Taking healthy steps and maintaining a balanced diet is not only recommended but is extremely important for diabetic people who want to control their blood sugar levels and decrease potential complications that may develop with the disease. In fact, a diet for diabetes patients must not only low in refined sugar but also in fats. Food containing high in plant fiber can help a lot in preventing disease progression. Together with other lifestyle interventions, diabetes may even be reversed. Here are some general dietary recommendations you can follow as your first steps towards controlling diabetes:
Diet For Diabetes
- Eat high fiber foods. Your body reacts differently to different types of carbohydrates. Choose slow-release carbs that does not cause rapid spikes in your blood sugar. Eating complex carbohydrates such as whole grains, leafy vegetables, and legumes and limiting your intake of refined and process foods will dramatically improve your blood sugar profile. Recent studies have also shown that daily consumption of 50 grams of fiber leads to a 10 percent decrease in blood sugar.
- Choose quality protein sources. A constantly elevated blood sugar has an effect in muscle build-up. Supplying your body with adequate amount of muscle building protein will prevent rapid weight loss and muscle wastage. Beans, eggs, fish and chicken are excellent sources of protein.
- Add healthy fats. Fats are important macronutrients that your body need for many metabolic processes. However, what kind of fat to eat is an important consideration for many diabetics who are also at risk of cardiovascular diseases. Make sure you add the healthier fats in your meal planning. Olive oil, nuts, avocadoes and fatty fish like salmon or tuna are your better options. Avoid hydrogenated fats mostly found in processed foods and limit intake of saturated fats.
- Cut down on sweets. Since diabetes impairs blood sugar metabolism, cutting down your blood sugar sources is not only a wise decision but a healthy one. Limiting if not totally eliminating sweetened beverages like cola, soft drinks and juices will lower your risk of developing disease complications. If you cannot totally avoid sweets, take it with a meal rather than eating it as a snack by itself. You can have yogurt whipped with avocado or banana instead of a slice of cake.
It is very important to plan ahead your meals so you will not fall into the trap of just eating anything that is available. Keeping a food diary for many who are struggling with blood sugar problems proves to be very helpful. It allows you to be more aware of what and how much you eat and helps you make adjustments along the way.