How to adjust your diet as a diabetic?
It is crucial to adjust your diet whether you have diabetes type I or II in order to have better control over your blood sugar level. Whether you have been newly diagnosed with diabetes or you have had it for years– when, what, and how much to eat is always a major factor to adapt to diabetes.
Short-term consequences of high blood sugar:
Frequent urination and constant urge to drink.
Long-term consequences of high blood sugar:
Results of long-term high blood sugar are far more detrimental and irreversible compared to short-term effects. The excess sugar in the blood can lead to nerve and organ damage including:
- Nerve damage (causing leg, feet, and arm pain).
- Eye damage
- Unable to feel injuries to the foot (which can lead to foot damage)
- Kidney disease
- Heart disease
- High blood pressure
- And others
It is important to keep your blood level at a constant level (not too low – as it can lead to dizziness and possibly unconsciousness and not too high either).
For your diet, consider the following types and portions of food to prevent spikes in your blood sugar:
- Whole fresh fruits compared to fruit juices
- Fresh squeezed fruit juice compared to juices with added syrup or sweeteners
- Citrus fruits such as oranges, tangerine, grapefruit, and lemons.
Consume 3-4 servings per day (space your servings throughout the day).
Servings portion: one fresh whole fruit or 1/2 cup of fruit juice or 1/2 cup of canned fruit.
- Low fat or nonfat milk or yogurt (unsweetened yogurt).
Consume 2-3 servings per day.
Servings: 1 cup of milk or 1 cup of yogurt.
Grain, beans, and starch
- Eat beans as a great source of fiber and proteins
- Choose whole-grain and whole-wheat bread and flour for cooking
- Choose unsalted pretzels and crackers compared to potato chips
Consume up to 6 servings per day.
Servings: 1 slice of toast, 1/2 of pita bread, 1/2 small bagel, 1/3 cup of rice, 1 small potato, or 1/2 cup of beans or corn.
- Eat fresh vegetables and unprocessed canned vegetables.
- Eat dark green vegetables.
Consume 3-5 serving per day
Servings: 1/2 cup cooked vegetables, 1/2 cup of vegetables juice, and 1 cup of raw vegetables.
Poultry and Fish
- Trim all visible fat and skin from poultry and fish.
- Bake, roast, broil, grill, or boil instead of frying or adding fat.
- Eat more fish than poultry.
Consume 2-3 serving per day
Servings: 2 to 3 oz cooked lean meat, poultry, or fish, 1/2 cup of tuna, 1 egg, or 4 oz of tofu.
**Diabetic patients should limit their fat, sweets, and alcohol intake**
Blood sugar should be checked regularly through out the day to determine when does it spike the most and adjust their diet (along with the medications) accordingly.
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