Diabetics need to be particularly careful on the kind of meals they eat. When it comes to flour, things are no different and that’s why this article has gathered all the necessary information you need to know what kind of flour you should include in your kitchen.
Are grains and flour really good for fiber?
Every nutritionist will tell you that the greatest source of fiber is the whole grains. We can’t argue on how essential fiber is to the body and in particular the digestive system. But, are whole grains the only source of fiber? Well, the answer is no, you can also get fiber in vegetables too.
In fact, in most cases, vegetables have more fiber than the whole grains. For instance, a slice of the whole wheat bread has only 1.9 grams of fiber whereas a carrot has 2.3 grams. As if that isn’t enough, vegetables are also very rich in minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants compared to the whole grains. Meaning you necessarily don’t have to eat grains.
What changes when a grain is converted into flour and does it affect the blood sugar differently?
Basically, on converting a grain into flour, two things change, the fiber and carb content. As a diabetic on eating meals made from certain flour, this will result in a drastic fatal rise in your blood sugar levels and this is the simple explanation as to why in most cases no grain far is included in most diabetic people meal plans.
Taking buckwheat, for instance, it has a low glycemic index of 49 meaning that it won’t cause a drastic rise in your blood sugar levels. On turning the grain into flour and baking a bread the glycemic index raises to 67, this being a clear indication that the composition changed and on consuming the bread it will have severe consequences on your ability to manage your blood sugar levels.
Another example being whole wheat kernals which in its grain form it has a glycemic index of 30 which is very low. On converting the grain into flour the glycemic index rises to 74.
Whole grain flours are a better option
As far as nutrition is concerned whole grains are way much better.
The composition of the whole grain kernals according to Minnesota Department of Health:
- Bran-the outer shell of the grain contains Vitamins, phytochemicals, fiber, antioxidants and approximately 50-80% of vital minerals such as magnesium, copper, zinc, and iron
- Endosperm- the middle layers, on the other hand, has proteins, carbohydrates, and minerals.
- Germ-inner layer contains Vitamin E, phytochemicals, and healthy fats.
The reason why whole grain is recommended is the fact that with refined grains you only get nutrients found in the endosperm. Meaning all the other nutrients will have been stripped off.
Better flours to use as a diabetic
As we mentioned earlier, as much as in we recommend whole grain, the majority of them are problematic to the diabetic after being converted to flour. As a diabetic, the following are the same kind of flour to cook with almond flour, ground flaxseed meal, coconut flour, almond meal and in general most nut flours. So as to thicken the sauces try our corn or arrowroot flour at just 1 or 2 tablespoons.
It is possible to make a burger that tastes like a bread and is prepared in just 3 minutes yet totally healthy for the diabetics. With no carbs at all, and yes you read that right, zero carbs!
Low-Carb Flour for the Diabetics
To begin with, coconut flour is gluten-free which a very important aspect to the diabetics. Coconut flour basically is made from the coconut meat which is left after all the fats have been extracted to make coconut oil. The flour is very rich in fiber and has low carb count; the only thing you have to pay attention is the fact that you have to take more water. Quarter a cup of coconut flour has 12 grams of fiber, 205 grams of fat, 19 grams of carbohydrates, 6 grams of proteins and 60 calories. The overall net carbs are low meaning that this won’t cause a drastic rise in your blood sugar levels. Getting into the specifics, coconut flour has net carb content of 14 grams of ½ cup serving.
Almond is very famous for making a delicious cereal breakfast for the diabetics. Well, you can also get low carb flour from the almond meal; the kind of flour that won’t have you worry that on preparing your favorite recipe it will have a drastic rise in your blood sugar levels. Even better, you can make the almond flour yourself by grinding the almonds until they are of fine texture. However, you shouldn’t overdo this since instead of flour you might end up getting almond butter and that’s not what you wanted in the first place. ½ a cup of almond flour contains 10.2 grams of carbohydrates, 5.8 grams of fiber and has a net carb of only 2.3 grams. Once you have your gluten-free almond free then you are now ready to make your favorite recipe.
To begin with, Walnut is very rich in omega-3 fatty acids which are good in ensuring you have a healthy heart. You can prepare walnut flour yourself all you have to do is grind the nuts until you have some consistent texture. ½ a cup of walnut meal contains 2.6 grams of fiber, 5.4 grams of carbs and a net carb of 1.4 grams. It is important to note that you can also use pistachios, macadamia nuts or even the hazelnuts.
Flours by their Glycemic Index
Glycemic index is a tool used to determine how quickly a certain food substance will cause a rise in your blood sugar level. The scale runs from 0-100.
A high GI indicated that that particular food substance will cause an increase in your blood sugar level fast. On the other hand, a low GI indicated that there will be slow digestion and absorption and if there will be any rise in the blood sugar levels, it will be gradual and not sudden.
Key things to have in mind
- Changing a grain into flour affects its GI
We saw this earlier where wheat kernels having a glycemic index of 30 raised to 71 after converting it to flour,
- Eating sourdough bread significantly reduces the GI
Sourdough has components that make it get digested slowly and this explains why it has a GI of 48 compared to that of Rye bread that ranges between 57-68.
- Most flours have a high GI
Bread with low glycemic indeed are recommended over those with anything above 55 on the GI scale
- There are flours with a low GI and low carbs too
In this article, we have highlighted and recommended only flours that have low carbs and read low on a glycemic index scale. These particular flours are both nutritious and healthy for a diabetic to eat.
My successful Diabetes Treatment Story
My doctor diagnosed me with diabetes just over a year ago, at the time I was prescribed Metformin. I went to the some diabetes related websites and learned about the diet they suggested. I started the diet right away and I was very loyal to it. However, after weeks of being on the diet it never helped, my blood sugar didn’t drop like I wanted it to. My personal physician wasn’t much help either, he didn’t really seem to give me any other options besides my prescription and the usual course of insulin. I was about to give up and then I discovered a great treatment method. The guide was authored by one of the leading professionals in the world of diabetes research, Dr. Max Sidorov. This is a guide that that shows you, in a very simple way, how to conquer the disease without traditional methods. I have to say that since I’ve found the guide and followed it, I’ve not only improved my health but I’ve also lost weight and improved other aspects as well. My activities have increased and I have a ton of energy! It is my goal to share the this diabetes treatment method as much as possible to show people there’s more to the disease than traditional schools of thought and you can find your own path to healing with natural methods.