Broad beans are a good source of fiber and protein, which can be beneficial for people with diabetes. However, the glycemic index (GI) of broad beans is moderate, at 63. This means that they can cause a relatively rapid increase in blood sugar levels.
There are a few things that you can do to lower the GI of broad beans so that diabetics can eat them:
- Cook them thoroughly. Cooking breaks down the starches in broad beans, making them less digestible and therefore slower to raise blood sugar levels.
- Add fiber. Fiber slows down the absorption of glucose into the bloodstream, so adding fiber-rich foods to broad beans can help to lower their GI. Good sources of fiber include legumes, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.
- Combine them with other foods. Eating broad beans with other foods that have a low GI can help to moderate their effect on blood sugar levels. Good choices include lean protein, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates.
Here are some specific examples of how you can lower the GI of broad beans:
- Cooked broad beans with brown rice and lentils. This meal combines broad beans with two other low-GI foods, brown rice and lentils. The fiber in the brown rice and lentils will help to slow down the absorption of glucose from the broad beans, resulting in a lower GI meal overall.
- Roasted broad beans with chickpeas and vegetables. This salad combines broad beans with chickpeas, which are another type of legume with a low GI. The vegetables in the salad will also add fiber, which will help to lower the GI of the meal.
- Broad bean hummus with whole-wheat pita bread. Hummus is a traditional Middle Eastern dish made from mashed broad beans, tahini, garlic, and lemon juice. It is a good source of protein and fiber, and it has a relatively low GI. Eating hummus with whole-wheat pita bread will provide additional fiber, which will help to lower the GI of the meal.
It is important to note that the GI of a food can vary depending on how it is prepared and cooked. For example, the GI of broad beans is lower when they are cooked thoroughly than when they are eaten raw. Therefore, it is important to choose cooking methods that will help to lower the GI of broad beans.
If you are diabetic, it is always a good idea to talk to your doctor or a registered dietitian about how to incorporate broad beans into your diet in a way that is safe and healthy for you.