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Root Crops and Diabetes

Posted on October 31, 2012 | No Comments on Root Crops and Diabetes

Root Crops posts as an ideal substitute for rice especially for people with diabetes. Rice, which is the staple food of Filipinos has been considered risky for people with diabetes because it can increase blood sugar levels. This is especially true because diabetic patients usually suffer from an abnormally voracious appetite for rice. Rice is the main source of carbohydrates and energy of many Filipinos but for the diabetic, this may be risky.

In a study conducted by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute, root crops like sweet potato (kamote) and cassava (kamoteng kahoy), taro (gabi) and ube (yam) can serve as an alternative and safe source of carbohydrates for diabetic patients. While these root crops are starchy, they have a low glycemic index at 55 or less which can help in controlling sugar. Food with low GI regulate the release of glucose into the blood to keep metabolic processes balance. This would also mean arresting the appetite of the person, which is helpful for controlling food intake among diabetics.

Thus, foods with low glycemic foods reduce the risk of getting coronary heart or reaching diabetes mellitus for diabetic patients. Moreover, root crops also help enhance physical endurance. Sudden changes in blood sugar level due to insulin production can cause wariness and fatigue on the part of the diabetic. Finally starchy root crops contain other important nutrients that our bodies need like protein, calcium, phosphorus, iron, thiamin, and vitamin C.

Aside from kamote and cassava, other root crops that may be entered in the diet of a diabetic included turnips, carrots, and radish. Turnip contains many vitamins and minerals such as calcium, potassium and vitamins B and C. Turnips should be eaten in moderation because it contains a lot of sugar. Carrot is another rootcrop which has a rich source of vitamin C, B, D, and vitamin A which is helpful in promoting metabolism and stabilizing neuro activity. Most importantly, carrots areimportant for enhancing vision, which is a common problem of people with diabetes. Finally, radish contains essential oils and minerals for prevention and control of atherosclerosis and kidney disease.

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