Bread is a staple in many cultures worldwide, and it can be hard to resist its comforting aroma and soft, crunchy texture. However, for people with diabetes or those watching their carb intake, bread can be challenging to include in their diet. In this article, we will explore the bread types diabetics can eat and what to consider when choosing bread.
Not all bread is created equal, and the way your body reacts to different types of bread can vary significantly. Wheat flour, which is commonly used to make bread, contains high amounts of starch that convert to sugar in the body. White bread, for instance, can contain up to 160 calories and 40 grams of carbohydrates in two slices, with only one gram of fiber. This can lead to blood sugar spikes and increase your risk of diabetes and other health issues.
Multigrain bread – not always healthy
Multigrain bread is often touted as a healthier alternative to white bread. However, the term “multigrain” only refers to the fact that the bread contains different grains, and it can still be highly processed and lacking in nutrients and fiber. To ensure you are getting the most nutritional benefits, opt for whole-grain bread, which contains the entire grain kernel, including the bran, germ, and endosperm. Whole-grain bread is high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals, and it can help lower your risk of heart disease, stroke, and other chronic conditions.
Brown bread – not always healthier
Brown bread is often marketed as a healthier alternative to white bread. However, some brown bread contains high amounts of sugar and artificial coloring that can deceive you into believing it is healthier. To ensure you are buying a healthy brown bread, look for the word “whole” on the label. Whole-wheat bread is made from the entire wheat kernel, and it contains more fiber and nutrients than refined wheat bread.
Choosing healthy bread
When choosing bread, it’s essential to read the nutrition label and check the total carbohydrate and fiber content. To maintain healthy blood sugar levels, choose bread with a carb-to-fiber ratio of 10:1 or even better, 5:1. This means that for every ten grams of carbs, the bread should contain at least one to two grams of fiber. Other things to look for include sprouted grain bread, sourdough bread, and whole-grain bread.
Best breads for diabetes
For people with diabetes, some bread types are better than others. Sprouted grain bread, such as Ezekiel bread, is made from whole grains and is high in fiber, protein, zinc, folate, iron, and magnesium. Sourdough bread is also a good option as it is made with fermented dough, which can reduce its glycemic index. Another good option is whole-grain bread, which is high in fiber and nutrients and can help improve blood sugar control.
Bread can be a part of a healthy diet, even for people with diabetes or those watching their carb intake. The key is to choose the right type of bread and pay attention to portion sizes.
Whole grain breads, such as whole wheat, rye, and sourdough, are generally better choices than white bread or bread made with refined flour. They contain more fiber, vitamins, and minerals, and are digested more slowly, which can help prevent spikes in blood sugar levels. However, even whole grain bread should be eaten in moderation, as it still contains carbohydrates that can affect blood sugar.
When choosing bread, it’s important to read the nutrition label and pay attention to the serving size. One slice of bread is typically considered one serving, but some breads may be larger, so it’s important to check. It’s also a good idea to look for breads that are lower in sugar and sodium, as these can also have negative health effects.
Another way to incorporate bread into a healthy diet is to pair it with other nutrient-dense foods. For example, a slice of whole grain bread topped with avocado, tomato, and a boiled egg makes for a balanced and satisfying meal. This can help ensure that you’re getting a variety of nutrients, rather than just empty calories from bread alone.