Diabetes is a disease in which the body is unable to properly use or produce insulin a hormone that comes from the pancreas and aid in the conversion and absorption of sugar and starch to be used as energy. If you are a diabetic a healthy diet can help control blood sugar and maintain a healthy weight. Below are some guidelines to help you to live a normal lifestyle and eating foods you like while preventing health complications
Variety and predictability
The dietary goal for diabetics is to eat a variety of foods and choose the most nutritious foods. A plan that emphasizes fruits vegetables whole grains lean meats and low-fat and low-sugar food is the ideal diet plan to follow.
But as important as what you eat is how often you eat and the portion sizes you consume. Your total calorie amount should be chosen with a view to maintaining a healthy weight and should be divided into several small meals each day. Sticking to a consistent routine and never skip meals is the best way to maintain your weight and keep your blood sugar from fluctuating which is especially important if you are on insulin or other medication that puts you at risk for hypoglycaemia.
Limitation Bad Fats
Those with diabetes are at higher risk of developing heart disease and strokes so you should try to limit the amount of trans-fats and saturated fats in the diet. Choose low-fat or sugar-free substitutions when available. Nuts and oils like olive and sesame contain monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats which keep the heart healthy. Fish such as salmon and herring contain omega-3 fatty acids which help lower blood fats called triglycerides. Eat heart-healthy fish few times a week is the perfect substitute for high-fat meats.
Choose your Plan
Counting carbs and monitoring When you eat them is a good system for diabetics using insulin at mealtimes. Learn which foods are high in carbohydrates to find your portion sizes and corresponding insulin dose. A good starting point is around 45-60 grams per meal but this will vary for each person.
The glycemic index (GI) lets you choose your meals based on the GI value (how carbohydrates increases blood sugar). Food with a high GI tend to slow the digestion of starch and slower digestion is responsible for preventing spikes in blood sugar. A balanced meal may still contain food with a high GI so long as it is combined with a low GI food.
An exchange list can replace the food that may have similar effects on your blood sugar for example a small piece of fruit replaced with a half cup of rice if they each have the same effect on blood sugar.
Help from a dietitian
A registered dietitian can help you come up with a plan that includes your favorite foods and working with all medications you can take while managing your weight and glucose levels and prevent further health complications.