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doi:10.1094/CFW-62-2-0053 | VIEW ARTICLE


A Review of the Impact of Whole Pulses on Glycemic Response

K.Cuvelier,1J.Storsley,1R.Mollard,2S. J.Thandapilly,1,2 and N.Ames1,2,3

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Winnipeg, MB Canada.University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB, Canada.Corresponding author. Tel: +1.204.474.7187; Fax: +1.204.474.7552; E-mail: nancy.ames@agr.gc.ca. Cereal Foods World 62(2):53-58.

Pulses are nutrient-dense foods that contain high amounts of fiber and plant proteins, with very little accompanying fat. For this reason, pulses have been included in dietary guidance documents around the world for many years. Due to their high fiber and protein contents, pulse products have been linked to reduced postprandial glycemic response (PPGR) in humans. The literature suggests that 150–500 g of whole cooked pulse products, depending on the type of pulse, can lower PPGR when consumed regularly. Processing of whole pulses impacts their efficacy in reducing PPGR, with a study showing that modulation of starch gelatinization and reduced enzymatic hydrolysis caused by thermal treatment (cooking) may be responsible for the low glycemic response attributed to pulses. Pulses consumed alone and as part of a mixed meal have both been shown to positively impact glycemic response. Collectively, the evidence promotes pulses as glycemic response-lowering foods and reinforces their qualifications for a health claim in Canada.

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