A well-balanced diet is an essential part of managing diabetes and it can no doubt be difficult at times to find the right kinds of food for a diabetic patient’s diet. However, being diabetic does not mean that one cannot enjoy a good meal as part of a healthy diet.
Taking appropriate steps to ensure a balanced diet will help you in the control of your blood sugars, your weight, and even your blood pressure. So, let’s touch on a few steps you can take.
- Eat regular meals, three times a day. By eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and avoiding skipping meals, the body is better able to regulate blood sugar over the course of the day.
- Limit sugary foods and drinks. Eating a lot of sugary foods will also cause blood sugars to remain high and difficult to control. However, this does not mean you need to go completely sugar-free. Minimal amounts of sugars can be included in foods such as baked snacks. Alternatively, using sweeteners in drinks and food can be an option.
- Eat starchy carbohydrate foods as part of your meals. The quantity of carbohydrates you eat affects the level of your blood sugars. However, carbohydrates remain an important part of the diet. Starchy carbohydrates like yam, potatoes, sweet potatoes, pasta, and rice should form an integral part of your diet. In choosing the healthy carbohydrate foods, you should choose the ones which are more slowly broken down in the body (have a low glycemic index).
- Eat more fruits and vegetables. Fruits and vegetables provide the body with vital nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and fibre. These are important for the proper functioning of the different systems of the body such as the immune system and digestive system. It is important to aim to eat fruits and vegetables as part of every meal.
- Try fish in the place of meat. Oily fish such as mackerel, sardines, catfish, and shrimps contain omega-3 which is a kind of fat which helps to protect against heart disease. Generally, eating fish instead of meat might help you reduce the amount of harmful fat you consume.
- Avoid diabetic food and drinks. There are a lot of different marketed food and drinks which claim to treat or cure diabetes. Majority of these have no scientific backing and have never been tested for their safety and efficacy. In addition, some can even cause issues with the kidneys or the liver, so it is best to avoid them.
Treating diabetes can be difficult, however following simple, uncomplicated steps and ensuring a healthy diet and lifestyle will go a long way in helping you manage the condition. Always seek regular medical advice and avoid untested therapies or products that can actually cause harm.