Research points to postprandial glucose and TAG measures as preferable assessments of cardiovascular risk as compared with fasting values. Although elevated postprandial glycaemic and lipaemic responses are thought to substantially increase chronic disease risk, postprandial glycaemia and lipaemia have historically only been considered separately. However, carbohydrates and fats can generally ‘compete’ for clearance from the stomach, small intestine, bloodstream and within the peripheral cell. Further, there are previous data demonstrating that the addition of carbohydrate to a high-fat meal blunts the postprandial lipaemic response, and the addition of fat to a high-carbohydrate meal blunts the postprandial glycaemic response. Thus, postprandial glycaemia and lipaemia are interrelated. The purpose of this brief review is 2-fold: first, to review the current evidence implicating postprandial glycaemia and lipaemia in chronic disease risk, and, second, to examine the possible utility of a single postprandial glycaemic and lipaemic summative value, which will be referred to as the metabolic load index. The potential benefits of the metabolic load index extend to the clinician, patient and researcher.