Nutrition
Reviewed by

Shifa Fathima

Glycemic Index Charts For Sprouts

The diagnosis of diabetes often comes as a shock to many people in their lives. Even with a genetic predisposition towards the condition, it may not always be something that one is prepared for. Especially in the case of type 1 diabetes, when the condition hits in the early years of a person’s life, one might take a lot of time to accept the fact that this is a condition that they may have to live with for the rest of their lives. Not only for the person affected, but this diagnosis can create a huge impact on other people around the person as well. This is because there is a certain degree of lifestyle change and management that everyone would have to make for sustainable living in the house.

Salads and fibrous foods are an important part of the life of a person with diabetes. The whole aspect of effective management of the symptoms would be centered around eating healthy and controlling the blood sugar levels. These are the two major pillars of diabetes management and other things like exercise, sleep, stress management, etc come along with it. 

Even though there are several restrictions on the diet like – elimination of sweets, starch, carbs, sugar, high calories, maida, refined grains, rice, etc, there are many other food items that are beneficial for a person with diabetes not only to maintain the blood sugar levels but also in a more holistic manner. The adoption of healthy eating habits will surely help in bringing the HbA1c down but will also help in the overall management of diet, weight, body fat, cholesterol, etc. This means that any complication that could arise as a result of diabetes can now be prevented with the inclusion of healthy food. 

Protein-packed Sprouts for Diabetes

One such form of super healthy food category would be - sprouts. Sprouts for diabetes are one of the primarily recommended forms of food upon the visit to a dietician after diagnosis. The several health benefits that this food group offers to people, in general, make it a must-have on the food list for everyone – with or without diabetes. Eating healthy would provide your body with a treasure chest of nutrients that would make the body feel like a well-oiled machine instead of rusts and cracks everywhere. 

Sprouts have been widely accepted and are renowned to have a halo around them as they provide benefits like no other foods regarding the health and well-being of a person. The best part about these grains is that a person can make their sprouts at home, in the manner that they prefer to consume them. It is one of the easiest and healthiest dishes to make and one can combine different lentils and sprouted whole grains for consumption.

Additionally, since the glycemic index of sprouts is known to be low, they are one of the most recognized advantageous food categories for someone with diabetes. They need no introduction to how they might benefit a person and are consumed globally owing to what they offer a person. They are gaining a lot of traction and attention from experts and researchers in terms of how they can prove to be even more advantageous. There are different types of sprouts that are available in the market and the term refers to a whole category of food. 

The process of sprouting involves soaking the grains for 8-12 hours and then tying them up in a clean cotton cloth and keeping it moist until they germinate. Sprouted forms of grains are easier to digest and the body is able to absorb nutrients faster. 

Nutrition Profile of Sprouts

Consume any kind of food with complete knowledge of the nutritional facts and benefits that they might offer. It is important to know how much food to consume to receive the optimal amount of nutrition. Often, knowing the nutritional chart of a food type would also help to understand what kind of side effects they may give in case of over-consumption. For example, the consumption of food with too much fiber can cause trouble in digestion. 

While catering to a person with diabetes, along with the nutritional facts, sprouts glycemic index would also need to be known to understand how much, if any, insulin needs to be taken. 

Here are the nutritional facts for 1 cup (90 grams) of bean sprouts:

  • Calories – 27
  • Fat – 0.2g
  • Sodium – 5.4mg
  • Carbs – 5.4g
  • Fiber – 1.6g
  • Sugars – 3.7g
  • Protein – 2.7g

The low amount of carbs would indicate that the glycemic index of sprouts would also be on the lower side. Sprouts are also known to have more protein than other leafy greens and are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals. They are also rich in antioxidants. 

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Glycemic Index of Sprouts

Sprouts' glycemic index is important to note before consumption. Many times, foods with high fiber have a low GI, and therefore, taking insulin during consumption could lead to lows. Here are the different types of sprouts available in the market and their respective glycemic indices.

  • Bean Sprouts – the estimated GI is supposed to be low due to the low-carb count of this type of sprouts
  • Lentil Sprouts – The glycemic index of lentil sprouts is 25
  • Alfalfa sprouts – A very low GI of 15 is seen in this type of sprouts
  • Radish sprouts – Radish sprouts have a GI of 32
  • Broccoli sprouts – It keeps the blood sugars under control with a GI of 15
  • Brussel sprouts – The GI is 15

Health Benefits of Sprouts

Sprouts for diabetes are known to be beneficial for health and overall diet management. Here are some of the major advantages of eating sprouts

  1. Lowers cholesterol – Particularly true for broccoli sprouts, studies have shown the positive effect it has on lowering the levels of LDL cholesterol and how it significantly increases the good cholesterol in the blood. Lentil sprouts also have similar effects.
  2. Manages blood sugar – In people with T2D, sprouts are known to benefit them from their antioxidant properties and also reduce insulin resistance. Sprouts are known to fight against vascular complications as well. 
  3. Reduce inflammations – The antioxidants in mung bean sprouts can have powerful antioxidant effects and can also help in the treatment of cancer, hypertension, sepsis, etc.
  4. Health-promoting properties – Consumption of Brussel sprouts have been linked with heart benefits and is also associated with less calcium build-up in the aortas. 
  5. Anti-ageing and longevity – The antioxidants also work to better the anti-aging factors and they provide Vitamins – B, C, and A to the body. They also enhance the overall immune health and make more calcium and zinc available. 
  6. Weight management – The low calories and high protein factors in this food category make it a good nutrient that would lower the hunger pangs. 
  7. Other benefits of sprouts are also that they have anti-diabetic and anti-cancer properties. They also help the body fight against inflammation and help the intestine by boosting the microbes in the gut.

Bottomline

Sprouts of all kinds are important for the overall health and well-being of a person with diabetes. They have several nutritional factors that may work in the favor of a person, especially someone living with diabetes. The multiple health benefits of the consumption of sprouts make it a healthy snack and dietary inclusive for all people alike. Make sure to include one bowl of sprouts as a salad or as a part of a meal at least twice or thrice a week to see the benefits.

FAQs

Do Sprouts have a Low Glycemic Index?

Yes, sprouts are low in GI. This is because they are low in carbs and calories. They do not cause the blood sugar levels to spike and increase drastically. The slow conversion of sugars in the body helps to maintain the blood sugar levels in range.

Which Sprout is best for Diabetes?

Research has shown that broccoli sprouts have led to a significant decrease in the fasting blood sugars among type 2 diabetes. Each type of sprouts, however, has its benefits and can help a person with diabetes in different ways.

Do Sprouts contain Sugar?

There is a very negligible amount of sugar (2-3 grams) that can be seen in sprouts which makes them safe for the consumption of a person with diabetes.

Which Sprouts are Low Carb?

Almost all sprouts are low in carbs which also contributes to them having a low glycemic index. Sprouts can, therefore, be eaten before meals as they are fibrous and can help in the slow release of sugar into the body

Are Sprouts Keto?

Yes, bean sprouts are keto-friendly and can be used in recipes that are followed by people on a keto diet. 

What are Sprouts for Diabetes?

The germinated sprouts can be used in different ways by a person with diabetes – mixed with capsicum and tomato like a salad, on sandwiches, on spring rolls, or cooked as a vegetable with or without gravy, etc.

References

  • https://www.verywellfit.com/carbs-in-sprouts-2241825

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