Cochin Cardiac Club

Health Blog by Dr.Uday Nair


Fruits contain lots of nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, natural fibers, and anti-oxidants which is very important for the body. Fruits are equally important for patients with diabetes, but they must be careful in selecting the right fruit and the right proportions. They should avoid overly sweet fruit such as jack fruit and durian for in blood sugar levels remain normal, and the best fruits are high in fiber with low glycemic index (GI) are ideal for diabetics because the existing fiber in the fruit will slow down the metabolism, and it will prevents the increase in blood sugar levels.

When people with diabetes are looking for foods that can help manage their diet, fruit is often not only a concern but also can be confusing. There are both good and bad fruit choices for diabetics, as well as a few which can fit into both good and bad categories depending on the situation. Eating fruit which is good for diabetics can help them maintain a healthy diet as well as control sugar levels and weight

Diabetics often ask whether it is safe for them to eat large quantities of fruit. Many people suffering from diabetes avoid eating fruit because they are worried about the high sugar content found in most fruits. Fortunately, there are many fruits a diabetic can enjoy which do not significantly affect blood glucose levels.

Glycemic Index

Fruit generally has a greater level of fructose that does not require insulin for absorption. Fructose is converted into glucose by the liver. Therefore it can readily be included in a diabetic diet and is also low in fat, sodium, and high in fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants. People with diabetes should choose those with low glycemic index and high fiber such as watermelon, strawberries, plums, kiwifruit etc. Glycemic index (GI) is a measure of how fast carbohydrate foods are converted in the body to blood glucose. Low rankings are those that score below 55, intermediate-GI foods score between 55 and 70 and high GI foods score above 70. Juices should be avoided as they do not contain fiber and would raise the blood sugar level rapidly.

Fruits and Blood Sugar

How quickly your blood sugar will be raised depends on such considerations as whether you eat after a high-fat meal or drink it as a glass of juice on an empty stomach. You'll also want to consider what your blood-sugar level is when you eat. If you're monitoring your blood glucose, you should be able to figure out how it responds to eating them. It is also important to pay attention to its size you eat - choose a small or medium-sized apple over a large one (or eat only half of the large one). A quick and easy measure of the right serving size is the amount that can comfortably fit in the palm of your hand. Anything bigger than that is too large.

One important point to note, every person are not the same. Different persons might respond differently to the same food. The increase in blood sugar level for one person to eat one apple might be the same as the other who eat 2 apples with the same size. Therefore it might be important to monitor the respond of our body to certain fruits.

Good Fruits For Diabetics

Fiber rich foods are general safe for diabetics to eat because they tend to have a lower glycemic index (GI) and therefore do not spike blood sugar levels to the same extent as high GI foods. This is because fiber slows down the absorption of sugar into the blood stream. Fiber rich fruits tend to be fruits with edible skins and seeds as it is these parts of the fruit that are highest in fiber. Fruits high in fiber include (fiber content in brackets): apples(2.5%), pears (2.1%), apricots (2.1%), blueberries (2.7%), kiwifruit (2.1%), pomegranates (3.4%), and avocados (6.7%).

The avocado is not only high in fiber, but is also a rich source of monounsaturated fat. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) recommends a diet high in monounsaturated fat as it can help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease which is more common in diabetics than the general population. There is also some evidence that a diet rich in monounsaturated fat can improve glycemic control.

Fruits high in fructose, and those with high fructose to glucose ratios are also beneficial to diabetics because fructose does not require insulin to metabolize and therefore can be enjoyed by insulin resistant diabetics. High fructose fruits include apples, pears, guavas, and mangoes, - all of which have fructose to glucose ratios greater than 2.


Along with high fiber and fructose levels, apples have added benefits for people with diabetes. Raw apples contain high amounts of pectin which has been shown to improve glycemic control in diabetics, reducing insulin requirements by up to 50% in some cases.Vitamin B1 in apples also helps prevent brain damage in the body.


Grape fruit is another fruit which may be beneficial for diabetics. Grapefruit can promote weight loss which in turn helps reduce insulin resistance. According to research, grapefruit may also help control insulin levels when consumed during meal times.

3.Avocado Fruit.

The avocado fruit is rich in fiber and contain high mono saturated fats that are essential for cardio-vascular system healthy. Avocados can also increase the glycemic index as well as reduce the risk of heart disease.

4.Guava fruit.

Amount of fructose in guava fruit is high enough so that it can cause the body does not require insulin for metabolism and this makes guava fruit is one of fruits diabetes that is safe for people who sufferer with this disease

Bad Fruits For Diabetics

Fruits with high amounts of glucose should be eaten only in small amounts as they can spike blood glucose levels however most can still be enjoyed as part of a healthy diabetic meal plan. High sugar fruits include bananas, dates, grapes,mangoes.

Likewise, fruit juices tend to be stripped of the pulpy fibrous parts of the fruit and therefore tend to be very low in fiber and very high in sugar. Many fruit juices manufacturers also add sugar to their fruit juices to the extent that some fruit juices have higher sugar levels than carbonated sodas.

Dried fruits tend to have a significant effect blood sugar levels due to their high sugar content. Canned fruits in syrup also tend to be high in sugar and therefore should be eaten in moderation or drained of the syrup before consuming. Many fruits are also available canned in their own juices rather than in syrup. These should be used in preference to fruits canned in syrup.

For conclusion, the question is not whether or not you should eat it but rather how much and what kinds you should be eating. As they are great sources of different nutrition, it is not a good idea not to eat them. We should put them into our diet and manage what and how much to eat.

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