Can Diabetics Eat Beetroot? Are Beets High in Sugar?

Last Updated on June 16, 2023 by Dr Sharon Baisil MD

Well, beetroots are amazing vegetables with plenty of helpful nutrients and fiber. Beetroot is indeed very good for individuals with diabetes as it has a low glycemic load, despite a higher glycemic index of 64.

Beets are vegetables that are on the recommended list of foods for diabetic patients. They are enriched with several vital nutrients that keep the body nourished and away from developing higher blood sugar levels in the body.

You can include this wonder veggie in your diabetic diet from today. It is safe as well as a recommended one. You do not have to worry about your blood sugar levels spiking up out of control with beets.

Beetroots seem to have many beneficial effects that help to treat diabetes efficiently. They are also said to be good for the management of blood pressure.

Veggie causing Diabetes

Beetroot helps in increasing good blood circulation in the body. This is very helpful for people diagnosed with diabetes as they tend to have blood clots or improper circulation issues due to blood vessel damage.

In addition to this, beetroots also seem to be enriched with a variety of antioxidants that help with reducing the internal oxidative stress in the body; the alpha-lipoic acid found in beets is meant to deal with nerve functioning.

Diabetic patients are often prone to developing nerve damage that can be irreversible. To prevent these extreme dangers, one must be very careful and can resort to including beetroots in the diet.

Beets are very nutritionally rich in vitamins and minerals. They are also low in fats and have no cholesterol. The overall calories in beetroots are also very low. We will look at the calorie and number of sugar found in beetroots later in this article.

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There are several good effects that you can benefit from if you add beets to your diabetic meals. They not only prevent risings in blood sugar levels but also improve overall health and body immunity.

Are beets high in sugar?

Beetroots are very healthy and also safe for diabetic consumption. Until now, we also discussed the many health benefits that beetroots have on the body. But what about their sugar content?

Well, it is nothing to worry about. Beetroots have moderate amounts of sugar with lots of fiber to manage it. Moreover, they are low in calories as well.

A 100-gram serving of beets has around 10 grams of carbohydrates, and out of this, around 6.76 grams is sugar. There is a presence of 2.8 grams of dietary fiber. Beetroot has a high glycemic index of 64, but the glycemic load is quite low.

Let us have a look at the other nutrients found in beetroots. The following table shows the nutritional makeup of beetroots.

Sl. No. Nutrients available in 100 g beetroot Amount available
1.Calories43
2.Carbohydrates10 g
3.Proteins1.61 g
4.Fats0.17 g
5.Water87.58 g
6.Cholesterol0 mg
7.Potassium325 mg
8.Manganese0.329 mg
9.Magnesium23 mg
10.Sodium78 mg
11.Calcium16 mg
12.Copper0.075 mg
13.Iron0.8 mg
14.Zinc0.35 mg
15.Phosphorus40 mg
16.Selenium0.7 mg
17.Choline6 mg
18.Folate109 µg
19.Vitamin C4.9 mg
20.Vitamin A33 IU
21.Vitamin B60.067 mg
22.Vitamin B10.031 mg
23.Vitamin B30.334 mg
24.Vitamin B20.04 mg
25.Vitamin B50.155 mg
26.Vitamin K0.2 µg
27.Vitamin E0.04 mg

With plenty of these nutrients, you can be assured of your health benefits. It is, however, important to include them in healthy dishes and in moderate quantities according to your health and diabetic conditions.

What happens if you eat beetroot every day?

Well, beetroots are great for health and what is better is that they can be included in your diet every day. They are safe and do not cause any disruptions when had daily.

But at the same time, they must be had certain limitations as well. A daily 70 – 80 gram serving is good for a day. It is better not to overdo it as it may affect your health otherwise.

On the other hand, when eaten in safe and limited amounts, beetroots can be very advantageous to health. They can have the following benefits for your body:

  1. The juice of beetroot is said to be very helpful in lowering the body’s blood pressure. This is good for the heart and prevents risks of cardiovascular ailments. We will discuss beetroot juice for diabetics in detail as we move further on.
  2. Beets have a good amount of antioxidants, iron, calcium, B vitamins, etc., which are great for keeping the liver healthy. These nutrients, along with zinc and copper, help to reduce oxidative in the liver, promoting better functioning of the liver. Moreover, it also encourages thinning of the bile to promote better flow of it in the intestine.
  3. The presence of fiber, folate, and betalains, enhance the inflammatory properties of the beetroot. This, in turn, also helps with proper kidney functioning and prevents inflammation.
  4. Beetroots also assist in keeping the oxygen supply healthy. This helps in keeping the brain well-oxygenated and encourages proper neural functioning.
  5. Eating beetroots is also good for the digestive system. With better liver functioning, digestion is less obstructed. It is also known to restore abdominal health and cure issues like constipation.
  6. Beetroots are rich in iron. Iron is very crucial for the health and prevents anemia. Women can be benefitted a lot from this daily source of iron.
  7. Calcium in beets also strengthens the bones and teeth. Beets are also good for preventing the risks of joint issues and osteoporosis.
  8. Researchers have also found that beetroot also has nutritional elements that keep away certain cancers such as prostate cancer, breast cancer, lung, and skin cancer.
  9. Beetroot has many overall benefits, too, like on the skin. It is good for preventing skin cancer, premature skin aging, and related skin issues.

Can a diabetic have beetroot juice?

Can a diabetic have beetroot juice

Well, to be direct in answering this question – No! Beetroot juice is not recommended for diabetics. Even though Beets are highly beneficial to health, converting them into juices will break down their fiber and drastically increases their Glycemic Load.

Beetroot juice can be taken in moderation, as the nitrous oxide present in it is very effective in treating and controlling high blood pressure, which is common in Type 2 Diabetes.

Packaged juices generally have added preservatives, chemicals, sugars, flavors, etc. They are also devoid of a good amount of fiber that is present in the vegetable.

You can also add some carrots to your juice to make it even more beneficial. This juice is great for improving your immunity. We have an easy at-home healthy beetroot juice recipe for you:

Ingredients:

  • 2 medium beetroots/ 1 large beetroot
  • 4 – 5 mint leaves
  • 2cm of ginger
  • salt

Method:

  • Wash, peel, and cut the beets into small pieces.
  • Add them to the blender with some salt, mint leaves, and ginger.
  • Add in a glass of water and blend into a smooth juicy consistency.
  • You can either choose to strain it or not.

Who should avoid beetroot?

Well, some rules go against the regular usage of beets as well. These are specific to individuals with certain health issues or allergies.

  • If you have a lower blood pressure than normal or are on blood pressure medications, it is advised to keep beetroot juice.
  • If you have kidney issues, the oxalates found in beets can infuriate this issue. Eating beetroots can also increase the risk of developing kidney stones.
  • If you are allergic to beets, you should stay away from them to prevent any mouth discomforts, reactions, or irritations.

It is best to follow your health schedule for the best diabetes management.

Frequently Asked Questions

How should beetroot be prepared to maximize its nutritional value for diabetics?

To optimize the nutritional value of beetroot for diabetics, it is best to consume it in its raw or lightly cooked form. Raw beetroot retains more nutrients and dietary fiber. Steaming or roasting beetroot are also healthy cooking methods that help preserve its nutritional content while enhancing its natural flavors.

Can beetroot consumption help improve insulin sensitivity in diabetics?

Some studies suggest that beetroot consumption may improve insulin sensitivity in diabetics. This is attributed to the presence of dietary nitrates in beetroot, which have been shown to enhance blood flow and potentially aid in glucose uptake. However, further research is needed to fully understand the extent of its impact on insulin sensitivity.

Are there any specific varieties of beetroot that are more beneficial for diabetics?

While there aren’t specific beetroot varieties exclusively beneficial for diabetics, opting for organic or locally sourced beetroots can ensure higher nutrient content. Choosing fresh beetroots with vibrant colors indicates their nutritional quality, including beneficial antioxidants and phytonutrients.

Can beetroot consumption have any impact on cardiovascular health in diabetic individuals?

Beetroot consumption may have a positive impact on cardiovascular health in diabetic individuals. Its high nitrate content has been associated with lower blood pressure levels, improved blood flow, and enhanced cardiovascular function. However, individual responses may vary, and it is advised to consult a healthcare professional for personalized guidance.

How does beetroot support digestive health in individuals with diabetes?

Beetroot supports digestive health in individuals with diabetes due to its high fiber content. Fiber aids in promoting regular bowel movements, preventing constipation, and maintaining a healthy gut microbiome. This can contribute to improved digestion and overall gastrointestinal well-being.

References

  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1089860314002286
  2. https://besps.journals.ekb.eg/article_136168.html
  3. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s40200-021-00798-z
  4. https://www.ajol.info/index.php/njbas/article/view/206319
  5. https://www.proquest.com/openview/7fe4310353bb197a4767919b63ba472d/1?pq-origsite=gscholar&cbl=18750&diss=y
  6. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/ptr.6653
  7. https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/proceedings-of-the-nutrition-society/article/dietary-nitrate-from-beetroot-juice-selectively-reduces-central-blood-pressure-in-type-2-diabetes-the-randomized-controlled-vasera-trial/2BC3E1C08D68BDF5AAE636D1628CD062
  8. https://academic.oup.com/jn/article/143/6/818/4571708?login=true
  9. https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Henrietta-Oboh-2/publication/309761602_Effects_of_Daily_Intake_of_Beetroot_Juice_on_Blood_Glucose_and_Hormones_in_Young_Healthy_Subjects/links/5821e2a408aece82e27f1a5f/Effects-of-Daily-Intake-of-Beetroot-Juice-on-Blood-Glucose-and-Hormones-in-Young-Healthy-Subjects.pdf

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