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23 January, 2019 12:25:42 PM


10 foods, drinks to help manage blood sugar

Delicious and surprising diabetes friendly food options are as close as your kitchen.
Independent Online Desk/ NDTV
10 foods, drinks to help manage blood sugar

If you have prediabetes or diabetes, the right diabetic meal plan is key to managing blood sugar levels. Sometimes, it can be tricky to choose the right foods and drinks as part of your diabetic.


  • Including the right foods in your diet is key to blood sugar management
  • Diabetics can consume some fruits
  • Food with a low glycemic index are ideal for diabetics

Here is a list which will make your choice easier


Beans (of any kind!)

Whether they're lentils, kidney, pinto, black or garbanzo; beans have a low glycemic index, which means the carbohydrates are released gradually and hence they're less likely to cause a spike in the blood sugar levels. According to a   recent study,  eating a  cup of beans daily for three months as part of a low-glycemic index diet lowered HbA1c levels by half a percentage point.

2. Apples

Many people think that there is no room fruits in a diabetic diet but this isn't true. One can consume fruits with a low or medium glycemic indexlike apples. Eating an apple a day also has other benefits – they are high in fiber, vitamin C and are  fat-free too! Not to mention an easy portable  snack option.

Tip: Toss an apple in your lunch bag or grab one between meals. Bake them and add cinnamon for a warm treat. 

3. Ensure Diabetes Care 

When you're having a hectic day it can be difficult to eat right. Ensure Diabetes Care can make things easier. Made by Abbott, it has carbohydrates that are slowly digested and absorbed to help minimize blood sugar spikes. With fewer than 230 calories per serve it's a smart and portion controlled choice. 

Tip: Carry a serve of Ensure Diabetes Care powder in your shaker(to be consumed with water) so you always have a healthy snack on hand — no matter how busy your day is.

4. Almonds

These crunchy nuts are rich in magnesium, a mineral that may help your body2 use its own insulin more effectively. Try including about one ounce (about 23 whole nuts) almonds in our diet which supplies nearly 20 percent3 of your daily dose of this blood sugar-balancing mineral. Plus, nuts like almonds are high in monounsaturated fatty acids, protein, and fiber, which makes them a great snack for diabetics.

Tip: For healthy snacking on-the-go, pack 30g  almonds into single-serve containers.

5. Spinach

This leafy green has  21 calories per cooked cup and is filled with blood sugar-friendly magnesium and fiber4. You can also  enjoy spinach raw, sautéed with olive oil, cooked or blended making it a versatile choice!

Tip: Toss a andful of baby spinach into your  smoothie or use it in place of lettuce in salads.

6. Chia seeds

You might have heard that losing or managing weight is one of the best things you can do to improve your blood sugar levels. Chia seeds will help you do exactly that. In a recent  study5, it was found that people with diabetes who added about an ounce of chia seeds to a calorie controlled diet for six months shed four pounds and trimmed an inch-and-a-half from their waistlines. Besides being packed with fibre, these gems also contain protein and provide 18 percent of your recommended daily intake of calcium.

Tip: Combine a quarter-cup of chia seeds with one cup of 1 percent or non-fat milk and one-half cup of diced fruit. Refrigerate overnight and enjoy for breakfast the next morning.

7. Blueberries

Blueberries contain compounds that have been shown to help reduce the risk of heart disease and help improve how your body uses insulin. As per a recent study, eating the equivalent of about 2 cups of blueberries daily improved insulin sensitivity in overweight people with insulin resistance. They're also a great source of fiber and other nutrients such as vitamin C and antioxidants.

Tip: Take alf a cup of fresh blueberries (or defrosted, frozen blueberries) and spoon over plain, unsweetened yogurt. You can also  add a cup of blueberries to your smoothie.

8. Oatmeal

Oatmeal isn't just good for your heart, it can also help control blood sugars. Just like apples, steel cut and rolled oats have a low glycemic index7. Just keep in mind that while steel cut and rolled oats are great picks whereas highly processed, instant and quick oats tend to be higher on the glycemic index so they're not as blood sugar-friendly.

Tip: Opt for steel or rolled oats cooked oatmeal with masala as a savoury option and with blueberries for a sweet option and enjoy a hearty, hot breakfast.

9. Turmeric

This golden spice contains curcumin, a substance that can  keep your pancreas healthy and prevent prediabetes from turning into Type 2 diabetes. Researchers, while conducting a study, gave participants who had prediabetes 1500 mg of a curcumin supplement daily or a placebo for nine months. It was found that 16 percent of people in the placebo group went on to become diabetic, while the entire curcumin group remained diabetes free. This study8 provides some insight into how an ancient spice like turmeric can help improve how the body can improve its sensitivity to insulin.

Tip: Curry powder is filled with turmeric, soload up on your favourite food and be sure not to miss your daily dose of turmeric.

10. Chamomile Tea

Chamomile tea has long been used for a variety of ailments. Existing research shows that it has antioxidant and anticancer properties, and a recent study found that it may help manage blood sugar levels as well. When participants in the study9 drank one cup of chamomile tea after meals three times per day for six weeks, they showed a reduction in blood sugar levels, insulin, and insulin resistance.

Tip: Replace an after-dinner cocktail with a freshly brewed cup of chamomile tea. Try adding a slice of lemon for flavor and an extra dose of vitamin C.

With these tasty foods and drinks, optimal blood sugar management is in your hands!



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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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