Is Jaggery Good for Diabetes?

Simple answer – No! It is a common myth that jaggery is a safe replacement for sugar in people with diabetes.

  • Both jaggery and sugar (table sugar) are derived from a common source i.e., sugarcane, though different processing is involved.
  • The major difference is that jaggery is less refined than sugar, and it thus retains small amounts of micronutrients (iron, calcium, magnesium, etc.).
  • On the other hand, refined sugar loses all its nutrients during crystallization.
  • So, jaggery can be a better alternative to refined sugar for those without diabetes.

Jaggery – micronutrients = Sugar

When it comes to the use of jaggery in those with diabetes, it is as bad as sugar because the bulk of it is sucrose.

Sucrose is a simple carbohydrate that gets digested and absorbed rapidly, resulting in elevated blood glucose levels.

Jaggery and sugar both have –

  1. Almost the same calorie density (380 kcal vs. 390 kcal per 100g)
  2. The high glycemic index (which means they cause a rapid and higher blood glucose excursion after consumption)

Thus, jaggery consumption is not advised for individuals with diabetes.

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