Diabetes: Are jaggery and honey ‘healthier’ alternatives to

On consumption of natural sugars over the refined ones, which is being done excessively these days, Dr Ramesh Goyal, Head of Department of Endocrinology & Diabetes, Apollo Hospitals, Ahmedabad says Jaggery is not a good substitute for sugar when it comes to patients with diabetes. The reason being that the glycemic index, an indicator of how a food item affects your glucose level, of jaggery is the same as sugar. A diabetic person consuming jaggery has the same level of high blood sugar which we expect from him/her eating sugar.

Shedding more light on the assumption that jaggery is a safer alternative to sugar, Dr Jhingan says sugar and jaggery both come from the same source which is sugarcane. Hence it is not a good substitute.

“Eating jaggery instead of sugar gives a false sense of security to patients with diabetes,” he adds.

The advantage of consuming jaggery is that it serves as a high source of iron and magnesium and is therefore good for your hemoglobin, but only for non-diabetics, he suggests.

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