Diabetes: Can Lemon Water Help Lower Blood Sugar?

One of the most important areas of managing diabetes is looking at diet, and so today we will go through the impact of lemon water and whether it can help lower blood sugar levels.

Diabetes: Can Lemon Water Help Lower Blood Sugar?

We know that sugar and diabetes management are vital aspects of your day-to-day lifestyle to get right, but we often get the question regarding fructose, namely fruits,  and whether they impact your blood sugar levels.

For those who don’t have diabetes, lemon water can be a fantastic healthy viable option for those who want to mix up their water intake and have a healthy, tasty edition. 

It’s also a key option for those that are looking to manage their waistline, as it’s a much more slimming choice than fizzy drinks.

Which makes this a fantastic choice for those who need to manage their blood sugar levels.

The American Diabetes Association lists citrus fruits such as lemons and oranges as superfoods. read on to learn why lemons on a diabetic diet are a really good option.

Why Lemon Water Is A Great Option For Diabetics

With over 420 million people worldwide affected by diabetes, trying to find a balance between diets and managing blood sugar levels, whilst carbohydrate intake can be a tricky formula to balance.

A glass of lemon water is a super option for diabetics as it ticks many boxes.

Low In Carbohydrates

Lemon is very low in carbohydrates, and we’ll have a minimal impact on spiking your blood sugar levels.

If you compare this to a fizzy drink or a sugary energy drink, the difference is extremely fast.

Going with lemon water is not only healthier, but it’s easier to take on for diabetics.

The glycaemic index (GI) is a list of carbohydrate-based foods that will show you how it affects blood sugar levels.

This is measured on a scale from 0 to 100, with  100 being pure glucose. What this means is the higher the GI number the higher the blood sugar spike will be.

Lemon juice has a glycaemic index number of 20, which means it is classified as a low GI food.

It also has a low Glycaemic load which is the amount of carbohydrate in a food multiplied by the quality. 

However, be wary of the glycemic index as it’s hard to quantify what the glycaemic level of a meal is going to be as we eat or consume foods in isolation.

With lemon water, however, it’s easy to calculate as the only ingredients will be lemon and water.

Low In Calories

Alongside being low in carbohydrates, water is going to be next to zero calories.

We know that many diabetics can struggle with their waistline, and any beverage that will help to reduce total calorie intake for the day is going to be a very sensible option.

If you can take a glass of lemon water which is likely going to be less than 10 calories, a 330ml can of fizzy drink will be over 150 calories, which can add up over a week and a month.

Health Properties

I doubt that you will have to remind you that fruit, including lemons, is packed full of nutrition. Lemon is a great source of vitamin A, vitamin C as well as fiber.

It is also another way to get your five a day and can help to provide your gut microbiome with a source of phytonutrients, which is another way of saying that it can help to keep your gut healthy.

Hydration Levels

Another benefit of drinking lemon water is that you’re going to naturally increase your water intake, which we know can be difficult for some individuals, and so drinking more lemon water naturally helps to keep you hydrated throughout the day.

Simply adding one glass of lemon water to your morning routine can help you start the morning in a positive light.

Healthy Habit Stacking

Most habits that we incorporate usually stack one way or the other.

What we mean by this is that if you follow an unhealthy habit, it will usually contain other unhealthy habits within that habit.

For example, if you drink lots of alcohol (see also ‘Beer Belly – Does Alcohol Really Cause Weight Gain?‘) you will likely have worse quality and quantity of sleep, which will affect your hunger hormone signaling (leptin and ghrelin which indicate when you are hungry and full),  which means that you will eat more foods even if you don’t need it, which can add pounds to your body.

Now let’s take a healthy habit: daily walking. If you walk outside every day, not only are you going to get movement which helps with overall calorie burning, but this energy expenditure will help to maintain a healthy weight, and you’ll also be out in the light and sunshine, which means that you will have healthy levels of vitamin D, and it will also help to reduce stress and anxiety as walking outside has been shown to reduce these levels.

Taking our example for today’s topic; drinking lemon water in the morning can help to start your day in a positive way, which will likely mean you will stick to other healthy habits throughout the day, and help with your overall lifestyle.

Not only is lemon water healthy because it is low in calories and carbohydrates, but it’s also a super way to maintain healthy hydration levels.

We all know the power of being hydrated, and how it can affect your mood and energy levels positively or negatively.

So this stacking of healthy habits will pay dividends to your long-term health in the long run.

Final Thoughts

Without considering diabetics, the lemon is a super awesome food that is packed full of vitamin A, vitamin C, as well as fiber. 

As it’s a low GI food (20 on the GI scale),  this makes it a superb option for those that are managing their blood sugar levels.

As with anything that is a change in your lifestyle, especially diet-related, we still recommend that you chat with your doctor or dietitian just to ensure that it is a healthy option for you moving forward.

Joshua Damie
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