If you are a diabetic patient, you might think, “Is pumpkin good for diabetics?” Well, the answer to this question is ‘yes’. Pumpkin is a low-calorie food loaded with micronutrients that are said to be suitable for people with diabetes. Pumpkins not only taste good but have plenty of nutrients.
Is pumpkin a vegetable or fruit? Like others, do you also think that pumpkin is a vegetable? Well, the fact is that it is a fruit, and it belongs to the Cucurbitaceae family that comprises cucumbers, watermelons, etc. There are more than 100 types of pumpkins available in the market to select from.
Pumpkin and Diabetes
There are various vegetables good for diabetes, but very limited fruits that diabetic patients can eat, and pumpkin is one of them. It comprises an array of health benefits for diabetic people. Let’s talk about a few of them here:
1) Helps manage blood sugar level- Pumpkin is full of vitamins, minerals, and carbohydrates. Usually, diabetic patients should avoid food containing carbohydrates; however, pumpkin is also rich in dietary fiber and magnesium, which cancels the glycemic index’s impact and helps maintain the blood sugar level.
2) Might help avoid insulin shots- Pumpkins contain carbohydrates called polysaccharides and a compound called puerarin, which, when put together, aid in reducing blood sugar and preventing diabetes. Pumpkins also help augment the production of insulin, which in turn helps regulate the blood sugar level.
3) Blood pressure- Pumpkin is a rich source of vitamin C, potassium, and fiber that help lower blood pressure and the chance of stroke.
4) Boosts Immunity- The immunity of diabetic people reduces over time. Therefore, it is important to consume food that helps increase their immunity. There are numerousfruits and vegetables good for diabetesthat help boost immunity, and pumpkin is one such fruit. It comprises Vitamin E and carotenoids, powerful antioxidants that help increase immunity and safeguard your cells from harmful free radicals.
5) Protects from cancer- Still confused, is pumpkin good for diabetics or not? Reading this benefit might remove all your doubts. Diabetic patients become weak with time, so they become susceptible to infections and other diseases. Pumpkin helps them avert these diseases as it contains Beta carotenoids and phytoestrogens that mimic the human hormone estrogen, which helps lessen the risk of breast, prostate, and gastric cancers.
Nutritional Benefits of Pumpkin
Pumpkin is recommended for diabetic patients because of the various nutrition benefits that it offers-
- Glycemic Index Score: 75 (max. 100)
- Glycemic Load Score:3 (max. 7)
Every 100 grams of pumpkin contains:
|Dietary fiber||0.5 grams|
|Vitamins & Minerals||Quantity|
|Vitamin B2||0.110 milligrams|
|Vitamin B1||0.05 milligrams|
|Vitamin B6||0.061 milligrams|
|Vitamin B3||0.6 milligrams|
|Vitamin C||9 milligrams|
|Vitamin A||369 micrograms|
|Vitamin B5||0.298 milligrams|
|Vitamin E||0.6 milligrams|
The Risks of Overconsumption of Pumpkins?
Excess of anything is bad, and this also applies to the consumption of pumpkins. It is important that you know that consuming a lot of pumpkins can increase the insulin in the body, which can be harmful to your health; plus, it may also cause constipation. So, ensure that you consume just a small portion of pumpkin in a day and do not increase its intake.
Pumpkins are usually used in making desserts and drinks, but as a diabetic patient, this can be unhealthy for you. Thus, it is recommended to consume it as soup or make a smoothie from it but do not add sugar. You should choose healthy recipes and go for small portions.
By now, you know that moderation is key to enjoying pumpkin. Therefore, consuming pumpkins in small quantities is good. Overconsumption of pumpkins can be pretty harmful to both diabetic and non-diabetic patients. Plus, keep in mind that the ideal time for consumption is during breakfast or at lunch – avoid eating it at night.
Can Diabetic Patients Eat Pumpkin Seeds?
The good part is that diabetic patients can also eat pumpkin seeds instead of consuming pumpkin in other forms. Pumpkin seeds help manage diabetes as they are high in magnesium, which controls the blood sugar level. Plus, the seeds are also rich in fiber, which can be ideal for better digestion and low blood sugar levels.
We hope we were able to answer your question ‘is pumpkin good for diabetics?’ Now that you know about the various health benefits of pumpkins and the best way and time to consume them, you can add a new fruit to your diabetic diet. Just ensure that you are not overconsuming it.