GI Point Diet
The plan is written by State-Registered Dietician Azmina Govindji and life coach and NLP trainer Nina Puddefoot. It is based on the glycaemic index (GI), but also guides people towards a diet that is low in fat and contains plenty of fruit and vegetables.
How the GI Point Diet claims to work
The authors allocate a certain number of points (GiP's) to each of hundreds of different foods. The number of points given is determined by the GI as well as the calorie content of the food in question. For example, low-fat protein foods and most fruits have a low GiP. The GiPs are given in tables in the book. The authors claim the diet works because it keeps you feeling full while you lose weight. This will certain help make it easier for people to stick with the plan. But the fact that this diet also encourages you to make low-fat choices and controls portion sizes will contribute to weight loss by restricting the total number of calories consumed.
The GI Point regimen
In the introductory two weeks, which is called the “start-it” phase, men are allowed 22 GiPs (GI Points) and women 17 GiPs each day. This is a “kick start” for the diet when you are likely to lose weight reasonably quickly. Following this is the “lose-it” phase, when men are allowed 25 GiPs each day and women 20 GiPs. Although this means eating more than during the “start-it” phase, the authors claim there will be a steady and sensible weight loss of 450-900g (1-2lb) per week.
During each of the first two phases both men and women also have a daily allowance of 200ml (1/3 pint) of semi-skimmed milk, and diet soft drinks, and sugar-free flavoured water and squash are unlimited. In addition, women are allowed up to seven units of alcohol per week and men up to ten units. There is no restriction on the amount of vegetables that can be eaten. Once slimmers have achieved their goal weight they are encouraged to follow the third phase - the “keep-it” phase - which is designed to help maintain the weight loss achieved.
The guidelines for the diet are to eat three meals and three snacks each day, comprising a variety of foods from all the different food groups. There are recipes and menu plans in the book, as well as advice for eating out. The plan also encourages people to take exercise every day - at least two ten-minute bursts of reasonably intense physical activity - and suggests some tips to get you started.
Is the GI Point Diet healthy?
The GI Point Diet falls in line with current guidelines on healthy eating, and it includes advice on behavioural modification techniques along with motivational tips, to enable people to make permanent changes to their eating habits. There is some evidence that choosing a diet based on low-GI carbohydrate foods and whole-grain cereals can help protect against health problems such as heart disease and diabetes. The diet may be difficult to follow as slimmers must carry around the food lists and count points all day (or know in advance what they are going to eat). Also, during the start-up phase hunger is likely to be a problem.
- ■Tomato juice cocktail
- ■A bowl of bran flakes with semi-skimmed milk
- ■Bowl or mug of cream of tomato soup
- ■Greek salad (feta cheese, olives, tomatoes, cucumber, and onion) with oil-free dressing
- ■Sugar-free jelly and strawberries
- ■Stir-fried ginger chicken and vegetables (green and red peppers, courgettes, broccoli florets, and mushrooms)
- ■Basmati rice
- ■Fresh or dried fruit, biscuits
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