In today’s video, we’re going to talk about Popcorn and Diabetes.
Popcorn can be a healthful snack for most people if they prepare it in the right way. Due to its relatively low-calorie and high-fiber content, air-popped popcorn can be a good option for people with diabetes too. However, people with diabetes need to take other factors into account when selecting snacks. Popcorn can be healthful, but it contains carbohydrates, so anyone who has to manage their blood sugar levels needs to choose the type, cooking method, and serving size carefully. Diet is essential to managing diabetes and reducing the risk of complications, such as heart disease, stroke, and nerve damage.
Popcorn and glycemic index.
For people with diabetes, the glycemic index is an important number to consider when choosing what foods to buy and eat. Air-popped popcorn has a GI of 55. It is technically a low-GI food, even though it has a higher GI than many other foods in this category. Popcorn remains a better snack option than many salty or sugary snacks for avoiding high blood sugar and diabetes complications. GI is a scale from 1 to 100 that refers to the speed at which sugar enters the bloodstream after a person eats foods containing carbohydrates. The higher the GI value, the more the blood sugar will rise.
In general, the digestive system processes foods with a higher GI rapidly, resulting in quick absorption of sugar into the bloodstream. As a result, these foods produce significant rises in blood sugar levels. In people with diabetes, the body cannot naturally regulate blood sugar, so this increase can lead to hyperglycemia. Conversely, the body absorbs low-GI foods at a slower rate. The increases that they cause in blood sugar and insulin levels are, therefore, more gradual. Low-GI diets offer proven health benefits, including improved glucose and lipid levels, for those with type 1 or type 2 diabetes. They also support weight control because slow absorption helps control appetite and provides satiety for longer.
Popcorn comes with recommended serving sizes. Sticking to these can make a notable difference to a person’s calorie intake, even with relatively healthful foods. Additionally, the choice of toppings has a significant effect on how much a person can or should eat per serving.
Eating 5 cups of air-popped popcorn provides 100–150 calories with very little fat. People might be able to eat more or less in a serving depending on their personalized diet plan. People who are calorie-counting to manage diabetes should avoid eating more than their doctor advises between meals. Portion size is vital for controlling blood sugar levels. While popcorn is a low-GI food in small amounts, eating too much might still cause a spike in blood sugar levels in those with diabetes. Be sure to measure portions carefully and use the same measures or calorie counts for each snack.
People on a restricted diet, including those with diabetes, should avoid adding large amounts of toppings to popcorn. Plain, air-popped popcorn is the best option for getting the most nutritional benefit with minimal extra calories and fat. It is best to choose an unbuttered, unsalted popcorn that does not contain hydrogenated oils.
People who wish to enhance the flavor can try adding one of the following, a small amount of grated, low-fat cheese, a sprinkling of nutritional yeast, a drizzle of olive oil, and spices, such as chili powder, garlic powder, or cinnamon.
Stores generally sell the most healthful popcorn in the form of loose kernels. In this bulk form, the kernels do not usually have any added salt, oil, sugar, or other ingredients that people with diabetes should avoid. A person can then choose to cook the popcorn in the method that best suits their needs and personal preference.
Those looking for a faster snack option could use microwave popcorn as an alternative. However, it is important to check the packaging as prepared bags often contain extra butter or sugar. Instead, people can look for packets of popcorn with light, unsalted butter or fewer calories. People with diabetes should avoid kettle corn varieties, as the extra sweetness comes with additional sugar. Caramel- and candy-covered popcorn are also not good choices of snacks for the same reason.
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