Are Fruits Safe to Consume When you have Diabetes?


When you think of diabetes, the first thing that crosses your mind is lowering your intake of sugar. Every huge and minute beverage or food item is put under the scanner, whether it involves having sugar with your tea or coffee, consuming cakes and other kinds of sweets or even eating fruits. A majority of people avoid certain fruits because they believe that they taste sweeter and so, are high in sugar. 

Naturally, you begin to question your dietitian in India, “Should I avoid fruits in the long run?” or “Will I ever be able to eat fruits again?” Well, here is what you need to know about this dilemma you face.

Fruit is a healthy kind of food

Fruits are filled with fiber, antioxidants and a host of vitamins. No matter what the sweetness level, all fruits come with carbohydrates and it is important to have a variety of fruits included into your meal plan. The trick lies in eating the right portion sizes. Typically speaking, you need to stick to two portions of fruit a day. The two portions of fruit need to be consumed at separate times of the day.

Why is the sugar in fruits good?

The sugar present in fruits is very different from the one you find in manufactured foods. The carbohydrates found in fruits do not behave in similar ways as refined sugar that is usually found in processed and packaged foods. Owing to this fact, the sugar you consume in the form of fruits is metabolized in a special way. In addition to this, there are many other nutrients you find in fruits that all help to offer added benefits. The more fruits diabetic patients consume, the more predictable their blood sugar becomes. 

How the sugar in fruits is consumed into the blood

Another element to consider when optimizing blood sugars is the Glycemic Index (GI). Many fruits possess a low GI owing to their fiber and fructose content. This means that the sugar is released even slower into the blood. Pineapples, melons and dry fruits such as raisins and dates contain medium GI values. There are fruits that come with a high GI too. This includes watermelons and rock melons.  

Consuming lower carbohydrate fruits

Eating fruits that are lower in carbohydrates make it possible to eat larger portions to make up for the ideal 15g carbohydrate serving size. Some of these fruits are guavas and berries. Having said that, you need to know that there are no such thing as good or bad fruits, even if you have diabetes. Every fruit is different in its own unique way and offers special kind of benefits that help to promote health and well-being. 

Some fruits you can consume

Bananas are a low-medium GI fruit and are a great source of fiber as well as potassium. People believe that these fruits contain too much sugar but its starch and natural sugar depends upon its ripeness. Usually, a small banana keeps to the 15g-carbohydrate serving. A large banana can be two-carbohydrate servings. Grapes are low in GI and high in water content. It is great for hydration and a handful of them are equal to one carbohydrate serving. Watermelons are high in antioxidants. It is also a high GI fruit and one wedge is equal to one exchange of carbohydrate.

Refined sugars such as glucose and fructose easily spike your blood glucose values. This in turn enhances your chances of diabetes, cancer, metabolic syndrome, obesity and heart diseases. Whole sugars found in fruits, on the other hand, are packed with vitamins, fiber, minerals, water and antioxidants. These work to safeguard against glucose spikes and play a vital role in enhancing your insulin sensitivity. 

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