Diabetes, or high blood sugar, is a common health issue that can cause serious problems if left unchecked and untreated. The most common form of diabetes, type 2 diabetes, is often caused by an unhealthy lifestyle (but some other circumstances can stimulate its appearance), and controlling one’s diet is a key aspect of managing the condition. While many people with diabetes are advised to carefully monitor their carbohydrate intake, reducing carbs doesn’t mean eliminating them altogether. In fact, some grains can be healthy for people with diabetes.
One of the most effective ways to manage type-2 diabetes is through diet, and experts have found that consuming certain whole grains can help control blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of diabetes. But, which grains? Take a look, because not all of them are suitable for you, if you are a diabetic.
Grains Suitable for Diabetics and regulate glucose
One of the most studied grains for diabetes is brown rice. A study published in Archives of Internal Medicine found that eating five or more servings of white rice each week led to an increased risk of diabetes. Conversely, consuming just two servings of brown rice each week led to a lower risk. The data indicated that replacing roughly one-third of a daily serving of white rice with brown rice would lead to a 16% reduction in overall type 2 diabetes risk.
Brown rice has a medium glycemic index (GL) of 16, according to Oregon State University. A ½-cup serving has 39 g of carbs and is a good source of magnesium, which helps regulate muscles and nerve function, blood pressure, and blood sugar levels, making it a worthy choice for anyone managing diabetes as well.
Another whole grain that can help manage diabetes is bulgur wheat. The researchers behind the Archives of Internal Medicine study theorized that replacing white rice with whole grains could possibly lower the risk of diabetes by as much as 36%. A 1-cup serving of cooked bulgur is an excellent source of fiber and has a medium GL of 12, according to Oregon State University.
No diet is complete without the right cereals, especially for blood glucose control.
Oats are also a great option for people with diabetes. They’re a nice source of fiber, which can help control blood sugar levels, and easy to include in your breakfast routine. A systematic review and meta-analysis published in Nutrients concluded that oat intake significantly reduced A1C levels, fasting glucose levels, and cholesterol among people with diabetes.
Buckwheat flour is another fantastic option for managing diabetes and helping sugar blood levels stable. It’s loaded with soluble fiber, which can help regulate blood glucose levels by slowing the rate at which glucose is metabolized and absorbed from the intestines. A small study published in Open Access Macedonian Journal of Medical Sciences found that eating a breakfast with buckwheat improved glucose tolerance through lunchtime.
Now, this is a superfood and everyone should include it in their diet: I’m talking about the ancient quinoa. It looks a lot like brown rice and has a nutty flavor. It’s loaded with nutrients, including fiber, which can help control blood sugar levels, and is easy to add to stews, casseroles, and salads.