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Diabetes management: Broccoli may help regulate blood sugar levels

Diabetes mellitus is quite a common condition nowadays. It is marked by elevated blood glucose levels. If nothing is done to control the condition, diabetes may also lead to kidney failure and cardiovascular complications. Millions of people across the globe are afflicted by the metabolic condition currently.

Fortunately, there are enough ways in which you can ensure your blood sugar levels stay stable. One of the major components of diabetes management is diet. You need to be extra careful of what you add to your plate and steer clear of refined and processed
foods that may up your blood sugar. It is a wise idea to stock up on fresh vegetables and fruits that are packed with fibre as they ensure slow release of sugar. The ever-so nutritious broccoli is one such vegetable that is said to do wonders for diabetes management.

1. Broccoli is a very good source of dietary fibres. Fibres take long to breakdown and digest and this ensures that the glucose is metabolised slowly, which in turn prevents untimely blood sugar spikes.

2. Broccoli is very low in carbohydrates. Hundred grams of broccoli only contains 7 grams of carbohydrates. According to experts, diabetics should opt for a low-carb diet as it helps keep the blood sugar levels in control.

3. It has a very low Glycaemic Index of 15, which makes broccoli an ideal fit for diabetics. The Glycaemic Index (GI) is a relative ranking of carbohydrate in foods according to how they affect blood glucose levels. It is advised to include more of low GI foods (below 55) in your diabetes diet, as these foods take long to metabolise and cause gradual release of sugar.

4. Broccoli is very low in calories and dense with antioxidants and minerals that assist with so many body functions. Diabetes is often accompanied with weight gain, which is why diabetics are advised to include more low-calorie and nutritious foods in their diet.

5. The study published in the International Journal of Food Science Nutrition studied the effect of broccoli sprouts on insulin resistance in type-2 diabetic patients, and found that the green vegetable was of immense help in improving insulin activity.

6. According to Consultant Nutritionist dr. Rupali Datta, diabetics often complain of damage caused to blood vessels. In a lab study published in the journal "Diabetes" in 2008, a team of researchers found that sulforaphanes in broccoli are protective against this type of cell damage.

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