National Nutrition Week 2018: This Is The Difference In Prediabetes And Diabetes; Common Myths Busted

Nation Nutrition Week 2018 ends today. Celebrity nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar takes this opportunity to talk about some common myths about diabetes and prediabetes and why they must not be believed.

National Nutrition Week 2018: This Is The Difference In Prediabetes And Diabetes; Common Myths Busted

Diabetes and prediabetes myths you must not believe


  1. Diabetics should focus on getting fitter
  2. They can add sugar to tea and coffee
  3. They should exercise regularly

September 7 is the final day of National Nutrition Week 2018 and celebrity nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar wants to make the most of the occasion by spreading awareness about the right kind of nutrition. Her second last Facebook live session for Nutrition Week 2018 featured numerous myths about diabetes and how people with diabetes and prediabetes have been living with such myths for a long time. These myths are specifically about the diet which diabetics need to follow, the pattern in which they eat food, they medicines, etc. So, as the National Nutrition Week ends today, let's take a look around myths around diabetes and why we need to stop believing them!

Following are some diabetes myths you must not believe

1. Diabetes and prediabetes is not reversible

This is one of the longest running myth about diabetes and prediabetes. Lifestyle modifications can not only help in reducing medication for diabetes, but has also helped them go completely off drugs.

2. People with diabetes and prediabetes should lose weight

It is not necessary for diabetic or pre diabetics to lose weight. In fact, they should work towards increasing their bone mineral density. Sedentary lifestyle, pollution, processed food and lack of exercise has made people lose much more body weight than they should be losing. People with diabetes need to focus on getting fitter to deal with the condition and manage it effectively. Work towards improving your strength as it will help in improving insulin sensitivity - which is just the opposite of diabetes. People with diabetes should focus on exercising regularly and eating local, seasonal and culturally relevant food.


People with diabetes and prediabetes should focus on getting fitter and not losing weight
Photo Credit: iStock

Also read: 5 Pre-Diabetes Symptoms You Must Know

3. Diabetes should eat high fibre foods

Diabetics are often suggested to increase their fibre intake. However, going overboard with consumption of fibre can be harmful for the body. Fibre is also available in foods like poha, upma, dalia, parantha, etc. Excessive fibre in the body can lead to gastric disturbances, which in turn will result in acidity, IBS, etc. Excessive consumption of fibre also comes in the way of assimilation of zinc in the body, which can further lead to insulin resistance.

4. Diabetics should not add sugar to tea and coffee

Instead of having biscuits, diabetics should opt for adding sugar in their tea and coffee. But the very consumption of tea or coffee should not be in excess. Do not have more than 2 or 3 cups of tea or coffee in a day. Avoid having tea or coffee after 4 pm and do not have first thing in the morning, and do not replace a meal with tea or coffee.


Diabetics can add sugar to tea or coffee
Photo Credit: iStock

5. Diabetics cannot have rice

Diabetics can have hand-pounded single polished rice, which contains optimum fibre. In India, rice is usually consumed with dal or in the form of khichdi etc. This further reduces the glycemic index of rice. Thus, diabetics can have rice. Similarly, you can eat millets, as far as they are in compliance with the season.

Also read: How Mushrooms Can Aid In Diabetes Treatment

6. Diabetes cannot eat fats

People with diabetes should include ghee in their diet. Fats like ghee are also important for smooth digestion, especially because diabetes drugs can play havoc with digestion. Eating fat is good for people who are insulin resistant. Including essential fats in your diet will help you achieve steady blood sugar response after a meal. Speaking about the quantity of ghee that you should eat, Rujuta mentions that you should as much ghee to food as it enhances the flavour, but not so much that it masks original flavour of the food. Use cooking oil which is local to your region for cooking food.


Fats like ghee are important for people with diabetes and pre-diabetes
Photo Credit: iStock

Here's what people with diabetes and prediabetes should do

1. What kind of protein to eat

Eat foods in your food heritage and they will be sufficient for your protein intake. Vegetarian food too is rich in protein, Rujuta says. Eating sustainably is what diabetics, and people with diabetes should focus on.

Also read: Diabetes: Foods That Help Control Blood Sugar Levels

2. Exercise

Increase your muscle density and bone density by exercising. Build up your fitness levels and exercise (given that walking is not an exercise). Exercising improves digestion, skin, strength, energy, flexibility and libido. It works better than drugs for managing diabetes. Engage in exercises which challenge your body. Include weight training in your fitness regime. Practice yoga regularly as it can help in managing diabetes.


People with diabetes and prediabetes should exercise regularly
Photo Credit: iStock

3. Sleep

Good quality of sleep is important for people with diabetes. They should focus on sleeping on time. People in their 40s and 50s should make sure they sleep on time every day. Go to bed on time and exercise in the morning. This will help you reducing your dependability on medicines for diabetes. 

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