While hollowed out Jack-o'-lanterns on Halloween have given pumpkins a recall value that transcends age, race and culture, pumpkins are known to pack in some amazing health benefits. Pumpkin is one of the finest sources of vitamin A and boasts powerful antioxidants that help in building immunity.
Widely regarded as a vegetable, pumpkin is a variety of winter squash. From the botanical point of view, pumpkin, however, is a fruit. In India, pumpkin is popularly known as Kaddu or Kashifal. The Indian pumpkin has found its way into the recipe of several ayurvedic medicines. It has been accorded the status of national vegetable. Pumpkin is not just about making the best pies and latte. In Indian households, pumpkin is cooked in oil and consumed boiled as well. Pumpkin also serves as an accompaniment in traditional sweets and is used exclusively to make popular variants of Petha.
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From a nutritional point of view, pumpkins cover a range of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber. Data provided by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) suggests a cup of cooked pumpkin (around 250 grams) provides about 50 calories of energy. Pumpkins are extremely low in fat and have more than 90 percent of their weight in water. The best part is that there is no trace of cholesterol in a pumpkin. That is good news for people with diabetes who are exposed to the risk of cardiovascular diseases
100 grams of a serving of pumpkin will have the following nutrition profile:
|Dietary fiber||0.5 grams|
|Vitamin A||369 micrograms|
|Vitamin B1||0.05 milligrams|
|Vitamin B2||0.110 milligrams|
|Vitamin B3||0.6 milligrams|
|Vitamin B5||0.298 milligrams|
|Vitamin B6||0.061 milligrams|
|Vitamin C||9 milligrams|
|Vitamin E||0.6 milligrams|
Several studies have proven the effectiveness of pumpkins for people with diabetes. They can be highly resourceful in managing blood sugars and can prevent further complications of the condition.
This fruit is a rich source of vitamins and minerals. But, it is also high in its carb count. Generally, foods with a higher carb content can lead to a higher glycemic index. Pumpkin, however, has the unique quality of being high in dietary fiber. Approximately 100 grams of pumpkin will consist of 10% dietary fiber. This, along with the presence of magnesium can help counter the effects of the high glycemic index eventually leading to better management of blood sugar levels
It has been shown that pumpkins can help reduce blood sugar levels due to the components and nutrients in them.
If not the whole fruit, pumpkin seeds can also be consumed and are helpful in the management of diabetes. Pumpkin seeds are high in magnesium and are known to be useful in lowering blood sugar levels.
The intake of pumpkins is also associated with positive and good heart health. This is due to the generous dose of magnesium. Mg can also lower the levels of triglycerides in the body.
Deemed to be ‘low-calorie superheroes’ as they are devoid of any cholesterol.
Besides helping regulate bowel movement, pumpkin fiber is known to slow down the rate at which sugar is absorbed into the bloodstream. Cooked pumpkin is known to soothe the digestive tract. Good digestion is the key to keeping fit with diabetes.
So, is pumpkin good for diabetes? If you are faced with this question, remember that pumpkins are great at not just regulating blood sugar levels but also come with remarkable nutritional benefits that double up as wholesome food habits.
It is often asked, are pumpkin seeds good for diabetes? Tests conducted on mice fed on pumpkin revealed reduced dependence on insulin administration. This was linked to their ability to start producing more of natural insulin. Since then, studies have proven pumpkin to improve glucose tolerance.
Pumpkin is beneficial in maintaining desired glucose levels, as indicated by Glycemic Load (GL) and Glycemic Index (GI). Pumpkin ranks high at 75 on the GI scale but registers a substantially low GL at just 3. This essentially means, pumpkin, when taken in moderation, actually assists in regulating blood sugar levels. The dietary fibre in every serving of pumpkin enhances digestive health, which in turn is helpful in diabetes.
Which brings us to the question: Can diabetics eat pumpkin? The answer is, yes. Pumpkin seeds are a potent source of magnesium and Omega-3 fatty acids. But do not overdose on its seeds.
Most parts of a pumpkin are edible. Even the flowers and the leaves are used in several cuisines in South America, Africa and Asia as ingredients or for garnishing. There are many ways to consume pumpkin.
Pumpkin is good for regulating blood sugar levels and also offers many nutritional benefits. It is a good source of vitamin A and contains powerful antioxidants that help in building immunity. It is low in calories, has negligible fat, and more than 90% of its weight is water. There is no cholesterol in a pumpkin, making it even more suitable for people with diabetes.
Yes, pumpkin is good for diabetes even though the pumpkin glycemic index is 75, the overall glycemic load is 3. This means that sticking to a single portion or a slice of pumpkin will not significantly raise blood sugar levels. It may also
A person with diabetes has to limit their intake of food and has to be careful about the kind of diet plan that they would be following. Due to a lot of food options being restricted, trying to add newer and tastier food items to the diet chart would then become important. The relationship between pumpkin for diabetes has been explored by several experts. Pumpkin seeds, too, have certain benefits that can be explored. The high magnesium content in pumpkin seeds can make them a good choice for daily consumption and can have a positive effect on diabetes.
These seeds are equipped with essential vitamins and many nutrients that can improve blood sugar levels. Additionally, they also work well to improve the health of the heart, bones, immune system, etc. They also provide antioxidants, magnesium, fiber, healthy fats, and zinc. The consumption of pumpkin seeds would also result in a lowered risk for complications associated with diabetes such as heart conditions.
The glycemic index of a pumpkin is 75. However, the glycemic load of a pumpkin is 3. This means that a pumpkin can only be problematic for a person with diabetes if it is consumed excessively. A single portion of the pumpkin would not raise the blood sugar levels in the body. So, to answer the question - is pumpkin good for diabetics? – one would have to maintain strict control over the portion and amount of pumpkin they are consuming.
Certain studies have proven that a pumpkin contains certain compounds that could benefit a person with type 2 diabetes. This fruit can be consumed in different forms – one can make a vegetable out of it, pie, puree, and can also consume pumpkin seeds. It is enriched with multiple micronutrients and can lower the complications associated with diabetes. People with T2D can have smaller portions of a pumpkin and can reap the benefits as it will not end up raising their blood sugar levels by a lot. The presence of polysaccharides and puerarin in pumpkins can help to lower blood sugar levels and can also help to prevent the onset of diabetes
A single portion of a pumpkin would not end up raising the blood sugar level to a great extent. Since the glycemic index pumpkin is 75 but it has a low glycemic load, it will not end up raising the levels of blood sugar as high.
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