Diet for Diabetes
The main aim of your diet for diabetes should be to control blood sugar. To achieve this, you should consume nutritious food items in moderation and stick to a regular meal schedule. Your diet for diabetes should be low in calories and fat, and loaded with nutrients. It should emphasize on whole grains, vegetables and fruits. In fact, this diet is ideal for almost all people and not just diabetics. In this article, we give useful tips on how to formulate your own diet for diabetes.
The emphasis should be on quality rather than quantity. So include the following nutritious foods to make the most of the calories you consume every day:
Simple and complex carbohydrates are broken down into blood glucose during digestion. Healthy carbohydrates can be found in low-fat dairy products, legumes (lentils, peas and beans), whole grains, vegetables and fruits.
Foods Rich in Fiber
These foods help to control blood sugar levels and reduce the chances of heart ailments. Fiber-rich foods include wheat bran, whole-wheat flour, legumes, nuts, fruits and vegetables.
Fish are Healthy for the Heart
Eat healthy fish regularly as they are a great alternative to fat-laden meats. Halibut, tuna and cod contain less fat and cholesterol compared to poultry and meat. Herring, mackerel and salmon are loaded with heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids which lower blood fats known as triglycerides. But do not consume fried fish and varieties contaminated by high mercury levels like king mackerel, swordfish and tilefish.
These are polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats which are contained in peanut, olive and canola oils, olives, walnuts, pecans, almonds and avocados. These good fats can reduce cholesterol levels, but they should be consumed sparingly because all fats contain plenty of calories.
Foods to Avoid
Diabetes can clog and harden arteries, raising the risk of heart ailments. Therefore, avoid the following foods to ensure your diet for diabetes is heart-healthy:
- Saturated fats: These are found in animal proteins and high-fat dairy products. Avoid eating bacon, sausage, hot dogs and beef.
- Trans fats: Foods containing trans fats include stick margarines, baked goods and processed fats. So, avoid these foods completely.
- Cholesterol: This is found in organ meats like liver, shellfish, egg yolks and animal proteins high in fat. Ensure to limit your cholesterol consumption to less than 200 milligrams per day.
- Sodium: Consumption should not exceed 2,000 mg per day.
Your diet for diabetes should pay particular attention to carbohydrates as they impact blood glucose level the most. Take a dietician’s help to measure serving size and its carbohydrate content. This is essential if you take insulin doses as they need to be adjusted accordingly. You can also use the glycemic index to select appropriate foods for your diet for diabetes.