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Is Orange Good for Diabetes? 5 Benefits of This Fruit
Diabetes

Is Orange Good for Diabetes? 5 Benefits of This Fruit

HR_author_photo_Edibel
Written by Edibel Quintero, RD | Medically reviewed by Medically reviewed by Rosmy Barrios, MD check
Published on August 4, 2022
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7 min

Oranges are a great choice if you enjoy sweet-tasting fruits. You might be searching for the right foods that maintain blood glucose levels, but can they actually help people with diabetes? We explain whether oranges are good for diabetes and their 5 health benefits.

Is orange good for diabetes

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Imagine this: you’ve just had some food but start feeling ill. A wave of head pain, numbness, and tiredness represent a rise in your blood sugar levels. This can be frustrating to deal with, especially if you can’t find the right nutritious foods to eat every day. 

So, do you want to try foods that are good for diabetes?

Oranges may be a suitable option if you require steady blood sugar. They have a range of nutrients, like vitamin C and potassium, that benefit your overall health. Many people try to incorporate citrus fruits into their diet to avoid those unwanted symptoms.

In this article, you’ll discover whether oranges are good for diabetes. 

Orange Nutritional Value

Oranges contain plenty of nutrients that can boost blood sugar regulation. Getting enough important minerals is crucial to supporting people with diabetes. You can understand more about oranges by looking at their sugar content, fats, and total carbohydrates. 

Below, you’ll find the nutritional value of oranges per 100g serving:

Net carbsTotal carbs FatsProtein
9.8g11.8g0.15g0.91g
Calories Fiber Sugar Glycemic index
522g8.57g43

Glycemic Index of Oranges

Oranges have a low glycemic index (GI) of 43. The lower this number is, the less likely your blood glucose levels will increase after food consumption. You can snack on this low-calorie food throughout the day to maintain blood sugar and glucose content.

Only foods that contain carbohydrates will have a glycemic index. For example, white bread (100g) has 34.7g of net carbs, meaning it has a high GI of 75. People with diabetes need to avoid products like this and stick to eating foods that are lower than 55 on the GI scale.  

There are 9.8g of net carbs in oranges, which is the perfect amount for preventing increased blood sugar levels. Most people eat one or two of this fruit daily, as it promotes satiety because of the high dietary fiber content. Always make sure to consume oranges in smaller portions between larger meals.

Is Orange Good for Diabetes?

Yes, oranges are great for maintaining blood sugar levels. They contain minimal fats and carbohydrates. Fiber is another important nutrient that reduces the risk of diabetes complications. It specifically helps blood sugar control and weight management.

Eating oranges is one way to stay healthy and keep your carb intake low. One orange is packed with vitamins and minerals – essential nutrients that improve blood sugar management. The American Diabetes Association praises oranges as being a “diabetes superfood” on your diet.

Dietary fiber is one of those nutrients that prevent a spike in blood glucose. Your body can’t absorb or break down fiber, meaning there won’t be excess sugar from digestion. Fiber also reduces the risk of heart disease by lowering LDL cholesterol and protecting blood vessels.

People who increase their fiber intake usually have lower fasting blood sugar levels and hemoglobin A1C. Too much hemoglobin can trigger serious long-term health problems like heart disease, kidney disease, blood clots, heart attacks, and nerve damage.

Oranges also have plenty of vitamin C – a water-soluble vitamin known to reduce free radicals caused by diabetes. This nutrient has antioxidant properties that lower blood sugar levels. Vitamin C minimizes the risk of diabetes-related oxidative stress in cells, proteins, and DNA.

Do Oranges Raise Your Blood Sugar?

No, oranges won’t cause a high spike in your blood sugar levels. They have a low GI score, meaning they can’t trigger excess glucose stores. Some people might feel wary about the 8.57g of sugar in oranges, but this sugar is natural and safe. 

You can eat oranges on a diabetes diet, as they have very little effect on blood sugar content. However, be aware that orange juice and canned mandarin oranges might not be good dietary options. These products usually contain added sugar that disrupts glucose and insulin levels.

Having more refined sugar can lead to weight gain, which is a contributing factor to diabetes. Sugar often stores itself as fat around important organs like your heart, liver, and kidneys. It might be best to avoid sugary products, but never eat less or cut extra food from your diet. 

Whole fruits, like one medium-sized orange, can hugely benefit a balanced diet. They are safe foods that can’t worsen type 2 diabetes or cause physical side effects. Eating citrus fruits will fuel your body with antioxidants – compounds that protect your cells from harmful molecules.

Benefits of Oranges for Diabetes

Oranges have many health benefits that will support diabetes management. This whole fruit is packed with vitamins and minerals – all essential for preventing high blood sugar levels. People with diabetes can eat oranges to not only maintain optimal health but to feel healthy again. 

Let’s take a look at the 5 main benefits of oranges: 

#1 Rich in fiber

The high-fiber content in oranges makes them perfect for a diabetes-friendly diet.

Fiber strengthens blood glucose control due to its non-digestible properties. Your body doesn’t have to produce extra sugar when breaking down oranges. Not only this, but the fiber is great at keeping blood sugar in the target range (between 80 and 130 mg/dL) before or after meals. 

Soluble fiber also supports weight loss by keeping you full for longer. Less snacking throughout the day means you can’t exceed your caloric intake. You could go on the ketogenic diet – a type of diet that focuses on low-carb, high-fat, and high-fiber foods that help you lose weight.

Eating citrus fruits like oranges can help you maintain or reach your ideal body goals. The soluble fiber will fight inflammation that might otherwise slow down your overall progress. 

#2 Boosts immune system

Oranges contain lots of vitamin C – an important nutrient for boosting the immune system. This vitamin protects the production and function of your immune and nerve-functioning cells. Healthy cells are essential for repairing, producing, and maintaining new body tissue. 

Stronger defenses in the body mean it can eliminate free radicals, especially ones that damage nerve cells from too much insulin. People with diabetes sometimes get nerve damage due to their body’s high-sugar content. However, consuming enough vitamins should prevent that. 

One medium-sized orange also has plenty of potassium. A healthy diet with high-potassium content ensures your body can fight NLRC4 inflammasome (an inflammatory response). Diabetes can often trigger this inflammation that weakens the immune system. 

#3 Have numerous vitamins and minerals

Oranges are filled with nutrients like calcium, vitamin C, thiamine (B1), and folic acid. This nutritional powerhouse is key to improving your long-term health. You should eat oranges on your diabetes diet to prevent problems like heart disease, neuropathy, and strokes.

Folic acid is especially great for improving glucose control in those with diabetes. They also strengthen insulin resistance, leading to manageable blood sugar levels. You can have oranges with a fruit salad to maintain red blood cell formation and prevent cardiovascular problems.

Calcium is another nutrient that improves insulin sensitivity. It may reduce low-density lipoprotein (LDL) – the bad cholesterol which collects in the walls of blood vessels. Too much LDL in your system can trigger serious heart problems that affect your important organs. 

Some people consume oranges due to their constipation-relieving effects. Calcium-rich foods may contribute to strong gut health, but avoid taking calcium supplements for diabetes. Oranges have natural calcium that won’t cause gastrointestinal side effects from carbonate pills.

#4 Source of antioxidants

Dietary antioxidants can reduce diabetic complications like chronic diseases, vision impairment, and nerve damage. They also minimize oxidative stress – and imbalance of free radicals. Oranges have lots of antioxidants, like vitamin C, that can eliminate dangerous molecules.

People with diabetes may snack on this whole fruit to prevent long-term health conditions. Antioxidants are crucial to staying healthy and protecting your organs. Just make sure not to get these compounds from drinking orange fruit juice, as it will only encourage more cellular stress.

#5 Prevents high blood pressure

Oranges usually have strong effects on lowering high blood pressure. Vitamin E (found in this fruit) is a fat-soluble nutrient that works to improve blood circulation. This improvement helps keep blood flowing properly through your veins, encouraging healthy blood pressure levels. 

If you need more guidance on blood pressure, the Cardi.Health app will support your management of cholesterol levels. This app can track your condition and create a personalized meal and activity plan. Keeping track of any blood pressure changes is very important. 

Cardi.Health also encourages you to share a monthly report with your doctor. A medical professional can evaluate blood pressure and determine the right medication. You can use the mobile app to set a reminder of when to take your pills or measure your pressure vitals.

FAQs

How many oranges can a person with diabetes eat per day?

You can eat 3–4 small oranges a day to maintain blood sugar. This is a safe limit due to the total carbohydrates, sugar, and calories. Oranges are a great snacking option between meals and may satisfy your sweet tooth. Just remember to eat other nutritious foods in your healthy diet.

How much does orange juice increase blood sugar?

Orange juice has a high glycemic index of between 66–76, depending on the product. Drinking too much of this may increase blood sugar to 180 mg/dL after consumption. Exceeding this amount could lead to symptoms like nausea, fatigue, intense thirst, and serious constipation.

How quickly will orange juice raise blood sugar?

Drinking just 1–2 cups of orange juice can raise your blood sugar in 15–30 minutes. The body starts to digest the sugar and produce more insulin. People with diabetes may struggle to lower their sugar levels as insulin causes cells to absorb more blood glucose.

A Word From Our MD

Eating fruit can be great for diabetes management. Oranges especially have many health benefits that maintain blood sugar levels. All of the essential vitamins and minerals work together to prevent diabetes-related symptoms, like headaches and stomach pain.

You shouldn’t drink orange juice or eat dried fruits. These products will only cause a spike in glucose levels and send you back to square one. Have fresh, raw oranges with a low glycemic index. It’s best to avoid added sugars completely and stick to consuming whole fruit.

Diabetes superfoods all contain flavonoid antioxidants that improve insulin production. Always try to reach your five-a-day and definitely add oranges to your meal plan. Relishing the benefits of oranges can reduce any physical and mental symptoms that derive from diabetes.

Conclusion 

So, the question is, are oranges for good diabetes?

You should incorporate this fruit into your daily meal schedule. It contains lots of vitamins and minerals that strengthen both physical and mental functions. Oranges don’t have many carbs, sugars, or fats, making them great for lowering sugar and blood glucose levels.

The Cardi.Health app will also help you manage high blood pressure and cholesterol. You can use the tracking features to monitor how you’re feeling, leading to improved long-term health.

HR_author_photo_Edibel
Written by
Edibel Quintero is a medical doctor who graduated in 2013 from the University of Zulia and has been working in her profession since then. She specializes in obesity and nutrition, physical rehabilitation, sports massage and post-operative rehabilitation. Edibel’s goal is to help people live healthier lives by educating them about food, exercise, mental wellness and other lifestyle choices that can improve their quality of life.
Medically reviewed by Rosmy Barrios, MD
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