Diet & Nutrition 4 MIN READ 917 VIEWS November 12, 2021

Indian Breakfast for Diabetics to Start the Day Healthily

Medically Reviewed By Dr. Aarti Nehra

Breakfast for Diabetics
What is Diabetes
Ideas for Healthy Indian Breakfast for Diabetics

Breakfast sets the rhythm for the day. It plays a crucial role in the diet of those dealing with diabetes. Diabetics need to not only manage their blood sugar but also control their cravings and stress levels. A good, healthy, and nutritious breakfast does not have to be boring or tasteless. Some of the options in Indian breakfast for diabetics can help keep glucose levels down. Let us explore a variety of healthy options in breakfast for diabetics type 1 and 2 but let’s start with learning about diabetes.

What is Diabetes?

Diabetes is a group of insulin-related diseases. Insulin is required to use and metabolise sugar that enters your body through the food you eat. Sugar or glucose is required by the cells in the body for normal functions. 

Insulin is produced in the pancreas but some people lose the natural ability to make the hormone. Without insulin, sugar is not absorbed and used. This sugar remains in the blood resulting in high blood sugar. This type of diabetes is called type 1 diabetes.

There are some people who have some insulin production but their body does not use it well or the insulin they produce does not work properly. Again, this results in glucose not getting absorbed from the bloodstream and causes high blood sugar. This is type 2 diabetes. 

Gestational diabetes (High blood sugar that develops during pregnancy and it usually disappears after giving birth) can occur during pregnancy. Although it is usually temporary, managing your blood sugar with an appropriate diet is vital for both the mother and child’s health. The options given below can also work as gestational diabetes breakfast ideas. 

Ideas for Healthy Indian Breakfast for Diabetics

1. Eggs 

Diabetic breakfast recipes with eggs are an excellent start to your day. Apart from having a low calorific value with high protein levels, they are also free of carbohydrates. Be sure not to add a lot of salt if your doctor has advised you to cut down on that. 

You can incorporate a variety of diabetic breakfast recipes with eggs, including pairing them with other items on this list. Adding veggies to your omelettes like spinach, mushrooms, or capsicum can make this a delicious start to your day. 

2. Oatmeal

This is a classic example of diabetic breakfast cereal. But oatmeal is often given a bad name as a bland breakfast option. To turn this around, you can add berries, nuts, seeds, and even a dash of cinnamon for extra crunch and flavour. Do not add sugar or heavy cream; they will defeat the purpose of healthy diabetic breakfast cereal

Oatmeal does have higher carbohydrate content but it can still work to decrease blood glucose since it is high in fibre. More fibre means that this diabetic breakfast cereal releases sugar in a slow and controlled manner. 

When talking about Indian breakfast for diabetics, there comes a twist to this classic oatmeal – masala oats. This spicy breakfast meal comes in a pre-packed form or you can make your own. However, do check with your doctor whether masala oats are appropriate for you. Some diabetics may be advised to stay away from spicy food.

3. Upma

It is a dish traditionally made with semolina (rava/sooji) or rice flour. This healthier alternative utilises broken wheat or millet as the base. Topped with green peas, finely cut carrots, lentils, and some lime, this dish is another healthy option in Indian breakfast for diabetics

4. Wheat Idlis, Rotis, and Cereal

Wheat is not only a good source of fibre but it also has magnesium. Notably, magnesium is essential for stabilizing blood sugar and supporting liver health. There are many traditional food items like daliya (broken whole wheat), idli and roti that can be cooked using wheat as the main ingredient. These Indian breakfasts for diabetes type 2 have a low glycemic index too, especially whole wheat. 

5. Fresh Whole Fruits

Yes, you heard that right! Fruits are safe and healthy as breakfast for diabetics type 1 and 2. While fruits contain carbohydrates and a form of sugar called fructose, they have high fibre content. Additionally, they come packed with vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals. Due to their fibre content, they can release sugar slowly which will curb any sugar spikes during your morning meal.

Choose low glycemic index fruits like blueberries, strawberries, oranges, apples, bananas, mangoes, dates, and pears. Try to manage your portion sizes because even though these are healthy, excessive amounts can lead to a sugar spike. Lastly, stick to fresh, whole and/or frozen forms of fruits. Avoid any processed versions like juices, syrups, and similar food items.

If you were paying attention, then you will notice a common theme in all the above options – high fibre and low glycemic index. When talking about key features of diabetic breakfast recipes, low carb ingredients cannot be missed. Many other healthy options exist for Indian breakfast for diabetics that meet these key parameters. When in doubt, always check with your doctor since breakfast for diabetics type 1 and type 2 may differ slightly. Also, while these work as gestational diabetes breakfast ideas, your doctor may have other instructions you need to follow.

It is important to follow all dietary and lifestyle instructions given by your doctor. This may include staying hydrated, exercising, and getting enough sleep among other things. After all, a healthy breakfast alone will not help you manage diabetes. If you liked this article and want to find out more, then check out how to lose weight during diabetes next.

Medically reviewed by Dr. Aarti Nehra

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