the glycemic index
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Montignac

The Montignac Method

The Montignac Method is not really a diet, but a different way of eating. Through a careful balance in the daily diet, your body will function better, healthier and fitter. Moreover, you will lose weight quickly. It’s all about “the good” carbohydrates and fats.

No more counting calories.

Hunger Diets do not work, says Mr. Michel Montignac. Most diets are based on counting calories:  depending on age, gender and daily activities, a man needs an average of 2500 calories a day. If you eat more calories than you burn, you will store these extra calories as fat and you will gain weight. You are eating fewer calories than you are using, your body is pulling from its fat storage cells for energy, so your weight is decreasing.

Not true, says Montignac!

It is true that people lose weight if they eat fewer calories, but that works only temporarily. Initially the body uses fat reserves to supplement the shortage of calories. But over time the body adjusts to the new circumstances. The body will use less energy and there are still sufficient calories to store as fat reserves. So you finally reach the opposite result: you eat less but still gain weight.

Yo-yo effect

Who in this way yet reached his goal weight and stops dieting, must take into account that all the extra calories eaten from that time are directly stored in the fat reserves. Indeed, the body has adapted to the low-calorie diet and considers all additional calories as “gift” for the fat storage. The result: they gain back the weight, the final weight is often higher than before the diet: the famous yo-yo effect.

The theory of Montignac

According to Montignac weight is determined by blood sugar. Carbohydrates in food are converted in the body into glucose. Glucose is a type of sugar which acts as a fuel. The body needs this, think of athletes who eat right before a game dishes with lots of carbohydrates. Carbs are essential in normal life. But too much glucose, a high blood sugar is not good. Therefore, the pancreas produces insulin which causes the blood sugar level to normal. The current diet with plenty of sugar, refined flours and rice products ensures that high peaks occur in blood sugar. The pancreas has struggled to those peaks and valleys to keep going and produce too much insulin. This excess insulin is bad for the arteries.

Good and bad carbs

According to Montignac it is important to maintain blood glucose levels as low as possible so the pancreas works optimal. The Montignac Method is based on eating good carbs as much as possible, so the blood sugar stays at normal level. “Bad” carbs on the other hand, give a high sugar level, should be avoided whenever possible. Michel Montignac has compiled a list of scientific figures available where good and bad carbohydrates have a certain value. This value is called the glycemic index or glycaemic index (GI). A high glycemic index means that the product cause the blood sugar levels to rise too much, a low number indicates that the product has less effect on the blood sugar level. Of the main food Montignac created a table that shows which products have a high glycemic index (“bad” carbohydrates) and which products have a low glycemic index (“good” carbohydrates). With this table you can choose the carbohydrates, that have a glycemic index of 50 or lower. A glycemic index of 50, according to Montignac is the line between good and bad carbs. Carbohydrates with a GI of less than 15 (vegetables, etc.) are very good or neutral carbohydrates: they can be eaten with both fats and carbohydrates.

A balanced meal

Who wants to keep their weight down just have to make sure the meal includes ingredients with a low glycemic index. These ingredients can be combined to saturation with each other and with meat, fish, eggs or fat. However, to lose weight rapidly, more needs to happen. Not only is it necessary to eat food with a low glycemic index, it is also important that during the weight loss phase carbohydrates and fats never be combined. A disordered but well-functioning pancreas under the influence of carbohydrates produces extra insulin. As soon as fat cells occur in the blood at the same time (because they are eaten together with the carbohydrates) they will be stored in the fat reserves cause of the high amount of insuline in the blood. In practice, this means that in phase 1 with a slice whole wheat rye bread (glycemic index 40) you should not use butter and it cannot be topped with cheese. The best choice is sugar free jam or syrup, raw vegetables, or low-fat (leaked) cottage cheese (0% fat). In contrast, there are no limitations when it comes to the amount of food. You may eat as much until you feel satisfied, as long as you respect the rules of the diet Montignac Method.

Daily balance

Because it is not possible to eat only good carbohydrates the whole day, that may not be combined with, for example fats. Montignac recommends during the weight loss phase, every day to make a choice between meals with good carbohydrates, but no fat (a carbohydrate meal) and fat foods. It applies that at least half of all meals (approximately 10 out of 21 meals a week) should consist of “good” carbohydrates. Fat foods and also the good carbs contain enough protein, so they are not listed separately.

Greases

With the Montignac Method, we are not afraid of fat. Fat is necessary, but it should be well balanced. Saturated fats (meat toppings, meat etc.) should be eaten moderately, but unsaturated fats (fish, vegetable oils, poultry) even have a beneficial effect on cholesterol levels.  

The Montignac Method is divided into two phases.

  • Phase 1 (weight loss phase) is intended for people who want to lose weight. The rules are stricter than in the second phase and should be stricly followed to achieve the best possible result.
  • If you have reached your target weight, you can switch to phase 2. The Montignac rules are more flexible in this phase and offer the opportunity to occasionally go on a razzle.

The Montignac Method means providing a balanced meal in which carbohydrates and fats may not be combined.