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Is Muskmelon Good for Diabetes? Let’s Find Out

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Muskmelon is a delicious fruit you cannot get enough of. It is a satisfying, cooling, summertime fruit and a fantastic nutritional source. As per research, it contains fibre, water, and several nutrients.

Muskmelons are also popular as ‘sweet melons’. While both the musky netted-rind varieties and unscented smooth-rind varieties are referred to as muskmelon, given their similar sweet flesh, the former was originally named so.

The Nutritional Profile of Muskmelon

As per USDA, one hundred grams of muskmelon has the following nutrients.

  • Energy: 38kCal
  • Carbohydrates: 8.16g
  • Protein: 0.82g
  • Calcium: 9mg
  • Potassium: 157mg
  • Selenium: 1.7µg
  • Vitamin C: 10.9 mg
  • Folate: 14µg
  • Vitamin A: 232µg
  • Beta Carotene: 2780µg
  • Vitamin K: 2.7µg

Research indicates fruits are considered healthy due to their high antioxidant, vitamin, mineral, fibre, and phytochemical properties as glucose, lipids, and uric acid metabolism in our body are directly affected by the nutrient profile. 

According to research, wild muskmelons are potent antidiabetic and anti-hyperlipidemic agents. Furthermore, polyphenols, in particular, have a crucial role in oxidative stress and lessen the severity of many inflammatory disorders.

Due to the presence of phenolics, the fruit and seed are well-known for their ability to treat several ailments. 

Muskmelons – An Overview

Muskmelon is a member of the gourd family, also known as Cucumis melo.

Other plants like squash, pumpkin, zucchini, and watermelon are closely related to it. Muskmelon has developed numerous distinctive variants over the years, including cantaloupe.

Is muskmelon (Cucumis melo) suitable for diabetes patients?

Muskmelon is a healthy and nutritious food for people with diabetes, according to research

As per studies, the biological properties of muskmelons include antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-hyperlipidemic, antibacterial, antidiabetic, and antiangiogenic activity.

In addition, it is a good source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, potassium, and beta-carotene. It is also low in calories, with one cup of diced muskmelon providing only about 60 calories.

Glycemic Index of muskmelon

One of the main benefits of muskmelon is it has a moderate glycemic index (GI). The glycemic index measures how quickly a food raises blood sugar levels. Foods with a high GI are more likely to cause rapid spikes in blood sugar. In contrast, those with a low GI are absorbed more slowly and have a less pronounced effect on blood sugar. 

Muskmelon has a GI of 65, which is considered moderate. Therefore, it is absorbed relatively slowly and may not cause significant spikes in blood sugar. Muskmelon is also a good source of fibre that can help slow sugar absorption and improve blood sugar control. It is important to note, however, that people with diabetes should still be mindful of their overall intake of carbohydrates, including those from fruits like muskmelon. 

Muskmelon Benefits for Diabetes

  1. Vitamin C is abundant in muskmelons. It helps to strengthen the immune system.
  2. Muskmelon is an energising food option because it contains vitamins and electrolytes.
  3. Muskmelon assists in reducing blood pressure levels due to its high potassium content.
  4. Muskmelon’s abundant amount of antioxidants will help you fight against free radicals.

Speaking with a healthcare provider or registered dietitian is recommended for personalised advice on managing blood sugar levels through diet. 

Does Muskmelon Raise Blood Glucose Level?

A person who is managing symptoms of diabetes must keep track of their GI count. The three categories of the glycemic index (GI) are as follows: 

  • Low GI – 1 to 55
  • Medium GI – 56 to 69
  • High GI – above 70

Muskmelon has a GI score of 65. Therefore, placing it in the medium GI food category. It is a relatively safer fruit choice for people with diabetes, provided they are mindful of their portion size.

Moreover, the glycemic load of muskmelons (GL 4) is relatively low. It indicates that it digests slowly, which results in a very gradual release of glucose into the blood.

How Much Muskmelon Can a Person With Diabetes Have?

The recommended daily intake for someone with diabetes is one cup of cubed muskmelon or about 120 grams.

To gain the most health benefits from eating muskmelon, refrain from adding salt or sugar. Instead, you can add muskmelon to a dish of mixed fruits or a green salad with a dressing made from the fruit.

Potential Hazards and Caution

There are no specific groups of people who should not eat muskmelon. However, some people may be allergic to musk melon or intolerant to it. Suppose you have a history of allergies or sensitivities to certain foods. 

Exercising caution when introducing a new food into your diet is always a good idea. It is also essential to wash musk melon thoroughly before consuming it to minimise the risk of foodborne illness.

If you need clarification about any food item or a meal plan, download the HealthifyMe app and book a consultation with a nutritionist. 

Conclusion

Numerous studies have demonstrated the link between the properties of muskmelon and its potential advantages for diabetic patients.

Research suggests it is rich in bioactive compounds. However, health professionals warn against going overboard and remind people that moderation is the secret to good health. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q. Does muskmelon increase blood sugar?

A. Muskmelon has a medium glycemic index but a low glycemic load; thus, it does not significantly increase blood sugar levels. Muskmelon is a fantastic option for people with diabetes since it has a high water content, is high in fibre, and has no fat, cholesterol or calories.

Q. Can a diabetic patient eat muskmelon?

A. Muskmelon has a glycemic load of about 3.5-4. Therefore, the blood glucose level will rise slowly due to the low glycemic load. However, you should consume muskmelon in moderation if you have diabetes. 

Q. Who should not eat muskmelon?

A. Avoid consuming muskmelon if you have a sensitive stomach because it can cause acidity. In addition, muskmelon provides a cooling effect to our bodies. Therefore, you should not consume it if you suffer from a cough or cold.

Q. Can a diabetic eat muskmelon at night?

A. Muskmelon is best consumed in the morning after breakfast. However, it is also acceptable as a late-afternoon snack. However, one should not eat it late at night. The body finds it challenging to absorb the fruit’s sugars later in the day and you can also catch cold given the cold potency of this fruit. 

The Supporting Sources

1. Lester, G. (1997). Melon (Cucumis melo L.) Fruit Nutritional Quality and Health Functionality, HortTechnology horttech, 7(3), 222-227. Retrieved Jan 5, 2023. DOI: https://doi.org/10.21273/HORTTECH.7.3.222

https://journals.ashs.org/horttech/view/journals/horttech/7/3/article-p222.xml

2. Park HA. Fruit Intake to Prevent and Control Hypertension and Diabetes. Korean J Fam Med. 2021 Jan;42(1):9-16. doi: 10.4082/kjfm.20.0225. Epub 2021 Jan 20. PMID: 33524250; PMCID: PMC7884895.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7884895/

3. Yadav JP, Grishina M, Shahbaaz M, Mukerjee A, Singh SK, Pathak P. Cucumis melo var. Momordica as a Potent Antidiabetic, Antioxidant and Possible Anticovid Alternative: Investigation through Experimental and Computational Methods. Chem Biodivers. 2022 Sep;19(9):e202200200. doi: 10.1002/cbdv.202200200. Epub 2022 Aug 25. PMID: 35950335.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35950335/

4. Fahamiya, Nazeem & Aslam, Mohd & Siddiqui, Aisha & Shiffa, Mohamed. (2016). REVIEW ON CUCUMIS MELO: ETHNOBOTANY AND UNANI MEDICINE. 621-636. 10.20959/wjpps201612-8223. 

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/328129787_REVIEW_ON_CUCUMIS_MELO_ETHNOBOTANY_AND_UNANI_MEDICINE#:~:text=Its%20antimicrobial%2C%20antioxidant%2C%20anti%2D,been%20proved%20by%20research%20studies.

5. Lei Chen, Young-Hwa Kang. In vitro inhibitory effect of oriental melon (Cucumis melo L. var. Makuwa Makino) seed on key enzyme linked to type 2 diabetes: Assessment of the antidiabetic potential of functional food. Journal of Functional Foods, 5, (2), 2013, pp. 981-986. Doi: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chmed.2020.02.005

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1674638420300812

6. Manchali S, Chidambara Murthy KN, Vishnuvardana, Patil BS. Nutritional Composition and Health Benefits of Various Botanical Types of Melon (Cucumis melo L.). Plants (Basel). 2021 Aug 24;10(9):1755. doi: 10.3390/plants10091755. PMID: 34579288; PMCID: PMC8469201.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8469201/

7. Ying Qian, Ong & Harith, Sakinah & Shahril, Mohd Razif & Shahidan, Norshazila. (2019). BIOACTIVE COMPOUNDS IN Cucumis melo L. AND ITS BENEFICIAL HEALTH EFFECTS: A SCOPING REVIEW. Malaysian Applied Biology. 48. 1-13. 

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/337757201_BIOACTIVE_COMPOUNDS_IN_Cucumis_melo_L_AND_ITS_BENEFICIAL_HEALTH_EFFECTS_A_SCOPING_REVIEW

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