Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Diet for Diabetes

Being a diabetic your diet is very important. It varies slightly depending in regards to the type of diabetes, body weight and style, personal needs, other diseases, age, sex and the physical activity of the said person. One must try to obtain and maintain an ideal body weight to help keep their diabetes in check.

For those who require the use of insulin or an oral hypoglycemic agent will usually be placed on a measured type diet. This diet is where everything is properly portioned out. For those not in this group and are not marked as obese usually go on an unmeasured diet.

The easiest way for one to check to see if they are taking in the right foods is to check to see where it lies on the GI or Glycemic Index. It is a measure as to how a certain food may quickly spike your blood sugar. Diabetics should stick to the low to mid range on the GI.
Within each diet for diabetes one must pay close attention to a diabetic’s nutritional need as these may change depending upon their lifestyle, age, pregnancy, or growth. The nutritional content must be good and able to be adjusted due to any change in ones metabolic rate and needs. These needs are proteins, carbohydrates and fats.

Protein- Protein is on the low end of this index and should account for 20 to 25% of a diet for diabetes. Even though it is readily available, some forms of protein take longer to prepare. Whey protein powder may be used as a substitute.

Carbohydrates- Keeping within a range of 40 to 60 % of the daily intake of a diet for diabetes falls to carbohydrates. The lower your blood sugar levels the lower your carbohydrate intake can be. Carbohydrates are essential for the management of blood sugar levels in a diabetic.

Fats- With taking in too many fats in ones diet can override the benefits of the higher carbohydrate diet. When monitoring your fat intake, try to stick to monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats as they are healthier than saturated and trans-fats and lower the chances of canceling out the benefits of a higher carbohydrate diet.

The easiest way to check all of these values is to check the labels on to food you buy. When you are eating out ask for the nutritional information on the food they serve. Other food such as produce and meat products can be found on various online searches.

There are some foods that a diabetic can intake without the worry of counting. In general, these foods are foods with less than 20 calories per serving and less than 5 grams of garbs. If it exceeds this criterion you should take account for it into your meal plan.

Sugar was once thought to be completely excluded from a diet for diabetes. However, more recent research has shown that it can be included as long as it is consistent to the level of carbohydrates in the meal. Foods lower in sugar are still better than but doesn’t mean you can eat extra servings of carbohydrates either.

All carbohydrates taken into the body is converted into glucose. Eating too much at one serving or too close to another can cause a spike in your blood sugar. Best choice is moderation throughout the day and eaten with nutritional foods at the same time containing proteins, vitamins or minerals.

1 comment:

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