How should a diabetic person eat?

To be clear, there is not one “official” diabetes diet. Instead, we are looking at a series of guidelines set by the American Diabetes Association to help diabetics get control of their blood sugar, whether or not they take insulin. As expected, this diet also induces weight loss at the same time for diabetics who are overweight.
Before starting with any diet consult your physician. We can’t emphasize this enough! He or she is a starting player on your diabetes management team, right alongside you. Your particular dietary requirements will depend on many factors:

  • Your type of diabetes
  • Risk factors present (obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, cholesterol
  • Do you need insulin?
  • Are you using medication, or just diet and exercise?
  • Do you have a sedentary lifestyle or active one?

Let’s begin with an average meal. The plate can be divided into three areas: protein, fats, and carbohydrates.
Carbohydrates are what supply the sugars that the body will use as fuel after the food is broken down.
At least 55-60 percent of your meal will be carbohydrates. And, these are not just any carbohydrates. You are encouraged to eat foods that are high in fiber and low in calories. Think vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and beans. Be sure that your food is definitely “whole grain” and not just processed white flour dressed up to look like a beneficial whole grain.
Fats are a necessary element inside the body. The most beneficial fats are those that are poly- and mono-unsaturated. To obtain these fats in your diet, try olive oil, canola oil, vegetable oil, and peanut oil. Omega-3 fatty acids are used by the body for heart health and immunity. Fish is a major source especially cold water fish. Aim for about 30% of your meal.
Protein is the building block of the body. All of the cells need access to protein for one reason or another. Try lean meat, fish, and dried beans, peas, and lentils. Protein, at most, needs to make up about 20 percent of your meal.
Meals should be coordinated with insulin injections and timing of medications to get the most use of them. There are also snacks you can eat before bed or when you awake to keep blood sugar within normal levels. Exercise, which can lower your blood sugar, also has to be factored into the equation of eating and insulin. For the Type 2 diabetic, losing weight can bring you one step closer to possibly stopping any sort of diabetes medication for good.
If you are diabetic and need to control your blood sugar, a special diet is in order for you. There is not one single diet that qualifies as a “diabetic diet,” but the above guidelines will help you know in which direction you need to go. Your doctor and nutritionist will help you develop a plan that works for you.
If you’re having trouble paying for your diabetes medication, MedSaverCard might be able to help. MedSaverCard works by pooling the buying power of thousands of uninsured patients, netting the cardholders up to 80% off the pharmacy’s cash price. Learn more about the program here.
The information in this article is not a substitue for a licensed physician. Please consult a doctor regarding your condition.

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