11 Dos and Don'ts of Diabetes-Friendly Diet
Diabetes is a chronic medical condition that requires individuals to follow a strict dietary regimen. Eating the right foods can help regulate blood sugar levels, while consuming the wrong ones can lead to adverse health effects. This article provides a comprehensive guide on the dos and don'ts of a diabetes-friendly diet.
What is a Diabetes-Friendly Diet?
A diabetes-friendly diet is one that is rich in nutrients, low in calories, and low in sugar. Such a diet can help regulate blood sugar levels and prevent spikes that can lead to health complications. The following are some dos and don'ts of a diabetes-friendly diet.
A healthy diet is an important part of managing diabetes, and there are several key dos and don'ts to consider when following a diabetes diet in India. Before proceeding through the various do's and don'ts, it’s important to note that diabetes can be managed by making healthy lifestyle changes like choosing healthy snack options. This is where Keeros can help you to manage diabetes better with a wide variety of diabetic-friendly & healthy Supersnacks. Click the link to check out these healthy for all & certified diabetic friendly supersnacks- keeros.in/collections/super-snacks
Do Follow a Healthy Diet
A healthy diet is crucial for diabetes management. Choose foods that are low in sugar and carbohydrates, and high in fiber, protein, and healthy fats. Some examples include leafy greens, whole grains, lean proteins, nuts, and seeds.
Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables: Aim for at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables per day. Choose a variety of colors and types to ensure you're getting a wide range of nutrients.
Choose Whole Grains: Opt for whole grains, such as brown rice, whole wheat bread, and quinoa, instead of refined grains like white rice and pasta. Whole grains are higher in fiber and nutrients and can help to slow the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream. If you want to try snacks made out of whole grains, you can try Keeros Supersnacks like Roasted Multigrain Supersnack & Supersnacks made out of quinoa like Quinoa Grain and Quinoa Millets.
Include Lean Protein Sources: Choose protein sources that are low in saturated fat, such as skinless chicken, fish, tofu, and legumes. These can help to balance blood sugar levels and keep you feeling full and satisfied.
Eat Regular Meals and Snacks: To help manage blood sugar levels, it's important to eat regular meals and snacks throughout the day. This can help to prevent blood sugar dips and spikes.
Include Healthy Fats: Although it's important to limit saturated and trans fats, it's still important to include healthy fats in your diet. These include monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which can be found in foods like nuts, seeds, avocados, and olive oil. You can also try snacks made out of seeds & nuts like Keeros Multiseed and Indo Trail Mix.
Plan Ahead: To make healthy eating easier, it can be helpful to plan meals and snacks in advance. This can help you to stay on track and avoid making unhealthy choices when you're short on time.
Eat Out Wisely: It's okay to eat out occasionally, but be mindful of portion sizes and choose healthier options when possible. Avoid deep-fried foods and opt for grilled or steamed options instead.
Eat Slowly: Taking your time to eat can help you to feel full and satisfied, which can help to prevent overeating. Eating slowly also gives your body time to register when you're full, which can be especially important for people with diabetes.
Do Monitor Your Blood Sugar
Monitoring your blood sugar regularly is essential for diabetes management. It helps you understand how your body responds to food, exercise, and medication. Talk to your doctor about how often you should check your blood sugar levels.
Limit Added Sugars: Avoid foods and drinks with added sugars, such as sweetened beverages, desserts, and candies. These can cause blood sugar levels to spike and contribute to weight gain.
Do Stay Hydrated
Staying hydrated is important for diabetes management. It helps regulate blood sugar levels, promotes healthy digestion, and prevents dehydration. Aim for at least 8 glasses of water a day. Staying hydrated is important for everyone, but it's especially important for people with diabetes. Aim for at least 8 cups of water per day, and avoid sugary drinks like soda and fruit juice.
Do Exercise Regularly
Exercise is an important part of managing diabetes. It helps control blood sugar levels, improves insulin sensitivity, and helps with weight management. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise, such as brisk walking, cycling, or swimming, most days of the week.
Do Take Your Medication as Prescribed
Taking your medication as prescribed is crucial for managing diabetes. It helps control blood sugar levels and prevent complications. Make sure you understand how to take your medication and follow your doctor's instructions.
Dont Eat Unhealthy Food & Snacks
Avoid Deep-Fried Foods: Fried foods, such as samosas, pakoras, and bhajiyas, are high in calories and can contribute to weight gain. Choose baked, roasted, grilled, or steamed options instead.
Limit Saturated and Trans Fats: Foods high in saturated and trans fats, such as fried foods, processed meats, and full-fat dairy products, can increase the risk of heart disease. Choose lean protein sources and opt for low-fat or fat-free dairy products instead.
Avoid High-Sodium Foods: Processed snacks and canned soups are often high in sodium, which can contribute to high blood pressure. Choose fresh, whole foods and season with herbs and spices instead of salt.
Don't Drink Alcohol in Excess
Drinking alcohol can cause blood sugar levels to fluctuate and increase the risk of complications associated with diabetes. Limit your alcohol intake to one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men.
Don't Skip Meals
Skipping meals can cause blood sugar levels to fluctuate and make diabetes management more difficult. Make sure to eat regular, balanced meals throughout the day. It can be tempting to skip meals when you're trying to lose weight or control your blood sugar, but this can actually make things worse. Skipping meals can cause blood sugar levels to drop too low, leading to cravings and overeating later on. For tasty and healthy mid-meal cravings, you should try Keeros Supersnacks.
Don't Skip Breakfast: Breakfast is an important meal that can help to fuel your body and kickstart your metabolism. Choose a healthy breakfast that includes protein and fiber to help keep you full and satisfied.
Don't Rely on Low-Fat or diet products
Low-fat or diet products may seem like a healthy choice, but they can often be high in added sugars or other unhealthy ingredients. Choose whole, unprocessed foods whenever possible.
Don't Eat Too Much Fruit
While fruit is a healthy choice, it's important to limit your intake as it can contain natural sugars that can impact blood sugar levels. Aim for 2-3 servings of fruit per day, and choose lower-sugar options like berries and citrus fruits.
Don't Neglect Your Mental Health
Living with diabetes can be challenging and can take a toll on your mental health. Make sure to prioritize self-care activities, such as meditation, yoga, or talking to a therapist. Seek help if you are struggling with anxiety, depression, or other mental health issues.
By following these guidelines, people with diabetes can help to manage their condition and reduce the risk of complications. It's also important to work with a healthcare provider or registered dietitian to develop a personalised meal plan that meets your individual needs and goals.
Q. What are some high-fiber foods that I can include in my diabetes-friendly diet?
A: Some high-fiber foods that you can include in your diabetes-friendly diet are broccoli, berries, quinoa, and oatmeal.
Q. Can I still eat carbohydrates if I have diabetes?
A: Yes, you can still eat carbohydrates if you have diabetes, but it is important to choose low-glycemic index carbohydrates that are broken down slowly in the body.
Q. Can I consume healthy fats if I have diabetes?
A: Yes, consuming healthy fats such as avocado, nuts, and olive oil can help regulate blood sugar levels and promote satiety.
Q. Is it okay to consume sugary foods and beverages in moderation if I have diabetes?
A: It is best to avoid sugary foods and beverages as much as possible, as they can cause spikes in blood sugar levels. If consumed in moderation, it is important to monitor blood sugar levels and portion sizes.
Q. How can I monitor my portion sizes while following a diabetes-friendly diet?
A: It is helpful to use measuring cups and spoons, as well as visual cues such as the size of your palm or fist, to monitor portion sizes. It is also important to eat slowly and mindfully, paying attention to hunger and fullness cues.
In addition to these guidelines, it's important for people with diabetes to be mindful of portion sizes and to spread their meals and snacks evenly throughout the day. It's also a good idea to work with a healthcare provider or registered dietitian to develop a personalized meal plan that takes into account your individual needs and goals.
Overall, following a healthy diet is an important part of managing diabetes and can help to control blood sugar levels, prevent complications, and promote overall health and well-being. Making lifestyle changes like switching to healthy snacks which are low in GI, high in protein & fibre, maintaining physical activity, timely medication, and regular monitoring of blood sugar levels can go a long way ensuring living a healthy life with diabetes.
Author- Simran Sahni