Your sugar levels are always influenced by what you eat.

5 Indian vegetables to keep your diabetes under control

Published: 06:11AM 15 December 2022

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Jayti Shah

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Diabetes is among the most popular diseases in India, affecting more than 70 percent of a total population. Diabetes is a metabolic disorder in which the body is unable to control blood sugar levels. This results in an excess of glucose in the blood, which leads to high blood pressure and heart disease. It is caused by a combination of genetic factors, obesity, an unhealthy diet, inactivity, and other factors.

What exactly is a diabetes diet?

When we eat, the pancreas releases insulin, which aids in the glucose transport from the bloodstream into cells, where it is converted into energy. In the case of diabetes, however, the person does not produce enough insulin, resulting in an excess of glucose in the blood. Furthermore, when we consume foods high in sugar and empty calories, the body digests them quickly, leaving you hungry in a relatively short amount of time and causing a rapid spike in levels of blood sugar. Hyperglycemia occurs when the body's glucose content becomes excessively high.

What is the problem with type 2 diabetes?

Your body is working properly to break down the foods. Carbohydrates are broken down and converted to sugar. However, this sugar should eventually enter muscle and liver cells and generate energy. Insulin regulates blood glucose levels by increasing sugar uptake in cells.

Diabetes can be managed with the assistance of a nutritious diet (Image courtesy - iStock photo)

Why is processed food harmful to diabetics?

When food is processed, hot temperatures, pressure, added chemicals, and many other factors significantly change the nutrient quality of the food. It decreases fiber and vitamin content. The food becomes more easily digestible, causing a rise in blood sugar. These foods all possess a high glycemic index.

Aside from that, most packaged foods - biscuits, instant breakfast, cornflakes, muesli, instant noodles, pasta - contain refined flour, a great number of refined sugar and salt, artificial colors, flavors and emulsifying agents.

What are the benefits of eating vegetables for diabetes?

There are numerous advantages to eating vegetables if you have diabetes. As an example,

  1. They are high in fiber and contain nutrients that help regulate blood sugar levels.
  2. Vegetable nutrients can even lower the risk of developing diabetes and certain types of cancer.
  3. A high-vegetable diet can help prevent type 2 diabetes and its associated health complications.
  4. Vegetable consumption can also lower the risk of heart disease and stroke.
  5. They are low in calories, which can aid in weight loss.

Specific foods lower blood sugar, allowing them to play a significant role in diabetes care. Consumption of foods that help stop diabetes complications including heart and kidney disease is also extremely beneficial.

These five diabetic vegetables can help you get your diabetes under control. So, let's look at these vegetables:

1.Bitter gourd (Karela)

Bitter gourd, also known as karela, contains insulin-like compounds known as polypeptide p. This naturally helps to lower blood sugar levels. According to a study published in the journal chemistry and biology, eating bitter gourd reduces glucose uptake and improves glycemic control.

Bitter gourd juice is extremely beneficial in diabetes management. However, you must be careful with the quantity. If you are taking insulin, you should consult your doctor before consuming bitter gourd because that can cause hypoglycemia.

Bitter gourd (Image courtesy - iStock photo)


Many people are unaware that spinach is greatly useful to diabetic patients. It is high in magnesium, which aids in regulating insulin production and brings down blood sugar levels. Spinach is high in fiber and low in calories, making it an excellent addition to a diabetic weight-loss regimen. It also contains Vitamins A, C, K, D, zinc, magnesium, iron, and copper.

Spinach (Image courtesy - iStock photo)

3. Fenugreek Leaves (Methi)

Fenugreek or methi helps regulate blood sugar levels because it includes galactomannan, a natural soluble fibre that slows the speed of sugar absorption into the blood. It also comprises amino acids that enhance the production of insulin.

Fenugreek leaves (Image courtesy - iStock photo)

4. Okra (Bhindi)

Okra, also known as bhindi, is high in fiber, vitamins, minerals, and anti-oxidants. Myricetin, a chemical found in okra, has the capability to absorb glucose from cells. It is also a great source of fiber and vitamin C, which can boost metabolism.

Okra (Image courtesy - iStock photo)

5. Cauliflower

Cauliflower not only helps with diabetes, but it also has many other health benefits. Cauliflower contains a lot of vitamin C, vitamin K, and folate. It is also high in dietary fiber. All of these nutrients promote heart health, reduce inflammation, and aid in the prevention of cancer. Cauliflower can help diabetics lower their blood sugar levels and improve their insulin sensitivity.

Cauliflower (Image courtesy - iStock photo)


Diabetes is a long-term condition that has an impact on a person's life. Insulin resistance that is uncontrolled can lead to serious health issues such as coronary disease, visual impairment, and kidney damage. A healthy diet is essential for diabetes management. A healthy diet must include plenty of vegetables. The vegetables in this guide are high in fiber, which can help regulate blood sugar levels. Choose vegetables with a low glycemic index and low starchy carbohydrate content.

Jayti Shah is a Clinical Nutritionist with a master's degree in Clinical Nutrition and Dietetics. She is a member of the Indian Dietetic Association (IDA). Over the last 9 years, she has helped 400 clients in their clinical and weight loss journeys. She works with SocialBoat as a nutrition consultant. We hope this article helps you to understand everything related to diabetes and the which type of vegetable is suitable for people having diabetes.

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