Brain Food: Carbohydrates, The Glycemic Index, And Serotonin

BHN Students

Like everything else in your body, the brain cannot work without energy. The brain’s primary energy source glucose, which comes from carbohydrates. The brain utilizes 20% of the bodies carbohydrate supply and the ability to concentrate, focus, and remain sharp throughout the day comes from an adequate, steady supply of glucose (Clark, 1999).

What is the Glycemic Index?

The glycemic index (GI) of a food is the rate at which carbohydrates enter brain cells and other cells of the body. Foods with a higher GI, such as simple or refined carbohydrates, are rapidly digested and absorbed and result in a rapid spike in blood sugar levels followed by a subsequent drop. Foods with a lower GI digest and absorb much slower and produce a gradual rise in blood sugar levels. By choosing whole grains with a lower glycemic index (GI) in the form of complex carbohydrates, glucose will be released…

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