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Indian Food for a Diabetic Diet

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Indian Food for a Diabetic Diet
Indian foods that contain chickpeas are ideal for a diabetic diet. Photo Credit Joe Gough/iStock/Getty Images

An Indian meal of naan, potatoes and a mango lassi to drink may be delicious and classic Indian fare, but it's not appropriate for a diabetic diet. Fortunately, you can enjoy the spicy flavors of Indian cuisine without paying for it with a high blood sugar reading later. Consider adding these Indian foods to your healthy diabetic diet.

Tandoori Roti

Tandoori is a fiber-rich, whole-grain bread that's more diabetic-friendly than refined Indian breads like chapati and dosa. Because whole-wheat bread is digested and absorbed more slowly than white bread, it reduces the risk of dangerous blood sugar spikes. Additionally, regularly consuming whole grains can boost your cells' sensitivity to insulin, according to the November 2003 "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition." More insulin-sensitive cells can help make managing your blood sugar easier.

Channa Masala

Channa masala is a flavorful chickpea-based South Indian classic bursting with dietary fiber. Karen Collins of the American Institute for Cancer Research states that beans like chickpeas contain ample amounts of soluble fiber. Soluble fiber delays digestion of carbs, helping you achieve even blood sugar levels. Additionally, the soluble fiber in chickpeas can help decrease elevated cholesterol levels.

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Vegetable Curry

Bland vegetables transform into mouth-watering superfoods when prepared as Indian vegetable curry. Containing a variety of nutrient-dense veggies like eggplant, spinach and carrots, vegetable curry is an excellent source of low glycemic index vegetables. The glycemic index is a measurement of how rapidly the carbs in a food end up as blood sugar. Including low glycemic index carbs in your diabetic diet can help you keep your blood sugar levels in check, the Glycemic Index Foundation reports.


Bhindi is a flavor-packed Indian side dish containing the vegetable okra. In addition to being a fibrous, low glycemic vegetable, okra contains compounds that can reduce the risk of diabetic kidney damage, the November 2010 edition of the "Jilin Medical Journal" states. In the study, 72 diabetic volunteers were given a diabetic diet or the same diet containing daily okra. The okra group had healthier kidneys at the end of the six-month followup period compared to those who didn't eat okra.

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author image Ryan Devon
Ryan Devon is a registered dietitian with a Master of Science in nutrition and health promotion from Simmons College. He starting writing in 2010, specializing in weight management and eating-disorder science.
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