Drinking a cold fresh fruit juice on a sunny day is refreshing, wouldn’t you agree? But, if you have diabetes, that is not a luxury you can enjoy. Juicing (not green juices), is a commonality that we all share however it poses a significant risk for diabetic patients.
Did you know that taking fruit juice increases your risk of diabetes by 21%? A study done by the Harvard School of Public Health indicated that drinking fruit juices raises your blood sugar because of the glycemic index.
Glycemic index is the ranking of the carbohydrate level in food and how it affects the blood sugar. You may argue that it’s a fruit juice and it has the same nutrients as the fruit. But, what you don’t know is that blending the fruits destroys the fiber content, the phytochemicals, and they contain a higher sugar load.
The difference between fruit juices and whole fruits comes down to one thing; the glycemic load. Because the fruit juice is a processed fruit, it has a high glycemic load. Hence they raise your blood sugar quicker than whole fruits.
Although the research didn’t show the effect of the fruit’s glycemic index does not determine the risk of diabetes, it reported that the glycemic index of the fruit juice does increase the risk.
Healthcare professionals’ advice all persons and especially persons with diabetes to embrace the intake of whole fruits instead of juice. In addition to being rich in fiber, fruits are low in energy density and contain a low glycemic load. Eating at least two servings each week lowers the risk of diabetes by 23%.
Doctors recommend the intake of any fruit as long as you are not allergic to it. However, fruits like blueberries, grapes, and apples are quite beneficial to persons with diabetes.
Berries and grapes contain anthocyanins compounds. Besides giving the berries their red, blue, and purple colors, the compounds contain antioxidants properties that fight free radicals. Anthocyanins are also anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer benefits. They lower the risk of heart attack (a diabetic complication).
How often should you take fruits? The daily allowance of fruits is five servings. You should plan your meals to maximize your fruit intake. As a person with diabetes, you need to avoid eating fruits in the morning due to hyperglycemia. Because of the ‘dawn phenomenon’ you will wake up with high blood sugar and eat fruits will increase the blood sugar even higher.