Papaya Benefits For Diabetes: Everything You Should Know
Papaya is a delicious as well as nutrient dense fruit. It’s packed with Vitamin C and A with plenty of fiber, antioxidants and water. Being low in sugar and glycemic index, papaya is suitable in diabetes. Read ahead to know how to eat papaya for diabetes.
Diabetes mellitus or Diabetes is a chronic disease that can be managed with a good diet and attention to what we eat, and when we eat. About 422 million people are suffering from diabetes worldwide and its prevalence is increasing day by day. Diabetes occurs when beta-pancreatic cells do not produce enough insulin or when our body does not respond well to insulin production. Normally, the pancreas secretes insulin to help the body store and use excess sugar and absorb fat from the food one eats. The sugar level of the body can be controlled by nutritious food, dietary changes, exercise, maintaining ideal body weight, and regular health check-up. There are many myths regarding the intake of sweet fruits by diabetics so in this article we will clear all the doubts regarding this and find out if we can eat papaya for diabetes?
Is Papaya Good For Diabetes?
Diabetic people need to follow a strict diet to regulate their sugar level but there are so many fruits for diabetes that can be eaten in moderation. Papaya or papaw/pawpaw is a bright yellow, pulpy, juicy, and sweet fruit which is a powerhouse of nutrients and antioxidants. It is high in water content and fiber which improves digestion and prevents constipation. Papaya contains an enzyme called papain which aids in digestion and can also be used as a meat tenderizer. It can cure bedsores and the application of mashed papaya is believed to be effective in healing the burns and preventing infection. Despite being sweet to taste, Papaya’s sugar content is low. Hence it can satisfy the cravings of diabetic patients with natural sugar.
The two major diabetes called Diabetes 1 and Diabetes 2 can cause health complications like heart attack, strokes, kidney failure, or blindness.
The great Voyager Christopher Columbus referred to papaya as ‘Fruit Of The Angles’ because of it’s amazing health benefits.
How Is Papaya Better Than Other Fruits?
All fruits including grapes, pears, and bananas can be consumed by diabetics, but they do contain carbohydrates. Therefore, only a small portion is recommended. As compared to other fruits, half a papaya has fewer carbohydrates than 15 grams (2 grams fiber and 11 grams sugar). Whereas, an Indian Bread (chapati) which is common in our daily diet, has 18 grams of carbohydrates.
There are three sources of energy Carbohydrates, protein, and fats. Did you know that Carbohydrates have the biggest impact on our blood sugar level? It breaks down into sugar or glucose and gets absorbed in the bloodstream of our body. Excessive intake of carbohydrates can lead to a spike in the blood sugar level and can cause serious conditions such as heart and kidney diseases. Papaya, being low in carbohydrates, is a perfect pick for diabetics.
According to a study by Biomedical And Biomaterial Research At Mauritius University the consumption of fermented papaya for 2 months reduced the blood sugar level and the reactive protein content along with uric acid in people with diabetes. The research found that the fermented papaya group showed several positive changes (1).
Another study was conducted on diabetic rats, at NCBI, which shows that aqueous extract of Carica papaya exerted a hypoglycemic and antioxidant effect while improving the lipid profile of the rats. Additionally, the leaf extract positively affected the integrity and function of both the liver and pancreas (2).
Also Read: Healthier Alternatives For Refined Sugar
Can Sugar Patients Eat Papaya?
The food selection, controlled diet, preparation method, portion, and timing of consumption can impact the sugar level of the body. Choosing fruits for a diabetic patient can be tricky but Papaya is a fibrous and filling fruit that can be consumed in moderation. Unlike mangoes and litchis, the Glycemic Index of Papaya is low, making it a good choice over other fruits.
Papaya Vs papaya juice? A recent study says that whole fruits help in lowering the diabetes symptoms so it is better to consume fruits in raw form rather than their juice. Papaya is easily accessible throughout the year and can be enjoyed in salads, smoothies, kebabs, sorbets, curries, or just on its own.
Diabetic patients must include fresh and local papaya in their diet for innumerable benefits such as bone health, improved digestion, healthy heart, and good eyesight. It fulfills the sweet cravings while balancing the sugar levels in the body and may protect from various other ailments. Raw Papaya for diabetics is a must but it is important to consult a doctor about the portion size in a single-serve. Its juice should be avoided as it spikes your sugar level and can lead to other health problems. Papaya in Diabetes is a promising fruit for a healthier lifestyle.