By now we all know that diabetes is on the rise, it has become an epidemic. It is well known that in particular cases of type 2 diabetes are directly related to people’s lifestyle and that is why the best way to prevent it is by establishing healthy habits. Following a healthy diet is essential, although there are no prohibited foods, it is very important for diabetics pay special attention to carbohydrate and calorie intake. One of the products that has raised the most doubts is corn, since it is considered an extremely healthy food but also rich in carbohydrates.
There are several references from experts in nutrition and medical specialists in diabetes, in which corn consumption is considered safe in people with diabetes. The main reason is that it is a magnificent source of energy, which also provides vitamins, minerals and fiber; It is also a low sodium and low fat cereal. Not surprisingly, corn is one of the oldest and most valued staple foods in various cultures.
While corn is a great alternative of cereal to consume in diabetes. It is important to have good control and follow the advice of the American Diabetes Association: set a daily limit for the amount of carbohydrates you plan to eat and keep a daily record of the carbohydrates you consume.
About its nutritional value:
One medium ear of cooked yellow sweet corn provides the following nutritional value:
- Calories: 77
- Carbohydrates: 17.1 grams
- Dietary fiber: 2.4 grams
- Sugars: 2.9 grams
- Fiber: 2.5 grams
- Protein: 2.9 grams
- Fat: 1.1 grams
Corn also provides: vitamin A, B, C, potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, and zinc. It is rich in fiber and powerful antioxidants.
About the glycemic index of corn:
One of the most important concepts in good diabetes control is the glycemic index (GI). It is a concept that defines the way food affects blood glucose, so that foods with a GI of 56 to 69 are foods with a medium glycemic index. Low glycemic index foods have a score of less than 55 and foods with a high glycemic index (70 and above) are those that they tend to increase the level of sugar in the blood. The GI is based on a scale from 0 to 100, with 100 being pure glucose.
The glycemic index of corn is 52, which is extraordinary considering that it is a source of carbohydrates and that it is also very versatile. There are other products derived from corn that have different glycemic indexes:
– Corn tortilla: 46
– Corn flakes: 81
– Popcorn: 65
One of the best recommendations for people with diabetes is focus on eating low GI foods. The main reason for this measure is that diabetes is characterized by the inability to produce sufficient amounts of insulin (the hormone that helps process blood sugar), that is when there is an excess of glucose in the blood. Remember that foods with a high GI release glucose quickly, while foods with a low glycemic index tend to release glucose slowly and steadily, which is helpful in keeping blood glucose under control.
It should be noted that serving size and digestible carbohydrates are included in the glycemic load, along with the glycemic index. A medium ear provides a glycemic load of 15.
There are interesting references in this regard. A 52-week study in patients with type 2 diabetes compared the effects of a low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet versus a high-carbohydrate, low-fat diet. Although both diets improved average blood sugar levels, weight, and fasting glucose, the low carb diet worked much better for overall glucose control. This is why corn is a great dietary addition.
In addition to being a low glycemic index food, corn is very rich in flavonoids and thus reduces the risk of chronic diseases, including diabetes. There is a valuable study, in which it was found that a moderate intake of resistant starch (about 10 grams per day) of corn can reduce the glucose and insulin response. Also, regular consumption of whole corn improves digestive health and can reduce the risk of developing chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes and obesity.
Corn contains powerful antioxidants, which are a great ally to fight free radicals that are the source of many chronic diseases. What’s more shines for its anti-inflammatory properties and it is a food rich in calcium that strengthens bone health. It is satiating, incredibly versatile and easy to integrate into anyone’s diet, another genius is that it is gluten-free and a great source of energy.
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