Grains - Rice, Pasta, Corn and Bread.

For the various communities in the UK, the different types of grain are all important sources of carbohydrate.

Replacing some grain foods that are quick rated with medium or slower rated foods should improve your blood sugar control.

There are also wholemeal and whole grain forms too that are thought to be healthier for the heart.

Why restrict yourself anyway to only one or two types of bread or pasta or rice. Try the best of each type.

Durum Wheat Pasta.

Durum Wheat Pasta is made from Durum Wheat Semolina which is the hardest grained wheat (external link).

Italy has legislation that only Durum Wheat is used to make Pasta but I can't find any reference to this in the UK so check the labels. avoid if there is no mention of Durum Wheat.

Plain pasta is 100% Durum Wheat and nothing else.

Coloured Pasta.

Tricolour Pasta and the Verdi (green) Pasta add dried spinach or tomato to the basic pasta.

  • Green or Verdi Pasta is about 2% Dried Spinach.
  • Red Pasta is about 2% Tomato.

The nutritional gain and Glycemic Index improvement is likely to be marginal at these levels .

I do like them for a little variety however.

GrainsSugar Absorption RateNotes
Durum Wheat PastaMostly Medium with some Slow. Durum wheat pasta is a good source of bulk carbohydrate it converts relatively slowly into blood sugar.

Consider durum wheat pasta based meals as a lower GI alternative to potato based meals.

Wholemeal versions are also available for some pasta's too.

Pasta: FettuciniMedium
Pasta: Macaroni
White Spaghetti
Pasta: Spaghetti (White)
Pasta: Spaghetti (Wholemeal)Slow
A little slower to convert to blood sugar than white spaghetti. Also thought to be healthier for the heart.
Pasta: VermicelliSlow
Slowest conversion to blood sugar of any of the Pasta's I have seen
RiceQuick (Instant) to Very Slow (Bran). Rice and food are the same word in Chinese. Nutritionally most forms are a good choice.

External Link: Rice Nutrition Breakdown.

Basmati RiceMedium
Instant RiceQuick
Actually a very quick conversion to blood sugar. Instant rice is pre-processed with the rice grain husk and skin removed. Convenient, but not as healthy as whole rice.
Rice BranVery Slow
Corn or Sweetcorn
Corn or Sweetcorn is a grain. The yellow seeds are medium rated if used as a vegetable.

If processed further, ground to a meal and used to make cornbread. I think its then high rated but have no figures at present.