Can Diabetic Patients Eat Banana? 7 Benefits

Diabetes is often said to be a very risky condition. As a diabetic patient, you might have to always think about what you can or cannot eat. It can get tiring to constantly pick healthy choices and judge every food item before deciding to include it in your diet routine.

How about fruits? Are fruits safe for diabetic patients? Well, it differs and depends from fruit to fruit. Several safe fruits are safe for diabetic consumption.

What about one of the most common and easiest fruits of all time – the Banana? Is Banana safe for diabetes patients? This might be one of the many questions you might have. Today, let us have a look at …

  • Can diabetic patients eat Banana?
  • What is the glycemic index of a banana?
  • How many bananas can a diabetic eat a day?
  • Is three bananas a day too much in diabetes?
  • Do bananas raise your blood sugar?
  • Nutrition information of bananas
  • What are the benefits of eating a banana?

Let us one by one look into the answers to all of these questions. We aim to assist you with the measures towards diabetic relief and cure.

Without much more delay, let us dive into answering the questions.

Can diabetic patients eat Banana?

Can diabetic patients eat Banana

Well, to give you a clear-cut answer on this one – bananas are nutritious for everyone, diabetics too, but must be had in moderate quantities only. It is a fruit packed with a lot of nutrients and healthy goodness but to attain its real benefits as a diabetic; you need to know more than just this.

Veggie causing Diabetes

Bananas are fruits with sky-high praises. They are an easy snack, nutritious, filling, and supply us with various health benefits.

But bananas, like most fruits, are sweet, meaning that they have sugar. This is exactly what comes in the way of it being a truly excellent food choice for diabetic patients.

Bananas are to be chosen and included in the diabetic meal plan as healthy fruits, with some caution. Nevertheless, we will go through the how’s and what’s of this fruit in detail for a clearer idea about it.

The sugar in bananas, if overdone, may lead to uncontrolled and mismanaged levels of blood glucose in the body. This, in turn, can hamper the rest of the body’s functioning and cause harmful situations.

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However, bananas have a low glycemic index. Hence, it is safe in a way. We are going to have a closer look at the exact glycemic index of this fruit later in this article.

In addition to this, the amount of fiber found in bananas is also on the higher side. Therefore, these qualities make it a safe and healthy addition to one’s diabetic health.

But due to its comparatively higher levels of carbohydrates, it needs to be included in controlled quantities to avoid any risk to your diabetic blood sugar levels.

Managing your food portions is a key step to keeping your diabetic conditions under check. We will go through the right limits and quantities of this fruit to help you get a crisp idea about it.

But before that, let us find out about the glycemic index of bananas.

What is the glycemic index of a banana?

What is the glycemic index of a banana

Bananas are fruits with a low glycemic index; we mentioned this before. But what is the glycemic index?

The glycemic index is the measure of the number of carbohydrates in it and how it can affect an individual’s blood sugar levels. This is one of the very efficient ways of learning about different food choices that are safe and healthy for consumption as a diabetes patient.

The glycemic index measure helps to give a very accurate way of determining the goodness of food. A food’s glycemic index is measured on a scale ranging from 0 to 100.

After measuring the glycemic index of foods, they are classified according to their sugar content and carb readings. Here is a table representing the divisions of food made according to the glycemic index:

Sl. No. Glycemic Index categoriesGlycemic Index ranges
1.Low Glycemic Index (safe for diabetics) 0 to 55
2.Medium Glycemic Index (safe when taken in moderate quantities)55  to 69
3.High Glycemic Index (unsafe for diabetics)From 70 and above

From the above-given table, you can easily find out whether a certain food is safe for you or not.

Coming to bananas, the glycemic index reading for bananas is – 51. It is under the low glycemic category.

It is important to be kept in mind that the ripeness of this fruit is also responsible for its glycemic index measures. Unripe bananas have a lower glycemic index of around 30. As the fruit ripens more and more, it starts to develop a higher glycemic index.

As per the glycemic index readings, the Banana is deemed safe to be taken by diabetic patients. But it is best to stick to moderate quantities of it only.

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What are these diabetic safe quantities, you ask? Let us discuss it.

How many bananas can a diabetic eat a day?

How many bananas can a diabetic eat a day

Well, it is safer to avoid having bananas daily if you have diabetes. It is best to have this fruit 3 or 4 times per week.

You can go for small or medium-sized bananas for the safest choices.

You can have them in your fruit salads as a morning, midday, or evening snack option. It can also be a before bedtime diabetic snack.

Make sure to abide by the mentioned quantities. Avoid having milkshakes or smoothies of this fruit as they are usually higher in sugar.

Including the right amounts of Banana is good for your health. You can benefit from the fiber found in this fruit. Fiber is a very important part of nutrition for diabetics as it helps regulate the sugar levels in the body and keeps the metabolic system properly functional.

You can also consider adding citrus fruits alongside bananas to ensure a safe and balanced amount of nutrition. It can enrich you with needed vitamins and minerals as well.

For better results, you can also consult your health experts and diabetic doctors to know about the safe quantities of bananas according to your unique diabetic health. It is crucial to follow all steps of safety to avoid any risks to your health and well-being.

Is three bananas a day too much for diabetic patients?

Is three bananas a day too much for diabetic patients

Given our previous discussion, the answer to this question may be pretty obvious. Yes! Three bananas in a day is an excessive quantity for diabetics. They can lead to higher levels of sugar and an overall mismanaged diabetic control.

Do not have more than three or four small to medium bananas in a week. It is a devised safe quantity for diabetic patients.

Too much of this fruit can hamper blood sugar management as it can add extra sugar. Hence, make sure you oblige to the norms of diet as well as food portions.

Do bananas raise your blood sugar levels?

Do bananas raise your blood sugar levels

Yes, bananas can lead to high sugar levels if not included in moderate amounts. Well, a banana is a good source of carbohydrates.

The sugars in it can give rise to rapid increases in the body’s glucose levels. It is a very risky deal for anyone with diabetes to have too much of this fruit.

A medium-sized banana alone can add 14g of carbs to the body.

By now, you have learned about the importance of having bananas in a limited amount with the right quantities.

Hence, it is best to be cautious with this fruit.

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Nutrition Information of Bananas

Nutrition Information of Bananas

Until now, we looked in the diabetic details for the fruit and talked about its glycemic index. We had been focusing on its carbohydrate levels.

Now, let us find out about the entire nutritional composition of this fruit.

Sl. No. Nutrients available in 100 g bananaAmount available
1.Calories89
2.Carbohydrates

– sugar

Dietary fiber

22.84g

– 12g

– 3 g

3.Proteins1.09g
4.Fats0.33g
5.Water74.91g
6.Potassium358mg
7.Magnesium27mg
8.Manganese0.27mg
9.Copper0.078mg
10.Selenium1µg
11.Choline9.8mg
12.Iron0.26mg
13.Phosphorus22mg
14.Zinc0.15mg
15.Calcium5mg
16.Sodium1mg
17.Vitamin C8.7mg
18.Vitamin B60.367mg
19.Vitamin A64IU
20.Folate20 µg
21.Vitamin B50.334mg
22.Vitamin B30.665mg
23.Vitamin B20.073mg
24.Vitamin K0.5 µg
25.Vitamin B10.031mg
26.Vitamin E0.1mg

Now, let us move forward to knowing the different health benefits these nutrients have on the body.

What are the benefits of eating a banana?

What are the benefits of eating a banana

  1. Bananas are great for keeping the belly fit. It is not only a healthy choice to snack on but also one that keeps issues such as bloating away. The presence of enough potassium in bananas is known to help with fighting bloating and water retention.
  1. They are healthy for muscle development and maintenance. Bananas thus make a good post-workout food choice.
  1. They have the right amounts of sodium and potassium that assist in managing the body’s blood pressure.
  1. Their richness of fiber keeps the digestive system healthy. It is also responsible for reducing issues like indigestion, constipation, intestinal inflammations, etc.
  1. Bananas also have cholesterol-lowering properties that help in keeping the heart safe.
  1. The presence of calcium in this fruit helps with bone health maintenance, and iron helps keep the blood circulation efficient.
  1. The richness of phytonutrients, antioxidants, and numerous vitamins and minerals help to fight and keep away diseases, improving overall immunity.

References

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3314874/
  2. https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/british-journal-of-nutrition/article/beneficial-effects-of-green-banana-biomass-consumption-in-patients-with-prediabetes-and-type-2-diabetes-a-randomized-controlled-trial/B4E2CF8B933CAAE84FEC202D5F9C22E1
  3. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1464-5491.1992.tb01883.x
  4. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0939475313003074
  5. http://www.biotech-asia.org/vol17no1/ampk-mediated-hypoglycemic-effect-of-banana-stems-juice-on-type-2-diabetes/
  6. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/jsfa.6698
  7. https://www.cabdirect.org/globalhealth/abstract/20113213712
  8. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs13105-011-0091-5
  9. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11130-013-0341-5
  10. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-69288-1

 

Dr Sharon Baisil MD
100 Best Foods for Diabetes

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