Sugarcane juice is a sweet, beverage commonly found in India, Africa, and parts of Asia. Most people love to drink sugarcane juice in summer, it is being marketed as an all-natural drink with a wide range of health benefits. In traditional Eastern medicine, it is used to treat liver, kidney and other diseases.

You may be surprised to know that some people believe that sugarcane juice is very good for sugar. This article explains what sugarcane juice is and whether it is a good option for people with diabetes.

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  1. What Is Sugarcane Juice?
  2. How Much Sugar Is in Sugarcane
  3. Should You Drink Sugarcane Juice if You Have Diabetes?
  4. Benefits and Risks of Sugarcane Juice for Diabetics
  5. How Much Sugarcane Juice Can People With Diabetes Drink?
  6. Summary

Sugarcane juice is a sweet, syrup-like liquid that is extracted from peeled sugarcane. It is often sold by street vendors who mix it with lemon or other juices. It is processed to make cane sugar, brown sugar and jaggery.

Sugarcane can also be used to make rum, and in Brazil it is fermented and used to make a liquor called cachaça.

Sugarcane juice is not pure sugar. It contains about 70–75% water, about 10–15% fiber, and 13–15% sugar in the form of sucrose – the same as table sugar. In its unprocessed form, it is also a good source of phenolic and flavonoid antioxidants. It has many health benefits due to its antioxidant properties. Sugarcane juice contains a very good amount of vitamins and minerals.

It also contains electrolytes like potassium, so it has been studied for its hydrating effects. Drinking sugarcane juice was linked to the ability to reduce carb increases and restore energy stores in muscles.

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Although it provides many nutrients, sugarcane juice is high in sugar and carbohydrates. In a 1-cup (240-mL) serving:

Calories: 183

Protein: 0 grams

Fat: 0 grams

Sugar: 50 grams

Fiber: Contains 0-13 grams. Meaning just 1 cup (240 mL) contains 50 grams of sugar – equivalent to about 12 teaspoons. This is significantly more than the 9 teaspoons and 6 teaspoons of total sugar per day that the American Heart Association recommends for men and women, respectively.

Sugarcane juice contains varying amounts of fiber. Still, it's best to get fiber from plant foods rather than sugary drinks. Sugar is a carb that your body breaks down into glucose. Some high-carb foods and beverages can cause your blood sugar to rise excessively, especially if you have or are at risk for diabetes. Thus, people suffering from diabetes should carefully monitor their sugar intake.

Although sugarcane juice has a low glycemic index (GI), it still has a high glycemic load (GL) – meaning it can have an impact on your blood sugar levels.

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Like other high-sugar drinks, sugarcane juice isn't a particularly good choice if you have diabetes. Its huge amount of sugar can raise your blood sugar levels dangerously. Thus, you should consume sugarcane juice with caution.

While test-tube studies on sugarcane extract suggest that its polyphenol antioxidants may help pancreas cells produce more insulin – the hormone that regulates blood sugar – this research is preliminary and should not be used in people with diabetes. Doesn't make it safe. If you like sweets then you can use fresh fruits.

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Here are some of the benefits and risks of consuming sugarcane juice for people with diabetes:


  • Keeps Liver Healthy: The alkaline content of sugarcane juice completely balances the electrolyte composition of your body, resulting in improved liver functioning and protection from diseases like jaundice.

  • Promotes oral health: Sugarcane juice is a powerhouse of minerals like calcium, zinc and potassium, which can strengthen your teeth and rebuild tooth enamel, thereby preventing bad breath.

  • Removes toxins: It also helps treat many health conditions including UTI, constipation and skin allergies. Sugarcane juice acts as a diuretic, which removes excess toxins and enhances regular kidney function. It is best to avoid sugarcane juice if you have diabetes, as its high sugar content can increase your blood sugar levels.


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People suffering from diabetes can drink a small glass (about 100 ml) of sugarcane juice before exercising in the morning. The extra calories can help balance your blood sugar levels quickly.

While sugarcane juice is rich in important elements like antioxidants, it is advised to consume it in moderation. Please consult your dietitian before including sugarcane juice in your diet plan.

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Despite some laboratory research, sugarcane juice is not a suitable drink for people with diabetes. Sugarcane juice is an unrefined beverage. Although it contains a lot of antioxidants, it is very high in sugar.

Instead of sugarcane juice, choose unsweetened coffee, tea or fruit water. These beverages can still taste mild without endangering your blood sugar levels.


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