Let us now understand the role of vegetables and fruits in fighting diabetes. Which vegetables, fruits help lower blood sugar while which ones should be avoided. Vegetables are low in calories, full of vitamins and minerals and are healthy. Some vegetables are rich sources of fiber too.
- Garlic and onions are extremely beneficial vegetables that help reduce blood sugar.
- Green leafy vegetables should form part of regular diet because it contains Manganese (an important ingredient of insulin).
- Bitter gourd lowers blood and urine sugar levels.
Role Of Vegetables In Diabetes
Diabetic patients can liberally use most vegetables because they contain negligible amounts of carbohydrates and calories.Vegetables that can be consumed in larger quantities by diabetics are:
- Cabbage, celery, lettuce, fenugreek leaves, mint, spinach, amaranth, bitter gourd, ash gourd, eggplant, lady’s finger, French beans, cauliflower, cucumber, drumstick, turnip, snake gourd, ridge gourd, radish, onion stalk and pumpkin.
There are other vegetables that contain carbohydrates and therefore have a high calorific value than leafy vegetables. Vegetables that should be consumed in limited quantities by diabetics are:
- High sugar vegetables and root vegetables like carrot, potato, beetroot, colocasia, sweet potato, yam, tapioca and other vegetables like artichoke, green plantain, tender jackfruit, broad beans, double beans, cluster beans.
Are Fruits Good For Diabetic Patients?
Diabetics can eat fresh fruits though they contain starch and sugar. Very few fruits contain carbohydrates more than 15 %. Most fresh fruits (especially juicy ones) contain a lot of water. Of the little sugar present in fruits 50% comprises of glucose and nearly equal proportion of fructose. The calorie value of both glucose and fructose is similar.
However in a diabetic fructose has an advantage over glucose because it is well tolerated and does not require insulin for metabolism. Diabetics therefore can consume fruits like any other normal person.
A diabetic can eat two fruits a day. Each serving can comprise of 1 medium fruit or 115 grams chopped fruits or 170 milliliters juice.
Fruits also provide fiber, vitamins and minerals required for good health. Vitamin C present in citrus fruits helps ward-off disease. It also contains manganese that is an important ingredient of insulin.