Apricots and Diabetes: A Nutritious and Delicious Combo
For people living with diabetes, eating a balanced and healthy diet is essential in managing their condition. This involves including fruits in their diet, despite the belief that the sweet taste may cause spikes in blood glucose levels. However, not all fruits are created equal, and some may be more beneficial than others. Apricots, in particular, are a diabetes-safe fruit that offers several health benefits. In this article, we will delve into the nutritional value of apricots, their benefits to people with diabetes, and how to incorporate them into your diet.
- Protein 1.4 g
- Carbohydrate 11.1 g
- Fat 0.39 g
- Fiber 2 g
- Sugar 9.24 g
- Cholesterol 0 g
Nutritional Value of Apricots
Apricots are packed with several essential vitamins and minerals, making them a nutritious addition to any diet. They are low in calories, with only 79.2 calories per cup of sliced apricots, making them a great snack option. Apricots also contain protein, dietary fiber, vitamins A and C, potassium, and iron.
Although all fruits are nutritionally beneficial, high-carb fruits are not an ideal option for people with diabetes. Luckily, apricots are diabetes-safe, with a total carb content of 18.3 g and 15.2 g of sugar per cup of sliced apricots. Moreover, apricots fall in the category of fruits with a low glycemic index (GI) with a GI value of 34 when fresh and even lower when dried with a GI of 30. Hence, they shouldn’t cause abnormally high blood glucose levels when eaten in moderate amounts.
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How Do Apricots Benefit People with Diabetes?
Apricots have several benefits that make them a great addition to a diabetic diet. Here are some of the ways apricots can benefit people with diabetes:
Slows Sugar Absorption into the Blood
Apricots are high in dietary fiber, which helps slow down the digestion of food. This results in a slower rate of absorption of sugar into the blood, avoiding the sudden postprandial spike in blood sugar associated with high-carb, low-fiber foods.
During ripening, apricots accumulate antioxidants, which help reduce complications that develop from oxidative stress. Oxidative stress occurs when there is an imbalance between antioxidants and free radicals in the body. This can lead to several health problems, including diabetic complications.
Apricots contain several compounds that have hypoglycemic properties, including anthocyanins, carotenoids, and procyanidins. A study done on 67 individuals with type 2 diabetes revealed a reduction in blood glucose levels following the ingestion of apricots.
The Best Ways to Eat Apricots as a Diabetes Patient
Apricots are a delicious snack that can be incorporated into your diet in several ways. Here are some ways to enjoy apricots:
- Dried or fresh apricots can be eaten as a snack
- They can be added to nuts and seeds as a homemade trail mix
- Chopped dried apricots can be added to salads
- Thinly sliced apricots can be used with almond butter to enjoy toast
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