When it comes to diabetics, their food intake has to be very cautious and calculated. And with fruits, there is a lot of confusion on what can be consumed and which food is to be avoided. There are certain fruits that can cause blood sugar levels to rise at an alarmingly rapid rate when compared to others. At the same time, there are fruits that play a supporting role in the treatment of diabetes.
As a general rule, only seasonal fruits should be consumed. Also, fruits should not form a part of any other meal, rather should be considered as a separate snack, perhaps in between meals. A fruit juice is a strict “no” for diabetics as that would immediately spike blood sugar levels and deprive them of fiber intake thereby resulting in complications.
Below is a list of top 10 fruits, which a diabetic patient can eat without any guilt and would not have any negative effect on their blood sugar levels.
Pears are one of the best fruit choices for people who have Type 2 diabetes. They are rich in vitamins and fiber and considered to be good for snacking between meals as its sweet taste helps diabetics in calming their hunger. This is the reason why, whenever there is a craving for something sweet, a diabetic can eat a small or a medium-sized pear. Specific features of the fruit include:
a) Pears are rich in fiber and low in carbohydrates and calories and have a rating of 33 to 35 on the glycemic index.
b) One medium-sized pear contains 6g of fiber and just 100 calories and only 26 grams of carbohydrates.
c) Balancing carbohydrates with fiber rich fruits like pear decreases the rate of absorption of glucose; so the blood sugar won’t spike as dramatically.
d) The sweet taste of pears helps diabetic in calming their hunger for sweet food without sacrificing control over their disease.
Strawberries make a great fruit choice for diabetics because of its multiple features and low sugar content. It also improves immunity, has the cancer-fighting ability and increases metabolism, which in turn helps in losing weight. The specific feature of the fruit include:
a) Strawberries are considered one of the best superfoods for a diabetes meal plan because of its vitamins, antioxidants, dietary fiber, and lower sugar content.
b) Several studies show that eating strawberries in quantities of at least 2–3 servings per week can lower the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
c) Strawberries are high in vitamin C and fiber and low in carbohydrates and have a low glycemic index at 40 and hence it is slowly released in the bloodstream as glucose.
d) Strawberries help in feeling full for a longer time and keep the blood sugar level steady and increase energy level.
People suffering from diabetes can enjoy an avocado in moderation without the stress of raising their blood sugar levels. It is also considered good for a healthy heart. Specific features of the fruit include:
a) Avocados are low in a carbohydrate, which means they have little effect on blood sugar levels and at the same time they are rich in fiber, fats and calories with a glycemic index of 15
b) The fats mostly found in avocado are monounsaturated fats, the heart-healthy kind that can keep blood cholesterol levels under control, and improve heart health.
c) With so few carbohydrates, a high fiber content, and healthful fat, people with diabetes can enjoy an avocado in moderation without the stress of raising their blood sugar levels.
d) One medium-sized avocado daily is good for diabetics.
Grapefruits are a good choice for diabetics keeping its nutritional profile in mind. It is known to modulate the blood glucose response by affecting how the body secretes and uses insulin. It is recommended that diabetics include a large grapefruit in their daily diet plan. Specific features of the fruit include:
a) Grapefruit is one of the nutritious fruit choices for diabetics because it is high in soluble fiber, vitamins A, vitamin C and low in calories and has a low glycemic index at 25.
b) It also contains flavonoid naringenin that helps diabetics to increase the body’s sensitivity to insulin and helps in losing extra fat from the body and maintain a healthy weight, which is a vital part of diabetes treatment.
c) Eating half of a large grapefruit on daily basis can manage the blood sugar level of a diabetic efficiently.
Guava has a reasonably low level of Glycemic index and thus would have a smaller impact on blood sugar levels. To keep sugar levels in control, it is recommended to eat one whole or sliced guava without the peel daily. Specific features of the fruit include:
a) Guava is a highly nutritious fruit choice for diabetes patients because it has a very high amount of lycopene, dietary fiber and also rich in potassium, vitamin C, vitamin A, calcium and magnesium.
b) The fruit and tea of its leaves both are beneficial for diabetes patients as many research reports have confirmed that eating guava fruit without its skin can reduce the sugar absorption in your blood.
c) Being rich in dietary fiber, it helps ease constipation and even can lower the chance of developing type 2 diabetes.
d) Potassium found in guava helps regulate blood pressure.
e) An article in the journal Nutrition’s & Metabolism found that compounds in guava leaf tea inhibit absorption of a certain type of sugar so that levels don’t spike after meals.
f) As per a study people who drank guava tea after eating white rice had far less amount of a glucose rise than people who drank hot water.
Cherries are considered to be among the best fruit choice for diabetics as it contains chemicals that increase the production of insulin by 50 per cent. It is recommended to include cherries as a part of a healthy diet plan as it helps fight heart disease, cancer and other diseases that are common among diabetic patients. Specific features of the fruit include:
a) Cherries have the lowest glycemic index at 22 and don’t cause spikes in blood sugar levels.
b) It also contains chemicals, called anthocyanins that boost insulin, which helps control blood sugar levels.
c) They occur naturally in cherries, giving them their bright red colour.
d) Anthocyanins are known to help lower blood sugar by increasing insulin production by up to 50 per cent, thereby keeping the blood sugar levels in control.