8 Best fruits for diabetic patients – Manage diabetes with these 8 healthy fruits.
A lot of diabetic patients suffer because they don’t know the exact diet to take. It is important and necessary for diabetic patients to know and understand what, when, why, and how they should eat fruits. Fruits, as we all know, are a healthy way to satisfy hunger and meet daily nutritional needs. Most fruits contain sugar, which is why the question is being asked; are fruits healthy for diabetic patients?
Yes, fruits are healthy and should be part of one’s balance diet every day in order to provide enough energy and to maintain a healthy weight. Though some fruits are high in sugar such as mangoes, they can be part of a healthy diet as long as they are not taken in excess. But the eating of some certain fruit is restricted in persons with diabetics whose blood sugar control is bad.
“Not all fruits should be consumed by persons with diabetes, especially those with very sweet taste because of their glucose and fructose content,” said by Dr Adebowale Adewunmi, a consultant nephrologist, Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH). “This does not mean that they cannot take a whole orange or apple a day because they equally need vitamin C and other nutrients present in these fruits. But we do not encourage intake of fruits like pineapple that has a very high sugar content,” he said. Also, he said, diabetic patients with poor sugar control are always asked to stop consuming fruits with sweet taste such as oranges and banana, till they have a good blood sugar level control. There are no restrictions on the number of fruits such as African garden egg, carrot, grapefruit, and cucumber that can be consumed.
Diabetic patients are asked to avoid intake of simple sugars, adding sugar to their tea, coffee or food; oily food as well as junk food. Also, in preparing their food, steamed or grilled foods are healthier than fried foods
The right amount of fruit to take
For every individual, five serving of fruits is recommended per day. In diabetic patients, the quantity of fruits consumed is also important. Fruits cannot be taken as a meal by diabetic patients, but vegetables can serve as a meal. Fruits are to be taken as dessert. Coloured fruits are to be used as dessert for diabetic patients because they contain chemical substances such as good eyesight. Consumption of fruits that have sweet taste should be taken in moderation. Calories from the recommended five servings of fruits per day are not too much. Staying within this limit will not cause a spike in blood sugar level compared with, say rice or bread.
8 Best fruits for diabetic patients
Fruits that are good for diabetic patients include:
- Apples: They are a great choice for diabetic patients because they are loaded with dietary fibre and pectin; a compound which breaks down slowly in the body and helps reduce the insulin requirements of diabetics.
- Cherries: They have a very low glycemic index rating of 22, so they will not spike up the blood sugar. They provide antioxidants (like beta-carotene), vitamins, and minerals.
- Guava: Guava is a diabetic-friendly fruit. It has a high concentration of lycopene and dietary fibre which are helpful for maintaining healthy blood sugar levels.
- Oranges: Oranges rank from between 31 to 50 on the glycemic index which means that they will not spike up the blood sugars and their fibre content will keep these blood sugar levels on an even keel. They are also good for weight loss, another important part of diabetes management.
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- Avocados: Avocados are high in dietary fibre and monounsaturated fats. They can also help to stabilize blood sugar levels. Since diabetic patients are at an increased risk for heart disease, they should have a diet rich in these good fats such as avocados, since it can lower the risk of heart disease.
- Strawberries: They are low on glycemic index at 44 and are high in fibre; the antioxidant properties can also help lower the risk of heart disease.
- Grapefruit: Grapefruit has a very low glycemic index of 25 and is high in dietary fibre. It also contains naringenin; a compound which can help to lower the body’s insulin resistance and can also help achieve a healthy weight.
- Black plums: Black plums help to control blood sugar levels. They are a rich source of anthocyanins and they also contain tannins and ellagic acid, both of which have proven beneficial for treating diabetes
While these fruits help you manage diabetes, it does not stop the need to see your doctor or physician