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Glycemic Index for More Than 60 Common Foods

Understanding the glycemic index and knowing the values in everyday foods can help you with glucose management and weight control

Last Updated: Oct 29, 2021

assorted staple foods and a blood sugar monitor

The glycemic index is a scale that relates to how quickly or slowly a given food will cause your blood glucose level to rise. Foods low on the glycemic index (GI) scale tend to cause a slow, steady rise in blood sugar. Meanwhile, foods high on the glycemic index cause more significant spikes in blood glucose levels.

Low GI foods tend to foster weight loss, while foods high on the GI scale may contribute to weight gain. That said, high GI foods can help with energy recovery after exercise or offset hypoglycemia. Long-distance runners and other endurance athletes favor foods that are high on the glycemic index for this reason. Conversely, diabetics and pre-diabetics should concentrate on low GI foods to help them control blood sugar.

Common foods and their glycemic index values

The following chart provides GI levels for more than 60 foods as derived from a comprehensive analysis of more than 200 scholarly articles devoted to studying glucose and GI impact on human subjects. The studies used different baselines for their scale, with some using basic glucose and others using common foods like white bread or rice. For this chart, all values reflect glucose as a basis for scaled comparison.

Food Glycemic index score (scale of 0-100)
High-carbohydrate foods  
White wheat bread* 75 ± 2
Whole wheat/whole meal bread 74 ± 2
White rice, boiled* 73 ± 4
Unleavened wheat bread 70 ± 5
Brown rice, boiled 68 ± 4
Couscous† 65 ± 4
Wheat roti 62 ± 3
Udon noodles 55 ± 7
Rice noodles† 53 ± 7
Specialty grain bread 53 ± 2
Sweet corn 52 ± 5
Chapatti 52 ± 4
Spaghetti, white 49 ± 2
Spaghetti, whole meal 48 ± 5
Corn tortilla 46 ± 4
Barley 28 ± 2
Breakfast cereals  
Cornflakes 81 ± 6
Instant oat porridge 79 ± 3
Rice porridge/congee 78 ± 9
Wheat flake biscuits 69 ± 2
Millet porridge 67 ± 5
Muesli 57 ± 2
Porridge, rolled oats 55 ± 2
Fruit and fruit products  
Watermelon, raw 76 ± 4
Pineapple, raw 59 ± 8
Mango, raw† 51 ± 5
Banana, raw† 51 ± 3
Orange juice 50 ± 2
Strawberry jam/jelly 49 ± 3
Peaches, canned† 43 ± 5
Orange, raw† 43 ± 3
Dates, raw 42 ± 4
Apple juice 41 ± 2
Apple, raw† 36 ± 2
Vegetables  
Potato, instant mash 87 ± 3
Potato, boiled 78 ± 4
Pumpkin, boiled 64 ± 7
Sweet potato, boiled 63 ± 6
Potato, french fries 63 ± 5
Plantain/green banana 55 ± 6
Taro, boiled 53 ± 2
Vegetable soup 48 ± 5
Carrots, boiled 39 ± 4
Dairy products and alternatives  
Rice milk 86 ± 7
Ice cream 51 ± 3
Yogurt, fruit 41 ± 2
Milk, full fat 39 ± 3
Milk, skim 37 ± 4
Soy milk 34 ± 4
Legumes  
Lentils 32 ± 5
Chickpeas 28 ± 9
Kidney beans 24 ± 4
Soya beans 16 ± 1
Snack products  
Rice crackers/crisps 87 ± 2
Popcorn 65 ± 5
Soft drink/soda 59 ± 3
Potato crisps 56 ± 3
Chocolate 40 ± 3
Sugars  
Glucose 103 ± 3
Sucrose 65 ± 4
Honey 61 ± 3
Fructose 15 ± 4

Data are means ± SEM.

* Low-GI varieties were also identified.

† Average of all available data.

How applicable is the scale?

Remember that glycemic index values are based on aggregated research, as individuals may respond with slight differences when exposed to the same foods. It’s also true that a wide range of variables influences the glucose content of natural foods; even two apples grown on the same tree and harvested simultaneously can have unequal distribution of sugar between them.

GI values are still helpful for anyone looking to maintain healthy blood sugar levels or provide targeted benefits in conjunction with exercise or the treatment of specific diseases. But both glycemic index and glycemic load information have their limits, and you should speak with your doctor about any drastic changes to your diet before you begin to experiment.