Are dates good for diabetics?
People are changing to healthier options as their awareness of health grows, making food taste better and sweeter. One such delight has been “dates” which have become one of the most popular alternatives to sweeteners and refined sugar, particularly among diabetics.
But the question in almost every diabetic’s mouth is “are dates good for diabetics?”.
Are dates good for diabetics?
Dates have a low glycemic index, which means they’re less likely to cause blood sugar spikes, making them a good choice for diabetics. Furthermore, dates have a medium glycemic load, so eating one or two fruits at a time is a smart idea for a diabetic.
What exactly are Dates?
Phoenix Dactyliferous, often known as date, is a flowering plant that belongs to the palm family. The fruit is clustered under the palm tree’s fronds and grows on Date Palm plants. The Middle East, where dates have been a mainstay for generations, is a great place to find these trees.
Dates are difficult to harvest, and they are also carefully pollinated to assure a plentiful crop.
Is it OK to eat dates if you have diabetes?
People with diabetes should be able to eat two to three dates at a time. However, a person should consult with their physician to ensure that this is safe. To keep their blood sugar levels stable, people with this illness must limit their carbohydrate intake.
According to one study, after consuming the equivalent of 7–10 dates, patients with diabetes did not have their blood sugar rise. The researchers did point out, however, that these fruits are high in calories, with 100 grams of date flesh offering 314 calories.
It’s also worth noting that dates come in a variety of sizes. Medjool dates, for example, might be twice as large as other varieties. A person’s portion size may need to be adjusted accordingly.
The fiber in dates may help the body absorb carbohydrates more slowly, reducing the danger of blood sugar spikes. Combining dates with a protein and fat source, such as almonds, may aid to slow digestion and controlling blood sugar levels.
Glycemic index and glycemic load
When determining whether dates are suitable for diabetics, the glycemic index (GI) is another thing to consider. The GI of food shows how it affects blood sugar levels.
Higher GI values are associated with foods that promote faster and bigger blood sugar increases. Foods with a lower GI, on the other hand, promote lower blood sugar levels. Low-GI foods are those with a GI rating of less than 55, according to healthcare specialists.
Dates have an average GI of 42, according to evidence from several studies. This makes them a low GI food that is good and safe for diabetics when consumed in moderation.
But, when it comes to dates, what does “in moderation” mean? To address this, we must examine the glycemic load (GL) of a food. When determining the effects of a food on blood sugar, the GL takes the serving size into account.
Multiply a food’s GI by the number of carbohydrates it contains and divide by 100 to get its GL. Two dried dates (48 g) provide 36 g of carbohydrates, resulting in a GL of 17, which is considered medium.
Other health benefits of dates for diabetes
Dates are high in magnesium and potassium, among other minerals. Fiber, carbs, and antioxidants are all abundant in them. Medicinal and nutritional effects have been extensively studied.
Dates include a number of minerals and chemicals that may help people with diabetes and insulin resistance.
Possibly Beneficial to the Brain
Dates may aid in the improvement of brain function. They have been shown in lab experiments to help decrease inflammatory indicators in the brain, such as interleukin 6 (IL-6). High IL-6 levels have been linked to an increased risk of neurological illnesses like Alzheimer’s [source].
High in Disease-Fighting Antioxidants
Dates include a variety of antioxidants that may aid in the prevention of chronic illnesses such as heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, and diabetes.
Bone health is important. Dates contain minerals such as phosphate, potassium, calcium, and magnesium. All of these have been investigated for their ability to prevent bone diseases such as osteoporosis.
For those with diabetes and pre-diabetes, dates are deemed safe to consume. However, depending on your health, it’s best to eat dates in moderation and limit yourself to only 1-2 dates per serving.
However, it is necessary to obtain medical advice, as many doctors advise patients against eating dates. Many people with diabetes and prediabetes may find dates to be a tasty and safe dessert.
When eaten in moderation, the fruit has a low GI, which means it does not produce major blood sugar rises. They also contain fiber, magnesium, and potassium, all of which are beneficial minerals for diabetics.
Dates can be eaten as a snack or used as a sweetener in oatmeal, desserts, and other dishes by diabetics.