Diabetes is one of the severe problems where the pancreas lacks the ability to regulate the levels of insulin production in the body. Insulin is very significant hormone for controlling levels of sugar in the bloodstream. Sweet potato is one of the beneficial foods that helps in keeping blood glucose under check and relieve a person from discomforting symptoms of diabetics.
As per the research performed on this starchy vegetable, it is found that sweet potatoes have an important component called adiponectin. It resembles like the hormone that is secreted from fat cells of the body. It enhances the metabolism, and also regulates insulin production in the food. Sweet potatoes are a diabetic friendly food that is safe to include in a diabetic meal. Let us know more about this food in detail.
Sweet Potato and Nutrition
Sweet potatoes are rich in Vitamins, protein, dietary fiber, like minerals such as iron, and potassium. These three benefits of sweet potentially aid diabetic to effectively manage blood sugar, reduce weight, and lower their insulin resistance.
Sweet potatoes are loaded with nutrients more than a regular potato. It has ample amounts of essential vitamins such as vitamin A, vitamin C and vitamin B6. Its antioxidant properties, and high fiber content helps in reducing the severity of diabetes and keeping it under control.
Sweet potatoes have a low-glycemic index that gets digested slowly in the body. The sugar, and carbs present in it slowly gets absorbed in the bloodstream so that it does not cause any sudden spike in blood glucose levels. Due to these benefits, it makes an ideal food for inclusion in the diabetic meal.
Where vitamin A boosts vision that is often a concern in diabetic, the high amounts of fiber aids in management of weight, and blood glucose levels in the body. Potassium helps in controlling blood pressure in a person.
One medium sized sweet potato has 26 grams of carbohydrate, and is offset by high fiber content approx. 4 grams. Sweet potatoes have healthy phytochemicals in it. too. The best way to eat is by pairing with high fiber, and high protein food, so as to balance the high carb content in the food.
Reasons that makes sweet potatoes a valuable inclusion in a diabetes diet:
- Sweet potatoes have beta-carotene in them that gives a bright color to this root vegetable. Due to the presence of this carotenoid, it is a rich source of vitamin A that boosts eye health.
- It has good amounts of vitamin C that increases immunity power in the body.
- Sweet potato is a healthy source of iron. The red color of this vegetable signifies plenty of iron in it that facilitates transportation of nutrients, and oxygen throughout the body.
- This holy grail veggie offers a plant-based protein source, and fiber that helps in digestion of fats, and keep your stomach full for a longer time. Not just it prevents hunger pangs, but also aids in weight management.
- Sweet potatoes help in increasing insulin sensitivity of the body.
What is the right portion of sweet potato to be consumed in a day?
Sweet potatoes are an ideal replacement of regular potatoes, as they are denser in fiber and other nutrition. As potatoes are rich in carbs, if you eat them in excess, then it can raise blood glucose levels. You don’t have to completely avoid eating them but eat them in moderation.
Your serving should comprise of only 25% of this starchy vegetable. Half of a medium-size sweet potato offer 15 grams of carbohydrates that is equivalent to 1/4th meal. Fill the remaining 3/4th of your plate with foods that provide protein, fiber, and healthy fats.
What is the right way to include sweet potatoes in a diabetic diet plan?
- Always eat the sweet potato with its skin as there lies the maximum fiber, and nutrition.
- Do not bake, fry or roast sweet potatoes. They are considered to be the worst methods of cooking that lowers its nutritional value, and increases GI level.
- The right way to consume them in the boiled sweet potatoes that are easy to digest by the body. It has the lowest GI score.
- To make it flavorful, you can add cinnamon, chili powder, oregano, black pepper, and paprika to it. These natural spices will also increase the digestive abilities of your system.
- It is suggested to eat them as a whole as its GI value reduce when you slice them.
In place of eliminating your potato cravings completely, consider discovering the healthful properties of sweet potato that is more nutritious than a regular potato for a diabetic. This super food helps in regulating glucose levels in blood, and offer valuable antioxidants to keep acute ailments at bay. It is advised to consult your nutritionist to help find the right amount, and right way to include it in the diabetic meal.