It’s fairly easy to give a meal a low G.I. twist through dessert. This is because so many of the basic components of dessert, like fruit and dairy products have a low G.I. factor.

In discussions with people about what they eat these days, dessert is seldom mentioned. With busier lifestyles and concerns about overweight, dessert is conveniently missed. While this appears a positive change in eliminating unnecessary kilojoules from the diet there is a negative side. In many instances desserts can make a valuable contribution to our daily calcium and vitamin C intake because they are frequently based on dairy foods and fruits. What’s more, desserts are usually carbohydrate rich which means they help top-up our satiety centre, signifying the completion of eating.

The basis of a perfect dessert—low G.I. fruits and dairy foods.

Citrus. A winter fruit which is an excellent source of vitamin C. Select heavy fruit with fine textured glossy skin. Oranges are good as a snack cut into quarters and frozen. Soak segments of a variety of citrus fruit in orange juice with a slurp of brandy, scatter with raisins or sultanas and serve as winter fruit salad.

Cherries. A true summer fruit Choose plump fruit, bright red/black colour on fresh green stems. A bowl of cherries on the table is a lovely dessert to share.

Stone fruits. Apricots appear earliest in the season. Choose those with as much golden orange colour, avoiding pale or green fruit. Peaches and nectarines should be just beginning to soften. Fresh sliced peaches or nectarines are delicious with ice cream or yoghurt. Sprinkle fresh peach halves with cinnamon and try them lightly grilled.

Pears and apples. At their peak during autumn and winter, but are available all year. Preparation simply involves washing and slicing and they provide the perfect finish to a meal.

Grapes. One of the most popular fruits with children because they are so sweet and easy to eat. Grapes do not ripen after harvest so choose bunches with a deep, uniform colour on fresh green sterna. Put a bowl on the table after a meal or include them in a fruit salad.

Custard, ice cream and yoghurt. Look far low-tat varieties for a cool and creamy treat


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