Overview of nutrition therapy for diabetes
A healthful eating pattern, regular physical activity, and often pharmacotherapy are key components of diabetes management. For many individuals with diabetes, the most challenging part of the treatment plan is determining what to eat. It is the position of the American Diabetes Association (ADA) that there is not a “one-size-fits-all” eating pattern for individuals with diabetes. The ADA also recognizes the integral role of nutrition therapy in overall diabetes management and has historically recommended that each person with diabetes be actively engaged in self-management, education, and treatment planning with his or her health care provider, which includes the collaborative development of an individualized eating plan. Therefore, it is important that all members of the health care team be knowledgeable about diabetes nutrition therapy and support its implementation.
Eating best and being active most days of the week can help:
- Keep your blood ranges, blood pressure, and cholesterol within your limited range.
- Lose weight or stay healthy.
- Prevent or delay complications of diabetes.
- You feel better and have more energy.
What foods and drinks should you avoid with diabetes?
- Foods were high in saturated fat and trans fat.
- Foods were high in salt, also known as sodium.
- Sweets like candy, and ice cream.
- Drinks like juices, regular sodas, and regular sports or energy drinks are high in sugar.
- Drink water instead of sugary drinks. Avoid sugar with coffee or tea.
If you drink alcohol, you should limit your alcohol content to more than one drink a day for a woman or two drinks a day for a man. If you use insulin or diabetes medications that increase the amount of insulin your body makes, alcohol can lower your blood glucose level.
Why should you develop a healthy eating plan?
If you have diabetes or prediabetes, your doctor may recommend that you should take a dietitian help to develop a healthy eating plan. This plan can help you control your blood sugar (glucose), maintain your weight, and control risk factors for heart disease, such as high blood pressure and high blood fats.
When you eat extra calories and fat, your body creates an unwanted spike in blood glucose. If your blood glucose is not controlled, it can lead to serious problems such as high blood glucose (hyperglycemia), which can lead to chronic problems such as damage to the nerves, kidneys, and heart.
For most people with type 2 diabetes to regulate blood glucose. If you want to lose weight, a diabetes diet can provide a well-organized and nutritious way to reach your goal safely.
Specific macronutrient considerations
Carbohydrate intake has a direct impact on postprandial glucose levels in patients with diabetes and is the main macronutrient of concern in glycemic management. Ideally, patients should choose nutritious, dense, fiber-rich carbohydrates such as vegetables, fruits, legumes, and whole-grain bread and whole grains throughout the day. Consuming sugar versus starch with the same caloric value can have similar effects on blood glucose. However, health care providers should be advised to cut down on excess sugar in nutrient-dense food choices. Nutrition therapy recommendations suggest avoiding sugary drinks to gain weight and reduce the severity of other cardiometabolic risk factors.
Since fiber is not absorbed, it is also suggested to eliminate grams of fiber from whole grams of carbohydrates in a diet. However, the glucose management guidelines do not support this practice. There is not enough evidence to support a certain amount or percentage of calories from carbohydrates in patients with diabetes. For patients, from 45 to 60 grams of carbohydrates per meal is recommended. For people, from 3 to 4 grams of carbohydrate per meal is recommended.
The protein increases the insulin response without increasing plasma glucose concentrations. There is no ideal amount of protein intake for proper glycemic control, so it must be tailored. Proteins are taken with carbohydrates throughout the day to enhance the insulin response, resulting in a decrease in the postprandial glucose response. However, since protein affects the insulin response, protein should not be ingested with carbohydrates during a hypoglycemic episode. According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, patients should always choose lean protein.
What are the results of the diabetes diet?
Embracing your healthy-eating plan is the best way to keep your blood glucose level under control and prevent diabetes complications. And if you need to lose weight, you can tailor it to your specific goals.
Aside from managing your diabetes, and this diet offers other benefits, too. Because a diabetes diet recommends generous amounts of fruits, vegetables, and fiber, following it is likely to reduce your risk of cardiovascular diseases and certain types of cancer. And consuming low-fat dairy products can reduce your risk of low bone mass in the future.