Black colored foods are better than ever for people with diabetes. Feast on 4 foods that are both nutritious and delicious. These tasty dark-colored foods also offer potential health benefits for people with diabetes, making them a top choice to add to your menu.
- Darker foods are typically rich in antioxidants. People with diabetes benefit from these foods because they help boost the immune system. Many black foods are full of essential vitamins and minerals.
- Black beans get their rich hue from powerful antioxidants called anthocyanin pigments. Because they are high in fiber, they help keep your blood sugar levels more stable. Black beans are high in protein for increased energy and contain polyphenols to help prevent cholesterol from forming plaque that clogs blood vessels. This can reduce your risk of heart disease. Phytochemicals in black beans can combat chronic diseases including cancer. Black beans are a source of fiber with no cholesterol or saturated fat. They provide manganese, phosphorous, magnesium, iron, folic acid and thiamin. Black beans can prevent constipation to combat gastrointestinal disease. Canned black beans are ready to eat but rinse them to reduce excess sodium. Dried beans must be soaked and cooked before use. Black beans are delicious in soups, burrito fillings and chili. They also make great veggie burgers. The U.S. Department of Agriculture recommends eating at least three cups of black beans weekly. They do count as a carbohydrate so factor them into your eating plan.
- Blackberries range in color from dark purple to nearly black. They can absorb free radicals that cause body damage. The Defeat Diabetes Foundation found blackberries can make the antioxidants in your blood soar by 25 percent. These mouthwatering berries are low in calories and rich in vitamins C and K. They also include carbohydrates and dietary fiber as well as copper and manganese for increased energy. The nutrients in blackberries help build healthy bones, help with the absorption of iron and enhance blood clotting. Blackberries taste great on their own or mixed in a yogurt smoothie topped with some nuts.
- While dark chocolate is not necessarily a health food, it contains nutrients and phytochemicals that make it an excellent treat. Steer clear of milk chocolate and other chocolate products laden with added sugar and additives. Instead choose sugar free desserts made with dark chocolate. The flavanols in dark chocolate may act as antioxidants to protect cells from damaging free radicals. Flavanols have also been shown to reduce the risk of stroke and dementia as well as protect the skin from UV rays. This irresistible dark food contains iron, copper, magnesium and manganese. A third of the fat contained in dark chocolate is monosaturated fat, which is good for heart health and improves cholesterol levels. It can lower blood pressure to help improve insulin sensitivity. This is a wonderful snack in small quantities when factored into an eating plan.
- Black fungus, also referred to as cloud ear or wood ear, contains dietary fiber, mannan and xylose to help promote blood circulation and prevent clotting in small blood vessels. This can also help prevent a heart attack or stroke. Other nutrients in black fungus include iron, carotene, niacin, phosphorous, calcium and fiber as well as vitamins B-1 and B-2. Black fungus has been shown to have antioxidant and antiviral properties. This unique food is a source of fiber and protein. Usually black fungus is served in Chinese dishes such as sweet and sour soup and vegetable stir fry.
- People with diabetes can also benefit from sipping black tea. Researchers have found that countries that drink the most black tea also have the lowest rate of diabetes. Serve it with a sugar substitute like Splenda or Stevia and a dash of cinnamon for a tasty beverage anytime.
Adding black colored foods to your diet are a tasty way to include a variety of nutrients and antioxidants. A colorful diet is also the most well-balanced and nutritious. Make sure your daily plate includes something from this list of beneficial foods.