Diabetes is a disorder that results in poor regulation of blood glucose levels in our body.
It can affect the entire system as well as every other organ in the body including the heart, eyes, kidney and more. It has been seen that, if one pays close attention to the diet that one follows, it can make a big difference in controlling the ailment and other complications that can arise from it. The main reason for the onset of type 2 diabetes is mainly a poor diet being followed and a sedentary lifestyle.
EHC explores certain foods and their effect in controlling diabetes.
Beans contain many vital minerals and dietary fibers that make them ideal for those suffering from diabetes. As diabetic people need to feel full for longer periods of time, such fiber rich food is good for such people. Beans are rich in magnesium, potassium and protein.
Different kinds of beans to choose from are – Kidney, navy, white, pinto, lima, soy, and black.
Beans can be eaten in different ways – in cooked form as well as in salads or in the boiled form in soups.
Green & Leafy Vegetables
It is known that green and leafy vegetables contain many useful nutrients that make them ideal for the diet of a diabetic person. Such vegetables are low in calories and have easy carbohydrates. They lower the risk of type 2 diabetes. Two or three servings per day of such vegetables are recommended. The kinds of vegetables you may consume are spinach, mustard greens, collard greens, chard, kale, etc.
Berries have a lot of beneficial nutrients as well as natural sugars that do not have a negative impact on the blood sugar levels. They are packed with vitamins, fiber, and antioxidants
Berries used in the preparation of sweet items like desserts will reduce the calorie and the sweet factor of the deserts and make them healthy. They can be eaten with cereals, as snacks or in salads as well.
The kinds of berries are strawberries, cranberries, blackberries, and blueberries.
Fish of different kinds can be consumed for the numerous benefits that they provide. They contain essential omega-3 fatty acids and are good sources of lean protein.
One can consider taking fish oil supplements if eating fish is not an option. Cold water fishes of the following variety are good for diabetic people – salmon, sardines, herring, tuna, mackerel, halibut., etc.
It is best that the fishes are prepared in a grilled or baked manner and consumed with healthy carbs like brown pasta or rice, brown bread or with salads. It is best to avoid having deep fried fishes.
No matter what food you eat, you need to have carbs in the form of bread, rice or pasta. It is best that one opts for the whole grain form of these carbohydrate items. One should switch to brown rice or whole wheat flour to have more of whole grain foods in their meals.
Nuts contain many vital nutrients which can help to stabilize the blood sugar levels. As diabetic people are recommended to eat smaller meals and snacks more often, nuts can be healthy snack options. It is best to soak nuts in water overnight and then consume them. That helps to release the enzyme inhibitors that they contain.
It is imperative that one uses a healthy medium for preparing foods. The oil that is used to cook meals and even salads should be healthy. Olive oil in the extra virgin form is the best oil to opt for. It is rich in monounsaturated fats and antioxidants.
Olive oil is a healthy choice for diabetic people, especially those who wish to lose weight. When extra virgin olive oil is used it is the first press form of the oil which is minimally processed. It is known to contain more antioxidants and anti inflammatory compounds.
Yogurt is known to have many beneficial properties that make it ideal as an accompaniment with meals, especially for diabetic people. It is rich in protein and contains high amounts of calcium and vitamin D.
Those who consume calcium rich food are prone to lose weight faster and are least likely to develop insulin resistance which leads to diabetes. It is best to consume the low fat and plain version of yogurt. This added with fruits or berries makes a healthy meal or snack. It will surely help one to feel full and reduce the urge to eat something sweet.
This is a starchy vegetable that offers several health benefits to diabetic people. It contains antioxidant beta carotene and is rich in vitamins like C, A, and fiber. The low glycemic index makes it a great carb food to have which is safe for the diabetic people. It can be grilled or baked. It is best to keep the skin on as most of the nutrients are near the skin. One can use it in salads, casseroles, soups or as side dishes as one likes it.
Tomatoes are usually added in most of our meals and it is a great food item with nutritional benefits for diabetic people. It is seen as a rich source of iron, vitamin C and vitamin E. It has fiber as well which ensures that the blood sugar levels remain steady.
Tomatoes are beneficial in every form that they are consumed. From being consumed in the raw form in salads to pureed or as a sauce in different dishes or as condiments. It can be added in generous amounts in a diabetic diet.
It has been noted that one should increase the amount of citrus fruits in their diet. When diabetic people crave for sweets, they can opt for such fruits which are high in natural sugars.
Beetroot is a vegetable that is seen as a great looking vegetable to add color and richness to any dish. It is high in vitamin C and folate.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar plays an important role in controlling the sugar levels in the blood. It also controls the blood glucose level, which rises noticeably right after you finish a meal. Moreover, it helps you to lose weight, which is important, considering obesity is one of the main drivers of diabetes. Mix a pinch of salt with two spoonfuls of apple cider vinegar and mix it in a glass of water. Take this regularly before having a meal.
People suffering from type 2 diabetes can benefit considerably from cinnamon. It boosts the insulin production process in the pancreas and lowers the sugar level. You can take cinnamon in several ways. Mix it with your tea or other drinks or directly take it as a powder for at least 40 days to get optimal results.
Chewing on curry leaves is a traditional and reliable way to reduce the symptoms of diabetes and help treat the insulin issues within the body. There are certain organic compounds within curry leaves that inhibit the breakdown of starches into simple sugars like glucose, which is one of the causes of diabetic flare-ups. Curry leaves are also shown to reduce cholesterol levels and obesity, both of which can contribute to diabetes as well.
Take about 1.5 oz of flaxseed oil and mix it with some cottage cheese and milk. Blend it well to make a fine mixture and eat the mixture with fruits as regularly as possible.
While the world hunts for improved treatments for diabetes, the simple measures like lifestyle changes and local foods listed above prove to be the most effective in battling diabetes.