When you’ve got Diabetes, your food choices matter a lot. Some are better than others and some are recommended by your doctors because of its benefits. Here are some of the top foods
Studies have shown that eating a diet rich in whole grains and high-fiber foods may reduce the risk of diabetes by between 35 and 42 percent. An excellent source of both is heart-healthy oatmeal: It’s packed with soluble fiber, which slows the absorption of glucose from food in the stomach — keeping blood-sugar levels under control. Top oatmeal with 1 to 2 tablespoons of chopped pecans, almonds, or walnuts to add protein and healthy fat, which stabilize blood sugars further. Plus, the nuts add great crunch and flavor to your morning meal.
If you’re looking for foods that raise blood-sugar levels slowly and gently like rolling waves, choose high-quality carbohydrates instead of low-quality carbs like refined grains and sugary foods. Whenever possible, you’ll want to couple these carbs with protein and/or healthy fat. Beans (including black, white, navy, lima, pinto, garbanzo, soy, and kidney) are a winning combination of high-quality carbohydrates, lean protein, and soluble fiber that helps stabilize your body’s blood-sugar levels and keeps hunger in check. Beans are also inexpensive, versatile, and virtually fat-free.
This crunchy fruit also appears to offer protection against diabetes. The Harvard School of Public Health examined the diets of 200,000 people and found that those who reported eating five or more apples a week had a 23 percent lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes compared with subjects who did not eat any apples. explained that not all antioxidants are created equal, and that a particular type of antioxidant in apples had a profound effect on lowering LDLs, a contributor to heart disease. More good news: A medium-size apple contains 3 grams of fiber, which includes both soluble and insoluble fiber. How ’bout them apples?
It’s especially high in an antioxidant called glutathione, which plays a key role in easing the effects of aging and many diseases, including diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.
Another outstanding source of lean protein is fresh fish. Choose an environmentally friendly variety like catfish, cod, or tilapia; all are mild-flavored, white-fleshed fish that can be healthfully prepared by baking, grilling, or roasting. Pair fish with the high-quality carbs found in vegetables, lentils, or beans for another balanced meal combination that will keep your blood sugar from rising
Avocados are known for their heart-healthy monounsaturated fat content. When substituting these fats for saturated fat, they can improve cholesterol levels, decreasing your risk of heart disease, according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
Fat-free yogurt naturally contains both high-quality carbohydrates and protein, making it an excellent food for slowing or preventing an unhealthy rise in blood sugar. Studies also show that a diet high in calcium from yogurt and other calcium-rich foods is associated with a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes. Be sure to stick to low-fat or nonfat brands; 0% Greek yogurt is my top pick because it has twice as much protein as regular nonfat yogurt.
Unsalted almonds provide a healthy, low-carb mix of monounsaturated fats plus magnesium, which is believed to be instrumental in carbohydrate metabolism. A large study out of Harvard University found that high daily magnesium intake reduced the risk of developing diabetes by 33 percent. Therefore, including more magnesium-rich foods like almonds, pumpkin seeds, spinach, and Swiss chard in your diet is a smart move.
Cooked or raw, carrots are a healthy addition to any meal plan. While cooked carrots have the rich texture of starchy vegetables, such as potatoes, they are classified as nonstarchy veggies because they don’t contain a lot of carbohydrate. Carrots are noted for their high vitamin A, made from the antioxidant beta-carotene in carrots. This vitamin is necessary for good vision and immune function, and it may help prevent the development of some cancers, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Omega-3s from food help reduce your risk of heart disease, which is important for those with type 2 diabetes, whose risk of cardiovascular disease is already elevated. (Over time, high blood glucose levels can lead to increased deposits of fatty materials in blood vessels, which contributes to clogging of arteries.) Wild salmon or sardines are not only rich in omega 3s but also contain a healthy-fat-and-protein combination that slows the body’s absorption of carbohydrates, keeping blood sugars on an even keel.
13. Flax Seeds
It contains alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which can be converted into omega-3 fatty acids, offering similar benefits of those found in fish. Flaxseed is a good source of lignans, antioxidants that have been shown to help prevent heart disease and cancer, according to the Cleveland Clinic.
14. Egg Whites
Rich in high-quality lean protein and low in carbs, egg whites are another healthy choice for controlling or preventing type 2 diabetes. One large egg white contains about 16 calories and 4 g of high-quality, filling protein, making egg whites a perfect food for blood sugar control, not to mention weight-loss or maintenance.
Some evidence indicates consuming garlic can slightly lower blood cholesterol levels for short-term use, but other studies conclude it has no effect. Evidence suggests garlic may slightly lower blood pressure, especially in people who have high blood pressure.
kale is one of those green leafy veggies associated with a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes. In one meta-analysis of several studies, people who ate the most green leafy vegetables were 14 percent less likely to develop diabetes than those consuming the least amounts.
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