Diabetes affects millions of people worldwide. This condition, which can occur at any stage of one’s life, is primarily chronic.
According to the World Health Organisation, as of 2019, an estimated 463 million adults were living with diabetes, which could increase to 700 million by 2045.
Type 2 diabetes, which is strongly related to obesity and lack of physical activity, is the most common and accounts for 90–95% of all diabetes cases.
While diabetes is a prevalent health problem worldwide, anyone can manage diabetes and its complications. The best strategy to do this is through dietary and lifestyle changes.
Known for its diverse and rich culinary heritage, India is home to a variety of spices and herbs that offer unique health benefits.
One example is sattu, a traditional Indian food that is particularly beneficial for people with diabetes. This flour, usually made from roasted and ground chana dal (split chickpeas) or barley, is a staple in India’s eastern states, especially Bihar, Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh.
This article will explore the benefits of sattu for people with diabetes, including its nutritional value, glycemic index, and potential benefits.
It will also look at whether sattu is a suitable option for individuals with type 1 diabetes and provide an overview of the different Indian ways of consuming sattu.
nutritional properties of sattu
Sattu is a rich source of protein and fiber. Since it is made from gram, sattu has higher protein levels than wheat flour.
This makes it an ideal option for people with diabetes searching for high-protein, low-carb options. Additionally, sattu contains various micronutrients such as iron, zinc and magnesium.
Glycemic Index of Sattu
The glycemic index (GI) of a food is a measure of how quickly it raises blood sugar levels. Foods with a high GI are absorbed rapidly and cause a sharp rise in blood sugar, while foods with a low GI are absorbed slowly and cause a gradual rise in blood sugar.
According to a Home Science Journal study, chickpea sattu in particular has a low GI of 28. As a result, it is an excellent choice for people with diabetes.
benefits of sattu for diabetes
Controls blood sugar level
As mentioned earlier, sattu flour is a low-GI food. This means that it causes a slow and gradual rise in blood sugar levels rather than a sudden rise. Therefore, it can be beneficial for people with diabetes, as it prevents the harmful effects of sudden changes in blood sugar levels.
Research shows that obesity is a significant risk factor for diabetes, making weight management essential for people with the condition.
Sattu is an ideal option for people with diabetes who want to manage their weight, as it is a low-carb, high-protein food. Thus, adding sattu to the diet can help control weight, which in turn can aid in the management of diabetes.
Helps manage complications related to diabetes
One study showed that iron deficiency is common in people with diabetes. This can result in anemia, making diabetes-related complications worse.
Therefore, it is essential to maintain healthy blood sugar levels and prevent anemia in people with diabetes. Fortunately, sattu can be beneficial as it is a good source of iron.
Lowers the risk of cardiovascular problems
Experts believe that consuming sattu flour can help reduce the risk of heart disease in people with diabetes. Since sattu flour is rich in fiber and protein, it may be beneficial in reducing the risk of heart disease.
Research shows that foods rich in fiber and protein can help reduce the risk of cardiovascular problems. Therefore diabetic patients should consider including sattu in their diet.
Sattu benefits people with diabetes as it has a low glycemic index. Plus, it’s high in fiber, protein, and antioxidants. These properties help regulate blood sugar levels and improve overall blood sugar control. However, it is important to note that sattu should be consumed in moderation as part of a balanced diet.
Sattu for people with type 1 diabetes
People with type 1 diabetes should consult a health care professional to determine their insulin dosage before including sattu in their diet.
This is because type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disorder in which the body’s immune system attacks and destroys beta cells in the pancreas, which are responsible for producing insulin.
Insulin is a hormone that helps regulate blood sugar levels, and people with type 1 diabetes require insulin injections to manage their blood sugar levels. Therefore, one must keep in mind the carbohydrate content in sattu and adjust the dose of insulin accordingly.
Sattu for diabetes – permissible amount
Unfortunately, it’s difficult to provide a specific recommendation for how much sattu someone with diabetes should consume.
This depends on several factors, such as the person’s blood sugar level, overall diet, and insulin regimen. Hence, it is best to consult a health expert such as a nutritionist from HealthifyMe. They take all these factors into consideration and create a personalized meal plan for you to reap the best benefits.
In general, people with diabetes should aim to consume a balanced diet that includes nutrient-dense foods low in added sugars and processed foods.
While sattu has some potential benefits if one consumes it as part of a balanced diet, please note that you cannot use it as a substitute for other essential foods.
Potential Disadvantages of Sattu
Every food has its fair share of advantages and disadvantages. Also, some foods keep you healthy while some don’t. That is, everyone’s body has a unique response to food. Therefore, along with knowing the benefits of sattu, it is also important to know about its possible disadvantages.
The amount of sodium in sattu flour is relatively high. Therefore, it may be harmful for people with diabetes, as high sodium intake may increase the risk of high blood pressure, which can further complicate diabetes. Therefore, it is important for people with diabetes to monitor their sodium intake and consume sattu in moderation.
Another potential disadvantage of sattu is that it is not gluten-free. Sattu flour is obtained from roasted and ground chickpeas (split chickpeas) or barley, which contain gluten.
Since gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley and rye, it makes sattu an unsuitable choice for people with gluten sensitivity or celiac disease. As a result, people with such sensitivity or celiac disease should avoid sattu.
Diarrhea, bloating and gas can also occur if sattu is consumed in excess.
Diabetes is now a chronic epidemic. There is no cure, and no one can pinpoint the exact problem that triggers the condition. Fortunately, one can keep oneself safe from diabetes and its subsequent complications through a healthy lifestyle. HealthifyMe Pro 2.0 Encourages users to be smart about their food and lifestyle choices, helping them achieve a more balanced, healthy and stress-free life, The app is your health guide, from counting carbs to conveniently checking your blood sugar levels safely from the comfort of your home.
Sattu is a traditional Indian food that has many health benefits. It provides a good source of protein, fiber and various micronutrients such as iron, zinc and magnesium.
Additionally, due to its low glycemic index, sattu may help manage blood sugar levels and weight, and reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetic complications.
People with type 1 diabetes can also consume sattu. However, it is necessary to consider the carbohydrate content in sattu and adjust the dose of insulin accordingly. Indian recipes using sattu for people with diabetes include sattu paratha, sattu drink and sattu laddoos.
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