Once you've found out that you have diabetes, making right food choices becomes a really important topic for you.
In fact, following diabetes diet doesn't mean that you'll feel deprived. This eating plan is a good option not only for people with reduced insulin production and insulin resistance, but also for everyone.
The main goal is keeping blood sugar levels in normal range. If not following this rule, blood glucose spikes may cause hyperglycemia, nerve damage, kidney failure, heart disease and loss of vision.
For most people diabetes diet can help shed extra pounds and improve well-being.
Watching a portion size is one of the most significant points in the eating plan. It usually depends on your body weight and activity levels.
Try to avoid saturated fats (like those in beef, bacon, high-fat dairy), trans fats (packaged snacks, margarines, shortening) and added sugar (from soda and energy drinks).
You'd better limit sodium consumption to 2300 mg per day, or even 1500 mg, if you have elevated blood pressure.
If you drink alcohol, do this in moderation. Taking too much may drop down your blood sugar levels, especially if you drink on an empty stomach.
Create your menu, using these essential nutrients:
#1. “Good” carbs – simple and complex carbohydrates decay into the glucose in your body. Prefer healthy carbs, found in whole grains, fruits, legumes and vegetables.
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#2. Omega-3-rich fish – it's a perfect alternative to red meat, which is full of saturated fats. Eating at least two servings of salmon, mackerel and tuna a week can maintain your heart health and prevent atherosclerosis.
#3. High-fiber products – plant-based food is the best source of dietary fiber. It improves digestion and helps regulate blood glucose levels.
#4. Unsaturated fats – you don't need to stay off all fats. Add some avocados, nuts and olive oil in order to give your body ability to function properly. But don't forget that even healthy fats contain high amount of calories, so it's important not to overdo with portion.
Dietitian may recommend you special meal plan to maintain optimal blood sugar levels and avoid diabetes complications.
The plate method is one of the most popular ways to control portion size without counting calories. Using 9-inch plate for you dinner or supper, put non-starchy veggies (tomatoes, carrots etc.) on half of it. One-quarter should be filled with protein foods and the other part – with whole grains or starches. You're allowed to drink water, tea or coffee (but don't put sugar to the cup!).
Counting carbs is a particularly good plan for those, who take insulin or other diabetes medicines. Specialist can teach you, how to define carbohydrate levels in a dish, how to read food labels correctly and regulate serving size.
Sometimes people with diabetes use glycemic index to know, how foods (especially carbs) elevate their blood glucose levels.
Consult with healthcare professional to find optimal diet plan and manage diabetes effectively.
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