Dietary Glycemic Index and Load and the Risk of Type 2 Diabetes: Assessment of Causal Relations.
Plain language summary
It is generally accepted that certain diet and lifestyle choices contribute to a person’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes (T2D). In this meta-analysis, researchers set out to review previous studies and assess whether there is any evidence that the amount and type of carbohydrate (measured by Glycaemic Index (GI) and Glycaemic Load (GL)) in a person’s diet has a direct influence on their risk of developing T2D. The authors concluded with a high level of confidence that eating high GI and GL foods can lead to a higher risk of developing T2D. They suggest that nutrition advice that favours low GI and GL foods could produce significant cost savings for public healthcare.
While dietary factors are important modifiable risk factors for type 2 diabetes (T2D), the causal role of carbohydrate quality in nutrition remains controversial. Dietary glycemic index (GI) and glycemic load (GL) have been examined in relation to the risk of T2D in multiple prospective cohort studies. Previous meta-analyses indicate significant relations but consideration of causality has been minimal. Here, the results of our recent meta-analyses of prospective cohort studies of 4 to 26-y follow-up are interpreted in the context of the nine Bradford-Hill criteria for causality, that is: (1) Strength of Association, (2) Consistency, (3) Specificity, (4) Temporality, (5) Biological Gradient, (6) Plausibility, (7) Experimental evidence, (8) Analogy, and (9) Coherence. These criteria necessitated referral to a body of literature wider than prospective cohort studies alone, especially in criteria 6 to 9. In this analysis, all nine of the Hill's criteria were met for GI and GL indicating that we can be confident of a role for GI and GL as causal factors contributing to incident T2D. In addition, neither dietary fiber nor cereal fiber nor wholegrain were found to be reliable or effective surrogate measures of GI or GL. Finally, our cost-benefit analysis suggests food and nutrition advice favors lower GI or GL and would produce significant potential cost savings in national healthcare budgets. The high confidence in causal associations for incident T2D is sufficient to consider inclusion of GI and GL in food and nutrient-based recommendations.
Dietary Insulin Load and Cancer Recurrence and Survival in Patients With Stage III Colon Cancer: Findings From CALGB 89803 (Alliance).
Journal of the National Cancer Institute. 2019;(2):170-179
BACKGROUND Evidence suggests that diets inducing postprandial hyperinsulinemia may be associated with increased cancer-related mortality. The goal of this study was to assess the influence of postdiagnosis dietary insulin load and dietary insulin index on outcomes of stage III colon cancer patients. METHODS We conducted a prospective observational study of 1023 patients with resected stage III colon cancer enrolled in an adjuvant chemotherapy trial who reported dietary intake halfway through and six months after chemotherapy. We evaluated the association of dietary insulin load and dietary insulin index with cancer recurrence and survival using Cox proportional hazards regression adjusted for potential confounders; statistical tests were two-sided. RESULTS High dietary insulin load had a statistically significant association with worse disease-free survival (DFS), comparing the highest vs lowest quintile (adjusted hazard ratio [HR] = 2.77, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.90 to 4.02, Ptrend < .001). High dietary insulin index was also associated with worse DFS (highest vs lowest quintile, HR = 1.75, 95% CI = 1.22 to 2.51, Ptrend= .01). The association between higher dietary insulin load and worse DFS differed by body mass index and was strongest among patients with obesity (HR = 3.66, 95% CI = 1.88 to 7.12, Pinteraction = .04). The influence of dietary insulin load on cancer outcomes did not differ by mutation status of KRAS, BRAF, PIK3CA, TP53, or microsatellite instability. CONCLUSIONS Patients with resected stage III colon cancer who consumed a high-insulinogenic diet were at increased risk of recurrence and mortality. These findings support the importance of dietary management following resection of colon cancer, and future research into underlying mechanisms of action is warranted.
Effects of a low-glycemic index diet during pregnancy on offspring growth, body composition, and vascular health: a pilot randomized controlled trial.
The American journal of clinical nutrition. 2016;(4):1073-82
BACKGROUND Elevated maternal blood glucose concentrations may contribute to macrosomia, adiposity, and poorer vascular health in the offspring. OBJECTIVE The aim was to explore the effect of a low-glycemic index (low-GI) diet during pregnancy on offspring growth, adiposity, and arterial wall thickness during infancy. DESIGN This was a longitudinal follow-up study in a self-selected subgroup of mother-infant pairs (n= 59) participating in a larger randomized trial comparing the effects on perinatal outcomes of a low-GI diet and a conventional high-fiber (HF) diet during pregnancy. Infant anthropometric measurements were taken every month for 6 mo and then at 9 and 12 mo of age. Adiposity was assessed at birth and at 3 mo by air-displacement plethysmography by using the Pea Pod system (Cosmed) and at 6 and 12 mo by bioimpedance analysis (Bodystat). Aortic intima-media thickness was assessed at 12 mo by high-resolution ultrasound (Philips). RESULTS Maternal dietary GI was lower in the low-GI group than in the HF group (51 ± 1 compared with 57 ± 1;P< 0.001). No differences in neonatal outcomes were observed in the main trial. In the self-selected subsample, birth weight and length z scores were lower in the low-GI group than in the HF group (birth weight z score: 0.2 ± 0.2 compared with 0.7 ± 0.2, respectively;P= 0.04; birth length z score: 0.3 ± 0.2 compared with 0.9 ± 0.2, respectively;P= 0.04), but adiposity from birth to 12 mo of age and growth trajectories from 1 to 12 mo of age were similar. Aortic intima-media thickness was lower in the low-GI group than in the HF group (657 ±12 compared with 696 ± 12 μm, respectively;P= 0.02), which was partly mediated by differences in birth weight. CONCLUSION In women at risk of gestational diabetes mellitus, a low-GI diet influences offspring birth weight, birth length, and arterial wall thickness in early childhood, but not adiposity or growth trajectory during the first year of life. This trial was registered at anzctr.org.au as ACTRN12610000681055.
Randomized Controlled Trial Investigating the Effects of a Low-Glycemic Index Diet on Pregnancy Outcomes in Women at High Risk of Gestational Diabetes Mellitus: The GI Baby 3 Study.
Diabetes care. 2016;(1):31-8
OBJECTIVE Dietary interventions can improve pregnancy outcomes in women with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM). We compared the effect of a low-glycemic index (GI) versus a conventional high-fiber (HF) diet on pregnancy outcomes, birth weight z score, and maternal metabolic profile in women at high risk of GDM. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS One hundred thirty-nine women [mean (SD) age 34.7 (0.4) years and prepregnancy BMI 25.2 (0.5) kg/m(2)] were randomly assigned to a low-GI (LGI) diet (n = 72; target GI ∼50) or a high-fiber, moderate-GI (HF) diet (n = 67; target GI ∼60) at 14-20 weeks' gestation. Diet was assessed by 3-day food records and infant body composition by air-displacement plethysmography, and pregnancy outcomes were assessed from medical records. RESULTS The LGI group achieved a lower GI than the HF group [mean (SD) 50 (5) vs. 58 (5); P < 0.001]. There were no differences in glycosylated hemoglobin, fructosamine, or lipids at 36 weeks or differences in birth weight [LGI 3.4 (0.4) kg vs. HF 3.4 (0.5) kg; P = 0.514], birth weight z score [LGI 0.31 (0.90) vs. HF 0.24 (1.07); P = 0.697], ponderal index [LGI 2.71 (0.22) vs. HF 2.69 (0.23) kg/m(3); P = 0.672], birth weight centile [LGI 46.2 (25.4) vs. HF 41.8 (25.6); P = 0.330], % fat mass [LGI 10 (4) vs. HF 10 (4); P = 0.789], or incidence of GDM. CONCLUSIONS In intensively monitored women at risk for GDM, a low-GI diet and a healthy diet produce similar pregnancy outcomes.
Effects of human milk and formula on postprandial glycaemia and insulinaemia.
European journal of clinical nutrition. 2015;(8):939-43
BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVES Consumption of formula in place of human milk may produce differences in postprandial glycaemia and insulinaemia that contribute to metabolic programming in the first year of life. The objective of the current study was to determine glycaemic and insulinaemic responses to human milk compared with a typical commercial formula, and then compare 11 other formulas. SUBJECTS/METHODS On separate mornings in random order, 10 healthy breastfeeding mothers consumed 25 g available carbohydrate portions of their own milk, a formula and reference food (25 g glucose on two occasions). In the second study, 10 different healthy subjects consumed 25 g available carbohydrate portions of 11 different commercial formulas and three reference foods (25 g glucose on three occasions). Fingerpick blood samples were taken at regular intervals over 2 h, and the glycaemic index (GI) and insulin index determined according to a standardised protocol. RESULTS There were no significant differences in postprandial glycaemia or insulinaemia after human milk vs a typical formula (P = 0.3). Both produced a low GI (mean ± s.e.m.: 38 ± 7 vs 34 ± 7, respectively) and high insulin index (87 ± 14 vs 94 ± 16). The GI and insulin indices of the other formulas ranged from 18 ± 3 to 67 ± 6 and 53 ± 9 to 209 ± 33, respectively. CONCLUSIONS Human milk and a typical formula elicit similar postprandial glycaemic and insulinaemic responses, but there is a wide range of responses to other formulas.
Validation of the food insulin index in lean, young, healthy individuals, and type 2 diabetes in the context of mixed meals: an acute randomized crossover trial.
The American journal of clinical nutrition. 2015;(4):801-6
BACKGROUND The Food Insulin Index (FII) is a novel classification of single foods based on insulin responses in healthy subjects relative to an isoenergetic reference food. OBJECTIVE Our aim was to compare day-long responses to 2 nutrient-matched diets predicted to have either high or low insulin demand in healthy controls and individuals with type 2 diabetes (T2DM). DESIGN Twenty adults (10 healthy adults and 10 adults with T2DM) were recruited. On separate mornings, subjects consumed either a high- or low-FII diet in random order. Diets consisted of 3 consecutive meals (breakfast, morning tea, and lunch), matched for macronutrients, fiber, and glycemic index (GI), but with 2-fold difference in insulin demand as predicted by the FII of the component foods. Postprandial glycemia and insulinemia were measured in capillary plasma at regular intervals over 8 h. RESULTS As predicted by their GI, there were no differences in glycemic responses between the 2 diets in either group (mean ± SEM; healthy: 6.2 ± 0.2 compared with 6.1 ± 0.1 mmol/L · min, P = 0.429; T2DM: 9.9 ± 1.3 compared with 10.3 ± 1.6 mmol/L · min, P = 0.485). Compared with the high-FII diet, mean postprandial insulin response over 8 h was 53% lower with the low-FII diet in healthy subjects (mean ± SEM; incremental AUCinsulin 31,900 ± 4100 pmol/L · min compared with 68,100 ± 11,400 pmol/L · min, P = 0.003) and 41% lower in subjects with T2DM (mean ± SEM; incremental AUCinsulin 11,000 ± 1800 pmol/L · min compared with 18,700 ± 3100 pmol/L · min, P = 0.018). Incremental AUCinsulin was statistically significantly different between diets when groups were combined (P = 0.001). CONCLUSIONS The FII algorithm may be a useful tool for reducing postprandial hyperinsulinemia in T2DM, thereby potentially improving insulin resistance and β-cell function. This trial was registered at the Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry as ACTRN12611000654954.
Effect of a low glycaemic index diet in gestational diabetes mellitus on post-natal outcomes after 3 months of birth: a pilot follow-up study.
Maternal & child nutrition. 2015;(3):409-14
A low glycaemic index (LGI) diet during pregnancy complicated by gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) may offer benefits to the mother and infant pair beyond those during pregnancy. We aimed to investigate the effect of an LGI diet during pregnancy complicated with GDM on early post-natal outcomes. Fifty-eight women (age: 23-41 years; mean ± SD pre-pregnancy body mass index: 24.5 ± 5.6 kg m(-2) ) who had GDM and followed either an LGI diet (n = 33) or a conventional high-fibre diet (HF; n = 25) during pregnancy had a 75-g oral glucose tolerance test and blood lipid tests at 3 months post-partum. Anthropometric assessments were conducted for 55 mother-infant pairs. The glycaemic index of the antenatal diets differed modestly (mean ± SD: 46.8 ± 5.4 vs. 52.4 ± 4.4; P < 0.001), but there were no significant differences in any of the post-natal outcomes. In conclusion, an LGI diet during pregnancy complicated by GDM has outcomes similar to those of a conventional healthy diet. Adequately powered studies should explore the potential beneficial effects of LGI diet on risk factors for chronic disease.
Estimating insulin demand for protein-containing foods using the food insulin index.
European journal of clinical nutrition. 2014;(9):1055-9
BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVE The Food Insulin Index (FII) is a novel algorithm for ranking foods on the basis of insulin responses in healthy subjects relative to an isoenergetic reference food. Our aim was to compare postprandial glycemic responses in adults with type 1 diabetes who used both carbohydrate counting and the FII algorithm to estimate the insulin dosage for a variety of protein-containing foods. SUBJECTS/METHODS A total of 11 adults on insulin pump therapy consumed six individual foods (steak, battered fish, poached eggs, low-fat yoghurt, baked beans and peanuts) on two occasions in random order, with the insulin dose determined once by the FII algorithm and once with carbohydrate counting. Postprandial glycemia was measured in capillary blood glucose samples at 15-30 min intervals over 3 h. Researchers and participants were blinded to treatment. RESULTS Compared with carbohydrate counting, the FII algorithm significantly reduced the mean blood glucose level (5.7±0.2 vs 6.5±0.2 mmol/l, P=0.003) and the mean change in blood glucose level (-0.7±0.2 vs 0.1±0.2 mmol/l, P=0.001). Peak blood glucose was reached earlier using the FII algorithm than using carbohydrate counting (34±5 vs 56±7 min, P=0.007). The risk of hypoglycemia was similar in both treatments (48% vs 33% for FII vs carbohydrate counting, respectively, P=0.155). CONCLUSIONS In adults with type 1 diabetes, compared with carbohydrate counting, the novel FII algorithm improved postprandial hyperglycemia after consumption of protein-containing foods.
Dose-response effect of a novel functional fibre, PolyGlycopleX(®), PGX(®), on satiety.
The objective of this research was to determine the dose-response effects of a palatable, viscous and gel forming fibre, PolyGlycopleX(®) (PGX(®)), [(α-D-glucurono-α-manno-β-D-manno-β-D-gluco), (α-Lgulurono-β-D mannurono), (β-D-gluco-β-D-mannan)] on satiety, and to gain insight into the underlying mechanisms that lead to appetite inhibition. Healthy subjects (n = 10), aged between 20.3 and 29.2 years, consumed PGX(®), in granular form at 2.5, 5.0 and 7.5 g, and a 5g inulin control, with a standard breakfast. The PGX(®) doses of 2.5 and 7.5 g mixed with water at the start of breakfast increased satiety (iAUC of 140.0 and 157.7, P = 0.025 and 0.001, respectively) compared to the control. The most effective dose (7.5g) was palatable and corresponded to a 34% increase in fullness, measured using a visual analogue scale and incremental area under the curve, and resulted in a delayed postprandial glycaemic response when compared with the control.
Discovery of a low-glycaemic index potato and relationship with starch digestion in vitro.
The British journal of nutrition. 2014;(4):699-705
Potatoes are usually a high-glycaemic index (GI) food. Finding a low-GI potato and developing a screening method for finding low-GI cultivars are both health and agricultural priorities. The aims of the present study were to screen the commonly used and newly introduced cultivars of potatoes, in a bid to discover a low-GI potato, and to describe the relationship between in vitro starch digestibility of cooked potatoes and their in vivo glycaemic response. According to International Standard Organisation (ISO) guidelines, seven different potato cultivars were tested for their GI. In vitro enzymatic starch hydrolysis and chemical analyses, including amylose content analysis, were carried out for each potato cultivar, and correlations with the respective GI values were sought. The potato cultivars had a wide range of GI values (53-103). The Carisma cultivar was classified as low GI and the Nicola cultivar (GI = 69) as medium GI and the other five cultivars were classified as high GI according to ISO guidelines. The GI values were strongly and positively correlated with the percentage of in vitro enzymatic hydrolysis of starch in the cooked potatoes, particularly with the hydrolysis percentage at 120 min (r 0·91 and P <0·01). Amylose, dietary fibre and total starch content was not correlated with either in vitro starch digestibility or GI. The findings suggest that low-GI potato cultivars can be identified by screening using a high-throughput in vitro digestion procedure, while chemical composition, including amylose and fibre content, is not indicative.