Monday, 30 July 2007

Feeling blue?

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When it comes to clothes, black is supposed to be slimming. But, when it comes to tortillas (yes, you read that right...I said tortillas), it seems that blue may be the slimmer choice. That's because blue tortillas evidently have far less starch and a lower GI (glycemic index) rating than the more traditional white corn tortilla.

The glycemic index ranks foods based on their effect on blood sugar levels. The way it works is basically like this: If a food ranks high on the GI, it probably contains simple, fast-acting carbohydrates (think pasta, white rice, white bread, candy, etc.) that, over time, will lead to weight loss. By contrast, if a certain type of food ranks low on the GI, it likely contains slower-digesting, complex carbohydrates (or, it could simply not contain many carbohydrates at all). Examples of low GI foods included sweet potatoes, whole wheat bread, brown rice, and nuts. These types of carbs will provide your body with the energy it needs, but when eaten in moderation, will not lead to an increase in weight (that is of course, unless the food is full of unhealthy fats).

As for the blue tortilla, it turns out that the coloring itself is due to the presence of anthocyanins in the corn. These are the same heart healthy compounds found in many types of berries and in red wine. And, as mentioned earlier, the blue tortilla ranks much lower on the GI than its white corn tortilla counterpart.

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