Diabetes is a disease that is becoming more prevalent worldwide. People with diabetes have to pay attention to many factors, and one of the most important is of course the diet.
Globally, it is estimated that every eleventh person suffers from diabetes.
It is additionally worrying that such an enormous number is in gradual, slight growth.
The number of diabetics is increasing every year and it can be said that diabetes is one of the most serious diseases today.
There are a number of factors that contribute to the development of diabetes, including genetics, but of course, we can not exclude our lifestyle as a factor.
Nevertheless, there are a number of foods that people with diabetes can consume without any worries, and there are some that should be avoided.
With proper nutrition, you can ensure a constant and stable level of sugar, and yet it is varied and healthy.
It is important to eliminate or reduce the intake of unwanted foods, and which we are actually talking about, we will talk about below.
What type of food is desirable for people with diabetes?
While there are concerns and misconceptions that certain foods are completely forbidden for people with diabetes, this is not true.
It is true that they simply need to be careful about the amount and frequency of their intake of these foods.
The goal is to eat a variety of healthy foods from all food groups, in appropriate quantities.
It is recommended to eat:
- Vegetables – starchy (potatoes, corn, peas, etc.) and starchy (broccoli, carrots, green leafy vegetables, peppers, tomatoes, etc.)
- Fruits (apple, forest fruit, plums, kiwi, lemon, cherries, etc.)
- Whole grains and products obtained from whole grain flour (oats, wheat, quinoa, barley, etc.)
- Protein sources (meat, eggs, fish, nuts, etc.)
- Milk and dairy products (preferably low fat)
- Sources of healthy fats (fish, nuts, seeds, etc.)
What types of foods are not recommended for people with diabetes and prediabetes?
As we have said, no type of food must be completely eliminated from the diet.
But of course, there are certain foods that are problematic and their intake should be extremely moderate or kept to a minimum.
1. Drinks with added sugars are the worst choice for diabetics
This type of drink is by far the worst drink choice for people with diabetes.
They are extremely rich in added sugars and can really and quickly raise blood sugar.
Some of these drinks also contain added fructose – a sugar that is linked to insulin resistance and is problematic in people with diabetes.
These drinks are also harmful to people without diabetes because such a huge amount of sugar leads to a sudden secretion and production of insulin in order to control blood sugar levels.
Over time, this sudden secretion can lead to decreased insulin sensitivity and a prediabetic condition.
2. Trans fats are unhealthy foods
Trans fats are an extremely unhealthy form of fat and are not recommended for anyone, especially people with diabetes.
In the food industry, they are usually artificially created by changing unsaturated fats to a more stable form – trans fats.
They are found in foods such as margarine, peanut butter, spreads, creams, and are often found in crackers, cakes, muffins, and other commercial products.
This type of fat is responsible for raising the so-called bad cholesterol, increasing inflammatory processes in the body, the emergence of insulin resistance, reducing good cholesterol, and so on.
This effect of trans fats is extremely undesirable and harmful for people with diabetes, so they are best avoided.
3. Dried fruits are not recommended for diabetics
Dried fruits are an excellent source of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants.
But the drying process itself leads to weight loss (lost as water), while the sugar content remains the same.
This means that the sugar is somehow concentrated, so in 100g of fresh grapes and 100g of raisins have drastically different sugar content.
Therefore, dried fruit should not be completely excluded from the diet, but its use should be in smaller quantities.
Also, try to use dried fruits with no added sugars.
Most often tropical fruits (pineapple, papaya, etc.) contain added white refined sugar.
4. “Muesli” for breakfast for diabetics
Whole grains are a great choice for breakfast because they are a great mix of complex carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
They do not lead to a sudden rise in blood glucose and a sudden secretion of insulin.
In contrast, commercial breakfast muesli, which comes in many forms, colors, and flavors, often contains added sugars in large quantities.
Such muesli is often found as a mix of dried fruits, nuts, and cereals.
Such a composition is desirable, but the amount of added sugars is excessive and thus reduces the health benefit.
If you want a healthy option for a muesli breakfast, prepare oatmeal.
Oatmeal (whole or ground oats, not instant oats) which you will combine with dried fruits (apricots, grapes, cranberries, etc.) and some type of nuts (hazelnuts, almonds, walnuts, etc.).
5. White bread, white rice, and white flour pasta
White bread is one of the most commonly used foods, but unfortunately, it can be a problem food for people with diabetes.
Several studies show that this type of bread and other white flour pastries contribute to a significant rise in blood sugar in people with diabetes.
In addition to white bread and pasta, refined flour, as well as white rice have been shown to be unsuitable for diabetics.
The problem is thought to be due to the refining process of the grain into white flour.
Namely, this procedure removes all parts of the grain, except the endosperm (the part rich in starch).
In this way, most of the minerals, fiber, vitamins are lost but also change the glycemic index and the way bread will act on blood sugar.
In addition, the fiber present in whole-grain flour helps to stabilize blood glucose levels.
They also contribute to satiety and improved digestion and can be helpful in regulating body weight and controlling blood cholesterol levels.
All this indicates that the replacement of white flour with wholemeal, as well as the replacement of white rice and pasta with wholemeal, can contribute to better health.
It can also improve blood glucose regulation.
In addition to all these foods, you should limit or avoid consuming:
- Fruit yogurts
- Chocolate milk
- Fruit (100%) juices
- French fries
- Whole milk products
- Muesli tiles