Fruit is Good For Diabetics: The Glycemic Index of Fruit

Science has proven many times over that fruit is good for diabetics. We eat fruits daily because they taste good and are good for our health. They are vital for keeping the human body active and healthy. While some diabetic patients don’t eat them so much due to the sugar content, the type of sugar in fruit is not the same as table sugar.

Diabetic patients can eat fruit without worry.

Do you agree with the above? Let us know in the comments. In the meantime, read on to learn more about why fruit is good for diabetes.

Diabetes

Diabetes is a disease that occurs when your body cannot maintain the levels of blood glucose, a.k.a. blood sugar. Blood glucose is your primary source of energy and comes from the food you eat.

You can control diabetes by exercising daily and maintaining a glucose-free diet. In this article, we will focus on how fruit figures into the story of diabetes.

Diabetes and Fruit

The American Diabetes Association, along with many similar health associations across the world, advises diabetes patients to consume fruit. The ADA says that fruit is good for diabetics as long as the patient is not allergic to any.

Moreover, the British Medical Journal stated that eating fruit decreases the risks of type 2 diabetes. Fruit is good for diabetics as long as it is fresh and frozen. Processed and prepared fruit in cans and jars are not as good and may contain added sugars, which are not recommended for people with diabetes.

Dry fruit and fruit juices fall into the category of processed fruit. Experts do not consider them as fruit because the body digests them more rapidly, which results in higher blood sugar levels. Moreover, processing fruit decreases key nutrients like vitamins and fiber that are needed in the body.

Some research institutes like National Institute of Diabetic and Digestive and Kidney Disease (NIDDK) recommends that diabetic people do not consume fruit juices and canned fruit. If anyone in your family does, please prohibit them if they have diabetes.

In addition to fruit juices and canned fruit, fruit smoothies also have high blood sugar levels and are not good for diabetic patients.

Some Info on the Glycemic Index (GI)

The Glycemic Index (GI) is a relative ranking of carbohydrates in foods according to how they affect blood glucose levels. Carbohydrates with a low GI value (55 or less) take more time to be digested, absorbed, and metabolized. They typically cause a slower rise in blood glucose and, usually, insulin levels.

Image Source: GLYCEMIC INDEX FOUNDATION

gi-table

People with diabetes should be familiar with the Glycemic Index (GI). The GI is a way to select safe and suitable fruit and other high-carbohydrate foods.

The glycemic load (GL) considers the GI of sustenance in addition to the quantity of sugar in a serving. The GL can be a progressively precise method for evaluating how sustenance influences glucose after some time. Low-GI and low-GL sustenance helps control glucose levels.

From the chart, we can easily conclude that low and medium GI foods are less digestible than high GI foods. High GI foods such as potatoes and grains are not good for diabetic patients because they are absorbed more rapidly.

We’ve covered enough of the science side for now, so let’s get to the heart of the matter: what are the fruits that diabetes patients can eat?

Fruit That is Good for Diabetics

Below is a list of fruit that is good for diabetics:

  • Grapes
  • Apples
  • Pineapples
  • Mangoes
  • Papayas
  • Oranges
  • Peaches
  • Pears
  • Plums
  • Strawberries
  • Kiwis
  • Avocados
  • Grapefruits
  • Cantaloupes
  • Cherries
  • Honeydew Melons
  • Figs

We can further classify the fruits according to GI. There are Low GI Fruits, Moderate GI Fruits, and High GI Fruits.

Low GI Fruits

Low GI fruits contain less than 55 GI and less than 10 GL. Here are some fruits with low GI that are suitable for diabetic patients:

  • Cherries
  • Grapefruits
  • Pears
  • Apples
  • Oranges
  • Plums

Moderate GI Fruits

Moderate GI fruits contain 56-69 GI and less than 20 GL. Here are fruits with moderate GI that are suitable for diabetic patients:

  • Papayas
  • Honeydew Melon
  • Figs

High GI Fruits

High GI fruits contain more than 70 GI and more than 20 GL. Here are fruits that are not suitable for diabetic patients because of the high GI and GL:

  • Dates
  • Carrots
  • Parsnips

Other Health Benefits of Fruit

Aside from their incredible taste, fruit contains a high percentage of water, which is beneficial for our overall health. Diets containing a good amount of fruits and vegetables can reduce the risks of obesity, heart attack, and stroke.

Fact: Obesity and type-2 diabetes are linked to each other.

Organic fruits are high in fiber and supplements, so they are a smart addition to any meal. Products that have been processed, like fruits and organic juices that lack fiber, ought to be restricted.

Fruit is perfect for satisfying your urge to eat something sweet especially if they keep you away from products with added sugar. Moreover, fruit contains vital vitamins and minerals. For example, bananas contain potassium and tryptophan, which is an important amino acid. Citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, grapefruits, and kiwis have vitamin C, which is a key vitamin for many body functions.

Dieting Plans

People with diabetes should eat a balanced diet because of their disease. Normally, doctors recommend 5 servings of fruit a day. Diabetic patients should focus on 50% starchy foods such as fruits and vegetables in their meals. Protein and high fiber starches can fulfill the other 50%.

If you eat 5 meals a day, you should include fruits and vegetables to maintain a healthy diet. Here are suggestions for ways to include fruit in your day:

Citrus Fruits

They taste good and are easy to add to meals. You can add lemon in your sauces and seafood to improve the taste. Citrus fruits help you digest your meal, and some people even drink lemon water in the morning to improve their metabolism.

Apples

An apple a day keeps the doctor away.

A medium-sized apple a day is a good choice. Apples are delicious and a perfect snack. An ADA recipe suggests marinating apples in a small amount of honey and spices and then grilling them. Roll the grilled apples in crushed walnuts or pecans for a sweet but healthy dessert.

Avocados

Avocados contain healthy fats that are easy to digest and boost our overall health. They can be eaten raw or cooked in various ways. You can prepare them easily by slicing them in half and mashing them. You can also add vegetables and herbs to make them taste even better.

All in all, fruit is good for diabetics and have several other health benefits. Please let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.