People suffering from diabetes should remember that uncontrolled consumption of carbohydrates leads to hyperglycemia – high blood glucose. Hyperglycemia causes new changes in the work of insular apparatus and contributes to progression of diabetes.
Control of food intake is an integral part of a person’s life with diabetes. In various amounts, carbohydrates are found in nearly all foods; therefore, the person with diabetes should take care of himself and know:
- When to eat?
- What to eat?
- How much to eat?
Unlike diets for weight loss, diabetic diet has its own distinctive features. People with diabetes should not starve, since cells of the body often experience energy-hungry. They also should not overeat and always take into account to what extent various foods raise blood sugar level.
The first thing that diabetics have to do during diabetic diet is to learn to count the number of consumed carbohydrates (particularly simple ones). Consumption of reasonable amounts of carbohydrates will help diabetics:
- Feel themselves good from morning till night
- Get rid of extra kilos
- Reduce the risk of cardiovascular and other diseases
Diabetic diet plans differ depending on the type of disease. Diabetic diet is diverse for insulin-dependent diabetics. However, food intake is limited by time intervals.
Mainly, children and young people suffer from insulin-dependent diabetes. Therefore, diet should be nutritious, but it must necessarily take into account daily intake of carbohydrates.
In type 2 diabetes, diet is stricter, while mealtime is freer. During such diet, it is necessary to avoid some products, especially containing cholesterol, fats and sugar.
More often, elderly people with overweight or obesity suffer from type 2 diabetes. Therefore, their diabetic diet should be low-calorie and aimed at weight reduction.
Trained diabetic should take an active part in process of the disease control. In any type of metabolic disease, it is necessary to take food so that to maintain healthy blood glucose level.
To sugar enters the blood as smoothly as possible, it is necessary to:
- make right choice of food products
- increase physical activity at certain time of the day
- Use anti-diabetic drugs if there is a need
The main element of diabetic diet is a reasonable intake of carbohydrates, proteins, fats, minerals and vitamins. Only carbohydrates affect blood sugar level, so foods high in this macro element are contraindicated for diabetics.
Sweets, jam, chocolate, honey, ice cream, bakery products, mustard, alcohol, sugary drinks, bananas, grapes, raisins, bitter, spicy and salty dishes should be excluded from the list of foods for diabetics. Insignificant consumption of sugar is permitted only if it is provided for the treatment.
Children and adults diagnosed with diabetes should consume protein with caution. This important macroelement is a building material for cells, tissues and organs of the body, and herewith contains many calories.
Rich sources of animal protein are white and red meat, fish, cheese, cottage cheese and other dairy products. The most important sources of vegetable proteins are legumes, potatoes, grain and flour products.
Diabetic diet guidelines suggest mastering the skills of replacement of some foods containing proteins by other. For example, 100g of meat can be replaced with 110-120g of fish. In case of replacement of meat by cheese, milk or eggs, it should be taken into account that these products include a relatively large amount of carbohydrates and fats.
Compared to proteins and carbohydrates, fats are the most calorie macroelement. Diet for diabetics does not rule out consumption of fats. However, if diabetes is accompanied with overweight or obesity, fat intake should be limited.
Many foods and ready meals contain hidden fats, and it is necessary to take into account during diabetic diet. It is better to exclude foods high in fat from recipes for diabetics:
- Fatty pork
- Egg powder
- Fat cottage cheese
Excessive consumption of animal fat is fast way to overweight, obesity and atherosclerosis. Therefore, people with diabetes, especially elderly should replace animal fats by vegetable and consume them in moderate amounts.
Nutrition schedule of the person with diabetes may include different number of meals. In general, diabetics are recommended to eat 4 or 5 times a day at the same time. Regular diabetic diet helps:
- Avoid excessive consumption of food
- Gradually provide the body with useful substances
- Prevent development of hypoglycemic states
Compliance with the principles of diabetic diet regulates biological rhythms, preserves health, and contributes to increase and preservation of patient’s working capacity. A good diet for diabetics as far as possible should conform to the person’s food habits.
People who are diagnosed with diabetes should take extra caution when consuming food. Before to eat, the person should make sure that food will help to control blood sugar level.