Diabetes mellitus, also known as diabetes, is a lifelong condition that affects blood sugar. A well balanced diet is an effective way to combat the effects of diabetes. Small diet changes have a big impact on diabetes. To understand a diabetic diet, it is important to understand diabetes first.
Types of diabetes
There are mainly three types of diabetes, Type 1, Type 2 and Gestational.
In type 1 diabetes, the pancreas produces very little or no insulin – It occurs during childhood or early adulthood and requires an external insulin intake. Type 2 is a more common form of diabetes – With type 2 diabetes, either the pancreas doesn’t use insulin correctly or they don’t produce enough insulin to maintain a normal blood sugar level. Gestational diabetes is mostly discovered during pregnancy screening.
Some common diabetes symptoms are – Hunger, fatigue, excess thirst, blurred vision, weight loss, and dry and itchy skin.
All About Diabetic Diet
Lifestyle and diet play a very important role in managing all types of diabetes. A diabetic’s diet is an eating plan that’s naturally rich in nutrients and low in fat and calories. The aim is to eat healthy food in moderation at regular intervals. Switching to a low carb diet is the most effective way to maintain your blood glucose levels. Before the discovery of insulin, low carb diet was a standard treatment for diabetes. Following a low carb diet, between 20–90 grams per day, for 6 months can show effective results that can last for almost 3 years.
Include the following diet changes to make your meals healthy and low in carbs.
Quit sugary beverages
Remove sugar from your diet to make it low carb – Sugar adds a lot of unwanted carbohydrates.
Avoid beverages like regular soda, sweet tea/coffee, fruit juices, alcohol and energy drinks. Switch to ice tea, green tea, coffee or lime water and consume these without sugar.
Restricting sugar can be a struggle in the beginning. You can try and gradually lower the sugar intake. Every few days reduce the sugar you consume with your tea and coffee. Your taste buds will soon adapt the taste.
Increase your vegetable portion
Non-starchy vegetables do not contain much carbohydrates and they also add a lot of fibre to your diet. Broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, cucumber, eggplant, beans, peas and capsicum are some of the non-starchy vegetables that are easily available and can be consumed on an everyday basis.
Snack on nuts
Unhealthy snacking can critically affect your blood sugar levels. Nuts like almonds, and walnuts are low on carbs and can be consumed in small amount as a mid-meal snack. You can also mix these nuts with seeds to add more fiber and protein.
Switch to non-processed grains
Grains have a good amount of carbohydrates but they are also rich in fibre which helps in controlling blood sugar. But when it comes to grains, you have to make a better choice. Always choose non-processed grains. Processed grains, like white rice, white bread, pasta, etc have very less fibre content and can instantly spike your sugar levels. Non processed grains like brown rice, barley, millet and oats are rich in fibre and are easy to digest. Consuming these in moderation can help you in maintaining your blood sugar levels.
Regularly monitoring your blood sugar is very important if you have diabetes. Share your blood sugar reports with your doctor for better treatment. Choose a reliable diagnostic centre like Apollo Diagnostics. With Apollo Diagnostics, you can get your blood test at home. Call 040 4444 2424 for the home collection service. Apollo Diagnostics is a leading diagnostics centre and pathology lab – With diagnostic centres in Hyderabad, Bangalore, Pune and Kolkata.
To assess your prediabetes risk click here. Book a test today!