Diabetes Management

Is Apple Good for Diabetes?

Debolina Raja ,
June 2022

An apple a day can keep the doctor away but can it do the same for diabetes?

An apple a day can keep the doctor away but can it do the same for diabetes.

Delicious, easy to eat, healthy, and a great snack to carry around – crunchy fresh apples have been Snow White’s favorite too! But while apples are meant to keep doctors away, are they as good for keeping diabetes at bay too?

If you or your loved one has diabetes, one question that may always be on top of your mind is, will this food raise my blood sugar? Today, let’s clarify if apples are a good option for someone with diabetes, what health benefits they offer and what to be careful about.

Glycemic Index or GI of apples

Glycemic Index, also referred to as GI, is a type of system that assigns a number or numeric value to foods based on how much carbohydrate they contain and how fast eating each of these can increase your blood sugar levels.

What you eat will have an impact on your overall blood sugar levels. Keeping a track of the GI count of the foods you have can help you understand how they will affect your blood sugar levels. However, keep in mind GI number is not the final indication of whether something is healthy.

That depends on your personalized glycemic response, which can only be measured using a continuous glucose monitoring device, something you get as part of your Diabefly Pro program. This will also help you to avoid certain foods, or include some in your regular diet, depending on your specific needs.

Glycemic index, or GI, is usually divided into three categories:

Low GI – between 1 and 55

Medium GI – between 56 and 69

High GI – 70 and above

The glycemic index of apples is 39. This amount of GI is considered safe for people with diabetes to consume as it falls under the low GI category. A glycemic index of 39 also means that eating apples, but of course in moderation, will not immediately raise your blood sugar levels. 

Apple and its health benefits for people with diabetes: 

  1. Apples are rich in phytochemicals and as a result, they help reduce oxidative stress which helps increase insulin sensitivity. Therefore, they are considered very good in lowering the risk or progression of diabetes.       
  2. According to a Finnish study, those who regularly consumed apples were at a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
  1. The skin or peel of apples contains a high amount of quercetin, which is also known to reduce the risk or lower the progression of type 2 diabetes.                                                                                                                                            
  2. Including apples in your regular diet has also shown benefits in weight loss and better weight management, thus preventing obesity or excessive weight gain as a result of diabetes.
  1. Reviews and studies have shown that even a low intake of apples is a good way to positively decrease the risk of diabetes while including apples in your regular diet shows a definitive and significant decrease in the risk for developing or the progression of diabetes.
  2. Apples are especially good for those with diabetes because they contain a host of phytochemicals, such as catechin, phloridzin, quercetin, chlorogenic acid, and more. All of these are powerful antioxidants that reduce oxidative stress and combat inflammation, lower cholesterol and prevent, delay or reduce the chances of diabetes, or progression towards type 2 diabetes.                                                                                                                 
  3. Apples are rich in flavonoids, which may keep your pancreatic cells protected from damage. The pancreas helps in secreting insulin when there is extra sugar in your blood. As a result, those who regularly include apples in their diet have a lower risk of developing diabetes and a lower risk of progressing towards type 2 diabetes. 

Overall health benefits of eating apples

In addition to all the above, including apples in your regular diet plan can have the following health benefits:

  1. Many people who suffer from diabetes are also at a high risk of developing liver-related complications. Including apples in your diet is not only beneficial for diabetes but is also good for overall kidney health.
  1. The carbohydrate content in apples is not too high, which makes it safe for you to eat even with diabetes, but high enough to give you enough energy and fuel to function through the day. Apples are also easier for your body to digest, which helps improve gut health.                                                                                                                    
  2. Apples are rich in fiber, which means that your body takes time to digest apples, and eating these will not cause a spike in your blood sugar levels.                                                                                                                                  
  3. Polyphenols, a type of plant compound found in apples, are known for their positive effects on better management of blood sugar levels. Regularly eating apples is also known to reduce insulin resistance in the body, which helps keep your blood sugar levels within the desired range. 

How to add apples to your daily diet

Once your doctor gives you the go-ahead, here are a few ways in which you can include apples in your daily diet:

  • The best and easiest way of course is to wash the fruit and take a crunchy bite.
  • Grate or chop and add in your morning cereal.
  • Add in your oats porridge or chia pudding.
  • Try a baked apple recipe.
  • Grate and add in your regular salad.
  • Make some applesauce or apple butter and spread them on your whole wheat toast.
  • Apples go great in your whole wheat pasta too! Add some chicken or vegetables, as you
  • prefer.
  • Another really easy way is to keep a jar of water and add freshly sliced apples to it to make some homemade apple-infused water. Healthy, tasty, and keeps you hydrated through the day.

As with any other foods that you eat, do remember that having too much of anything is bad for your overall health. Hence, eating in moderation is the key.

With its many health benefits for diabetes as well as for your overall health, eating apples can be a great way to keep your blood sugar levels in check, reduce your risk of diabetes, as well as improve your overall health. 


However, including more apples in your regular diet, make sure that you do speak to your diabetes care team and dietician/nutritionist to understand how much apple is safe for you to eat, and follow medical advice as given.

Controlling blood sugar with diet is only one aspect of diabetes management or reversal. It is important to take a comprehensive approach that includes exercise, stress, and sleep management.

Fitterfly’s programs Diabefly, Diabefly Pro, and Diabefly Reverse are personalized programs that come with a team of dedicated coaches to focus on different aspects of diabetes management or reversal.

They can not only provide helpful information about what fruits are safe for you. But also help you form healthy habits that will help you sustain your progress for a lifetime. 

Tip of the day: Eating fruits with another meal, can increase your risk of spiking blood sugar. Therefore, it is always best to eat them as a snack. 

Looking for the perfect Indian diet for Diabetes?

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