If you have diabetes please eat rice, banana and Ghee but eat the right way !

food image 2Here comes another important day the world diabetes day especially for Indians. With 40 percent of Indians being prone to diabetes call it syndrome x/metabolic disorders/lifestyle changes etc . Typically in India diabetics are asked to stop eating rice, banana and ghee.

The first thing once needs to understand is that eating rice / idly / dosa does not cause diabetes eating loads of rice with very little of dal and curry will spike the blood sugar levels. Low fats for diabetics but how much low is low and what type of fats? Too low of fats affects your brain functioning and poor lubrication to gut and joints.

The traditional Indian foods and eating practices hold good for us even today and are proved scientifically across the globe only fear is Ghee should not be patented by nations who never ate before we introduced to the rest of the world and now sold as “clarified butter” clarifying al l the misconceptions around this wonder food!

Rice:  Traditionally when rice is served on a plate before that there are at least two forms of curries, chutneys and dal in the plate and rice is served and topped with a dollop of ghee . How does this help?

Rice is a simple carbohydrate but remember it’s the richest source of biological protein compared to any non-vegetarian food followed by fish protein. So rich though not dense on protein is having high biological value protein, energy packed carbohydrate might cause sudden spike in the blood sugars this is where our traditional Indian food wisdom comes in, its mixed with curries – fiber and vitamins and minerals, dal – protein and ghee – which reduces the glycaemic index of the rice. So ideally you platter has a complex carbohydrate mix which is absorbed gradually without rising blood sugars. Agree? Well same goes with Idly and Dosa , or an aloo paratha if you smear a spoon of ghee on you idlys, or dosa or paratha it does the same thing reduces its glycaemic index and much better if you are also eating it along with you chutney sambar, sabzi and salad.Look at our traditional sweets each of it has a key ingredient ghee in it unfortunately now replaced by oils / dalda or Vanaspati.


Old is Gold so is our cow ghee let me not get into controversy of “cow”,:) or desi ghee (home made) it makes our brains sharp, lubricates our gut and bones, aids in constipations, melts hard fat deposits, delays gastric emptying by up-regulating the response of a gut hormone GLP-1. GLP-1 has a half-life of less than 2 minutes, due to rapid degradation by the enzyme dipeptidyl peptidase-4. It is a potent antihyperglycemic hormone, inducing glucose-dependent stimulation of insulin secretion while suppressing glucagon secretion. Such glucose-dependent action is particularly attractive because, when the plasma glucose concentration is in the normal fasting range, GLP-1 no longer stimulates insulin to cause hypoglycemia. GLP-1 appears to restore the glucose sensitivity of pancreatic β-cells, with the mechanism possibly involving the increased expression of GLUT2 and glucokinase. GLP-1 is also known to inhibit pancreatic β-cell apoptosis and stimulate the proliferation and differentiation of insulin-secreting β-cells. In addition, GLP-1 inhibits gastric secretion and motility. This delays and protracts carbohydrate absorption and contributes to a satiating effect Basically this means that it lowers the glycemic index and helps regulate the blood sugar response. So adding ghee to food, in this case adding it to rice, roti, dosa, idly, paratha lowers the glycemic index of these carbohydrate dense foods which on its own is pretty high on the GI. Whatever be your health condition minimum of 10 gms( two teaspoons of ghee) of ghee will certainly add zing and make the food more palatable.


Recent research shows that high potassium foods help in prevention of renal and cardiac problems in diabetics . Beats fatigue, constipation, prevents acidity, instant energy, regulates …blood pressures and brings in flawless glow on skin. With an average of 105 calories, banana is an excellent source of instant energy. It is especially great as an after workout food because it instantly replenishes the low levels of glucose in the blood. The probiotic effect of fructooligosaccharides (FOS) present in bananas, helps stimulate the growth of friendly bacteria in the intestine and protect you against gastric disturbances. It is also good for your bone health too. Fermentation of FOS reduces the pH in the gut thereby promoting calcium absorption which in turn builds strong bones. Banana stem helps to eliminate fluids from the body. This diuretic effect is thought to be useful in eliminating kidney stones and also help detoxify the body. The stem is also believed to dissolve stones. Bananas actually protect you from muscle cramps. Because of its high magnesium and potassium content, bananas are the best way to replenish the minerals in your body. It helps relax the muscles and protects you from any further episodes of leg cramps. Bananas, being very rich in potassium and very low in sodium help manage blood pressure better. It aids in maintaining water balance in the body and detoxify the body to protect you against heart attack and stroke. Bananas are also very effective antacids. It coats the inner lining of the stomach and suppress acid secretion, thereby protecting you from stomach ulcers and acidity. If you feel your body dehydrated and depleted of electrolytes. Restore the lost potassium by eating bananas. The feel good factor after is certain, having a banana before bed can help promote sleep. The soothing effect is due to high levels of tryptophan which gets converted to serotonin in the brain. This not only improves your mood but also makes you more alert and improves your concentration levels. IF are a diabetic you can still eat banana at least thrice a week no harm.

We eat banana mashed in milk or curds along with rice in south of India and with puri or Chapati in north and western parts of the country. Again the same logic it is made complex by adding a bit of ghee, milk and mixed along with rice or roti and so absorbed slowly. So instead of silly bananshake try this form of banana recipe called as shikran eaten with staple cereals.

So people next time you diet or nutrition counsellor asks you to reduce or stop eating your staple food rice and change to foods of foreign lands like oats, corn flakes or asks to take olive oil instead of ghee and take pears and prunes and kiwis instead of our humble banana you please go prepared 🙂

Healthy balance diet consisting of foods from all groups timely meals ,medication and exercise will make your life merrier despite of “diabetes” and go ahead and eat your rice banana and ghee wisely without guilt or fear!

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