The Worst Foods for Diabetics (Even Ones That Seem Healthy)

In 2015, over 9% of the American population had diabetes, and that number has only grown. Diabetes is a chronic disease that influences the body’s response to insulin. Once people get diagnosed with diabetes, their diet significantly changes.

Some foods that appear healthy are actually detrimental. Many contain hidden sugars, preservatives, and salts that can be hard to spot on the nutritional label. Read on for the worst foods for diabetics.

Dried Fruit Is Not As Safe As Fresh Fruit

Dried fruit is displayed and sold at a market in Israel.
Michael Jacobs/Art in All of Us/Corbis via Getty Images
Michael Jacobs/Art in All of Us/Corbis via Getty Images

Diabetics can eat certain fruits, as they are part of a healthy diet. But they should avoid dried fruit because they are highly concentrated forms of whole fruit. “In these concentrated forms, everything goes up,” says nutritionist Rupali Datta. “The sugar levels, the glycemic index.”

Because dried fruits are smaller than fresh ones, people tend to eat more. For instance, a cup of fresh grapes has 27 carbs, but a cup of raisins has 115 carbs. Diabetics are far more likely to receive a blood sugar spike from dried fruits.