This Article is From Aug 09, 2023

Diabetes: 10 Reasons Why You Should Follow Mediterranean Diet If You Have High Blood Sugar

We discuss ways in which a Mediterranean diet can boost help of people with diabetes.

Diabetes: 10 Reasons Why You Should Follow Mediterranean Diet If You Have High Blood Sugar

Research suggests that following a Mediterranean diet can be beneficial for diabetics

A Mediterranean diet is a way of eating based on the traditional cuisine of countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea, such as Greece, Italy, and Spain. It typically includes whole, minimally processed foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds. It also features fish and seafood as the primary sources of protein, with moderate amounts of poultry, dairy, and eggs. Red meat and sweets are consumed in smaller quantities.

Research suggests that following a Mediterranean diet can be beneficial for diabetics. This diet promotes healthy blood sugar control by emphasising whole grains, fruits, and vegetables with a low glycemic index. These foods help prevent rapid spikes in blood sugar levels after meals. Additionally, the Mediterranean diet is rich in monounsaturated fats from olive oil, avocados, and nuts, which have been shown to have a positive impact on insulin sensitivity.

The inclusion of fatty fish, such as salmon, as a source of protein provides omega-3 fatty acids, which have been associated with improved heart health and reduced risk of cardiovascular issues commonly associated with diabetes. Overall, the Mediterranean diet focuses on nutrient-dense, low-glycemic foods that can benefit individuals with diabetes and contribute to long-term disease management. Let's now understand how it can benefit diabetics. 

10 Ways the Mediterranean diet can benefit diabetics:

1. Improved blood sugar control

The Mediterranean diet focuses on whole foods, including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, and lean proteins, which can help regulate blood sugar levels and prevent spikes.

2. Weight management

The Mediterranean diet promotes a healthy weight, which is crucial for diabetics as excess weight can exacerbate insulin resistance and lead to complications.

3. Heart health

The Mediterranean diet is associated with a reduced risk of heart disease, a common complication of diabetes. It emphasises healthy fats like olive oil and nuts, which can help lower bad cholesterol levels.

4. Reduced inflammation

The diet is rich in anti-inflammatory foods such as fatty fish, olive oil, and certain fruits and vegetables. This can benefit diabetics, as chronic inflammation is linked to insulin resistance and diabetes complications.

5. Increased fibre intake

The Mediterranean diet is high in fibre due to its emphasis on whole grains, legumes, fruits, and vegetables. This can slow down the absorption of sugars, preventing blood sugar spikes after meals.

6. Enhanced insulin sensitivity

Research suggests that the Mediterranean diet can improve insulin sensitivity, enabling the body to utilise insulin more effectively, thus reducing the risk of diabetes progression.

7. Lower risk of diabetic complications

By improving overall health and blood sugar control, following a Mediterranean diet can help reduce the risk of complications such as nerve damage, kidney disease, and eye problems associated with diabetes.

8. Nutrient-rich meals

The diet emphasises nutrient-dense foods, providing an array of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, which can support optimal health and reduce the risk of diabetes-related deficiencies.

9. Better glycemic index control

The Mediterranean diet priorities low-glycemic index foods, which release sugar slowly into the bloodstream, preventing sudden spikes in blood sugar levels.

10. Sustainable and enjoyable

Unlike restrictive diets, the Mediterranean diet is a sustainable and enjoyable approach to eating. It offers a wide variety of food options and encourages a balanced lifestyle, making it easier for diabetics to adopt and stick to long-term.

Although a Mediterranean diet may be helpful for diabetics, it is essential for diabetics to consult with their healthcare provider or a registered dietitian for personalised dietary recommendations.

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for a qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.