High Fiber Grains to maintain blood sugar

High Fiber Grains to maintain blood sugar

Millets and Ancient Grains – Veg Superfoods to help regulate your Blood Sugar


Diabetes is a big problem in India- It has the 2nd largest number of diagnosed diabetics – at 7.7 crores as of the last study in 2017. 1 in six diabetics in the world is in India.


While medical care is easily available and expanding, making your diet diabetes friendly is not that easy to get. Especially for vegetarians as most western advice is heavy on egg and leans fats like chicken breast or fish.


It’s important to eat foods that help with blood sugar regulation and also prevent strain on your heart & kidneys.


But figuring out what to eat when you have diabetes need not be tough, even if you don’t like fish or eggs. Here are 5 grains & superfoods which are rich in fiber and are easy on your organs, while being vegetarian to the boot.



Glycaemic Index

Glycaemic Load

Gluten Free





Black rice








Bajra (Pearl Millet)




Chickpeas (Bengal Gram or Chana)







  1. Barley – Jau – Barley has long been traditionally recommended for Sugar control across India. The Lowest GI grain widely cultivated, it was also the first cultivated grain in India along with rice, Barley is rich in fibers, proteins, B complex vitamins, magnesium, potassium, iron.

With a GI of 25 & Glycemic Load of 9 it is the best staple for diabetics and a far better option than Whole Wheat, Rice, ragi or jowar – the 4 most popular staples in India.


  1. Chickpeas / Bengal Gram or Chhola / Chana – The eponymous Chhole are superbly healthy food option for diabetics. Its common Indian variety – Bengal Gram or Chana is commonly consumed as Besan, or Sattu, or even as a Dal.

It has a fantastic GI of 31, and among the lowest Glycemic loads of 11. It is also a nutrition powerhouse with the highest source of veg protein and very high in fiber.


And not to forget, hummus is made of chickpeas 


  1. Pearl Millet – Bajra – This hardy millet grown in Rajasthan & Gujarat, is a true Superfood. It is super rich in minerals, with very high Phosphorus and Protein. It has a moderate GI at 54, but its high amount on insoluble fibre makes the absorption of Glucose very slow, with a Glycemic load as low as 6.06!


  1. Black Rice – Forbidden Rice - Black rice is such a nutritional powerhouse- it was once the exclusive preserve of Chinese royalty and forbidden to common people. It is packed with eight essential vitamins and nutrients like zinc, riboflavin, more antioxidants than any other grain and three times as much fibre as white rice.

Most importantly for our purpose, it has a low GI of 42.3 and a Glycaemic load of 14, making it a wonderful option for Diabetics and blood sugar control.


  1. Buckwheat – Kuttu – A pseudo-cereal like quinoa, buckwheat is actually a seed & not a grain. In India, it has long been popular as a food option during Fasts (Upvaas) – Kuttu ki roti, pakodi & imarti are staples at North Indian restaurants like Haldiram’s during Navratra.


And because its completely gluten free, its also often recommended as a diet option for Celiac D disease.

It’s a nutrient powerhouse with a large amount of protein, fibers and flavonoids rutin and quercetin. Rutin strengthens the blood vessels while quercetin helps to reduce inflammation.


It has a low GI of 45, and a very low Glycemic load of 15, and thus again a great option for Diabetics.



So now you have 5 diabetes friendly food options, which are also vegetarian and easily available across India and online. We recommend that you add them to your diet and see the benefits.


PS: A lot of the benefits depends upon the recipe and medium of cooking. No matter how healthy Besan might be, pakode cannot be healthy! 





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