Second-meal effect: low-glycemic-index foods eaten at dinner improve subsequent breakfast glycemic response

Am J Clin Nutr. 1988 Oct;48(4):1041-7. doi: 10.1093/ajcn/48.4.1041.


The effects of the glycemic index (GI) of carbohydrate eaten the previous night on the glycemic response to a standard test meal eaten subsequently in the morning (breakfast) was studied. On separate evenings normal subjects ate low- or high-GI test meals of the same nutrient composition. The dinners consisted of single foods in two experiments and mixed meals containing several foods in the third. The differences between the observed glycemic responses to low- and high-GI dinners were predicted by their GIs. The glycemic responses to breakfast were significantly lower on mornings after low-GI dinners than after high-GI dinners. Eating, at dinner, foods with different fiber contents but the same GI had no effect on postbreakfast glycemia. We conclude that the GI predicts the difference between glycemic responses of mixed dinner meals; breakfast carbohydrate tolerance is improved when low-GI foods are eaten the previous evening.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Controlled Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Amino Acids / analysis
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism*
  • Blood Urea Nitrogen
  • C-Peptide / analysis
  • Creatinine / analysis
  • Diet
  • Dietary Carbohydrates / pharmacology*
  • Dietary Fats / pharmacology
  • Dietary Fiber / pharmacology
  • Dietary Proteins / pharmacology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Time Factors


  • Amino Acids
  • Blood Glucose
  • C-Peptide
  • Dietary Carbohydrates
  • Dietary Fats
  • Dietary Fiber
  • Dietary Proteins
  • Creatinine