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Diabetes & Glycaemic Index

Mushrooms, Diabetes & the Glycaemic Index (GI) Summary

  • Are a nutrient-rich food for people with diabetes.
  • Do not raise blood glucose levels, that is, they have a very low GI.
  • Help keep your blood glucose levels normal.
  • Help keep your blood pressure normal by providing potassium and virtually no sodium (salt).
  • Are perfect for weight control as they are low in kilojoules and help appetite control and the avoidance of over-eating.

Glycaemic Index & Diabetes

Diabetes is a common condition in which the blood sugar levels or, more accurately, the blood glucose levels, rise above a healthy level in the blood. Estimates suggest that 900,000 people in Australia have diabetes, with the majority having type II diabetes.

You may have heard of the Glycaemic Index (GI), which is the measure of the effect a carbohydrate-containing food has on your blood glucose (sugar) levels. The effect is an indication of the speed at which the carbohydrate in food is digested and absorbed into the blood. A rapid rise in blood glucose shows that carbohydrate in food has been digested and absorbed into the blood quickly. People with diabetes are encouraged to eat mainly low GI foods, foods with only a minor effect on blood glucose levels.

The dietary advice for people with diabetes is to eat mainly least processed foods, such as fruits, vegetables, mushrooms, lean meats, low-fat dairy, nuts and whole grain cereal foods. Those foods that are the least processed generally have the least effect on blood glucose levels.

Mushrooms won't raise blood glucose

Mushrooms have a low carbohydrate level. As the carbohydrate content of mushrooms is so low, the mushroom has a GI close to zero. In other words, eating mushrooms has no real effect on blood glucose levels, something that is of benefit to people with diabetes.