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Couscous and Diabetes - Is it Good For Diabetics

Article author photo Elen Khachatrian by Elen Khachatrian | Last updated on August 03, 2023
Medically reviewed by Ani Harutyunyan Article author photo Ani Harutyunyan


This article will discuss whether couscous is suitable for diabetics and its consumption benefits and side effects.

Type-2 Diabetes

Refined grains, such as rice or couscous, due to their moderate GI index and carbs, tend to cause blood sugar to spike shortly after eating, followed by energy crashes. To find glycemic index values for more than 350 foods, visit the Glycemic index chart.

A study [1] showed that blood glucose after eating pasta was lower than after eating couscous. It was conducted on eight healthy subjects and insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus patients. After an overnight fast, they ate in the morning on two separate occasions and in a randomized order of 50 gr of pasta or couscous. In numbers, the couscous glycemic index equals 65. 

In conclusion, couscous has a higher glycemic effect and insulin index than pasta or other grains, so try to avoid couscous consumption.

However, let's not forget about the fiber content of this grain, which equals 2.2g per serving size (1 cup). Couscous contains both soluble and insoluble fiber. Its pairing with foods rich in soluble fiber prevents spikes in blood glucose levels. 

In summary, eating couscous is not forbidden for diabetics; however, you must be cautious about how much you consume and prepare [3].

Here are some safe ways to eat couscous:

  1. pair them with foods rich in soluble fiber,
  2. pair them with boiled chicken or beef, 
  3. eat plain couscous or couscous salad with vegetables with another healthy main dish


Article author photo Elen Khachatrian
Education: Nutrition & Microbiology at YSU
Last updated: August 03, 2023
Medically reviewed by Ani Harutyunyan
Data provided by should be considered and used as information only. Please consult your physician before beginning any diet.