The truth remains that food can be the most potent form of medicine for a diverse range of health conditions— including diabetes. There are certain foods that possess powerful nutrients that can help protect the heart, regulate blood sugar, and control appetite, which is all important for managing diabetes.
People who suffer from diabetes should include these 16 foods in your prescribed treatment regimen to help manage your condition and reduce the risk for diabetes-related health problems.
Studies suggest that people who consume foods that are high in the flavonoid quercetin like apples had less heart disease and diabetes deaths. Apart from apples, some other good sources of quercetin are leafy green vegetables, tomatoes, berries, and onions.
Hot peppers are not just low in calories; they are also low in carbohydrate and add some pleasant flavor to our meals. As a matter of fact, the compound capsaicin present in hot peppers combats inflammation and lowers blood pressure which, in turn, boosts cardiovascular health. Capsaicin can also help to improve metabolism, which helps in weight loss.
Avocado contains healthy, unsaturated fats that can control appetite. According to studies, incorporating half of an avocado into a meal minimizes after-meal hunger without interfering with after-meal blood glucose levels. Food portion control is usually beneficial for people with diabetes and trying to manage their body weight.
For people looking for a healthy alternative to meat, mushrooms are a choice as they are diabetes-friendly and contain fiber and antioxidants. You can use sliced mushrooms as a substitute for meat in recipes without the added calories.
Contrary to the belief that dried fruits are bad for people with diabetes, prunes contain are low on the glycemic index scale with no added sugars. This means that prunes do not increase blood sugar as much as many other dried fruits and sweeteners. They are also lower in carbohydrate.
People who have diabetes should consume more fiber-rich foods like peas, dried beans, and lentils to prevent overeating or eating the wrong foods. Although these foods contain carbohydrate, they contain amazing flavors that help keep you feeling full.
Mackerel or Salmon
Cardiovascular diseases are common with people with diabetes. However, diets that are high in omega-3 fatty acids —which are the “good fat” can help prevent the arteries from clogging while elevating levels of HDL (good) cholesterol.
It is important to kick-start your day with some oats to give you energy. Oats are a good source of whole grain and are also rich in fiber. Beta-glucan, a fiber strain present in oats has also been found to be effective at lowering LDL cholesterol levels, which is vital in lowering heart disease risk.
Studies suggest that acute inflammation resulting from a lack of exercise, fat-rich foods, and consuming few fruits and vegetables can raise the risk of hearts attacks and negatively affect the body’s ability in the absorption of blood sugar. The simple thing to do is to consume green tea and cranberry or orange juice. They’re all loaded with flavonoids, which are potent for fighting off inflammation.
Studies suggest that people with diabetes are prone to having lower levels of vitamin C in their bodies, so a citrus fruit rich in antioxidant is a great meal choice. It may seem easier to get your vitamin C from pills, but since fruits are usually low in fat and high in fiber, they are a healthier choice.
Legumes such as chickpeas, kidney beans, lentils, and cannelloni beans are an amazing addition to salads and soups. And this low-fat, low-calorie, high-fiber, high-protein food helps to reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes. The fiber slows the release of glucose into the bloodstream, which inhibits the increase of blood sugar that makes one feel hungry.
Studies suggest that people who eat nuts regularly enjoy lower rates of heart disease than people who do not consume them. Simply sprinkle 2 tablespoons of nuts on yogurt, salads, cereal, or veggies.
Apart from iron, B vitamins, and protein, steaks also contain other nutrients that are beneficial to the body. It contains a compound called conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) that helps to fix impaired blood sugar metabolism and may also have anti-cancer properties.
Researchers have discovered that dark chocolate boosts insulin sensitivity, which is an important improvement in inhibiting or treating type 2 diabetes. What’s more, dark chocolate also facilitates a significant reduction in blood pressure, lowered LDL (bad) cholesterol, as well as an improved blood vessel function. However, it is important to note that dark chocolates are loaded with a lot of calories, and so should not be consumed in excess.
Collard Greens, Spinach, and Kale
Collard greens, spinach, and kale are green leafy vegetables that are high in lutein, a carotenoid that’s effective for eye problems. This is especially helpful for people with diabetes who may develop serious eye problems as one of the complications of the disease. These leafy vegetables are also rich sources of iron, fiber, calcium, B vitamins, and vitamin C.
The Bottom Line
Diabetes is simply a situation where a person’s blood sugar or glucose levels are higher than is usual. This spike is commonly caused by the consumption of carbohydrate foods such as rice, cereals, bread, pasta, milk, and fruits.
Thankfully, people who have type 2 diabetes can actually eat to regulate their blood sugar, enjoy good appetites, and feel full for longer. And so, the eating plan of diabetics should center on the quantity and type of food they eat per day.
However, it is also important to eat foods you enjoy, even if you have diabetes. You should eat enough food and avoid overeating and poor food choices. The 16 diabetes-friendly foods we mentioned above can help keep your blood sugar levels in check and make you healthier.