Can diabetics eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches?

In this brief guide, we will answer the query, “Can diabetics eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches?” The article will discuss how this snack can be nutritious and safe for people with diabetes; moreover, the article will briefly overview some health benefits and drawbacks of eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

Can diabetics eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches?

Yes, diabetics can eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches using the correct ingredients, like unsweetened peanut butter, sugar-free jelly, and whole grain bread (1,2).

Using sugar-free ingredients and whole grain bread will ensure a good control of blood glucose, which is essential for people with diabetes (1,2).

What are the main diet recommendations for people with diabetes?

The main diet recommendations for people who have diabetes are to reduce their carbohydrate intake while increasing their intake of protein, unsaturated fats, and fiber (3). 

Healthy fats, fiber, and protein help to reduce the glycemic impact of carbs when you eat them, as a result, carbohydrates aren’t absorbed so fast and transported into your blood (3).

Another important recommendation is reducing calorie intake, especially for people who are overweight or have obesity (3).

Reducing overweight in people with diabetes can help reduce the risks of health consequences caused by diabetes, such as hypertension and cardiovascular diseases (3).

What is the impact of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for blood glucose in people with diabetes?

First, we have to understand the impact of foods on blood glucose and how it is measured (2,4). 

The impact of any food in blood glucose is measured by the glycemic index, this index determines the ability of the food to increase your blood glucose, the higher glycemic index, the higher the surge of blood glucose (2,4).

peanut butter is a low glycemic index food, with a score of 14; this means that peanut butter will not raise your blood glucose so high, and it is fine to consume for people with diabetes (2,4).

On the other hand, white bread and regular jelly have glycemic index around 75 and 55; which is relatively high and could cause a considerable raise in your blood glucose (2,4).

Therefore, you should avoid white bread and regular jelly, because they are more likely to increase your blood glucose levels (2,4).

How to make a diabetes-friendly peanut butter and jelly sandwich?

You can make a healthy peanut butter and jelly sandwich for people with diabetes by replacing the high-glycemic index ingredients for better options. For example, non-added sugar jelly has a glycemic index of 27, and the whole bread around 48 (2,4).

Using low glycemic index foods like whole grain, non-added sugar jelly, and unsweetened peanut butter can make your sandwich a delicious and healthy snack (3).

What are the health benefits of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for people with diabetes?

There are some health benefits of eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for people with diabetes, for example, the control of cravings and glucose due to the fiber and healthy fats in peanut butter (5). 

Healthy fats are especially helpful in diabetes because they can provide control for glucose; peanuts are rich in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids that help prevent cardiovascular diseases thanks to their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties (5).

Fiber contained in both peanuts and whole grain bread can help control glucose because they slow the absorption of glucose. Moreover, fiber provides you with satiety, which could be helpful for weight management and weight loss (6).

On the other hand, jellies made with natural fruits are loaded with the benefits of fruits. For example, fruits are rich in vitamin C and polyphenols, these nutrients have potent antioxidant properties and can prevent infectious diseases, as well as reducing the risks of cardiovascular diseases (7).

What are possible health drawbacks of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for people with diabetes?

Like any other food, eating an excess of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches can have health drawbacks for people with diabetes, for example (3,5,8):

  • Even if you can reduce the glycemic index with the appropriate ingredients, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich is still providing a great amount of carbs, which can maintain your glucose high.
  • Peanut butter is mainly fats, which are loaded with a lot of energy (calories); therefore, an excessive intake of peanut butter can lead to weight gain.
  • Finally, there is the probability of having a peanut protein allergy. A food allergy can cause mild reactions like diarrhea or eczema, but it can also cause severe outcomes like anaphylaxis.

To avoid any problem of an excessive consumption of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, please visit a nutrition specialist for professional advice; he or she will adjust your peanut butter and jelly sandwiches intake.

Other FAQs about Peanut butter that you may be interested in.

Can peanut butter go bad?

Can you get sick from eating expired peanut butter?

Does peanut butter expire?

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we answered the query, “Can diabetics eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches?” The article discussed how this snack can be nutritious and safe for people with diabetes; moreover, the article briefly overviewed some health benefits and drawbacks of eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

References

  1. de la Fuente-Arrillaga C, Martinez-Gonzalez MA, Zazpe I, Vazquez-Ruiz Z, Benito-Corchon S, Bes-Rastrollo M. Glycemic load, glycemic index, bread and incidence of overweight/obesity in a Mediterranean cohort: the SUN project. BMC Public Health, 2014;14(1):1091.
  1. Augustin LSA, Kendall CWC, Jenkins DJA, Willett WC, Astrup A, Barclay AW, et al. Glycemic index, glycemic load and glycemic response: An International Scientific Consensus Summit from the International Carbohydrate Quality Consortium (ICQC). Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis, 2015;25(9):795–815.
  1. Martín-Peláez S, Fito M, Castaner O. Mediterranean diet effects on type 2 diabetes prevention, disease progression, and related mechanisms. A review. Nutrients, 2020;12(8):2236.
  1. Matthan NR, Ausman LM, Meng H, Tighiouart H, Lichtenstein AH. Estimating the reliability of glycemic index values and potential sources of methodological and biological variability. Am J Clin Nutr, 2016;104(4):1004–13.
  1. Bonku R, Yu J. Health aspects of peanuts as an outcome of its chemical composition. Food Sci Hum Wellness, 2020;9(1):21–30.
  1. Snauwaert E, Paglialonga F, Vande Walle J, Wan M, Desloovere A, Polderman N, et al. The benefits of dietary fiber: the gastrointestinal tract and beyond. Pediatr Nephrol, 2022.
  1. Godswill AG, Somtochukwu IV, Ikechukwu AO, Kate EC. Health benefits of micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) and their associated deficiency diseases: A systematic review. International Journal of Food Sciences, 2020;3(1):1–32.
  1. Cena H, Calder PC. Defining a healthy diet: Evidence for the role of contemporary dietary patterns in health and disease. Nutrients, 2020;12(2):334.

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