Is diabetes protein powder good for people with diabetes

Diabetes protein powder is enriched with ingredients which have scientific evidence of diabetes management.

Diabetes is a condition where body cannot produce enough insulin which is required to naturally control the blood sugar levels. Given this condition, it becomes necessary to eat foods which release glucose slowly in blood.

All of the foods from carbohydrate category which include grains, cereals, legumes and dals release glucose faster than foods from protein category. Protein rich foods include the dairy, eggs, fish, poultry, meat, nuts and protein shakes.

Diabetes protein powder is one category among the range of protein shakes available.

Protein is one of the most important nutrients to manage any disease condition. Protein, also known as building blocks of body, has a role in cell structure itself. All cells of the body, including the immunity cells and hormonal components, require protein as raw material.

When body ages, there is constant breakdown of protein in body which needs to be compensated with protein from foods.

It is an absolute fact that not everyone eats all protein rich foods every single day in every single meal. Having said that, it becomes important to include a diabetes protein powder in daily diet, to manage control on blood sugar levels.

Diabetes management becomes slightly convenient with protein shakes where the nutrients are calculated in one serving so there is less chance of overeating.

How does diabetes protein powder help?

A balanced blend of slow release carbohydrates with good quality protein and high fiber content is what makes a perfect protein powder. There are variety of protein shakes available in market hence reading labels and making an informed choice with the help of a healthcare expert is recommended.

Diabetes protein powder should help slow release of glucose in blood to maintain steady insulin levels and should provide high quality protein to help prevent muscle loss. High quality proteins like whey proteins are also known for their benefit in host immunity which is important so as to prevent from further complications of diabetes.

There is a lot of data available on comparison between use of a diabetes protein powder versus a standard protein powder. Majority of data has shown improvement in blood sugar control, HbA1c levels and overall diabetes management with a protein powder.

Studies also support the role of protein in improving insulin action, reducing postprandial (post meals) glucose spike and improvement in muscle mass which in turn plays a role in improving insulin action.

Protein powder and weight management

There is enough scientific evidence supporting the benefits of weight loss in diabetes management. Sustainable weight loss comes with lifestyle modification where physical activity and diet play a huge role. Including protein powders in daily diet have shown positive results in weight loss.

Putting both of them together, a diabetes protein powder can definitely help achieve weight loss which can help in diabetes management.

Including other high protein foods like dairy, eggs, lean meat and nuts is also beneficial to help improve the overall protein intake throughout the day. Studies have shown that high protein diets have an advantage over average protein diets in diabetes management.

While making the diet protein rich, one must also look at the amino acids profile of foods and make sure the foods contains all essential amino acids for better benefits.

What all to check while buying a diabetes protein powder?

The first advice is to check with your concerned dietitian or doctor to understand the options of protein powders available. Once you know where to look at, then you can make an informed decision.

Diabetes protein powder should have high quality protein source. So far, the highest quality ranking goes to whey protein which has all essential amino acids and have enough evidence to be beneficial in diabetes management. Other sources of protein in protein powder are soya protein, casein protein, milk protein, milk solids etc.

Label should also be checked for source of carbohydrate used and make sure it is slow absorbed carbohydrate which releases glucose slowly. Make sure there is no added sugar (specifically sucrose) in a product which is labelled as diabetes protein powder.

Free sugar, specially sucrose, shoots the postprandial blood sugar levels and makes insulin unsteady which is an obstacle in diabetes management

Fiber content of protein powder should also be checked since fiber is one of those important nutrients which slowdown the release of glucose in blood. Sources like oats fiber, guar gum fiber, inulin fiber are usually present in a protein powder for better management of blood sugar.

What is the right time to have diabetes protein powder in a day?

Diabetes management requires eating small healthy meals at regular intervals so that the insulin levels are steady throughout the day. Hence anytime of the day where there is a longer gap between main meals can be the right time to include a protein powder.

Sometimes, depending on individual variation in daily glucose control and meal timings, your dietitian may suggest you to take the protein shake first thing in the morning or during bedtime. However, it is commonly placed as meal between meals.

There is also a greater possibility to choose a healthy snack in form of a diabetes protein powder rather than picking up high sugar and high fat fast foods. It is always a healthier choice to opt for a protein powder for optimum diabetes management provided you make a right choice.

Your healthcare provider is the right person to guide you with various options available along with addressing your doubts regarding the same. To conclude, a diabetes protein powder can be a healthier and a more convenient option for diabetes management.