Diabetes is a disease which has been consuming the world population at an alarming rate. However, the fact that majority of people miss is that it is easily preventable and in some cases reversible depending on the type of diabetes one has developed. With the right techniques and diabetes diet plans it is possible to lessen and reverse the effects of diabetes.
Peoplegenerally have wrong idea about the ‘special diet’ for diabetic patient. They tend to believe diabetic diet requires one to stay away from all the delicious food items that the taste buds craves desperately. However, the reality is much different!
A ‘special diet’ for a diabetic patient means having a balanced diet (containing yummy stuffs too) which will brighten up mood and control sugar levels. One doesn’t need to completely turn to bland food items and do extreme exercises to reverse the effects of diabetes.
The following Diet plan tips will help you enjoy your meal without any worry:-
The problem of ‘Losing weight’!
After development of diabetes ‘losing weight’ becomes the most significant treatment. However, that doesn’t mean, you need to lose tones of weight in one go. Only 5-10% weight loss will help in reduction in the blood sugar level, blood pressure and cholesterol level. So, you definitely need to work on that!
Losing fat in the ‘right’ places.
Not all fat is harmful for our body. You need to know which part of the body fat is actually causing the blood sugar level to rise. General the accumulated abdominal fat is responsible for diabetes. The presence of high fat level near the belly region causes the cells in the liver and stomach to become ‘Insulin resistant’ which causes the rise of glucose in blood stream. Therefore, loosing belly fat is essential if you have a:
- waist circumference of 35 inches or more (For females)
- waist circumference of 40 inches or more (For males)
- The belly fat occurs due to calories obtained from the fructose found in sugary beverages such as soda, energy and sports drinks, coffee drinks and processed foods like doughnuts, muffins, cereal, candy and granola bars. So, cutting down these products from your meals will help you to a large extent.
Which diet you need to follow?
If you have developed diabetes then your diet plans are needed to be changed. You should seek guidance from the doctors and or dietician in order to prepare the perfect diet plan for treatment purpose. Here, we will give a reference of the ‘diabetic diet plan’ a diabetic patient must follow:
First, you need to know ‘what exactly is a diabetic diet plan?’
According to American Diabetes Association (ADA) Diabetic diet plan is a guide which informs you about the right kind of food you need to consume in order to reduce your blood sugar levels, control you cholesterol and blood pressure level.
A good diet plan should fit in your schedule and also satisfy your taste buds. Your diabetes diet plan is not going to be different than the other people or need some special addition. However, in order to lose weight you might need to adjust the carbohydrate, fat and sugar levels in your meals.
The 4 diabetic diet tips that will help you are:
Tip number 1: Choose your fat wisely!
Like said earlier, not all fats are harmful. Some fats have adverse effect on our body whereas some fats have good effects on our body. So, your first task should be to include the good fats and exclude the harmful fats from your meal.
Fats you need to stay away from:
- Artificial trans fats (which is produced by adding hydrogen to liquid vegetable oils to save it from getting spoilt but it’s not good for your health)
- Commercially-baked goods
- Packaged snack foods
- Fried food
- Anything with “partially hydrogenated” oil ( even if it claims to be trans-fat-free)
Fats you need in your meal:
- Unsaturated fats (which you will get from fish and plant products like olive oil, nuts, and avocados)
- Omega-3 fatty acids (which help in maintaining good hearth and brain health. The prime sources include salmon, tuna and flax seeds)
Here are some ways which will help you lessen harmful fats from your diet and eat more good fats:
- Turn to snacks of nuts and seeds instead of chips and crackers. You can also have nuts with your breakfast cereal.
- Add avocados to your meal. These are loaded with healthy fat and are extremely tasty. You can use them in your sandwiches, salads and also make guacamole.
- For dressing salads, cooked vegetables, or pasta dishes use cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil
- Avoid commercial salad dressings at all cost. These are very high in calories and Trans fat. Try using extra virgin olive oil, flax seed oil, or sesame oil for salad dressing.
- Eat protein rich food.
- If you eat red meat, eat the organic and grass fed ones which are much healthier.
- Avoid saturated fat which are found in processed meats, takeout food and packaged meals.
- Avoid frying your food; rather cook your food by boiling, baking or stir frying.
- Use of coconut oil in your cooking.
- Have organic dairy products.
Tip number 2: Choose the high-fibre carbs!
Carbohydrates are responsible for maintaining blood-sugar level, blood pressure level and cholesterol levels therefore its content in our meal has a huge impact on our health. You need to limit the refined carbs and have more of high-fiber complex carbohydrates.
The food items you need to avoid:
- White rice
- White potatoes (fried and mashed)
- Regular pasta
- White bread
- Sugary breakfast cereal
- Instant oatmeal
- Trans fats from partially hydrogenated or deep-fried foods
- Packaged and fast foods
- baked goods, sweets, chips and desserts
- Processed meat and red meat from animals fed with antibiotics, growth hormones and GMO feed
- Low-fat products which replace fat with sugar such as fat-free yogurt
Food items you need to have to gain good carbs:
- Brown or wild rice
- Sweet potatoes, yams, cauliflower mash,peas or leafy greens
- Raw nuts, flax seeds
- Fish and shellfish, organic free-range chicken or turkey
- olive oil, fish oils
- High-quality protein content food such as eggs, beans, milk, cheese, and unsweetened yogurt
- Whole wheat pasta, spaghetti squash
- Whole-wheat or whole grain bread
- High fibre and low sugar cereal
- Steel cut, rolled oats
- Low sugar bran flakes
Tip number 3: Add the right sugars!
Having diabetes doesn’t mean you need to cut off all the sugars from your meals. You simply need to lessen the sugar intake from your meal by having small servings of desserts and sweets.
Ways to have good sugars in your diet:
- Slowly reduce your cravings for sugar with adjustments in your meal.
- If you plan on eating more sugar, then cut off the high-carb products from your meal to maintain the balance.
- Try having healthy sugars in your diet such as peanut butter, ricotta cheese, yogurt, or nuts.
- Eat your sugar food items along with your healthy meals, avoid having a stand-alone sugar snacks.
- Reduce the sugar sweetness by quarters or replace it with natural sweeteners like cinnamon, mint, and vanilla extract.
- Buy the low-sugar food items.
- Find alternatives to sweet dishes like have blend up banana as a frozen sweet cream instead of sugary ice-creams or have a small chunk of dark chocolate instead of a whole milk chocolate bar.
- Take lesser bites of the sweet dish and enjoy every bite slowly.
The sugars you need to avoid:
- Sugary soft drinks, soda and juices (which increases the risk of diabetes by 15% with every 12 oz. intake)
- Creamers and sweeteners which are added to tea and coffee.
- The low fat products (where the fats are replaced with sugar for example fat-free milk or yoghurt)
- Processed and packaged meals ( like canned soups, frozen dinners and low-fat meals, these actually have hidden sugars which are harmful for our body)
The sugars you can have:
- Fresh fruits
- Fruit juices such as lemonade
- Using natural sweeteners like mint, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla extract instead of sugars.
Tip number 4: Don’t starve, eat regularly and maintain a ‘Food dairy’
You can’t lose weight and unwanted fat by starving. For getting a healthier body and reducing the effects of diabetes, you need to eat regularly and give your body the right amount of nutrients it requires. Try following a schedule and eat consistent amount of food.
Plan your eating schedule with the help of your dietician:
- Have a good breakfast so that your body is energized for the day which also maintains the blood sugar levels.
- Have small meals at set times (6 per day): Eating at regular intervals in small portions will help you maintain good health.
- Maintain the calorie intake per day: Try to keep check on your calorie intake per day. You need to take roughly the same amount of calorie in order to stable your blood-sugar level. Avoid eating way too much a day and starving the very next day, it can be disastrous for your health!
Keep a Food diary!
It has been found out that maintaining a food dairy has helped several people lose weight and stable their blood-sugar levels quicker than the others who didn’t. The food dairy helps you by the following ways:
- It helps you keep notes about the problem areas: Like the small snacks you miss or the excess calorie you consume in your small meals.
- It increases your awareness about what you eat and what you don’t helping both you and your dietician to figure out what you need to do if any problem arises.
However, along with diet you need to have an exercise routine specially designed to shed of those extra belly fats which are the main reasons for diabetes. Plus, it will also help you feel fresh and healthy.
For both diet and exerciser routine planning, you need to contact an expert who can guide through the whole process. They will prepare the proper diet plan according to the type of diabetes you have developed.
Follow your diet plans and exercise regularly and you can easily reverse the effects diabetes in a very short period of time!