We all know that diabetic people cannot metabolize sugars well, so they accumulate in the blood and, therefore, they have to leave out simple sugars in their diet because they are the ones that increase the amount of glucose in the blood faster. One of the sweet and most natural foods that those who suffer from diabetes are forced to leave is honey, because due to its sugar content they should not really eat it.
However, there are situations in which it can be taken even if you suffer from this disease and, in addition, there are different types of this food with different sugar content. In we give the answer to a common question: can diabetics eat honey? Although we anticipate that the answer is that they should NOT eat it, we explain the necessary details to know when they can “make the exception” and other aspects.
Does honey raise sugar?
This is the first question that many people who begin to suffer from diabetes, or who know someone with this health problem, ask themselves, and the answer is simple: honey DOES raise blood sugar, or put blood glucose levels correctly. The reason is that a good part of the composition of this food are sugars of different types, so when ingested the body ends up accumulating them in the blood if they cannot be metabolized well, as is the case of diabetics, who due to problems with insulin cannot use sugars for the benefit of the body and suffer hyperglycemia or high glucose levels.
Nutritional composition of honey
As we have mentioned, honey has many sugars of different types, but it also contains other nutrients, distributed in the following ranges:
- Water: between 14% and 22%.
- Sugars: fructose (28% – 44%), glucose (22% – 40%), sucrose (0.2% – 7%), maltose (2% – 16%) and other sugars (0.1% – 8%).
- Proteins and amino acids: between 0.2% and 2%.
- Minerals: between 0.5% and 1.5%.
- Vitamins and other nutrients: between 0.5% and 1%.
Does honey cause diabetes?
No, honey does not cause diabetes. This disease is caused by factors related to genetics, which make someone more prone to this problem, by a very inadequate diet, with few quality nutrients and high in sugars and fats of the less healthy types, and by uncontrolled obesity, that is, without treating properly. Therefore, apart from genetic reasons, junk or junk foods, alcohol, sugary drinks, industrial pastries are some examples of this unhealthy diet that can cause diabetes. But, the fact of eating honey, although it is done often, does not produce this disease, although it can trigger it if there are genetic factors that predispose it.
So, can diabetics take honey?
If you ask yourself “can I eat honey if I have diabetes?”, the clearest answer is that if you have diabetes, you should NOT eat honey from bees. However, diabetic people also have times when their blood glucose levels drop, that is, they are times when they have acute hypoglycemia. Therefore, it is at these times that they should take food with sugar, and even if it is serious, they should be taken on direct glucose, and honey is a good option, although it must be a small amount of honey from bees.
Normally, an effective remedy to raise glucose when someone has hypoglycemia or a diabetic is given a drop in glucose is to take some honey and cinnamon. Therefore, with diabetes, honey and cinnamon are an option to regulate glucose levels when they are low.
Also, if there is a time when a diabetic decides to eat a little honey without being in a moment of low sugar, it is necessary that the appropriate amount of insulin is previously applied, the one that corresponds to him according to the levels marked by the device to measure blood glucose after pricking and introducing the drop of blood him.
Is agave honey good for diabetics?
Many people wonder: can diabetics take agave honey or maguey? and even believe that the answer is yes, but the truth is that this is a wrong idea. Honey, syrup or agave or maguey syrup is actually not recommended either, as it happens as with honey from bees that contains a high level of sugars.
The belief spread that honey or agave syrup had a low glycemic index, that is, it provided little number of sugars, but it is not true. Actually, it has sugars like natural honey from bees, although depending on the composition of each product, depending on the brand of this food, we can find more or less amount of glycemic index, due to the amount and concentration of sugars. Therefore, it is advisable to read the labeling of the product, in addition to taking into account that it is best to talk directly with the doctor.
So, diabetics can only take agave honey in low blood glucose, and very little amount, to rebalance their levels. It is very important that when doing so they do not overdo it, since then in a short time they can go from having low levels to having hyperglycemia. Therefore, it is always vital to first measure blood glucose levels to calculate well the amounts of agave syrup that can be taken and insulin that must be injected before taking this sweet treat.
Natural Remedies to Lower Blood Sugar
Although honey, whatever type it is, is not a food suitable for diabetics, or not at least to consume it regularly, there are foods that can help regulate glucose levels. This is the case of natural hypoglycemic agents, such as the following infusions:
- Stevia infusion
- Cinnamon infusion
- Rooibos infusion
- Nettle root infusion
- Sage infusion
However, it is not advisable to take them very often and above all you have to monitor their consumption if you are a diabetic person who follows an insulin treatment constantly. And, of course, to these infusions you cannot add any sugar or sweetener, only a little stevia is recommended or, better yet, take them without sweetening.