If you have diabetes, berries can be a great addition to your diet. Not only do they taste great but they have several key ingredients that keep your blood sugar at the levels they should be.
If you’re concerned about the glycemic index of berries, don’t be, they’re actually not as bad as you’d think. If you’re not aware, the glycemic index will rate foods and place them in order of how they affect your blood sugar. If a certain food item makes your blood sugar go up, that will be higher on the glycemic index. Usually, foods that are on the bottom of the index will have rankings under 55. Berries are great because they are well below this number, usually under 40 on the index.
If you’re currently suffering from diabetes, you’re aware that it is best to maintain your blood sugar through your diet. Another good way to do this is by reducing the amount of food that you eat in a given meal time. For berries, because they do not have a lot of carbs, you can have more versus a similar food. It means you can enjoy a larger serving without worrying about the impact to your blood sugar.
You should be aware, however, that all fruits will contain sugars but these are natural and they don’t need insulin for your body to consume them. Fruit is a great option for diabetics because of that reason.
Another great thing about berries, they have a lot of vitamins and antioxidants. This is the “good stuff” and they are essential to maintaining your health. They’re also high in fiber and that means you get the added benefit there too.
Berries can be a seasonal food and they are usually found in your grocery during the summer months. You’ll also get better deals during this time of year because they are plentiful. Outside of the summer, look for deals on frozen fruits.
Berries are only good if you actually eat them and use them in your meal plan. As a diabetic is it important to have a plan when it comes to your meals. A good way to integrate berries into your meals is to have planned recipes. Another good way is to make sure that you have berries available. This is where having frozen berries can be really helpful, they are very convenient and easy to add to any meal.
Berries are a convenient food, in general, to have around and they can be enjoyed in the following ways:
- Smoothies are another healthy option and berries taste great in them! You can add items like soy milk or low-fat milk to get even more added benefits.
- Yogurt or granola can give you a much needed boost in the afternoon, but you can also add a small portion of fresh berries (or frozen) to truly get more “bang for your buck”
- Salads can be topped with berries to provide a healthy option and make eating your greens a little more tolerable. Be sure to make the greens the larger portion, adding whatever toppings you like in terms of vegetables or other greens. Once you’ve built the base salad you can add grilled chicken or other lean proteins, then top with berries.
- Breakfast can be fantastic when you add berries to the mix, if you enjoy pancakes or waffles, fresh berries can add a sweet topping to them without the added sugar of syrup.
- Low fat, frozen yogurt can be topped with berries for a treat. Berries will add sweetness to the yogurt while giving you the benefit of vitamins and fiber.
The best part about incorporating berries into your diet? You can use them in almost any dish or meal, any time of the day. Also, you get the added benefit and nutrition that berries bring to the table. They are rich in nutrients and loaded with vitamins. In fact, some studies have even shown that diets high in berries can reduce the risk of heart disease while improving brain function.
If you’re diabetic, hands down, berries are one of the best things you can eat and add to your diet. The health benefits alone are worth it. While fruits and berries do have sugar in the form of fructose, when eaten in small servings they can be helpful to maintaining your blood sugar levels. In fact, berries could be called a “superfood”, they are that good for you. They also allow you the option to swap out foods that are higher in fat but give you the same satisfaction. They are also great if you’re trying to watch your carbohydrate intake, they’re high in fiber but low in carbohydrates. It really is a win-win situation when you opt to include berries in your diet. They’re also sweet and taste great, so you feel like you’re cheating when you’re actually eating something that is good for you.
Strawberries are one of the best choices if you’re thinking about including berries in your diet. For one, they have the lowest calories and they are also low in carbohydrates. Strawberries have an amazing array of benefits including vitamins and antioxidants too.
You shouldn’t forget the other options, though. Each variety of berry will have different benefits. For example, raspberries are packed with fiber, blackberries are good for diabetics in particular while blueberries are low in calories and carbohydrates. They’re also loaded with antioxidants and nutrients.
So, as you can see, berries are a great way to supplement your diet if you have diabetes. You can get the added benefit of natural sugars while consuming foods that are low on the glycemic index. Berries are all natural and they’re high in fiber, they are really a great option if you’re trying to watch your weight too. Because of their fiber content, berries go a long way in helping you feel full.
So, what are you waiting for, give berries a try today and add them to your diet? You won’t regret giving them a chance and you never know, you could see a lot of improvements to your health in general. Don’t forget that there are many ways to incorporate berries into your meal plan too. They go great with any meal, they can be added to salads or protein or even in the form of a smoothie. If you really want to indulge you can also add berries to ice cream of make a fresh fruit topper on a sundae.
The one thing about berries when you’re diabetic, they’re a food that gives you the sweetest you crave while also being healthy, it is a great trade off and you don’t have to worry about berries impacting your health as much as other foods.