Is Buttermilk Good for Diabetes? (7 Health Benefits)

Popularly referred to as chhaachh or lassi by native Indians, buttermilk is one of the products obtained from milk. It is a traditional drink in India which is being made in homes for ages.

This healthy drink in India is prepared from the residual liquid of the milk that remains when the milk is churned for making butter. Some people may also prepare it from curd.

The interesting aspect of buttermilk is that it is not butter, nor does it contain any. This traditional white drink comprises water, lactose sugar, and casein protein. The probable reason why this beverage got such a name can be because it is primarily made from churned milk, used for making butter.

Is Buttermilk Good for Diabetes?

This traditional beverage is laden with a plethora of benefits for everyone; even diabetics can drink buttermilk without concerning much. 

Diabetics are not restricted from having buttermilk. Low-fat fermented dairy products are considered good for diabetes. Buttermilk also falls under the category of low-fat milk products obtained after fermentation.

But pay attention to the amount of sugar you add to the glass of your buttermilk. That is where the precautions and safety limits come into play.

Veggie causing Diabetes

Before we proceed with the nutritional aspect of buttermilk, it will be great to know about the legacy of this delightful beverage.

7 Health Benefits of Buttermilk

1. Improves Digestion

The gut-friendly bacteria which are residing in buttermilk aids digestion. The efficiency of digestive processes is increased.

Lactic acid also promotes regular bowel movement. Buttermilk can be used to cure Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). IBS is a condition in which a person experience pain in the stomach, often accompanied by diarrhea or constipation, and is a result of intestinal malfunctioning.

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This drink is useful in preventing conditions like acidity, stomach infections, colon cancer. People who drink buttermilk not only have a lower risk of acquiring digestion-related diseases, but they also have a stronger immune system, which further curtails the possibility of acquiring multiple diseases.

2. Controls Cholesterol

Buttermilk deserves to be in your diet plan if you have got your bad cholesterol levels raised. It will help to lower down the triglycerides count.

Potassium in buttermilk helps to keep blood pressure within the optimum range. It is an excellent food preference for people with hypertension and cardiovascular diseases.

Since it does not add to the number of bad fats, you can use it for your weight management purpose. How nice this sounds!

3. Embellishes the Skin

Dealing with skin issues? Worry not! Buttermilk will take care of your skin too.

You should go for this drink if you want glowing skin, moisturized skin, or blemish-free skin. It acts as a cleanser, toner, and skin-brightening agent.

Isn’t this like a low-cost natural skincare product? Yes, it is, and this is something awesome!

4. Cools and Cleanses Body Naturally

People prefer drinking buttermilk more frequently in summers because it acts as a natural coolant for the body. You might have tried numerous refreshing smoothies at home.

This time, give a try to buttermilk. It is much superior to those chemical-loaded cold drinks you keep sipping during the summers for the sake of refreshment.

Add some ice cubes to your buttermilk, and you are ready to kick off the burning summer heat without taking the support of health-deteriorating packaged drinks.

5. Keeps Body Hydrated

Hydration is very important, especially for people with diabetes. In water scarcity, sugars in the body will get concentrated, and levels will reach the peaks. To prevent this, avoid dehydration at any cost.

90% of the buttermilk is water. Other nutrients occupy 10%. Having water present in abundance, buttermilk is your sure-fire way to ensure hydration for your body.

6. Loaded with Zinc and Calcium

Zinc plays a salient role in carbohydrate metabolism. It also has the properties that confer the body the ability to recover from diseases, heal wounds, and repair tissues.

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The human body badly needs calcium, and buttermilk is packed with it. This calcium will be utilized by your body to strengthen your bones and teeth.

A good bone density helps you to prevent osteoporosis, a condition that signifies calcium deficiency in bones and is quite common in adults over 35 years of age.

7. Packed with Vitamins

Buttermilk provides vitamin B12 and vitamin D, both of which are essential nutrients required by the body. The former prevents pernicious anemia while the latter improves bones and vision.

Nutrition of Buttermilk

Here is a picture of what all nutrients your body will get after sipping one cup (230 ml) of buttermilk:

Nutrients Quantity
Carbohydrates12 grams
Proteins8 grams
Fibers0 grams
Fats3 grams
Calories99 cal

Besides this, calcium, sodium, riboflavin, zinc, vitamin B12, pantothenic acid is also present in the amount such that they make 12-25% of the daily value.

How to Make Buttermilk at Home?

The simplest and quickest way to make buttermilk at home is by combining curd and water in equal amounts in a blender and turn it on. You will get a delicious white smoothie to which we call buttermilk.

Tweak your buttermilk with curry leaves, cumin (jeera), asafoetida (heeng), coriander (dhania), black salt, mint (pudina), ginger (adrak), and pepper (kali mirch). You can choose the ingredients you prefer as per your taste. Finally, add some ice cube sand to rejuvenate your body with this natural body recharger.

Is buttermilk High in Sugar?

Is buttermilk High in Sugar

Buttermilk is not at all high in sugar. 100 ml of buttermilk merely contains 6.5 grams of sugar. This is great to know!

The sugar in buttermilk is a natural lactose sugar.  This sugar is different from the common table sugar we use in everyday life, and the best part is that lactose sugar has no negative effects on diabetes.

Dietary tips for Consuming Buttermilk

Buttermilk is a healthy drink for people with diabetes as long as you are paying attention to the sugar content. The natural sugars inside the buttermilk will not harm you.

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However, if you are adding table sugar from your side, it is your mistake, inviting a risk.

Control your carbs and calorie intake. You can easily do it by studying the nutritional composition of the foods you consume.

Adjust the amount of your drink based on your permitted calorie level.

For example, if your blood sugar status prompts for lesser calorie intake, cut down to the half glass of buttermilk. There are also chances that your blood sugars are managed aptly, and you can accommodate greater calorie intake. If so, go for one glass a day.

For this, you must be aware of your permissible daily calorie intake beforehand.

Here are the dietary tips you must follow while consuming buttermilk during diabetes-

  1. One cup of buttermilk enfolds 99 calories. This gives you a fair idea of how much buttermilk you can consume every day. In diabetes, we can’t follow ‘one-size-fits-all’. Consult your doctor and get informed of your daily permissible calorie intake. Consume the drink accordingly.
  2. People who are intolerant to lactose may find it difficult to digest buttermilk. Better to avoid it in such a case.

Concluding Words

Buttermilk does not cause a spike in blood sugar levels until and unless it is laden with table sugar. It is an extremely healthy and refreshing drink that is favorable to be used by diabetics.

Now diabetics no longer need to make compromises with the taste. Buttermilk is a delectable, nutritious, and diabetes-friendly option to adopt and stick by for healthy well-being.

References

  1. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29173212/
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0899900713003742
  3. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30997492/
Dr Sharon Baisil MD
100 Best Foods for Diabetes

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