Can You Eat Sweets With Diabetes?
Diabetes? *Gasp!* ‘You cannot have any sugar and have to live without sweets for the rest of your life!’ You must have been told this and thus you religiously believe in it.
However, you will be glad to know that this is a myth! Yes! Diabetics can eat sugar and stuff that contains caloric sweeteners such as honey, maple syrup and molasses. You must be wondering how. This is because diabetics are allowed foods that have carbs in them and it does not matter whether those carbs come from starchy foods such as potatoes or from sweets.
It is a good idea to save the sweets for special occasions as you shouldn’t miss out on nutritious food. When you want to include a sweet in your meal, you must keep the portions small and count carbs.
Say no to sugar? Really?
This notion that people suffering with diabetes must shun sugar totally is old school. Logically it does make sense. Diabetes is basically a medical condition that causes high blood sugar. Consuming sugary foods result in an increase in blood sugar levels. Thus people with diabetes should avoid consuming foods with sugar to keeps diabetes in control prevent high blood sugar which is called hyperglycemia in medical terms. However, just avoiding sugary stuff will not go too far in controlling blood sugar. Want to know why? Keep reading!
After you have your meal, your blood sugar level is chiefly determined by the total amount of carbs you ate and not from where those carbs come from. The carbs that elevate your blood sugar levels are of two types – sugar and starch. Both raise your blood glucose to the same level if you ate the same amount of both. For instance, if you ate half a cup of plain ice cream (containing 15 g of carbs), your blood sugar can rise to the same amount if you had consumed 1 slice of bread made out of whole wheat (also 15 g of carbs). This is the reason why you can eat one type of carb (starch) and not the other kind that is sugar.
What you need to pay heed to is the fact that even if foods containing sugars can be included in your diabetes diet with very little impact on the blood glucose, a majority of sweets and desserts are high in calories. And it goes without saying that they have very little or almost nil nutritional value. Thereby, even if it is completely possible to work out your diabetes meal plan, there are foods that have to be labeled as treats and should be consumed in limited quantities. This has to be kept in mind regardless of the type of sweetener you choose. Even natural sweeteners such as honey, agave syrup and the like have carbs in them that elevate your blood sugar levels. Thus, they should not be considered healthier than other sweeteners for diabetics.
So, that was all about whether you can eat sweets with diabetes. Now, you would also want to know about controlling blood sugar. If you want those tips, you need to stay tuned as I will be back with them soon in my next post.
Till then take care!
Caution: The above information does not take precedence over the advice of a doctor!
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