Diabetes and Bananas: Are Bananas Good or Bad For diabetics?

Banana, being a rich source of vitamin, potassium, and several other nutrients are considered very healthy. However, the high content of sugar often gives rise the question as to whether the fruit should be consumed by those who suffer from diabetes? It is often very important to take extreme care of your body when you are suffering from diabetes as the disease brings in a lot of other related complications such as a number of cardiovascular diseases as well as diseases related to the kidney. A well maintained and regulated lifestyle, coupled with a healthy diet and physical exercise have always been recommended by the doctors. One such regulation is the inclusion of bananas in the daily diet.

In this article, we try to find out the answer to the above question. We shall delve deep and analyze whether it is safe to eat bananas as a diabetic patient.

Let’s Know Some Facts Related to Bananas

Before we begin our discussion on the relation between diabetes and bananas, we should know a few facts about the fruit. Following are a few facts which might help us to understand the relation between diabetes and bananas:

  • The fruit is very rich in both sugar and carbohydrates. These elements, in turn, are responsible for raising the blood sugar level in the body, thereby adversely affecting diabetes.
  • Out of the total calories that banana contains, around 93% of the same is in the form of carbohydrates, which might pose some threat and increase complications in a patient suffering from diabetes.
  • However, the fiber content of the fruit makes it harmless for a diabetes patient. In fact, doctors have always recommended that a patient suffering from diabetes should actually take in as much fiber as possible.
  • On an average, a medium sized banana contains about 3 grams of fiber, 14 grams of sugar, and about 6 grams of starch.

Thus, eating of bananas may or may not be harmful to a person suffering from diabetes. After taking into consideration, a few other factors, the fruit can be consumed adequately.

In the following paragraphs, we determine and analyze more carefully the relation between bananas and diabetes and the factors to be kept in mind while eating the fruit.

The Relation Between Bananas and Diabetes

We now will try to understand the relation between the two. Most of the people ask the question that whether it is safe for a person suffering from diabetes to have bananas? Well, there is two schools of thoughts herein. While one school of thought is of the view that the fruit high in carbohydrates and sugar content should be avoided, the other school of thought says that you can eat the fruit but with certain precautions and proper medical guidance.

Diabetes and Bananas

In the following paragraphs, we delve deeper into the relation between bananas and diabetic patient and try to analyze how the bananas should be included in our daily diet for the maximum benefits.

How Can Eating Bananas be Beneficial for Diabetes?

As discussed above, there could be some benefits that a patient suffering from diabetes might have by eating bananas.

The following are some of the essential benefits:

  • When a banana with the prescribed number of carbohydrates is eaten, it is beneficial as it helps to improve the level of blood sugar and glucose in the body.
  • It is also known to improve the way insulin responds to the body. This, in turn, goes a long way in managing diabetes.
  • The chemical, B-6 present in bananas reduces the levels of stress in the body. This goes a long way in the treatment of diabetes as better stress management reduces complications in the treatment.
  • The fruit is also known to manage and improve metabolism, which, as above, leads to better treatment of diabetes and reduces other complications associated with the disease.
  • Bananas are known to be a rich source of fiber. This improves digestion. Finally, the potassium in the fruit helps to prevent the problem of high blood pressure, while also preventing various types of heart diseases. All these factors lead to essential benefits to a person who suffers from diabetes.

What are the Risks Associated with Eating Bananas if you Have Diabetes?

Although eating of bananas can be beneficial as already seen above, there are, however, a few risks and difficulties which are associated with it. In the following points, we look into the adverse effects on a diabetes patient which comes with eating of bananas:

  • Unripe bananas are known to carry the glycemic index level at 42. However, this value keeps on increasing as the banana gets riper and riper with time. When this index shoots up to as much as 55, it adversely affects the blood sugar level of the body and hence is harmful. The index is used to measure the presence of the carbohydrates and too much of carbohydrate is bad for a diabetic patient.
  • One of the risks that the fruit carries comes with the fact that the fruit should not be eaten as a dessert. If eaten in that form, it increases the level of sugar in the blood to a very harmful extent.
  • Consuming bananas will be an issue if they are overripe and you are not eating a moderate amount of the fruit. Eating large amounts of the fruit will pose serious health threats.
  • One of the many risks associated with the eating of bananas by a person suffering from diabetes is the one which takes place if you have too much potassium in your body coupled with problems in the kidney. Bananas, being a rich source of potassium will increase to more accumulation of the chemical leading to adverse health effects.

What is in Store for People with Diabetes Who Want to Eat Bananas?

  • As seen in the above paragraphs, if you are a diabetic patient, you still can have bananas but only after taking certain things into consideration.
  • Your overall treatment of diabetes should be paired with a good lifestyle, a healthy diet, and adequate physical exercise. That way a small banana is something that you can definitely enjoy!

What are the Things That Should be Kept in Mind While You Include Bananas in your Diet?

Are bananas good for diabetics? – Eating bananas when you are someone who suffers from diabetes can be really tricky. However, if you follow a healthy lifestyle, you can still continue eating the fruit. The only thing you need is to keep a few things in mind when you are including bananas in your daily diet.

Following are a few tips to be followed if you want to include the fruit in the diet but are afraid to do so owing to your problem of diabetes:

  • As seen above, it becomes imperative to be aware of the glycemic index while you are eating bananas. Hence, go for the one which is neither extremely ripe nor is extremely unripe. A right balance is something that is required and is preferable.
  • Include the fruit as part of your breakfast and combine the same with nuts and oats for making a healthy combination.
  • Putting some cinnamon on the banana will also help. The benefits will come from the varied health benefits which cinnamon carries. For example, the chemicals and anti-oxidants present in cinnamon improves the glucose levels and enhances the use of insulin in the body.
  • Whenever you are eating the fruit, do remember you are taking in a lot of carbohydrates and the same needs to be compensated with a diet which has less of carbohydrates.
  • Use the green plantains too while you are eating the fruit.

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We hope that the post has been helpful in removing some of the doubts you had with regards to the relation between diabetes and the inclusion of bananas in the diet.

Although the fruit contains a lot of sugar and carbohydrates and can bring about adverse effects on the blood glucose level, a moderate consumption along with a few precautions can help you in treating diabetes. Having said that, do remember to consult your medical doctor before consuming bananas, particularly if you are under certain kind of medications. Bananas are a rich source of various vitamins and nutrients and as such, it is always advisable to consult your doctor before including the fruit in your diet.

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