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Do French Fries Affect Blood Glucose Levels in Type 2 Diabetes?

by
author image Jessica Bruso
Based in Massachusetts, Jessica Bruso has been writing since 2008. She holds a master of science degree in food policy and applied nutrition and a bachelor of arts degree in international relations, both from Tufts University.
Do French Fries Affect Blood Glucose Levels in Type 2 Diabetes?
A plate of french fries with ketchup. Photo Credit bhofack2/iStock/Getty Images

French fries may be tasty, but they definitely aren't healthy. A single restaurant serving can have as many as 491 calories and 23.9 grams of fat, and even a small order of fast food fries has about 207 calories and 9.2 grams of fat. Diabetics should be particularly careful to watch how many fries they eat because of their high carbohydrate content and glycemic index score.

Carbohydrate Content

Diabetics need to keep their carbohydrate consumption at about the same level for each meal, which is typically between 45 and 60 grams, according to the American Diabetes Association. This helps prevent spikes in their blood sugar levels. Just 10 french fries cooked at home from frozen have 19 grams of carbohydrates. A small order of fast food fries has about 28.6 grams, and a typical order of restaurant fries has 63.2 grams of carbohydrates.

Glycemic Index

The glycemic index helps predict how much foods will increase your blood sugar levels, with foods that are high on the glycemic index, with scores between 70 and 100, being likely to cause spikes in your blood sugar levels. French fries are a high-glycemic-index food, with a score of 75. This means eating french fries is likely to cause your blood sugar levels to increase, although you can minimize this effect by eating fries along with foods that are low on the glycemic index such as non-starchy vegetables and most fruits.

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