What is the diabetic diet and how does it work?

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When people suffer from diabetes they need to be cautious about what they eat. They need to maintain a healthy diet that will help to keep their condition under control. Therefore when one follows a diabetic diet one would be ultimately following a healthy eating plan and at the same time control the blood sugar level.

The diabetic diet is composed of various foods but always in moderate amounts. One also needs to make sure that the time of each meal is set and that this is maintained daily. A diabetic diet has to be rich in nutrients while also keeping an eye on the caloric intake and the fats.

Most of the foods that are included in a diabetic diet revolve around whole grains, fruits and vegetables, and needless to say these are all very beneficial for anyone.

When one suffers from diabetes or prediabetes, the doctor or health care practitioner will have advised which foods can be eaten and which are to be avoided. It is critical for diabetic people to set up and follow a healthy meal plan eveyr day. Such a diet is crucial to keep the blood sugar level at a certain level. Diabetic people also need to keep an eye on their weight. This is because there are various risk factors associated with an increase in weight, particularly for diabetic people. These include problems with the blood pressure and heart diseases.

Simply put, when one eats foods which contain a lot of fats or which are high in calories, the body will respond with a rise in the blood glucose level. This will in turn increase teh chances of other more serious problems including hyperglycemia, heart damage and kidney problems.

Thus the blood glucose level needs to be kept at a certain level and what one eats naturally contributes greatly to this. Diabetic people thus follow the diabetic diet and ensure that they maintain a healthy lifestyle and healthy eating habits. However anyone can follow such a diet and keep track of one’s eating habits, as ultimately nobody wants any of the above mentioned health problems or an increase in their risk factor.

Those who suffer from type 2 diabetes need to stick to a certain weight. The diabetic diet can contribute to this and as a result it is easier to control the blood glucose level.

Let us now elaborate a bit further on what constitutes a typical diabetic diet. A diabetic diet is composed of three meals daily, and always at established and regular times. Making sure that meals are eaten at a specified time eveyr day is very important as this helps the body use the insulin properly.

A diabetic diet is made up of these food choices:

  • Foods that contain high amounts of fibre such as whole wheat, nuts, legumes and vegetables.
  • Fish is recommended in a diabetic diet, but the preferred choices include salmon, tuna, halibut and cod. When one follows the diabetic diet one should try to eat fish at least twice a week. On the other hand meats that are high in fats are to be avoided, and thus fish is a very good alternative.
  • Foods with healthy carbohydrates. These include fruits and vegetables, low-fat dairy products, whole grains and legumes. Such foods helps a great deal with digestion as well as to break down the blood glucose.
  • Foods with monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. These help to lower the cholesterol levels. These are often referred to as good fats and are found in nuts like walnuts and almonds, as well as olives, avocados, and naturally, canola and olive oils.

It is recommended that one avoids consuming any high-fat dairy products when following a diabetic diet. Also, any foods like beef, sausages, baked goods high fta foods, processed foods and snacks, need to be avoided as they are unhealthy especially for diabetic people.

Needless to say, for some people it may not be easy to stick to these food options. For a diabetic person it is a must, for obvious health reasons. But for someone who decides to try out the diabetic diet despite the fact that he or she does not suffer from diabetes, the diet may appear to be quite strict.

In case of a diabetic person a meal plan and recommended food choices will be advised by the doctor or dietician. For a person who does not suffer from the condition but wants to try to follow a diabetic diet plan for weight loss and a healthy diet reasons, a typical diabetic plan will need to include the above mentioned food options in moderate amounts. For most people who have diabetes and even for those who do not suffer from it, a healthy diabetic diet consists of 40% to 60% of calories which are to be derived from carbohydrates. Then there should be 20% from protein and not more than 30% from fat. A diabetic diet has to be low in cholesterol, salt and added sugars.

For those who feel that the diabetic diet is way too bland, it does not really have to be that way. Vegetables for instance can be eaten raw, roasted or cooked. You cannot go wrong with vegetables, and some of the best selections for a diabetic diet include mushrooms, onions, tomatoes, zucchini and Brussels Sprouts as they are low in carbohydrates but tasty at the same time. Kale and spinach are also great options. High fiber foods and whole grains are important food options in a diabetic diet. Dried beans and peas are great for snacks and lentils should be used in various dishes as they are very nutritious. It is a common misconception that fats are to be eliminated. In truth there are good fats such as those from avocados and olive oil, which are good in a diabetic diet.

So all in all while maintaining control on the blood sugar levels, one would also be embarking on a healthy diet thanks to a diabetic diet.

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