Brinjal, also called aubergine or aubergine, is a popular vegetable in Indian cuisine. It has a distinctive texture and a versatile flavor. Recently, there has been renewed interest in the potential health benefits of eggplant, especially for people with diabetes. Some studies have suggested that consuming brinjal may have positive effects for people with diabetes, as it can help regulate blood sugar.
This article will explore the impact of brinjal consumption on diabetes and the potential benefits of adding this vegetable to a diabetes-friendly diet.
Nutritional values of brinjal
With its low calorie and high fiber content, brinjal is an excellent choice for people looking to control their weight and manage their blood sugar. Plus, its high levels of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, such as vitamin C, potassium, and folic acid, make it nutritious. Additionally, brinjal contains nasunin, an anthocyanin pigment with powerful antioxidant properties.
According to USDAthe nutritional values of one hundred grams of cooked, boiled and drained eggplant prepared without salt are as follows.
- Energy: 35kCal
- Carbohydrates: 8.73g
- Fibre: 2.5g
- Protein: 0.83g
- Calcium: 6mg
- Magnesium: 11mg
- Potassium: 123mg
- Phosphorus: 15mg
- Vitamin A: 37 IU
- Vitamin C: 1.3mg
- Vitamin K: 2.9 mcg
- Vitamin B6: 0.086mg
- Folate: 14 mcg
The nutritional value of eggplant can be affected by a variety of factors, including the method of preparation and the oil used. For example, frying or sautéing eggplants in oil increases their calorie and fat content compared to steaming or roasting. Additionally, the type of oil used during cooking can also have an impact – for example, olive oil is a healthier option than high saturated fat oil. Finally, the variety of eggplant may also play a role, as different types may contain different levels of nutrients. Some may be higher in fiber and others higher in antioxidants.
Note from The Fitness Freak
Rich in vitamins and minerals, brinjal is a nutrient-dense vegetable. Its high fiber content is beneficial for digestive health, weight management and blood sugar control. In addition, eggplant is a good source of vitamins C, K and B6 and potassium, manganese and folate. As a result, it may benefit overall health.
Brinjal glycemic index
The glycemic index (GI) of a food tells you how quickly it will raise your blood sugar. High GI foods break down faster and can cause your blood sugar to spike dramatically and suddenly. On the other hand, low GI foods are digested more slowly, resulting in a slower and more minor rise in your blood sugar.
The glycemic index Database states that eggplant has an approximate glycemic index of 20, which is considered low. This makes it an ideal food for people with diabetes or anyone trying to control their blood sugar, as it won’t cause a sudden spike in their blood sugar.
Exploring the relationship between eggplant and diabetes
Diabetes is a long-lasting disease characterized by excess sugar in the blood. It is divided into two broad categories: type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease in which the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks and destroys cells in the pancreas responsible for of insulin production. Type 2 diabetes results from insulin resistance, which means cells in the body don’t respond properly to the hormone, leading to high blood sugar levels.
Obesity is a significant risk factor for type 2 diabetes, and high-calorie, nutrient-poor diets may increase the risk of developing the disease. However, eating more nutrient-dense fruits and vegetables reduces the risk. Brinjal is a great choice because it’s low in calories but high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
Eggplant is an excellent source of antioxidants, molecules that help protect the body against free radicals. These free radicals are molecules that can damage cells and cause chronic diseases like diabetes. Additionally, eggplant skin contains nasunin, a flavonoid known for its anti-inflammatory properties. As a result, it can protect the body from destruction caused by free radicals.
There has not been extensive research on the direct effects of brinjal consumption on blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. However, studies have suggested that eating foods high in fiber and low in calories, such as brinjal, may improve blood sugar control. For example, research shows that a diet high in fiber-rich fruits and vegetables, including eggplant, was linked to a decreased risk of developing diabetes.
The Benefits of Brinjal for Diabetes Control
Brinjal may have benefits for people with diabetes that go beyond its potential impact on blood sugar.
Research reported that brinjal powder may be beneficial for people with diabetes as it may help lower blood pressure. As a result, it may reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease. Additionally, the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of eggplant may help protect against cell damage and inflammation.
Eggplant is rich in phytonutrients, beneficial compounds found in plants that have a positive effect on health. Research shows that phytonutrients can also reduce inflammation and lower blood sugar levels.
One of the phytonutrients in eggplant is chlorogenic acid, a polyphenol with anti-inflammatory effects. It can help lower blood sugar levels. Another phytonutrient in eggplant is solavetivone. It is an antibacterial substance that could prevent the growth of dangerous bacteria in the intestine.
Good source of fiber
Eggplant is an excellent source of fiber, which helps regulate blood sugar. This is because fiber slows the absorption of sugar from the blood, thereby reducing blood sugar levels. Plus, fiber also aids in weight loss, which can help prevent obesity.
Potassium and Magnesium
Eggplant is a nutritious vegetable rich in two important minerals, potassium and magnesium. Potassium is essential for maintaining good heart health because it can help lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart disease in people with diabetes.
Magnesium is also vital for blood sugar control. It helps the body use insulin more efficiently and may lower blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. Additionally, magnesium may reduce the risk of heart disease in people with diabetes.
Ways to Use Brinjal in a Diabetes Friendly Diet
There are plenty of delicious options if you’re looking for diabetes-friendly ways to incorporate eggplant into your diet. Popular Indian dishes that include brinjal are:
- Baingan Bharta (roasted and mashed eggplant mixed with spices and tomatoes)
- Bharva Baingan (eggplant stuffed with a mixture of spices and vegetables)
- Baingan ka Raita (a yogurt-based dip made with mashed brinjal, yogurt and spices)
- Baingan ki Subzi (brunjal sautéed with spices and vegetables)
When including eggplant in a diabetes-friendly diet, portion size is key. It is recommended to consume about ½ cup of cooked brinjal per serving. Be sure to pair eggplant with other nutrient-dense foods to make it a balanced meal. To get a personalized plan for incorporating brinjals and other nutritious foods to manage diabetes, you can talk to a HealthifyMe nutritionist.
The potential benefits of brinjal for people with diabetes may be promising, but more research is needed to understand its impact on blood sugar. Nonetheless, studies have indicated that consuming brinjal may help improve blood sugar control and reduce the risk of complications associated with diabetes.
Many Indian dishes contain brinjals, such as Baingan Bharta, Bharva Baingan, Baingan ka Raita and Baingan ki Subzi. Consuming these foods and considering portion sizes with other nutritious meals can be beneficial for diabetes management.
1. The United States Department of Agriculture
2. Glycemic Index Guide
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