Last updated on August 31st, 2023
Poor dietary choices are strongly linked to diabetes. A recent study says there were 86 lakh more cases of diabetes mellitus in 2018 than compared to 1990 due to wrong food choices. Therefore, the importance of correct food choices is paramount in diabetes. So, diabetics should find themselves speculating about the best dietary suggestions for them. Walking on this road today to stop at the carrot pit stop. You may have one question in your mind: are carrots good for diabetics?
A quick answer to the question: is carrot good for diabetes patients? Is definitely a yes! Carrots for diabetics and other non-starchy veggies, such as broccoli, kale, spinach, etc., are completely safe. Moreover, for diabetics (and every person indeed), non-starchy veggies should constitute a vital part of a healthy diet. It’s better for diabetics to take note of the carb content in any food he or she consumes. Carrot for diabetes patients is recommended also because it has low carb content.
Carrots, being a non-starchy veggie, are less likely to affect blood sugars. In this article, we will explain all the facts related to carrots and diabetes in detail. Keep reading to unwind all the interesting facts regarding carrot for sugar patients.
Nutrition Facts of Carrots
|Nutritional Value of Carrots
|Nutrients per 100 grams
Fiber is a vital part of any diabetic meal plan as it keeps a person full and helps indigestion. The 10% of carbohydrates (1/2 is sugar) in carrots make them a low-calorie food. But can sugar patient eat carrot? Keep reading this in detail.
Read More: Is Apple Good for Diabetes Patients?
Check Video By Dt. Seema Goel About “Are Carrots Good For People With Diabetes?”
Benefits of Carrots for People With Diabetes
Carrot for diabetes patients has several benefits. And the answer to is carrot good for diabetes? It’s a big yes! The fiber content in carrots for diabetics aids in their weight management which is very beneficial for overweight diabetes patients. Fiber helps in decreasing hunger pangs by keeping you full for longer. Diabetic patients have a higher risk of eye problems, such as diabetic retinopathy. Carrots are also rich in vitamin A, thereby improving your eye health for diabetics. Along with this, the gajar glycemic index comes in the low GI category, which is ideal for diabetics. Low-GI foods like carrots don’t bring abrupt spikes in blood sugar.
A proves carrots help in reducing blood sugar mildly. Carrots also contain “beta-carotene”. It provides bright orange color to the carrots. Its processing occurs in vitamin A, which regulates blood sugars. So the answer to can carrots raise blood sugar? Is simply no. Moreover, the antioxidants present in carrots battle with free radicals. Also, they help in preventing cardiac problems and cancer. In diabetes sugar in carrots is permissible as it is present in very tiny amounts in the veggie.
There is only 4.7 g of sugar in 100 g of carrot. This much sugar content would result in no damage. However, carrot is not a very good source of minerals like iron or calcium. Also, the beta-carotene content in carrots for diabetics assists in iron absorption significantly.
Carrot is a non-starchy veggie. It contains essential vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants. Carrots pack a high fiber content; thus, it aids in absorbing carbohydrates at a slow rate. Carrot is good for diabetes patients as it aids in controlling post-meal glucose spikes as well.
A Detailed Description of Nutrients in Carrots
In a study, researchers evaluated the significance of vitamin A in managing normal blood sugar levels. They observed that participants deficient in vitamin A experienced an impairment in pancreatic β-cells. Also, researchers observed a reduction in insulin secretion and successive high blood sugar. These outcomes show that vitamin A plays a major role in managing blood sugars for diabetics.
Management of blood sugars is the prime objective of diabetes treatment. The net carbs that an individual takes in have a strong impact on glucose levels.
One medium raw carrot comprises around 6 grams of carbs. Carrots are not essentially low in carbs; they are a beneficial source. As per the CDC reports, average carbs must constitute about 45% of the calorie ingestion for diabetics.
Carb counting and maintaining their healthy limits are useful in proper blood glucose control. This avoids the risk of diabetes complications, including:
- Heart problems like stroke
- Eye problems like vision loss
- Kidney problems
Vitamin B complex is helpful in different ranges of metabolism. As per a study, it was found that a lack of B1 and B6 commonly occurred in type 2 diabetic patients. Besides, the early progression of diabetic nephropathy more commonly happens in the case of low B6 levels. This study proposes that low levels of vitamin B6 levels have a negative impact on diabetes outcomes.
Dietary fiber consumption forms a vital part of blood glucose control in diabetes. There was a strong suggestion, as per studies, that dietary fiber may lower the incidence of type 2 diabetes. Moreover, for diabetics, fiber consumption may aid in lessening both fasting and chronic blood sugars.
Carrot is a rich source of carotenoids. These pigments (compounds) occur in yellow and orange fruits and veggies in the diet. The eyes also contain a pigment known as carotenoids. The antioxidant action of these carotenoids aids in defending the retina from getting damaged.
Studies also propose that carotenoids might help against diabetic retinopathy. Diabetic retinopathy is a medical problem that causes vision loss. This is a common diabetes-related complication.
Meal plans with high levels of alpha and beta carotene are known to add to a decreased risk of type 2 diabetes. The carotene content per 100 grams of carrots is as follows:
- 3,477 micrograms of alpha-carotene
- 8,285 micrograms of beta carotene
Vibrant fruits and veggies pack all the vital nutrients important for a healthy diet. The carrot is an example of such a vegetable, highly nourishing and full of nutrients. A medium-sized carrot comprises only 4 grams of digestible carbohydrates. Also, it is a low GI food. Foods with fewer carbs and low GI scores do not exert a huge impact on glucose levels.
Read More : Health Benefits of beer
Glycemic Index Value of Carrots
The ADA states the low Glycemic Index range to be a score of 55 or below. The carrot glycemic index value is around 16, which comes under a low GI category. The boiled carrot glycemic index is between 32 to 49. Along with this, carrot glycemic load is also low. Two pieces of small carrots have a glycemic load of just 8, which comes in the low GL category. This proves why carrots are good for diabetic patients and answer the question, can diabetics eat carrots?
Also, the ADA suggests consuming a minimum of three to five veggies a day. One serving is around:
- One cup of raw veggies
- Half a cup of cooked veggies
So you can include carrot for diabetes patients in the above criteria. Non-starchy veggies having a GI of 55 or below may aid a diabetic in managing his or her glucose levels.
However, you should know that the GI score of carrot differs as per its mode of preparation. Give a glance at this table:
|Glycemic Index of Carrots
|Mode of preparation
|Serving (in grams)
|Carbs per serving (in gm)
|Raw and diced carrots
|Raw and whole carrots
|Carrot cake with coconut flour
Other non-starchy veggies which are safe for diabetics are:
- Leafy greens, such as kale, broccoli, celery, spinach
Read More: 14 Health Benefits of Kiwi Fruit
Ways to Have Carrots For Diabetics
Due to its versatility, carrot can be eaten in diabetes in many forms. Below are a few exciting ways of adding carrots for prediabetes and diabetic pateints daily diet:
- Carrot Sabzi: Chop 2 carrots and dice an onion into it. Cook both and add ½ bowl of fresh green peas and a little seasoning. And your colorful sabzi is ready to go to the stomach.
- Carrot Juice: Another healthy way of consuming carrots is making carrot juice. Carrot juice is good for diabetes patients and can be consumed in between meals. Carrot juice can make a good mid-day or evening snack option.
- Carrot Salad: Make a nourishing salad using some grated, raw carrots, moong sprouts, onion, chopped tomatoes, some green chillies, and slight black salt.
- Carrot Soup: Prepare a tomato soup using red carrots. Cook tomatoes, carrots, onion, spinach, some garlic, black salt and a little pepper. This vibrant soup certainly aids in weight loss, as well.
Read More: Is Banana Good For Diabetes?
Amount and Frequency of Having Carrots
Carrot is a versatile veggie. People can have them at any time of the day. All that is required is to add 1-2 carrots to any of these meals to obtain a daily dose of vitamin A and fiber:
- Start the day using healthy ABC juice (Apple + Beetroot + Carrot juice)
- Include a grated carrot in a fresh salad. Have it at lunch
- Have some carrot-beetroot soup at dinnertime
Any Risks of Having Carrots in Excess
An excessive intake of carrots may cause an overdose of vitamin A. This is particular in people having carrots in addition to their vitamin A supplements. Too much intake of carrots may result in carotenemia. It results in yellowish staining of the skin. Overdoing carrots may also cause constipation.
Hope we have answered all your doubts regarding can a diabetic patient eat carrots? Carrots, including other non-starchy veggies, are a perfect inclusion in a healthy diabetic meal plan. They consist of abundant essential nutrients beneficial for a person’s glucose levels. These nutrients can be vitamin A and fiber. A diabetic person must carry on adding veggies, lean protein, and whole grains into their meal plans, which makes carrots good for diabetics. For other guidance about managing blood sugars via diet, it is good to visit a nutritionist or dietitian near you.
Some Healthy Eating Tips for Diabetics:
- Diabetics must restrict their carb consumption per meal to 1 cup or below. Try consuming carbohydrates containing high fiber content. As fiber is useful in improving blood sugars. High-fiber carbohydrates are brown rice, beans, whole-grain bread, etc.
- Consume enough non-starchy veggies. Diabetics must fill at least ½ of their plates with such types of nutritious veggies.
- Fruits, as well as low-fat dairy products, are a healthy inclusion to a diabetic diet. Remember not to overdo them. ½ a glass of low-fat milk or a small handful of fresh berries may be a pleasant after-dinner delicacy. It is vital to restrict dried fruit and fruit juices. As they contain carbs in a more concentrated form.
- Lean protein is the most excellent form of protein for diabetics. About 1/4th of the plate must pack a lean protein source like fish or chicken. Bake them, never fry them as it would lead to the charring of the protein.
- Consuming an excess of sugary or processed foods might have a negative effect on the blood sugars. These foods might also cause weight gain and exert a detrimental effect on one’s overall health. Opting for lower-carb alternatives in small quantities, and only rarely, is a good way to treat health.
Read More: Can Diabetics Eat Oranges?
FAQ’s (Frequently Asked Questions)
Yes, carrots for diabetics are good food to include in their daily diet. Carrot glycemic index and calories are low. It has a good presence of dietary fiber and antioxidants. Moreover, carrot is versatile food therefore can be used in multiple forms and meals.
Yes, carrots do contain sugar. However, the quantity of sugar present is very low. In 100 grams of carrots, there is only 4.7 grams of sugar. Moreover, carrot has a good amount of fiber, which delays their digestion and doesn’t cause a blood sugar spike.
Vitamin content in carrots is fat-soluble. These vitamins include A, E and K. They are heat stable and boiling does not damage them. In fact, cooking is useful in breaking down the cell walls of the veggies. This results in freeing up more of the nutrients.
On an average, it is suggested to have 3-10 carrots in a day.
Consuming carrots in limits is good for a person’s health. Consuming too many carrots may result in a condition referred to as carotenemia. It is nothing but a yellowish staining of the skin due to the deposition of beta-carotene found in carrots.
As such, there is no specific time of having raw veggies. People usually consume carrots along with their lunch or dinner. Consuming carrots with beetroots in the lunch time is good as beetroot contains high calories. Thus, it is good to avoid carrots in the night.
This site provides educational content; however, it is not a substitute for professional medical guidance. Readers should consult their healthcare professional for personalised guidance. We work hard to provide accurate and helpful information. Your well-being is important to us, and we value your feedback. To learn more, visit our editorial policy page for details on our content guidelines and the content creation process.