Your diabetes is likely a giant piece of your life that you cannot ignore. No matter what you do or where you go, it’s there. It’s always present, and it is a massive burden to carry. But what if you could turn the tables? What if you could take back control of your life and show diabetes that you will not let it ruin your life? And what if the answer was even more straightforward than you thought?
It’s not too good to be true. In fact, the foods that you eat on a day-to-day basis hold power to make an enormous change in the quality of your life and make your diabetes a secondary actor and not the star of the play.
There isn’t a cure for diabetes, and that includes any dietary programs. However, if you eat certain foods, your body will be in much better shape to handle your diabetes. The key to keep in mind is that your primary goal should be to keep your blood sugars under control. To do this, you need a two-pronged approach.
First, you should use medicine to control the blood sugars and a meter and lancets to measure how they are running. While it is true that these medications might be expensive, you can find many coupons that will help you save on Lantus strips to check your sugar.
Next, you need to adjust your diet to eat the correct foods that will help not only keep your diabetes under control but also to make you overall healthier. Below you will find several foods that can help you keep those blood sugars at bay and reach your health goals.
An excellent source of protein will make you feel full for longer and help you avoid falling for tempting carbs. But, what is an exceptional source of protein?
Some of the best are:
- lean meat;
- chicken or turkey without the skin;
- nuts and peanuts;
- dried beans and certain peas, such as chickpeas and split peas, and
- meat substitutes, such as tofu.
You can also look for dairy products that you find inviting. For example, if you like yogurt, look for a brand that offers low fat and low sugar options.
Be cautious as we often tend to think of high protein as being low carb. This, however, is not always the case. For example, a 6 ounce serving of low-fat yogurt has anywhere from 12-13 grams of carbs. While this might not put you over your carb count for the day, it does have the potential to affect you if you think that you are eating low carb, high protein snack. Looking for an even lower source of dairy protein, try Greek yogurt instead.
Think fat is bad? Think again. Our society has decided that fat is a bad thing and that we should avoid it at all costs. This is not necessarily true. Several sources of fat are very good for you.
For example, the fats found in avocado and salmon are good for you. Try grilling salmon to give the fish a delicious smoky flavor. If you look online, you are likely to find hundreds of recipes for delicious grilled salmon. Keep in mind that even healthy fats when consumed in excess can affect you long term health.
High fiber food is another great food option that helps keep you feeling full. Foods like beans and lentils are great options. That being said, these foods also contain carbohydrates and as such should be consumed in moderate amounts.
Do you like Mexican food? You should consider making homemade salsa using beans. This is a great way to sneak in some veggies and add some serious flavor to your diet.
Another great way to get some protein and high fiber foods is to cook some delicious low-fat ground turkey chili.
What foods should you limit?
Foods and drinks you should limit include:
- fried foods and other foods high in saturated fat and trans fat;
- foods high in sodium;
- sweets like baked goods, candy, and ice cream;
- beverages with added sugars, like juice, regular soda, and energy drinks.
Drink water instead of sweetened beverages and go for a sugar substitute in your coffee or tea.
If you drink alcohol, moderation is again the key. You should not have more than one drink a day if you’re a woman or two drinks if you’re a man. It’s best to eat some food when you drink alcohol to prevent your blood glucose levels dropping too low when you take medicine.
Food has tremendous power over how we feel and how our body functions. While your diabetes is a condition that will likely be with you for life, that doesn’t mean that you can’t lessen its impact on your life. You need to combat it using a mix of medication and healthy eating.
Remember, every expert was a beginner at some point. The hardest part of making these changes is just taking that first step. Once you get going, you will find that your challenges in eating healthy will become less and less of an issue. Before you know it, you will be an expert at eating healthy, and you will find that your diabetes will still be present but not an impossible burden on your life.