Are Grapes Good For Diabetics? Carb Content and Glycemic Index

If you have diabetes, you may wonder if grapes are good for diabetics.

While it is true that grapes provide a source of natural sugars, it all comes down to how many grapes you have and combining it with other foods that can help decrease the effect on your blood sugar levels. 

In this article, we’ll explore the relationship between grapes and blood sugar levels. 

In addition, we’ll talk about how you can include grapes in your diet if you have diabetes without affecting your blood sugar levels. 

Are Grapes A Good Snack For People With Diabetes?

Yes, grapes can be a good snack for diabetics. In fact, according to the American Diabetes Association, while fruit contains natural sugars, people with diabetes can still eat them to get all of their health benefits. 

While grapes are a source of carbs, people with diabetes can eat them if consumed in moderation. They are an excellent source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. 

And, since grapes contain natural sugars, they can satisfy your sweet tooth without relying on high-sugar sources, such as candies, cakes, and ice cream. 

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Carb Content Of Grapes

If you are counting carbs and using the American Diabetes Association’s exchange list, you know that around 15-17 grapes (½ cup) provide roughly 15 grams of carbs. Therefore, you should eat grapes in moderation if you have diabetes.

Glycemic Index of Grapes And The Effect On Blood Sugar

The glycemic index is a measure that helps determine the impact of food on blood sugar levels. The higher the glycemic index, the higher its impact on blood sugar levels. 

Several factors can affect the glycemic index, such as ripeness, cooking methods, and nutrient composition. 

Grapes have a glycemic index of 53, meaning they have a low glycemic index thanks to their high fiber content

This means that grapes may not have a high impact on blood sugar levels, as most people tend to believe. 

However, grapes need to be eaten in moderation since they are a source of carbs. 

Now, several ways exist to help reduce its glycemic index and prevent it from affecting your blood sugar levels. Fiber, protein, and fats take longer to digest, helping gradually release the sugars. 

So, if you want to prevent grapes from messing up your blood sugar levels, it may be better to pair them with some Greek yogurt (protein), nut butter (healthy fats), or vegetable sticks (fiber). Depending on your goals and needs, you can choose one or all of them. 

Which Color of Grape Is Best For People With Diabetes? 

Grapes come in all sizes and colors. But can the grape’s color affect your blood sugar levels? Generally speaking, most grapes contain a similar amount of vitamins, minerals, and fiber. 

However, there is a slight difference between red grapes and green grapes. It seems that green grapes may contain slightly fewer carbs than red grapes.

In 100 grams of green grapes, you can find 18.6 grams of carbs, while in 100 grams of red grapes, you find 20.2 grams. 

Even though this may not be significant, if you have a tight carb intake, you may want to choose green over red grapes. 

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Benefits of Grapes For People With Diabetes

Here are some of the possible health benefits grapes may provide. 

1) High in antioxidants

Grapes are high in anthocyanins, which are powerful antioxidants that studies show can help reduce oxidative stress. As a result, they can help reduce the risk of other chronic illnesses, such as heart disease. 

2) Reduced cholesterol levels

Research shows that red grapes may help reduce total cholesterol levels and LDL cholesterol. As a result, it may help promote good heart health

3) Improved eye health

Grapes contain antioxidants called lutein and zeaxanthin, which studies show can help improve eye health. 

4) Enhanced immune function

Since grapes are high in antioxidants, they can help reduce inflammation, which results in enhanced immune function. 

Possible Side Effects of Eating Grapes

Grapes are generally safe and well-tolerated. However, since they are high in fiber, for people who are not used to a high fiber intake, it can promote gastric distress. 

As a result, some people may get bloating, gas, and stomach cramps when eating too many grapes. 

Considering the carbohydrate content of grapes, moderation is advisable for individuals managing blood sugar levels.

How To Add Grapes To Your Diabetic Diet

There are several ways in which you can add grapes. You can add them fresh, in juice, and raisins. 

If you have diabetes, it’s better to eat grapes fresh since grape juice and raisins are high in sugar, which can increase blood sugar levels.  

Here are some ways in which you can add grapes to your diabetes diet that won’t affect your sugar levels too much. Remember to modify the portions and ingredients based on your goals and needs. 

Homemade grape jelly

You can make grape jelly using a sugar-free sweetener and chia seeds. This can significantly reduce the carb content, making it a better option for those with diabetes. 

Grape muffins

Make sure you use sugar-free sweeteners and whole-grain flour. They can become a tasty treat and snack for people with diabetes. 

Grape sorbet

If you want something sweet and refreshing, grape sorbet can be your biggest ally. Just make sure to use your favorite sugar-free sweetener. 

Options like monk fruit and stevia may be better since they don’t have an aftertaste (for most people), but it all comes down to personal preferences.  

Roasted grapes and olives

This can be a great healthy appetizer that you can take to your next dinner party. 


Grapes are high in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. While most people think that they are unsuitable for a person with diabetes, the truth is they have a low glycemic index. As a result, grapes can be a good fruit and snack to include in a diabetics diet since they won’t increase your sugar levels too much. 

However, since they are a source of carbs, you should eat them in moderation to avoid spiking your blood sugar levels. 

If you include grapes in your diabetes diet, make sure you combine them with a healthy fat, protein, or high-fiber food. They can help release the carbs slower, promoting better blood sugar levels.

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  2. Sabra A, Netticadan T, Wijekoon C. Grape bioactive molecules, and the potential health benefits in reducing the risk of heart diseases. Food Chem X. 2021 Oct 27;12:100149. doi: 10.1016/j.fochx.2021.100149. PMID: 34761204; PMCID: PMC8567006.
  3. Rahbar AR, Mahmoudabadi MM, Islam MS. Comparative effects of red and white grapes on oxidative markers and lipidemic parameters in adult hypercholesterolemic humans. Food Funct. 2015 Jun;6(6):1992-8. doi: 10.1039/c5fo00100e. PMID: 26007320.
  4. Patel AK, Davis A, Rodriguez ME, Agron S, Hackam AS. Protective effects of a grape-supplemented diet in a mouse model of retinal degeneration. Nutrition. 2016 Mar;32(3):384-90. doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2015.09.017. Epub 2015 Oct 28. PMID: 26732835; PMCID: PMC4744109.

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