What is included in the Diabetic Diet?

Diabetes is one of the common ailments that people suffer from these days. There are two types of diabetes – Type 1 and Type 2.

  • In the former condition, the body does not produce enough insulin. This is an autoimmune disorder in which the body starts destroying the insulin-producing cells. This condition and can only be treated by supplementing the insulin levels in the body.
  • In Type 2, the body is resistant to the hormone insulin or does not produce enough insulin. Therefore, even though there is sufficient insulin present in the body, it cannot be utilized in both the conditions, glucose is not properly absorbed in the body, and any excess glucose is found detected in the bloodstream.

Glucose is the main source of energy for the body. It is derived from the different food products we consume. These foods are broken down in the cells of your body into glucose and then used for different metabolic and other activities.

Both excess and low glucose adversely affect the bodily functions and lead to many complications. Excess glucose leads to complication such as diabetes among other things, and less glucose can led to weakness and hypoglycemia.

In diabetics, the glucose accumulated in the body cannot be metabolized and remains in the blood. This is called hyperglycemia and is a cause of many other conditions. People who suffer from diabetes often suffer from kidney damage and are prone to many other problems.

Kidneys are organs in the body that are responsible for filtering ad removing the toxins in the body. Therefore, an excess amount of glucose in the blood puts a lot of strain on the organ and causes damage to it.

Diabetics are Prone to Fluctuating Levels of Glucose in the Blood

These levels rise significantly 2 or 3 hours after a meal, and therefore, diabetics often take shots of insulin right before they consume a meal. The amount of sugar released in the blood after a meal depends on the type and quantity of food consumed.

A diabetic diet is suitable for these individuals, as it helps control the type of food they eat and also the sugar levels right after they eat a meal.

Planning a diet for diabetics depends on the age, gender, fitness, and health of the individual. It is true that a high level of sugary foods increases the level of glucose in the body, but the diet has to be decided by keeping in mind the glycemic index of foods (mainly carbohydrates).

The glycemic index of food is rated depending on how it changes the level of sugar in our body. Foods that have a high glycemic index rapidly release glucose in the bloodstream, whereas those foods that have a low GI tend to slowly release the sugar into the bloodstream.

An effective diabetic diet comprises of foods that have a low GI so that the release of sugar in the blood is slow and controlled.

Besides choosing the right kind of food, diabetics need to regulate the portion size and take small quantities at regular intervals rather than eat one large portion in one sitting. Eating larger meals at one time bombards the body with sugar, which is difficult to metabolize.

Instead, if diabetics eat smaller meals at regular intervals, the controlled release of sugar will be easily be managed.

Ideal foods for Diabetics

Foods that are ideal for diabetics include fresh fruits and vegetables. A fiber-rich diet is healthy for these individuals. Both soluble and insoluble fibers are beneficial for diabetics. Insoluble fiber keeps the digestive system healthy and flushes out the waste from the body by ensuring smooth bowel movement.

diabetic foods

Soluble fiber also absorbs some of the carbohydrates in the body and therefore aids metabolism. Along with increased fiber, diabetics also need to drink sufficient water.

Water helps in maintaining smooth bowel movement and avoiding constipation. It also helps flush out the toxins from the body by helping you urinate frequently.

Eating freshly made food as opposed to processed foods will also help keep diabetics healthy. Processed foods are processed faster and thus release sugar into the bloodstream. Having these foods raises the level of glucose and causes hyperglycemia.

Fresh fruits and vegetables, on the other hand, do not contain a lot of carbohydrates, and so, they do not release sugar like other foods. Processed foods also contain preservatives and other trans fats that could add to more health complications in the body.

Although adhering to a diabetic diet is beneficial for these individuals, they also need medication and other therapy for this condition. Diabetes cannot be treated via a proper diet alone.

After detecting diabetes, doctors treat it with the help of medication, and those in need also have to take insulin shots each day. Therefore, it is vital to consult your doctor regularly to make sure that your sugar levels are normal, and you can also discuss the changes in your diet as and when required.

There are tests that can detect individuals who are prone to diabetes so that they can take safety measures to prevent the development of this condition.   If you are a prediabetic, maintaining a diabetic diet helps curb this condition and keeps you from becoming hyperglycemic.

Diabetes runs in many families. Therefore, if your parents and other close relatives suffer from diabetes, you need to be extra careful in managing your diet and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.