What causes your blood sugar to rise? Carbohydrates play a role in people with diabetes. Once you consume too many carbohydrates, there is a high chance that your blood glucose levels will increase abnormally. It includes potatoes, which contain many carbohydrates and a high glycemic index (GI).
The presence of fiber in potato skin adds to the nutritional value of potatoes. They are also rich in vitamin C and potassium. Despite the availability of these nutrients, a potato is a starchy vegetable. This factor alone can make your blood sugar increase rapidly.
What is the glycemic index of potatoes?
The glycemic index measures the safety of the food that individuals take. The higher the GI is, the more harmful it is to your blood sugar. If the GI is low, then the food is safe to consume.
Potatoes have a high GI. That makes it harmful for individuals with diabetes to consume. A cup of potatoes can increase your blood sugar, similar to what a can of a soda can. It also explains why dietitians always recommend eating whole grains instead of potatoes if your blood glucose levels are at risk.
Whatever the potato dish you prepare, its GI will always be high. The following figures indicate the amount of GI in potatoes:
- 111 for baked potatoes
- 82 for boiled potatoes
- 87 for mashed potatoes
- 73 for fries or potato wedges
The figures above indicate the different GI indexes in various potato preparations. Anything above 70 is considered harmful and can complicate your conditions.
Potato is a starchy vegetable. It contains many carbohydrates, making them harmful to your blood sugar. When you fry them, the number of calories also increases. However, starchy vegetables like potatoes still contain nutrients necessary for the body.
Since potatoes can raise your blood sugar relatively quickly, The American Diabetes Association recommends eating them in moderation and including non-starchy vegetables together with potatoes in your meals whenever you have them.
What are suitable replacements for potatoes?
Managing your blood sugar levels is not just about taking insulin shots or ingesting oral drugs. It also includes your lifestyle and the food you eat daily. Prevent high carbs meals as they only increase your blood sugar. Choose the types of food that are rich in fiber and protein.
The following are also suitable replacements for potatoes:
- Whole grains (e.g., quinoa and brown rice)
- Cauliflower (steamed or mashed)
Do not skip visits to your healthcare professional. Seek advice before adding something to your daily meal. Furthermore, continue with your diabetes medications to ensure you manage your condition well.