diets ranked by across-the-board effectiveness.

Best Weight-Loss Diets
Diets ranked by effectiveness for both quick and lasting weight loss.

Best Diabetes Diets
Diets that can prevent diabetes or help diabetics.

Best Heart-Healthy Diets
Diets that lower cholesterol, blood pressure or triglycerides.

Best Diets for Healthy Eating
Diets ranked by how safe and nutritionally complete they are.

Best Commercial Diet Plans
Brand-name diets ranked by overall effectiveness.

Easiest Diets to Follow
Diets ranked on whether they're a snap to stick to.

Best Plant-Based Diets
Plant-based diets ranked by overall effectiveness.

Connect with U.S. News Health