Mushrooms and Diabetes

As our population gets older and more overweight, type 2 diabetes is on the rise. Type 2 diabetes is a progressive, life-long condition that can lead to serious complications such as blindness, heart disease, kidney problems, nerve damage and erectile dysfunction.1 Anyone over 40 is at risk and should have their blood glucose (sugar) tested as part of their regular yearly physical. Being overweight, having high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels are some of the risk factors that increase the likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes.2

Diabetes is a condition in which the body cannot properly use and store food for energy. The main fuel that the body needs is called glucose, a form of sugar. Glucose comes from foods such as fruit, milk, some vegetables, starchy foods and sugar.3 Along with physical activity and not smoking, healthy eating is one of the cornerstones for preventing and managing diabetes. As they are low in calories and fat, have very little carbohydrate and provide some fibre, fresh mushrooms are a delicious way to eat healthy.

Fresh Mushrooms Can Help!

  • Fresh mushrooms contain both soluble and insoluble fibre. Soluble fibre has been shown to help regulate blood sugar levels.4
  • Aim for 25 to 35 grams of fibre every day.
Glycemic Index (GI)
  • Fresh mushrooms are a low glycemic food as they contain very little carbohydrate. That means that they do not raise blood-sugar levels as significantly as carbohydrate-rich foods, such as bread.
  • Eating foods with a low GI may help to control blood sugar levels, control appetite and lower the likelihood of getting type 2 diabetes.5
Weight Watching
  • Fresh mushrooms are a perfect choice for weight management, since they have high water content, are low in fat and contain some fibre: three factors that will help you feel full with fewer calories. That means less room for calorie-laden foods.
Mushrooms Make a Difference
  • Have ½ cup sliced, cooked fresh mushrooms instead of ½ cup corn kernels as a side dish. Benefit: save 15.5 grams carbohydrates and lower the GI.6
  • Substitute ½ cup sliced Crimini mushrooms for ½ cup white rice as a side dish. Benefit: save 20 grams carbohydrates and lower the GI.6
  • Instead of ½ cup mashed potatoes have ½ cup sliced, cooked fresh mushrooms. Benefit: save 15 grams of carbohydrates and lower the GI.6

For more about diabetes visit the Canadian Diabetes Association.

  1. From Canadian Diabetes Association Website: Types of Diabetes
  2. From Canadian Diabetes Association Website: Are You at Risk
  3. From Just the Basics, Canadian Diabetes Association.
  4. Chandalia M, Garg A, Lutjohann D, von Bergmann K, Grundy SM, Brinkley LJ. Beneficial effects of high dietary fiber intake in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. N Eng J Med 2000:342:1392-1398.
  5. Glycemic Index, Canadian Diabetes Association
  6. USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference (Release 28, released September 2015, slightly revised May 2016)

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