Is watermelon good for diabetics? Watermelon and Diabetes

If mango is the president of all the fruits, then watermelon is the vice-president. The main reason to say this is both are the fruits of the summers. Secondly, watermelon is full of water, making it essential for summer season. But the question asked often: is watermelon good for diabetics? Are watermelon and diabetes the right pair? Let’s see…

“Life is like eating a watermelon, you know you’re going to get some seeds; just spit them out and take another bite.”

Table showing nutritional facts of 100g of ripe watermelon
Calories 30
GI 72
Saturated fats 0g
Carbs 8g (6g sugars & 0.4g dietary fibers) 2% (26% & 1.5%)
Proteins 0.6g 1%

Glycemic Index and Glycemic Load

The watermelon is a high GI food with the index value being 72. Any food that has GI more than or equal to 70 is a high GI food. With this fact, it is not recommended to have watermelon frequently or if you are on reversal of type diabetes.

The glycemic load of 100g of watermelon = 72*8/100 = 5.76

The glycemic load is in the lower range which is good for diabetics. But since the GI is high it is recommended to have higher caution while eating watermelon by monitoring blood glucose and adding low GI food to eat and definitely a short walk (15-20 min) soon after eating 100g of watermelon. If you increase the quantity of consumption from 100g to higher value, the glycemic load will increase with it because of the parallel increase in the carbohydrate content. Thus, do not go beyond 100g of watermelon if at all you wish to eat it. And yes, occasionally! If you look at these facts of watermelon, it is kind of weird where the almighty (if you are not atheist) does not want to you to eat watermelon at first (by raising the glycemic index so high) and then decided you can have a little of his delicious creation (by reducing the glycemic load). LOL!

Also read: Can diabetic patient eat grapes?

Micronutrients

Vitamin C 13% of RDA | An experimental study suggests that vitamin C supplementation of 1000mg per day for 6 weeks can cause reduction in blood sugar and lipid levels along with insulin. However, the supplemental dose is almost 17 times the RDA, but increasing the dietary vitamin C intake can help reduce the supplemental dose. Also, as you can see, vitamin C will also help to prevent dyslipidemia which is commonly seen among diabetics.

Vitamin A 11% of RDA | The role of vitamin A in type 2 diabetes is still under review. However, there are 3 possible mechanisms by which vitamin A can be beneficial. These include its antioxidant property, its property to lower insulin resistance and thirdly, it ability to mediate insulin release.

Magnesium 2% of RDA | Please read this article to know the benefits of Magnesium for diabetes affected individuals.

Also read: Can a diabetic patient eat avocado?

Is watermelon good for diabetics? (Watermelon and Diabetes)

Currently, the effect of watermelon on diabetic human entities is still under review. However, the experiments on the rats have revealed that fresh watermelon juice can lower the blood sugar levels, maintain the body weight and improve the ant oxidative parameters in the body.

Warning:

  • Almost every individual, diabetic or non-diabetic, has its own bodily mechanism and metabolism. It is always cautioned that food recommendations should be correlated with personal health history and the advice of the doctor.
  • These calculations are based on the daily calorie intake of 2000. Therefore, if your calorie intake exceeds 2000 a day, you can increase the ideal serving size and vice versa. However, the recommended blood glucose level still remains the same.

Also, it is a good practice to have a rough calculation of the nutritional facts of the food items before eating them. This applies to the people belonging to all the spectra of health and fitness and not just diabetics.

Do you want me to analyse any other food item? Comment your request below.

References

Hey there, I'm a final year undergrad medical student at Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam Medical College (SSRMC), Mauritius.

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