Insulin index vs load

What’s the difference between the insulin index and the insulin load?

The basis of the insulin score is the insulin index. It allows us to compare the insulinogenicity of different foods and recipes using standardized portion sizes (239 kcals). How does white bread compare to blueberries? The insulin index answers that.

However, when comparing things that are usually eaten in very different amounts the insulin index is misleading. For example, comparing spices (usually measured in teaspoons) and fish (usually served in portions of hundreds of grams), the insulin index will give strange results. For comparisons that adjust for the actual serving sizes in which they’re eaten, the insulin load should be used.

The insulin load is obtained from the food’s insulin index which is then adjusted to the serving size in which it’s eaten. It estimates how much insulin is likely secreted from a certain food eaten in a certain amount. Your daily dietary insulin load comes from adding up all of the food you ate (e.g. 5 g of spices + 100 g of white fish + 50 g of almond flour…). The insulin load is given in ‘glucose equivalent units’, where 1 unit is equal to how much insulin rises in response to 1 g of glucose.

Check out our article discussing the insulin score