It is a well-known fact that those with diabetes have a much greater risk of heart disease as well as certain mental disorders such as depression.
But not to start this on a gloomy note, type II diabetes cases (at least most of them) can not only be prevented, but even reversed!
But it’s not like one has to live in deprivation in order to hinder or manage their diabetes.
The key is to eat a well-balanced (and tasty!) diet which will supply you with all the nutrients needed, as well as giving your energy levels and immune system a boost.
Some think that they have to remain hungry and keep choosing bland foods just to stay healthier, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth.
It’s not like you have to eat any special foods. Whether diabetic or not, your nutritional needs are the same as those of all others.
However, as you certainly know, you still have to keep an eye out for certain types of food – namely, carbs.
And while following popular diets like the Mediterranean one is bound to help matters, your best option is still to lose a little bit of weight.
In fact, dropping as little as 5 or 10% of your total current weight is more than enough for lowering your cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar levels.
And everyone knows that the healthier you eat, the better your general mood becomes.
So don’t think that just because you’ve already been diagnosed with diabetes, it’s too late to make a change for the better.
By making better life choices such as being more active and choosing healthier foods, you can put a damper on your symptoms, or, in some cases, even reverse your diabetes altogether!
And remember, you have more control over your body and health than you are probably aware of.
First thing’s first: a diet for diabetics doesn’t have to be all that complicated, nor does one have to say goodbye to their favorite ‘guilty’ foods.
Your initial step is to learn the myths and facts about properly eating while having diabetes.
Of course, we don’t need to tell you to avoid processed and packaged foods and aim for healthier options.
One shouldn’t obsess over certain types of food, as variety is important for everyone’s daily diet.
The beauty about high-fiber carbs is that they are released much more slowly into one’s bloodstream, thus hindering any insulin spikes.
Like we previously stated, having diabetes doesn’t mean you should avoid sweets altogether. Having said that, most of us, diabetes or not, consume way too much sugar on a daily basis, mostly without even realizing it.
That’s why the main point here is to consume sweets in moderation. No one is going t stop you from indulging in your favorite type of dessert now and again, just as long as you limit the portion size.
It’s very important that you don’t over-indulge, something even non-diabetics do, especially here in the U.S.
Here are some tips we’d like to share with you which you just might find useful:
One example is in alcohol, something most of us ignore. But the fact remains that most underestimate just how much caloric content alcoholic beverages like wine and beer pack.
Not to mention cocktails which are mixed with both alcohol and sodas.
Furthermore, they represent even bigger bad news for those who happen to be diabetic, as it is already widely known that alcohol can mess with insulin and diabetes medication.
In other words, it is not enough to choose your sweets wisely; you should also remember that a large number of foods, even those which do not taste sweet at all, may be hiding sugar.
So put on your detective cap and do some investigative research starting with a careful study of the labels on the products, and don’t be shocked when you discover how many of them contain added sugars.
While it is required of manufacturers to include the sugar per serving size on their products, they are not forced to spill the beans on how much of that sugar belongs naturally to the product in question and how much is unnecessary, added sugar.
Additionally, it would not hurt to get yourself acquainted with the ‘vocabulary’ used on the labels. We are referring to ‘sugar, by any other name’.
In other words, other than the usual ‘sugar, molasses, and honey’, there are plenty of other ingredients such as:
So make sure not to fall for this cheap trick and keep an eye out for any sugars which are strategically called differently.
That way you’ll be saving yourself from a great load of empty calories.
This is of crucial importance to everyone on this planet, not just those with diabetes.
The thing is, some fats are abundant in health benefits while others hang at the opposite end of the spectrum by being highly unhealthy and damaging to one’s health.
Here they are divided into groups:
Unhealthy Fats – The most harmful kind are the artificial trans fats. But you should also avoid any product which has “partially-hydrogenated oil” as part of its ingredients. Never mind the fact that it might claim to be free of trans fats.
Healthy Fats – Unsaturated fats take first place here. They can be obtained from plant and fish sources such as, say, nuts, olive oil, and avocados.
Omega-3 fatty acids are also a great choice since they support the health of your heart and brain as well as fighting inflammation. Rich sources are flaxseed, tuna, and salmon.
Saturated Fats – Even though there is hardly a way to avoid them altogether, one should still try to limit their intake.
10% of your daily caloric intake is more than enough, according to the American Diabetes Association. They can be found in dairy, red meat and oils of the tropical kind.
If you are looking to limit your unhealthy fat intake and replace it with healthy fats, you can use simple strategies such as cooking any other way instead of frying, and when you do fry, use healthy olive oil.
You should also minimalize your daily dairy intake.
The fact that one only needs to lose 7% of one’s entire body mass results in cutting one’s diabetes risk by half.
Sounds encouraging? We think so too. And don’t worry, you don’t have to count every single calorie or forcibly starve yourself to achieve this.
Here are some tips we think you’ll find helpful:
Another interesting find is that those who keep a food diary lose even twice as much body weight compared to those who don’t.
Why is this? Simple, it makes you much more aware of what you eat.
Also, by keeping track of everything you consume, you can eventually locate problem areas such as overly-caloric meals and drinks.
We realize you are probably tired of hearing this, but the fact that exercise helps you not only lose weight but also manage your insulin levels, is something which cannot be ignored.
You can ease your way into becoming more active by a mere 30-minute walk each day.
We’re not saying you should overdo it, simple light exercises like biking or taking a swim are more than enough to make you a little sweaty and improving your stamina.
That’s it dear, readers. Don’t discourage yourselves if at first you don’t succeed. After all, most things in life require some trial and error. Stay healthy!