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Is popcorn healthy for diabetics? | The race

When you have a craving for a crunchy snack we must be careful with the options to choose, especially people with diabetes. Products like pretzels, white bread, and potato chips are high-glycemic carbohydrates (GI), digest quickly, and cause blood sugar to rise quickly.

Healthy snacks are not always so appealing. In the case of popcorn, Are they an option for diabetics?

When they are prepared with air, without sugar, without salt and if eaten in moderation, popcorn they can be a healthy snack.

Popcorn is 100 percent unprocessed grains, they are whole foods. They contain a lot fiber, vitamins and minerals. Also they do not have a high glycemic index.

The size of the recommended serving of popcorn for people with diabetes is approximately 3 cups of popcorn, as long as no have been cooked with extra fat, like butter or oil.

High fiber content

Popcorn is relatively high in fiber: a cup of air popcorn contains little more than one gram of fiber. It also contains 1 gram of protein and 6 grams of carbohydrates.

They do not contain cholesterol, they are practically free of fat (only 0.1 g per cup). There is only of 100 to 150 calories in a 5-cup serving, popped, says the Grand Forks Human Nutrition Research Center.

Its fiber content also makes a suitable snack because it helps promote satiety and can help improve blood sugar control in people with diabetes, according to multiple studies and as concluded in a meta-analysis published in the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine.

Glycemic index

Although popcorn contains carbohydrates, the fiber content in popcorn slows the rate at which it is digested and prevents spikes in blood sugar. They have a low glycemic load and index.

Air-popped popcorn has a GI of 55, which is still low almost moderate according to the scales shown by the Oregon State University.

Nutritional value

Popcorn provides vitamins such as folic acid, niacin, riboflavin, thiamine, pantothenic acid, and vitamins B6, A, E, and K.

As for minerals, they also contain iron, calcium, copper, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium and zinc.

Its peel is full of fiber and antioxidants

Researchers from the Scranton University they discovered that shells of popcorn actually have the higher concentration of polyphenols and fiber.

The peels contain beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin which are important for maintaining the eye health.

The polyphenols they provide have properties antioxidants and anti-inflammatory.

Now you know, popcorn is a healthy option as long as you don’t overdo it, it is free of salt, fats like butter or margarine. To season them, instead of salt, use dried herbs or chili powder (no sodium or other additives).