Prediabetes Diet Basics
There are ways to reverse prediabetes naturally before it advances to full Type 2 Diabetes (T2D). One of the key methods is through a properly balanced diet, with consideration being given to what and how much is being eaten. When working out your prediabetes diet you need to consider the glycemic index (GI) of the foods you are eating, the amount you eat, the combinations you eat and the nutrition provided. Your body doesn't just need fuel, it needs the correct fuel.
Glycemic Index (GI)
The glycemic index (GI) is a scale from 1-100 that ranks carbohydrate-rich foods by how much they raise blood glucose levels. Some carbohydrate foods are digested quickly, and others more slowly. The ranking is based on how the carbohydrate food when digested compares to the standard food, which is either white bread or pure glucose.
White bread and glucose have been given the highest possible rating of 100 on the glycemic index because they raise blood glucose levels higher and quicker than most other foods.
People at risk of developing diabetes or with diabetes may find that choosing lower GI foods may be helpful. Here are some benefits of eating foods that are lower on the GI scale:
- They raise blood glucose slowly, which can improve your blood glucose levels after a meal.
- They are often higher in fiber. High fiber foods help you feel full and are important if you’re trying to lose or maintain your weight.
- They may improve blood cholesterol levels, which is important for preventing heart disease.
Research has shown that eating mostly high GI foods increases the risk of type 2 diabetes. To help prevent diabetes, try to make a point of choosing lower GI foods more often. That high GI food may taste great, but it could be killing you on layaway.
Glycemic Index Food Guide
Pasta has carbs right? Carbs create sugar. therefore pasta MUST be bad for me, right? No, it isn't as simple as that. [Pasta is actually pretty good on the GI scale] The way that the molecules are constructed in a carb, affects how it converts to sugar. same with the amount of fat and fiber in the food. So dieticians and scientists have worked together to make it a bit easier for you. The American Diabetes Association has a great article on understanding carbohydrates https://bit.ly/ZQQoff. Diabetes Canada has a very helpful Glycemic Index Food Guide https://bit.ly/2NWZK7k
The Diabetes Plate Method For Meal Planning
Is your head spinning after reading all of those GI values yet? Worried that you need a calculator at hand for every bite? No need to worry.
The Diabetes Plate Method is a simple guide for planning meals. The result is tasty meals that are good for you, boost energy, and keep you feeling satisfied. Using the "formula" encourages you to eat more healthy food and fewer unhealthy foods.
The Diabetes Plate Method helps you control portion sizes of starchy, carbohydrate-containing foods that have the most impact on blood glucose levels. It focuses on eating more nonstarchy vegetables, which are low in carbohydrate and calories and high in vitamins, minerals, and fiber. It also helps you get enough lean protein.
You can use the plate method for your specific health and nutrition goals including weight loss or maintenance, blood glucose management, and simple good nutrition. The plate method is also a useful meal planning tool for people with prediabetes and for those who simply want a healthy approach to eating.
Start today by filling half your plate with nonstarchy vegetables. Then fill one-quarter of your plate with whole grain or starchy foods and the remaining quarter with lean protein foods. The Diabetes Plate Method includes fruit and low-fat dairy on the side, as your meal plan and calorie needs allow. Healthful fats, which can be used in any section of the plate for food preparation or as condiments, are also key ingredients.
So if you refer to the various guides on the Glycemic Index values of foods, use the Diabetes Plate Method and watch the volume of foods you are eating, and support this with proper nutritional supplements, it is the basis of a healthy prediabetes diet.
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