20 Foods With A Low-Glycemic Index For Diabetes

Medical Condition


Published on: 30-Aug-2022


10 min read


Updated on : 02-Nov-2023




Tarishi Shrivastava


20 Foods With A Low-Glycemic Index For Diabetes

20 Foods With A Low-Glycemic Index For Diabetes

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Food has always been an essential part of our lives, but for people with diabetes it becomes crucial to monitor what and when they eat.  That is why they must be aware of the “Glycemic Index” of every diet element. 

The glycemic index (GI) tells fibre requirements, carbohydrates in a specific food item, and how they can affect your blood sugar level when consumed. As per the American Diabetes Association (ADA), GI score is classified as follows:

  • Low GI: 55 or below
  • Moderate GI: 56 to 69
  • High GI: 70 and above

Low GI foods are best for managing post-meal spikes in Blood Sugar Level. They keep your blood sugar level steady and do not let it spike quickly. 

Many fruits have lower to medium glycemic indexes, which are an excellent choice for diabetes management. Besides, foods are a great source of vitamins A and C and fibre.

The glycemic load (GL) estimates the food-blood sugar in 3 stages which are low, medium, and high. This calculation considers the GI plus the grams of carbohydrates per serving of the food.

Table Of Content 

1. Foods With Low Glycemic Index

2. The Final Say

3. FAQs

Foods With Low Glycemic Index

Foods With  Low Glycemic Index

1. Apricots (Dried)

Fresh apricots are hard to find and store. So they are plucked off before complete ripening to avoid darkening. They are then naturally processed for shipping.

Small amounts of dried apricots are the best option as their carb content is slightly higher than the other whole fruits. Also, they are rich in Vitamin A and Vitamin E.

Glycemic load: 9 | Glycemic index: 32

2. Pears 

Pears provide 20% RDA of fibre. Always try to eat them with their peel on because it is more nutritious. Pears are mildly sweet.

Glycemic load: 4 | Glycemic index: 38

3. Apples

Apples are an excellent source of fibre. You can easily cover the daily fibre requirements by having one apple. Apples have a sweet-sour taste and a crunchy texture, making them delicious. In addition, apples are readily available throughout the year. 

Glycemic load: 5 | Glycemic index: 39

4. Oranges

Oranges are a perfect pack of vitamin C. They contain 83 mg of vitamin C. One orange contains 140 grams of fibre, around 10% of your daily fibre requirement. It also keeps your digestive System healthy.

Glycemic load: 5 | Glycemic index: 40

5. Plums

It is hard to find plums in the market, as they easily bruise. However, to consume the nutritional benefits, you can eat dried plums and be cautious of the quantity. 

Dried fruits are rich in carbohydrates, as they are dehydrated and dried.

The GL score of fresh plums is 2, and the GL score of prunes is 9.

Glycemic load: 2 | Glycemic index: 40

6. Strawberries

This fruit is excellent for health and contains antioxidants, vitamin C, and fibre. For example, 1 cup of strawberry has more vitamin C than an orange.

Glycemic load: 3 | Glycemic index: 41

7. Peaches

Peaches are a complete pack of vitamins and minerals. They cover the daily requirement of vitamin A by 6% and vitamin C by 15%. Other than this, peaches are also a rich source of vitamins E and K, niacin, folate, iron, choline, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese, zinc, and copper.

Glycemic load: 5 | Glycemic index: 42

8. Grapes

Grapes are also an excellent source of vitamin C. In addition, they are considered one of the best options to improve mood and brain function, as they have a high quantity of Vitamin B-6.

Glycemic load: 5 | Glycemic index: 53

9. Milk

Milk is an excellent source of various nutritional values.

However, along with calcium, it has the lowest GL index compared to any dairy product.

Glycemic index: 37-39

10. Oats

Beta-glucan has many health benefits and is the best breakfast alternative. Try to consume steel cut or rolled cuts than processed or instant oats because instant oats are higher in GI.

Glycemic index: 55

11. Chickpeas 

Chickpeas can be used as an option for white rice or potatoes with an excess Glycemic index. It has potassium, vitamin B9, and calcium.

Glycemic index: 28

12. Carrots

Carrots are rich in Vitamin A (beta carotene), which is good for the eyes. They help to prevent cell damage and also have antioxidants.

Glycemic index: 39

13. Rajma (Kidney beans)

Kidney beans are essential for diabetes patients as it is low in fat and high in protein; they also contain potassium and fibre.

Glycemic Index: 24

14. Lentils

They are a source of potassium and phosphorus; they can also be included in lunch and breakfast bowls.

Glycemic Index: 32

15. Coconut

Coconut contains the antioxidant selenium, which protects cells. In addition, coconut is a good source of carbs, proteins, and manganese, which is essential for bone health.

Glycemic index: 45

16. Brown rice

Brown rice can be added to lunch or dinner as it contains fibre and is low in carbs. In addition, it prevents stroke or heart disease due to the presence of magnesium.

Glycemic index: 55

17. Mushroom

It is the food that has the least GI and has a good source of selenium. However, fibre and antioxidants also prevent cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and heart diseases.

Glycemic index: 10

18. Sweet Potatoes

They are low in carbohydrates and suitable for the immune system and eye health. Also, it helps to improve the reproduction system.

Glycemic Index: 54

19. Whole wheat bread

It can be used as a good breakfast option, as a sandwich, or toasted with butter, rich in complex carbohydrates and protein. It helps in weight management and reduces the risk of stroke and diabetes.

Glycemic index: 51

20. Curd

Great for the skin, it is the best probiotic that improves digestion, bone health, and skin texture. It also lightens dark spots and reduces dandruff.

Glycemic index: 28

The Final Say

As per one study on diabetes patients, having low glycemic index foods helps maintain Blood sugar level in the long run. Some foods are high in GL, but having them in little quantities can work the same as a low GI. You do not have to avoid high GI foods, but looking out for the amount of food you consume is recommended.


1. What glycemic index is good for diabetes?

Foods that contain less than 55 glycemic indexes are considered best for diabetes.

2. How does the glycemic index work?

Food with a GI of less than 55 is low glycemic, and more than 70 is high glycemic.

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