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Couscous and Diabetes - Is it Good For Diabetics

Article author photo Elen Khachatrian by Elen Khachatrian | Last updated on April 07, 2022
Education: Nutrition & Microbiology at YSU


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

Type-1 Diabetes

A study 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. They ate in the morning, after an overnight fast, on two separate occasions and in a randomized order of 50 gr of pasta or couscous.

In conclusion, couscous has a higher glycemic effect and insulin index than pasta or other grains.

Insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus should avoid couscous consumption [1].

Type-2 Diabetes

An essential step in preventing and managing type 2 diabetes is replacing refined, simple sugars in the diet with more complex sources. According to research, complex carbohydrates lead to better blood sugar management than refined grains. Refined grains, such as rice or couscous, tend to cause blood sugar, or glucose, to spike shortly after eating, followed by energy crashes.

However, according to some studies, couscous has a good amount of fiber, which can help with blood sugar levels.

Couscous' ability to lower blood sugar levels is also linked to its high fiber content.

Fiber slows glucose absorption by the blood [2].

A six-week study was conducted on 13 patients with type 2 diabetes fed meals with moderate to high fiber content. Surprisingly, a high fiber intake in these patients reduces hyperinsulinemia, lowers plasma lipid concentrations, and improves glycemic control. The ultimate glycemic index of couscous is 65, which is considered medium GI. To find glycemic index values for more than 350 foods, visit the Glycemic index chart page.

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


Article author photo Elen Khachatrian
Education: Nutrition & Microbiology at YSU
Last updated: April 07, 2022
Data provided by should be considered and used as information only. Please consult your physician before beginning any diet.