If you are conscious about your health, trying to eat the best foods possible, and also happen to be living with diabetes, then you may feel like your options are slim to none. But there are plenty of surprising foods you may be able to eat as someone with diabetes.
Almond flour is largely considered to be the best healthy alternative to regular wheat flour, but will it affect your blood sugar? We’ve broken down all the facts to provide you with a definitive answer to this question. Read on for the full scoop.
Does Almond Flour Spike Blood Sugar?
Because almond flour content is made up almost entirely of crushed almonds, it is safe to include in your diet while also enjoying all of the benefits of eating regular almonds as it releases sugar slowly.
Almond flour does not negatively affect blood sugar levels and was even found to lower total cholesterol and LDL levels in people with type 2 diabetes.
People who eat almonds and flour made from them have lower insulin and blood glucose levels, showing improved blood sugar control, proving the many benefits of almonds for diabetes management.
Nutritional Value of Almond Flour
We’ve already mentioned a bit about how this unique flour is packed with nutrients, but let’s take a closer look at what exactly those nutrients are.
In 100g of almond flour, you’ll find an abundance of niacin, vitamin B6, thiamin, and other healthy nutrients your body needs to function at its best.
There is also plenty of magnesium, which, as we mentioned earlier, helps your body fight inflammation. It contains a healthy portion of calcium and potassium, as well as phosphorus and zinc – all healthy minerals that help fight infection and signs of aging and help keep your blood sugar under control.
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Glycemic Index of Almond Flour
The glycemic index of almond flour is less than 1. Sparing all of the complicated details, this essentially means that almond-based flour will have little to no effect in increasing blood glucose levels, making it suitable for anyone living with diabetes.
This low glycemic index is a stark contrast to the glycemic index of white flour, which comes in at a staggering 71. Likewise, rice flour has an even higher index of 98.
Some other good, healthy flours to eat with low glycemic indexes include coconut flour and chickpea flour.
How to Consume Almond Flour for Diabetes
The great thing about this flour alternative is that it works well in a variety of foods, from making tasty baked goods to diabetes-friendly dinners and more. It is also a great way to enjoy plant-based meals without spiking your sugar levels. Here are some great ways to use almond flour in your cooking:
Almond flour makes for a fantastic bread crumb substitute or to use in place of traditional flours. It can be used to make a nutty crust for fish or chicken, and since it has an almost buttery flavor, the coating not only makes your food more nutritious but makes it taste better as well.
Many people stand firmly by the fact that there’s no substitute for regular baking flour, no matter how many health benefits the alternative may provide. In some cases, they are right, but it all depends on the texture you want to achieve and how much flour you use in a recipe.
Thankfully, there are hundreds of recipes that use almond flour instead of white flour as part of their ingredient list, and most of them happen to be gluten-free as well. So if you live a gluten-free life, you’re in luck.
Why Almond Flour Might Be Harmful to Your Health
Unfortunately, nothing is perfect, and there are a few reasons why you may want to stay away from almond-based flours. One of the first reasons is that it is high in phytic acid. Phytic acid is known as an anti-nutrient and occurs naturally in all seeds, including beans, grains, legumes, and nuts.
While it is an important element in these seeds, it is not beneficial for humans. In fact, it can be quite hard on our bodies, causing tooth decay, gut issues, and nutrient deficiencies.
Furthermore, almond flour may cause constipation in some people. This also goes for nut milk, butter, energy bars containing nuts, granola containing nuts, and more.
Nuts, in general, can cause constipation, so if you have recently switched to this flour and are noticing that your bowel movements are more difficult, consider using another alternative.
Why Is Almond Flour Better Than Regular Flour for Diabetes?
Almonds are able to lower the amount of cholesterol in your body, especially if it’s high, to begin with. A 45g portion of almonds – around one cup – is able to lower your LDL cholesterol levels significantly, based on a recent review.
What’s more, while almonds are largely believed to be high in calories, they can actually help in reducing weight and body fat percentage. Since low-calorie diets are often low in fiber, which results in less food for your gut bacteria, almonds are able to counteract this imbalance.
Almond flour is an excellent substitute for traditional flour, and people with diabetes can use it in their cooking and baking.
It is high in nutrients, healthy, and boasts a range of gut benefits, ensuring you have enough prebiotic dietary fiber content. You can find almond flour at most local grocery stores, and we highly recommend using it if you struggle with blood sugar management.