Expert-Recommended Low Glycemic Index Foods For People With Diabetes
Foods which have GI less than 55 on the scale of 0 to 100 are considered as low GI foods. These foods produce lower and more stable blood sugar levels.
Low GI foods help in keep blood sugar levels under control
- Oranges have low GI
- Dried apricots have low GI but are high in carbs
- Diabetics must include low GI foods in their diet
Foods that are rich in carbs are ranked on the basis of their glycemic index, which is a scientific ranking of these foods on the basis of how they affect blood sugar levels. Glycemic index of foods is calculated on the basis of how much and how quickly the food can increase blood sugar levels around two to three hours after eating. This is also related to how quickly a carb-rich food is broken down into glucose, mentions nutritionist Nmami Agarwal in one of her blog posts shared on Instagram.
GI of a food is affected by how much starch the food contains and the type of sugar (lactose, sucrose or fructose) it has. Storage time and ripeness of the food also affects its GI. More ripe fruits have high GI value. Cooking and processing food also increases GI of food, mentions Nmami. Furthermore, fat and protein content of food also increases its GI levels.
Low glycemic index foods
Foods which have GI less than 55 on the scale of 0 to 100 are considered as low GI foods. These foods produce lower and more stable blood sugar levels. People with diabetes should include more low GI foods in their diet. Foods that have low GI can help you feel full for longer, control your appetite and help in managing weight.
Foods with low GI for people with diabetes
1. Quinoa: Quinoa is a food item popular in the weight loss industry. What's more is that its GI is 53 (150g serving). Quinoa digests slowly and enters bloodstream gradually. Including quinoa in your diet does not result in any spike in blood sugar levels.
2. Oats: Oats is low GI food which can help in maintaining glucose levels. People with diabetes must include oats in their diet as it can help in controlling blood sugar levels. Oats can be consumed in the form of poha, porridge, smoothi or roti.
3. Oranges: GI of oranges is 40. They have low glycemic load. Oranges are rich in Vitamin C and fibre. They can prevent any spice in blood sugar levels.
4. Zucchini: Low in GI, zucchini does increase blood sugar levels. It is low in calories, high in fibre and is also a rich source of Vitamin A. Along with helping in weight loss, zucchini can be great for people diabetes as well.
Also read: High-Glycemic Index: Top 7 Foods
5. Lentils: GI of lentils is low, ranging from anywhere between 18 to 52, mentions Nmami. A variety of lentils are available in India. Boiling them further lowers their GI levels. Lentils are also a good source of protein and can be a staple food for people with diabetes.
6. Dried apricots: GI of dried apricots is 32. They glycemic lload is also low. You must consumed dried apricots in moderation as they are high in carbs.
People with type 1 and type 2 diabetes will benefit from including more low GI foods in their diet.
(Nmami Agarwal is a nutritionist at Nmami Life)
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