Can Diabetics Eat Popcorn?

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Jul 31, 2012

What’s fun at the movies without popcorns? Being a diabetic does not limit the amount of fun you can have just yet. According to the American Diabetes Association, diabetics should in fact, include popcorns as part of their daily diet. The key to a healthy diet for a diabetic, however, includes balancing popcorns with other food choices.


Carbohydrates Content

According to the American Diabetes Association, about 45g or 60g of carbohydrates per meal is optimal for diabetics. 3-cup serving of plain, air popped popcorn makes up 15g of carbohydrates. If you like eating popcorns, you may eat it with other foods and count the number of carbohydrates you consume through the popcorns along with those of other food items.




As may be obvious, plain and air-popped kernels are low in fat. 3 cups of these would have only 1g of fat. A lot of people enjoy popcorn with butter-flavoured topping or butter. It is important for diabetics to keep in mind the type and amount of popcorns they snack on. The more the fat content of popcorns is the more a diabetic is likely to develop the risk of heart disease. Choose toppings that are free of fat or are sugar free.


You may also like reading: Top 10 Power Foods for Diabetes.


Protein and Fibre

As per the USDA National Nutrient Database, 3-cup serving of plain and air-popped popcorn consists 3g of protein and 3.6g of fibre. The fibrous content of popcorn is derived from whole grains that make up almost half of the grains in a diabetic’s diet. Fibre makes one feel more full than usual, thereby preventing overeating and enhancing weight management. Protein helps in the regulation of blood glucose levels. Protein is more slowly converted into sugar than carbohydrates.



To know what the sodium content of popcorn is read the nutrition label. A high-sodium diet contributes to high blood pressure. This is a major risk factor for heart diseases. If you must add salt to popcorn, do so in moderation. 1 cup of plain and air-popped popcorn has only 1 mg of sodium, which makes it a healthy addition to a low-sodium diet.

Popcorn is therefore, a healthy choice for diabetics, though they must keep a close watch at the type and amount of popcorns they consume. For a diabetic on a glycemic index diet, popcorn may act as a low-glycemic food that does not lead to a rapid spike in the blood glucose levels.


Read more articles on Diabetes.



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