This article was updated on November 14th, 2020.
We can all relate to the difficulties of changing old habits, especially in times of COVID-19, where so many of us are more relaxed with our daily diets, and in many cases have adopted more sedentary lifestyles. But for people with conditions such as Type 2 diabetes, a nutritious and healthy diet, combined with exercise is essential. A new study from the British Journal of Medicine revealed promising results that suggest that eating a diet rich in vegetables and fruits might reduce the risk of Type 2 diabetes by up to 50%.
What Is Type 2 Diabetes?
The pancreas exists for one purpose, to release the hormone insulin so that the body’s cells can use the energy from carbohydrates. This is a balanced system. When it’s working, as it should, insulin will be released in exactly the right amount, neither too much nor too little, at exactly the right times.
Bring Back The Balance
The key to managing Type 2 diabetes is to bring the insulin/carb ratio back into balance. And, the best way to control your diabetes is through diet. It involves taking control of both input and output of energy sources and expenditures. It means you need to think about what you are putting in your body and the effect it will have. While it may seem tedious, eventually it will become second nature.
With that in mind, we wanted to share some ideas to control your Type 2 diabetes with these 6 tips.
A challenge for sure, because with Type 2 diabetes you are driven to eat more and more to satisfy the cravings produced by an imbalance. Calorie intake must be tightly controlled as becoming overweight or gaining even more weight will inevitably make diabetes worse.
2.Simple Carbohydrates, Give Them a Miss
Carbs are fuel for the body and must be consumed and used properly to promote good health. Knowing the difference between good carbs and bad ones is crucial. Simple, sugary carbs like those found in sodas, candies, cakes and foods made with white flour, are quickly absorbed and produce intense spikes in insulin. Those spikes come down just as quickly, making cravings for more empty calories more intense.
3.Substitute More Complex Carbohydrates
Complex carbohydrates are those made with less refined products. They are absorbed better and slower than simple carbs. Bread, cereals, and other products made with whole grains should be substituted for those made with highly refined methods.
4.Use Ancient Grains
Ancient grains, unlike their modern counterparts, have never been modified and so they are more easily digested, and rather than cause food allergies, they can actually help prevent disease. In a published study where diabetic patients swapped foods made from modern wheat with foods prepared with ancient grain, KAMUT® brand khorasan wheat, they found that KAMUT® provided added protective effects in reducing glucose, insulin, lipid, and inflammatory risk factors.http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00394-016-1168-2.
5.Look Out for Problem “Healthy” Foods
When eating fruit, it is better to eat a raw apple or pear than to eat one that is prepared in a pie or in juice, particularly with added sugars. Raw fruit is absorbed more slowly, and so insulin spikes are mostly avoided. There’s a reason fruit is often referred to as “nature’s candy,” it’s because of the naturally occurring sugars, so moderation is the way to go.
When buying and preparing food, the least processed choices are the best. These are simple choices that can bring real benefits. Eating a baked potato, for instance, is a better choice than whipped potatoes containing butter and cream. Raw vegetables are a better choice than cooked. In fact, even if you don’t have diabetes, going raw can have significant health benefits.
Health professionals tell us that 90% of Type 2 diabetes cases can be prevented or brought back into control by eating better, exercising appropriately, and controlling weight. So for Diabetes Month, think more about your food choices and start eating for your health.