Many fruits are rich in micronutrients, essential vitamins, fibre content and antioxidants. Along with that fruits occupy more space and less calories making your tummy full and giving you feeling of satiety or fullness.
Most of the fruits have high fibre content, they come in soluble or insoluble form. Both forms are indigestible. They form a bulk & increase water content of stool, making it softer and easily movable in Gastrointestinal tract. High fibre diet reduces cardiovascular morbidity & mortality.
Diabetic person should avoid eating fruits with high glycemic index i.e. those fruits which readily digest in stomach and raise your blood sugars more than others like Mango, Chickoo, Banana (Green), Grapes, Custard Apple, etc.
Also, one should avoid drinking fruit juices as condensation process increases sugar content of juice. A glass of juice is roughly equivalent to eating 2-3 fruits at a time. It is always better to eat a fresh fruit instead of drinking a fruit juice added with or without preservatives.
Managing blood sugars by a diabetic person is all about balancing food intake. For example, suppose Person (A) who is diabetic had four bread slices for breakfast at 9.00AM and his blood sugars are measured at 11.00AM were found out to be 300 mg/dl. If the same person (A) divides the breakfast into 2 halves and takes 2 bread slices at 8.00AM and 2 bread slices at 10.00 AM then his blood sugar roughly remains around 130 mg/dl. In this example the food intake is not decreased but instead it is divided into small quantity and consumed frequently.
Normally we consume most of the meal in the first 20 mins of starting a meal so eating a fruit before the meal delays food intake and gives the feeling of fullness or satiety much earlier. That eventually leads to consumption of less food at meal time, so less calorie intake.
Many colorful fruits like berries are rich in antioxidants ( Lycopene, Beta-carotene, etc.). In diabetes high bloood sugar values cause damage to nerves, retina, blood vessels and other systems via specific pathways. One of them is through generating free oxygen radical species, these anti-oxidants react with such harmful oxygen radicals and scavenge them, thus minimizing the tissue damage in diabetes.
What fruits to eat in diabetes ?
- Blueberries, blackberries, strawberries etc. all berries are rich in antioxidants, vitamins and low in carbohydrates.
- Peaches are rich in vitamin A & C, potassium and fibre.
- An Apple a day keeps the doctor away. Apples are rich in fibre, vitamin C & low in carb. Don’t peel the skin as it contains antioxidants.
- Oranges are great in vitamin C, low in carb, contain potassium and folate, other citrus fruits like grapefruits are also equally good to eat.
- Pears are good in potassium and fibre. Other fruits like apricot, guava are also rich in vitamin A and good to eat .
Eating fruits before meals helps you to loose weight & control your blood sugars. Making this as a habit helps obese individuals and known diabetic people.
Awareness is Prevention.