Diabetes management is not a cakewalk, but is not an impossible feat either. Your diet and nutrition can play a significant role in managing diabetes. Here are some healthy dietary tips you should make part of your daily regime now.
1. Follow a balanced diet with complex carbs: According to Preeti Rao, Health and Wellness Coach, eating a variety of fruits and vegetables, lean protein and good sources of fat is very essential for diabetes management. One must avoid trans fats (also called hydrogenated fat), processed food, and sugar and up intake of complex carbs. Complex carbohydrates are rich in fiber and are not highly processed like refined carbohydrates. They take longer to digest and hence provide a sustained source of energy for a longer duration.
2. Include more Low GI Foods:Glycemic Index (GI) is a relative ranking of carbohydrate in foods according to how they affect blood glucose levels. Carbohydrates with a low GI value (55 or less) are more slowly digested, absorbed and metabolised and cause a lower and slower rise in blood glucose. Low GI foods are also rich in fibre which takes the longest to digest, make you feel fuller for a longer time and help control appetite. This could further help in weight management. Tomato, spinach, guavas, cauliflower, and pears are some low glycemic index foods you can choose to add to your diet.
3. Maintain Optimal Body Weight: It is very essential for diabetics to maintain optimal body weight. Being overweight causes insulin resistance and makes it difficult for the body to maintain appropriate blood glucose levels. For those who are overweight, dropping 5- 10 per cent of your weight can help. Don't starve. Starving can do more harm to your blood glucose levels than good. Eat foods that are low in Glycemic index, reduce the intake of starch and up the intake of fibre. Go for a jog or a run. Engage in light to moderate physical activity, if high dedicating to high intensity exercise is difficult to manage.
4. Sugary Drinks and Fruit Juices: Diabetics should steer clear of aerated and sugary drinks, various studies and reports have time and again reinforced that these drinks are full of liquid calories and can cause major spike in the blood sugar levels. Your can of fruit juice is not one of the healthiest substitutes either. Fruit juices especially packaged fruit juices are loaded with fructose that elevates the blood sugar levels. It is advisable to eat whole fruits instead. Fruits are full of fibres, fibres take time to metabolise and thus doesn't result in sudden surge in blood sugar levels. Eat fruits that have a low glycemic index. Eat fruits with some nuts and olives to balance the glycemic load.
These tips forms a part of better diabetes management, and are not a cure to the condition. Diabetics should always be mindful of their diet and be in touch with their doctors and physicians. Regular exercise and physical activity could also play an important role in a holistic diabetes management.
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