Can a diabetic eat Sugarcane?
Sugar cane is perfectly edible once you clean it and cut off the outer rind. A diabetic can eat sugarcane as long as the portion size is really small. Sugarcane is full of sugar and will cause spikes in blood sugar levels. However, it also contains nutrients and fibre. One can eat sugarcane raw. Sugarcane may be tough and fibrous to chew but tastes great. If you find chewing sugarcane difficult, you can just suck fresh juices from sugarcane after getting rid of the outer rind. A diabetic can eat little amount of sugarcane just to kill those cravings but cannot binge eat sugarcane. It is not a good idea to include sugarcane routinely as part of a diabetic meal plan.
What are the benefits of eating Sugarcane?
- When you have sugar cravings, it is better to eat a bit of sugarcane than eat sugar or sugar-based sweets. Sugarcane gives you sugar in its raw form, which is not a processed form of sugar like table sugar. When you eat sugarcane, you also get some molasses and moisture with the sugar. This technically means you end up consuming fewer calories per serving.
- Moreover, antioxidants that are abundant in sugarcane help boost your immunity. So, by eating sugarcane you have higher chances of building and maintaining a stronger immune system. Antioxidants from sugarcane can combat free radicals. Free radicals are molecules that can damage body cells and cause problems around various conditions like cancer, diabetes, cardiac disease etc.
- Consumption of sugarcane promotes oral health, hygiene and leaves you with a refreshing breath. You can eat sugarcane or juice it and drink. Drinking sugarcane juice leaves you with white shiny teeth, fights tooth decay and bad breath. The dental benefits of sugarcane are due to high mineral content.
- Also, experts suggest that sugarcane can help in dealing with GERD or acid reflux. Natural sugars and antioxidants present in sugarcane help fight GERD or acid reflux. A diabetic can eat a bite of sugarcane to control acid reflux or GERD symptoms.
- Octacosanol present in sugarcane can help relieve one from stress and anxiety. Experts say sugarcane extract can produce octacosanol that can help deal with stress-induced insomnia. Some people like eating a bit of sugarcane before going to bed to get a good night’s sleep.
What are the side effects of Sugarcane?
Generally, eating small amounts of sugarcane does not have any side effects. However, some people show side effects after eating sugarcane especially in excess quantity. These side effects include headache, stomach upset, dizziness, insomnia and in rare cases some weight loss. People with diabetes, hypertension, cardiac problems and other health conditions must be careful about eating sugarcane as it can lead to blood thinning and change cholesterol levels in blood. A diabetic thus, must not eat sugarcane if any of these side effects are seen.