This Article is From Jul 17, 2019

Diabetes Diet: Here's Why Protein Rich Foods Are Important For Diabetics

Diabetes diet: Dr Sujeet Jha says that diabetics must include protein rich foods in their diet to prevent muscle wasting. Read below to know more about why protein is important for diabetics and others.

Diabetes Diet: Here's Why Protein Rich Foods Are Important For Diabetics

Diabetes diet must include protein rich foods, finds study


  • There are as many as 69 million diabetic individuals in India alone
  • Study linked food preferences of people to diabetes prevalence in India
  • Protein is an important macro nutrient for diabetics

Diabetes is a condition characterised by increased blood sugar levels. It is an emerging health problem, especially in the developing countries. World Health Organisation mentions that there are as many as 69 million diabetic individuals in India alone and this number is estimated to go up to 98 million by 2030. Following a healthy lifestyle is an important aspect of diabetes management. A study found that protein rich foods and dairy products in a meal can help in reducing diabetes risk. The study linked food preferences of individuals to prevalence of diabetes in India. It was found that while eating calorie-rich foods like sugar and refined carbs can increase diabetes risk, including protein-rich foods in your diet can reduce risk of diabetes.

Diabetes diet: Why protein rich foods are important?

Diabetes need regular care and attention. If not controlled or treated properly, can lead to loss of vision, heart problems, kidney problems and much more. Healthy diet and lifestyle can effectively reduce risk of diabetes.


Healthy diet and lifestyle can reduce risk of diabetes
Photo Credit: iStock

Also read: Include These Plant Based Foods To Reduce Type 2 Diabetes Risk

We talk to Dr Sujeet Jha if proteins are helpful for diabetes management. He says that protein rich foods are important for people with diabetes to prevent loss of muscle - which is common among diabetics. "If diabetes diet lacks protein, you are likely to experience muscle wasting. Muscle wasting contributes to diabetes and affects overall quality of life. People tend to feel weak and are unable to exercise sufficiently. Thus, protein is important for muscle build up, especially in diabetics," he says and adds that this stands true even for people who don't have diabetes.

But, too much protein is not good for people with diabetes. "High protein diet has not been found to be beneficial for diabetics. Ideally, 55% of your diet should include fibre-rich carbs, 15-20% of it should be protein and 15-20% of it should include fat," he informs while adding extra protein should not be taken by diabetics.


People with diabetes should consume a high fibre diet
Photo Credit: iStock

Also read: Did You Know High Blood Pressure, Diabetes And Obesity Are Linked To Unhealthy Brains?

He goes on to say that high fibre diet is often recommended for people with diabetes. Complex carbs that are rich in fibre and good for your health. They include vegetables, pulses and legumes. "Most Indians consume a high carb and moderate to less protein diet," says Dr Sujeet.

Following are the protein rich foods that can be beneficial for people with diabetes

1. Eggs

2. Cottage cheese

3. Chicken

4. Lentils

5. Legumes

6. Soy products

7. Beans

8. Nuts and seeds

9. Chickpeas

10. Fatty fish and seafood

Thus, people with diabetes must include protein rich foods in their diet for their overall health and well-being.

Also read: Is Keto Diet Safe For People With Diabetes?

(Dr. Sujeet Jha is the Director of Institute of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism at Max Healthcare)

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.