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Glycemic Index: Garlic Chicken Breast with Sweet Potatoes

Glycemic index is something you should try to keep on the low side. One thing that helps you do that is using low temperatures when preparing food. In this article, we will talk about steaming and its effects on nutrient content and Glycemic index of various foods, and you’ll learn a tasty recipe.

Steaming will keep Glycemic index down

Steaming is a process where food is kept separate from boiling water and only has contact with steam which assures that all ingredients are exposed to low heat, generally around 100°C (212 F). It’s a great tool for keeping the Glycemic index low. Steaming preserves more nutrients because fewer are leached away into the water, compared to boiling. It also comes in handy that you can easily avoid overcooking or burning food when steaming, and you don’t need to use any fat.

Steaming does not destroy vitamin C

It’s a common misconception that any use of heat will destroy all susceptible micronutrients in food. The reality is that they are affected, but not as much as you’d think. Compared to raw consumption, boiling reduces the amount of folic acid by 35%, and steaming only by 15%. Similarly, boiling reduces the amount of vitamin C by 25%, and steaming only by 15%. On top of that, steaming preserves pro-vitamins like beta-carotene in carrots and antioxidants in broccoli significantly better than boiling.

Recipe: Garlic Chicken Breast with Sweet Potatoes

This whole meal is prepared only by using a steamer! That’s why all of the vegetables used will retain the majority of their nutrients and the Glycemic index of the finished meal will stay low. It’s a great example of how to get the most out of quality produce while enjoying a tasty meal!


• 250g boneless, skinless chicken breast
• 1 carrot, diced
• 1 sweet potato, diced
• 1 beet root, diced
• 2 garlic cloves, minced
• tablespoon basil pesto
• tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
• a pinch of coarse salt


1. Cover chicken breast in minced garlic and let sit.
2. Dice carrot and beet root. Put in steamer and let steam for 10 minutes.
3. Dice sweet potato and add with chicken breast to other ingredients in steamer. Gently salt and continue steaming for another 10 minutes.
4. Cover chicken breast in basil pesto and serve with vegetables and a drizzle of olive oil.