What is the glycaemic index?

MY friend keeps mentioning the glycaemic index?

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What is it?

THE glycaemic index (GI) shows how quickly a food containing carbohydrates affects your blood sugar (glucose) level when that food is eaten on its own.

Carbohydrate foods that are broken down quickly and cause a rapid increase in blood glucose have a high GI rating - these include sugar and sugary foods, sugary soft drinks, white bread, potatoes and white rice.

Low or medium GI foods are broken down more slowly and cause a gradual rise in blood sugar levels. They include fruit, vegetables (not dried), pulses and wholegrain foods.

Some low GI foods, such as wholegrain foods, fruit, vegetables, beans and lentils, are foods we should eat as part of a healthy diet.

However, foods with a high GI are not necessarily unhealthy and not all foods with a low GI are healthy. For example, bread, rice and potatoes are high GI foods, while chocolate pudding has a low GI value.

A 'MINI STROKE' or transient ischaemic attack (TIA) is caused by a temporary disruption in the blood supply,resulting in a lack of oxygen to the brain. The effects last for a few minutes and are usually fully resolved within 24 hours.

The main signs of a mini-stroke can be identified by using the FAST test:

l Face - the face may have fallen on one side, the person can't smile.

l Arms - the person may not be able to raise both arms and keep them there.

l Speech - may be slurred.

l Time - if there are any of these signs, it is time to dial 999 immediately.

A person who has a TIA should be treated as soon as possible to minimise the risk of further TIAs or a full stroke.

CAN reheating rice cause food poisoning?

YES, however, it's not the reheating that causes the problem but the way the rice has been stored before it was reheated.

Uncooked rice can contain spores of Bacillus cereus, a bacterium that can cause food poisoning. When the rice is cooked, the spores can survive.

If the rice is left standing at room temperature, the spores can grow into bacteria. These bacteria will multiply and may produce toxins that cause vomiting or diarrhoea.

The longer cooked rice is left at room temperature, the more likely it is that the bacteria or toxins could make the rice unsafe to eat.

Ideally, rice should be served as soon as it has been cooked. If that isn't possible, cool the rice as quickly as possible (ideally within one hour).

Keep rice in the fridge for no more than one day until reheating and when you reheat rice, always check that the dish is steaming hot all the way through. Do not reheat rice more than once.

Food and drink

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