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A Nutritionist’s Answers – Is Wheat Good For Diabetes?
Wheat is one of the most commonly consumed cereals in India. Every day we Indians consume wheat in the form of roti, paratha, thepla, bread, pasta, biscuits and namkeens.
While it is one of the most commonly used cereals, wheat is often considered a healthy cereal for people with diabetes over rice. Wheat also aids in good digestion and prevents cardiovascular disease, while helping you maintain a healthy weight.
Despite the benefits wheat offers, sometimes we wonder if wheat is good for people with diabetes. Let us understand the nutritional value of wheat and how it affects blood glucose levels.
What is the nutritional value of wheat?
Typically, the nutritional value of 100 grams of wheat is:
Calories – 320 kcal
Carbohydrate – 64 grams
Protein- 10 grams
Total fat- 1.53 grams
Fiber – 11.36 grams
The glycemic index for whole grain wheat flour is 45, whereas the glycemic load of it is 26.8. The low glycemic index of wheat makes it a good cereal choice for people with diabetes.
However, because of the carbohydrate content in wheat, you must keep a watch on the quantity of wheat you consume.
Besides tracking your wheat intake you must ensure to add a lot of fiber and proteins in your diet to reduce the glycemic load of your entire meal.
Additionally, you must ensure that you do not sieve the flour too much as it can reduce the fiber content in the wheat flour. The fiber content reduces the glycemic index which directly affects blood sugar levels.
The less processed the wheat is, the better choice it makes for controlling blood sugar.
What are the other health benefits of wheat for diabetes?
Understanding the effect of wheat for diabetes is crucial as wheat is a staple cereal in almost all Indian households. Whole wheat flour does not cause a rise in blood glucose levels as much as rice such as blood sugar and body fat levels.
Apart from managing glucose levels and body fat levels, the fiber in wheat is what makes it a hero. Some of the benefits it offers are:
- Lowers the risk of developing chronic diseases.
- Helps you manage your heart health.
- The high fiber content in wheat delays the emptying of the stomach. This helps you feel satiated for a long time.
- Lowers the risk of developing cancer.
- Strengthens the bones.
Indias top Diabetes nutritionists
are here to help
Indias top Diabetes nutritionists are here to help
Ways to consume wheat in diabetes?
The most popular cereal across the globe wheat can be consumed in many ways by people with diabetes, including:
- Roti/ Chapati: Generally wheat flour is used to make roti or chapati, which are a staple food in many Indian households.
- Dalia: Fiber-rich cereal made with broken wheat, dalia is a nutritious and filling food option.
- Chilla: Wheat pancakes or chilla made from wheat flour using a healthy oil like rice bran or olive oil.
- Healthy cakes: Whole wheat flour can be used to make carrot cakes with natural sweeteners like stevia and yogurt to replace sugar and oil.
- Partha/theplas: Although the calorie is high in thepla and parathas, whole wheat tepla and vegetable partha can occasionally be consumed by people with diabetes.
Is chapati made from whole wheat good for diabetes?
Chapatis made from whole wheat is generally better than rice for most people with diabetes. The low glycemic index of whole flour wheat makes it ideal for people with diabetes.
The high complex carbohydrates present in whole wheat flour take time to digest thereby reducing the glycemic load. Besides having complex carbohydrates, chapati is high in dietary fiber, which slows down the absorption of sugar in the bloodstream. The delay in the absorption of sugar prevents a sudden spike in blood sugar levels.
Chapati made from whole wheat flour is low in fats which are considered to provide a healthy and balanced diet for people with diabetes.
Yes! Wheat and diabetes are a good match 🙂
Whole wheat is a healthy cereal for people with diabetes. Fiber-rich wheat flour has several benefits for people with diabetes. While thinking of food for diabetes, wheat is generally the cereal that comes up first in our mind.
Although a healthy cereal, you must consume wheat flour in moderate amounts as excessive consumption of wheat flour can cause a spike in blood sugar levels.
If you are finding it difficult to manage your blood glucose levels despite taking good care of your diet, do not worry.
India's top Diabetes nutritionists are here to help