Can a diabetic eat white rice? Yes. A diabetic can definitely eat white rice. The only catch is not to eat too much white rice. Generally glycaemic index (GI) of white rice is high. This means white rice can cause blood sugar spikes quickly. White rice is also rich in carbohydrates. High carb content also can cause blood sugar spikes. So if you are a diabetic, you may think you must avoid white rice. But, you do not need to avoid white rice completely. A diabetic can eat white rice sometimes and in small portions. You will be fine as long as you do not eat white rice too often.
Does white rice raise blood sugar?
Yes. White rice does raise blood sugar levels to some extent. There is no doubt about the effect of white rice on blood sugar levels. The main reason for this is the high content of starch in white rice. White rice does not contain sugar but contains lot of starch. Starch is also a type of carbohydrate just like sugar. When you eat white rice, the starch in white rice breaks down into glucose. This in turn causes a rise in your blood sugar levels.
Is white rice bad for a diabetic?
In general, white rice is not completely bad for a diabetic. It is true that white rice is more processed than brown rice. This is a cause for concern when eating white rice. However, in many developed countries, most white rice has added folate or other vitamins. Thus enriched, white rice has good nutritional value. Moreover, white rice is easy to digest as it is low in fibre. So, for people with weakened digestive system, white rice is much better than other rice.
However, white rice is rich in starch and high in GI. High glycaemic index means carbs in white rice quickly convert into sugar in your blood. This raises blood sugar levels. So, eating too much white rice can be bad for a diabetic. If a diabetic eats too much white rice, it can lead to other diabetic complications such as diabetic neuropathy.
Diabetic neuropathy means damage to nerves due to long term high blood sugar levels. To avoid such problems, a diabetic can eat more of brown rice and less of white rice. Brown rice has much higher levels of fibre, vitamins and nutrients. Some recipes for fried rice or biryani do cater for brown rice alongside basmati rice or white rice. You may choose whatever type of rice you would like to eat.