7 REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD BE HAVING BEETROOT FOR DIABETES.
In the current scenario, 8 out of 10 people in India are found to have high glucose or sugar levels in their blood. The increased blood sugar level is the leading cause of Type-2 Diabetes. Diabetic patients are often asked to take fewer carbohydrates and even avoid many fruits and vegetables. But do you know the uses of beetroot for diabetes patients? Research has proved that this common vegetable can actually help diabetic people control their blood sugar levels.
So, in this article, we will know why people with diabetes should have beetroot in their diet and what are its magical effects. So, without any further delay, let’s get started.
EFFECTS OF DIABETES ON OUR BODY
First, let us understand what harmful effects diabetes or high blood sugar levels have on our bodies. We have mentioned some of the common effects below:
- High blood sugar might lead to severe health conditions, ranging from stroke and nerve problems to heart or kidney failure and even death.
- High sugar levels endanger the entire body, especially the heart, eyes, and feet. People with diabetes are more prone to heart attacks.
- Diabetes is a complex process that also includes hormonal disbalance and other problems.
- You get tired quickly, and the chances of developing high blood pressure increase.
HOW DO BEETROOTS WORK IN OUR BODIES?
Before heading to the benefits of eating beets, let us first see how they function inside our bodies.
Due to old age and a variety of other diseases such as diabetes and insulin resistance, our blood vessels get stiffer. Therefore, we need some dilators so that the elasticity in our blood vessels remains better and healthier. Nitric oxide is one of the things which really helps you to achieve that.
Due to insulin resistance, nitric oxide production in our body goes down. However, taking beets and beet juice really helps to regenerate the nitric oxide that you need in order to create that elasticity in your arteries. This is possible because beets contain nitrates which are derivatives of nitric oxide.
In addition to that, up to 8 to 10 mm, Hg drop in your blood pressure is achievable when you incorporate beets in your diet. One cup of raw beets is around 13 g of carbs and has a good amount of fibre, so you end up with about 9 g of carbs which is not bad. Thus, it’s not very high in carbohydrates and is a great addition to help control your diabetes and blood pressure.
BENEFITS OF BEETS FOR DIABETIC PATIENTS
Now let’s see the answer to the questions: Why is beetroot good for diabetes? What are its effects on our body health?
- Consuming beetroot is beneficial to people with diabetes in several ways. The primary benefit of beetroot in diabetes is that it lowers the blood sugar and insulin levels in our body. Research studies indicated that metabolites present in beets could reduce insulin resistance
- It is rich in phytochemicals that lower the effects of glucose and insulin levels. Consuming half a cup of beet juice results in suppressing the effects of food on blood.
- It lowers the risk of diabetes complications like kidney disease, retinopathy, diabetic foot, neuropathy and cardiovascular diseases.
- Another complication often experienced by diabetic patients is high blood pressure. Several research studies have shown that drinking beetroot juice or eating beets in salad significantly reduces systolic blood pressure. This is due to the presence of nitrates in beetroot.
- It is very high in folate and vitamin B and very high in antioxidants. One of the antioxidants is alpha-lipoic acid which has been shown to reduce nerve damage in patients with diabetes.
- Beets are like medicinal foods and are helpful to treat many conditions like fever and constipation. They are a good source of antioxidants, folate, potassium and other nutrients.
- Beetroot helps in lowering the risk of chronic ailments. It is rich in antioxidants that help in preventing many diseases like heart diseases and cancer.
NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION OF BEETROOTS
- Carbohydrates: 9.5 g
- Protein: 1.61 g
- Total fat: 0.17g
- Fibre: 2.80 g
- Niacin (Vitamin B3) : 0.33 mg
- Thiamine (Vitamin B1) : 0.03 mg
- Vitamin C: 4.9 mg
- Vitamin E: 0.04 mg
- Sodium: 78 mg
- Potassium: 325 mg
- Calcium: 16mg
- Copper: 0.07mg
- Iron: 0.8mg
- Manganese: 0.3 mg
- Magnesium: 23 mg
- Zinc: 0.35 mg
The energy value of 100g beetroots is 43 calories.
HOW TO TAKE BEETROOT FOR DIABETES AND IN WHAT QUANTITY?
Since we have seen the relationship between beets and diabetes, let us see how diabetes patients can take beets in their diet.
- The easiest way of including beets in your diet is through salads. Add beetroots as a part of your salad with your meals.
- Beetroot for diabetes can also be taken along with other vegetables. Cook it along with your favourite veggies and have it to control your glucose.
- Some people also roast beetroot slices in the oven and then include the roasted beets in their diet.
- The best way of consuming beets is in juice form. Make pure beetroot juice or combine it with carrot to enhance its taste.
An adult diabetic patient should consume the following amounts of beets daily.
- If you are drinking beetroot juice, 230 ml or ½ cup of liquid is sufficient to control your post-meal glucose levels.
- If you are taking it in the raw form, 1 cup of sliced beets or 160 g can help you maintain your blood sugar.
- It is advisable that before taking beetroot for diabetes, you must consult your diabetologist to prevent any side effects.
HOW TO PREVENT DIABETES?
Although diabetes is a widespread disorder, we can still prevent it by taking some preventive measures. We have listed some of them for you.
- As a dietary disease, diabetes can be slowly managed by a healthy and nutritious diet containing less carbohydrate and more vitamins.
- Eating a diet containing a high amount of vegetables, fruits, berries, whole grains, and protein is the best first step to a healthier lifestyle, thereby preventing diabetes.
- Cooking meals at home using fresh ingredients instead of ordering take out is the essential step in managing carbohydrate intake.
- Eliminate the obvious culprits such as soda, sweets, sweet cereal and similar products containing very little nutritional value and a very high amount of added sugars.
- Avoid taking bread and rice and other baked and fried items, which are not going to improve your health in any way.
- Don’t forget to do regular exercises, yoga and meditation for healthy well being.
Beets are considered a superfood and have numerous health benefits for everyone, especially people with diabetes. Apart from taking beetroot for diabetes, you may also have it for lowering your blood pressure. A significant amount of reduction in insulin resistance as well as blood pressure is seen in people who eat beets or drink beet juice.
Note that your diabetes is not going to be controlled just by taking beets. You need to choose healthier foods and reduce the amount of carbohydrate intake. So, start practising a healthy lifestyle and healthy diet today itself and say goodbye to your diabetes.