What Kinds of Fruits Should Diabetics Eat?
Diabetic patients often avoid eating fruits because they are particularly worried about consuming high levels of sugar, which are found in several kinds of fruits. Thus, doctors are frequently asked by these diabetic individuals about what types of fruits are safe to eat in huge quantities. Despite the occurrence of several fruits with high amounts of sugar, there are still others that diabetics can enjoy eating without having to worry about their blood sugar levels increasing.
Consuming fruits that are rich in fiber is particularly beneficial for diabetic individuals. This is because these kinds of fruits have a lower glycemic index. Foods with a lower glycemic index do not cause the blood glucose level to shoot up drastically like in foods with high glycemic indexes. Fiber helps to slow down sugar absorption and prevents excessive amounts of this compound from rushing into the bloodstream. Diabetics should be on the lookout for fruits that have edible skins and seeds, as these are the parts that have the highest amounts of fiber. Fiber rich fruits include apples, apricots, pears, blueberries, pomegranates, kiwifruits, and avocados. Among these fruits, avocados have the highest amount of fiber at 7.6 percent, followed by pomegranates with a 3.4 percent fiber content. Meanwhile, apricots and blueberries have the lowest amount of fiber with 2.1 percent.
One of the reasons why healthcare professionals advise people with diabetes to add avocados in their diet is because avocados are rich in monounsaturated fat. According to the American Diabetes Association (or ADA), people who include foods that have high monounsaturated fat content in their diets are less likely to develop cardiovascular diseases. Diabetics are more prone to having this kind of disease, as it is one of the many complications of diabetes. There is also significant evidence showing that consuming monounsaturated fats can help control an individual’s glycemic index.
Aside from fruits high in fiber, those that are rich in fructose as well as fruits with a high ratio of fructose compared to glucose are also good for diabetics. Fructose is an example of a simple monosaccharide. Monosaccharides are easily broken down and absorbed by the body. They do not need insulin to be processed, and thus fruits that have high fructose levels may be enjoyed by patients suffering from insulin resistant diabetes mellitus. Mangos, pears, guavas, and apples are examples of fruits that are high in fructose. These fruits contain fructose to glucose ratios that are more than two.
Like avocados, apples are also highly recommended for people who have diabetes. The popular saying “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” may have some truth to it after all. This is because aside from having high fiber and fructose contents, apples are also rich in pectin. According to studies, pectin helps diabetics manage the glycemic levels in their bodies, which thus reduces a patient’s need for insulin treatments by up to 50 percent. Along with apples, grapefruits are beneficial to diabetics, as they help promote weight loss and thereby reduce the patient’s resistance to insulin.