Adapting your diet is a fundamental part of treating type 2 diabetes. The amount of carbohydrates must be adapted to each individual person based on their individual needs. Let ‘s look at the guidelines that define the type 2 diabetes diet.
Together with drug treatment and regular physical activity, a diet adapted to diabetes is able to regulate blood glucose levels.
The Type 2 Diabetes Diet: High or Low Carb?
The position of nutrition experts regarding the consumption of carbohydrate-rich foods has changed in recent years. In fact, the American Diabetes Association now states that there is no exact amount of carbohydrates recommended for the treatment of type 2 diabetes.
It is logical to think that the quantity of carbon hydrates must be adapted to each individual according to his personal needs, lifestyle, concomitant pathologies, etc.
For example, the amount of foods such as bread, rice, pasta or legumes will have to increase for people who exercise regularly and be reduced for more sedentary individuals.
People undergoing treatment with insulin or oral therapy that can cause hypoglycemia will need to be especially careful; that is, they will have to take similar amounts of carbohydrates in each of the meals of the day.
Within the hydrates of carbon we find two groups to which it is good to pay special attention in the diet for type 2 diabetes:
- Cooking sugar.
- Some sweeteners, such as fructose.
- Fruit and fruit juices.
- Milk and yogurt.
- Sweets and bakery or pastry products.
- Sugary drinks.
They are present in starchy foods such as:
- Bread, baked goods and sweets.
In any case, the food plan to be followed must be prescribed and customized by the doctor on the basis of the specific needs of the individual.
General rules of the diet for type 2 diabetes
A review published in the International Journal of Health Sciences reports that patients with type 2 diabetes must necessarily change their diet to control the disease and improve quality of life.
A proper meal plan helps prevent any complications. Among the aspects to be taken into account are the following:
- Eat a wide variety of healthy foods. This is a crucial aspect to ensure an optimal supply of nutrients. The ideal is to include sources of all nutrient groups in each meal.
- Consume fresh vegetables. Starch-free vegetables include dark green and deep yellow vegetables, such as cucumber, spinach, broccoli, romaine lettuce, cabbage, chard, and bell pepper. Vegetables that contain starch, on the other hand, include corn, broad beans, carrots or yams.
- Eat fruit and vegetables plain. Avoid canned ones, syrups and juices. According to the most recent studies, the consumption of sugary liquids has been associated with an increased risk of metabolic diseases.
- Eat whole grains. Make sure half of the grains you eat each day are whole, as they contain more fiber. The introduction of fiber in the diet prevents glycemic spikes.
- Dairy product. Remember that milk, yogurt and other dairy products naturally contain sugars. Keep this in mind when planning your meals to keep your blood sugar levels within the desired range. Some skimmed dairy products contain added sugar, so be sure to read the label.
Don’t forget the fibers
To keep diabetes under control, you need to consume plenty of fiber; these nutrients stimulate the sense of satiety and delay gastric emptying, exerting positive effects on blood sugar, according to a study published in Diabetologia .
It is important to ensure a regular intake in order to reduce the risk of metabolic diseases.
Diet is a vital part of diabetes management
Adequate nutrition is crucial in the management of type 2 diabetes. Consequently, part of the treatment must be based on diet.
Although there are some general rules that everyone can observe, the ideal is to consult a nutritionist, who will offer a meal plan based on individual needs.