This Diet Was the Only Way to Manage Diabetes Before the Discovery of Insulin | Diabetes Health Page

This Diet Was the Only Way to Manage Diabetes Before the Discovery of Insulin

By MaYa | Articles

Feb 12

Before insulin was discovered back in 1921, people relied on this diet to manage their diabetes. Diabetes is a disease that affects more than 415 million people around the world, records claim. It is a disease that makes it difficult to control the blood sugar level.

Furthermore, it can cause various complication that can affect the body. People back in the 1900s had to have a way to manage the condition. They did it by following a low-carb diet. Therefore, we will focus on the type of meal they consumed and why it proved useful.

Here is how a low-carb diet helped people with diabetes long before insulin was discovered.

Low-Carb Diet and Diabetes

Diabetes is a disease that makes it more difficult, and even sometimes impossible, for the body to process carbohydrates effectively. When we consume carbs normally, the body breaks them down into small parts of glucose, which later become blood sugar.

According to studies, a low-carb diet can help keep diabetes in check. In fact, long before the discovery of insulin, low-carb diets were a standard way for people to treat diabetes. Furthermore, these diets seemed to have a lasting effect.

But, only if the patient adhered to the diet. In one research, participants with type 2 diabetes focused on consuming a low-carb diet for the span of 6 months. In addition, they managed to control their diabetes for three days.

Furthermore, a similar study had people with type 1 diabetes follow a low-carb diet. Those who managed to adhere the diet for 4 years, managed to improve their blood sugar levels significantly.

How Much Carb Is Enough?

The ideal intake of carbs for people with diabetes is a slightly controversial topic. According to some research, people with diabetes drastically improved their blood sugar levels and lost weight when they restricted themselves to 20g of carbs per day.

However, different research shows that a moderate restriction of carbs, like 70 to 90 g, can also be an effective way to treat the disease. But, it all depends on the body’s tolerance.

What to Eat and Avoid

If you want to follow a low-carb diet, here are the foods you should focus on. Firstly, it is important to consume high-quality whole foods. These foods can help the body deal with the cravings and keep it full regardless of what you are currently eating.

Foods to Eat

Make sure to consume plenty of proteins in every meal. Here is a list of some of the best protein-rich foods you should go for.

Foods to Consume in Moderation

You can eat the following foods but in moderate quantities. Furthermore, you have to consider your personal carb tolerance before you consume more than the recommended amounts of these foods.

  • Cottage cheese (half a cup)
  • Flax or chia seeds (two tablespoons)
  • Berries (one cup)
  • Dark chocolate with a minimum of 85% cocoa (30g)
  • Greek yogurt plain (one cup)
  • Liquor (1.5oz)
  • Peanuts and nuts (30-60g)
  • Winter squash (1cup)
  • White or dry red wine (4oz)

To make up for the lost sodium, eat olives, broth, or other low-carb foods that are salty.

Therefore, feel free to add salt to your meals. However, if you have heart, kidneys, or blood pressure problems, make sure to consult with a doctor before increasing the amount of salt in your diet.

Foods to Avoid

Because of carbs they contain, these foods can drastically increase the blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. As a result, we recommend that you stay away from these foods.

  • baked goods,
  • beer
  • bread,
  • candy,
  • cereal,
  • corn
  • desserts,
  • fruit other than berries.
  • ice cream, etc.
  • juice,
  • legumes, such as lentils, peas, and some beans
  • milk
  • pasta,
  • punch,
  • soda,
  • starchy vegetables
  • sweetened tea

Consult With a Doctor Before You Change the Diet

When you restrict the number of carbs in the body, there will probably be a significant reduction in the blood sugar levels. As a result, insulin and medications are necessary to keep them under control.

If your medications, including insulin, are not properly adjusted for this diet, it could increase the risk of hypoglycemia. Therefore, it is crucial for people with diabetes to take medications and insulin to keep their blood glucose levels in check.

So, it is important to speak with a doctor before you start a low-carb diet.