How Do Beets Help with Diabetes?

If you are suffering from diabetes, you have to take special care of your diet. While majority of the vegetables are considered good for people with diabetes and are included in a diabetes diet, however, some root vegetables, which contain high amounts of natural sugars are not included in their diet for the reason that they can result in a spike in levels of blood sugar. A good example is beet root. In fact, majority of the individuals are unaware of the fact that beets and diabetes is a great combination.

How Do Beets Help with Diabetes?

1. It’s Safe for Levels of Blood Sugar

Lower GI (glycemic index) foods are considered good for diabetics as they decrease the risk of increasing blood sugar. It is well known that beets possess earthy and sweet taste. But the GI of beets is medium and not high. This implies that eating beets will not cause an immediate rise in blood sugar.

2. It Helps in Controlling Blood Pressure

Majority of the diabetics also suffer from hypertension, which may worsen the diabetes of the patient. Beets have the ability to lower blood pressure. According to a study, consuming beet juice reduced blood pressure significantly. This proves that beets are good for the health of diabetics.

3. It Prevents the Formation of Renal Stones

Diabetics are more prone to develop kidney problems. Certain substances are present in beets, which inhibit the formation of kidney stones. Hence, beets and diabetes is an excellent combination.

4. It Helps in Boosting Circulation of Blood

The micronutrients and fiber present in beets help in improving blood circulation, thereby, delivering the glucose faster to the body cells. This enables reduced production of insulin which is required for metabolism of sugar and its regulation. Improved circulation of blood also has beneficial effects on the brain.

5. It’s Rich in Potassium

According to a study, low potassium levels raise your risk of getting diabetes. According to USDA, beets contain high amounts of potassium. Hence, eating beets is beneficial for diabetics, especially for type 2 diabetics.

6. It Provides Lots of Fiber

Beets provide lots of fiber, which is quite beneficial for diabetics. Food high in fiber is usually low in calories. Furthermore, fiber sends signals to your body cells to show greater response to insulin and also suppresses the formation of glucose in the cells of the liver.

7. It Helps You to Eat Less

Apart from controlling the production of glucose in liver, the fiber present in beets also helps you to keep full for longer duration. This makes you to crave less for food, thereby, controlling your blood sugar. Hence, beets and diabetes form a healthy combination.

8. It Is a Rich Source of the Mineral Magnesium

According to a research, the mineral magnesium is responsible for carrying out many functions in your body. It helps in maintaining muscle; in making your nervous system perform well, in regulating the blood pressure and in preventing heart attack. Additionally, it also helps in regulating the levels of blood sugar.

9. It Is a Rich Source of the Mineral Selenium

Selenium, a micronutrient is a powerful antioxidant and is very helpful in fighting off multiple diseases. According to a study, the risk of getting diabetes type 2 is reduced by high levels of selenium. High selenium levels are able to reduce the risk of diabetes by around 25%. And selenium is present in a significant amount in beets.

10. It Helps in Reducing Damage to Nerves

Diabetes may lead to nerve damage as one of its complications. Beets contain antioxidant compounds, which help in preventing the nerve damage caused by diabetes. This shows that beets and diabetes form a great combination. Nerve damage usually causes symptoms of numbness and pain in feet and hands.

11. It Helps in Improving Endurance While Exercising

Exercising regularly is very important, especially for diabetics. However, certain patients do not want to perform exercise due to fatigue and pain after workout. Beet juice helps in improving muscle performance by absorbing greater oxygen during exercise session and adding endurance. Beet juice also helps in relieving the fatigue post workout. Hence, beets are beneficial for maintaining your fitness.

Precautions

As you are aware that high amount of sugar is present in beets. Though it is said that the sugar present in beet is safe for consumption by diabetics, still they are required to be cautious about the intake. You should eat light roasted or steamed beet instead of fully cooked beet as the sugar may get increased by cooking process, which may worsen the level of blood sugar.

It is also advised to consult your physician before eating beet regularly if you are a diabetic. The quantity of beet that you may take depends on the level of your blood sugar and general condition of your health.

How to Eat Beets for Diabetes

When beets are cooked for long time some of their beneficial properties may break down. Due to this, to get maximum benefits for health it is best to eat beets in raw state, grated as a salad or as juice.

Beet juice may be utilized as base in vegetable or fruit smoothies or juice cocktails. Certain popular combinations of juices, for 1 serving are:

  • 2 medium beets, 1 apple, 3 medium carrots
  • 1 large beet, 1 piece of ginger and 2 apples
  • 1 large beet, ½ pineapple, ice and 4 ounces coconut
  • 1 large beet, one cup strawberries, 2 apples, ice and ½ cup blueberries
  • 1 large beet, 3 carrots, kale, ice and 1 stick celery

Beets may also be boiled, steamed, pickled or roasted. They may form base in many recipes such as borscht, which is a kind of soup that is quite popular in countries located in Eastern Europe.

Beetroot forms a tasty addition to risottos. It also accompanies mackerel traditionally.

You can try avocado that is filled with pomegranate, cumin and beetroot and salsa made of shallot as a light snack or starter or reginette pasta along with beetroot and sour cream sauce as main meal.

However, you should keep in mind that a well balanced diet that contains a variety of foods is required to maintain good health.

 
 
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