Nutrition Basics for Individuals With Diabetes

Learning new dietary choices for those with diabetes.
Living with diabetes can have a huge impact on the foods you eat. If you are used to eating whatever you like, those days are long gone as you need to pay strict attention to the foods you eat. This article will provide you with some nutrition basics if you or a loved one is suffering from diabetes.

Understanding glucose

Everything that you eat and drink is broken down into glucose. Glucose is a sugar that provides your body with the energy you need to function properly. If your glucose levels are low, it is common to experience lightheadness, dizziness, confusion, blurriness, and your body may start to shake. If you do not get your glucose level up quickly, you can pass out and you may need to go to a hospital. Your body works with insulin that is produced by the pancreas to help your body use the glucose for energy. If you don’t have enough insulin being produced in the pancreas, you will need to take injections or medications that can help to provide insulin. Without insulin, your blood glucose level will become high, which can lead to blood cells leaving the body when you urinate. There are several other problems that will originate when the blood sugar is too high so you must seek treatment for it and you need to monitor your blood glucose levels daily to keep it under surveillance. In order to do this, purchase a blood glucose monitor: A blood glucose monitor must be used several times a day to test your blood glucose levels and to make sure it is between 70-120.

What can you eat to reduce your blood glucose?

Since the foods you eat have a direct impact on your diabetes problem, you may be wondering what type of foods you can consume. Some people like to drink nutritional supplements each day. Nutritional shakes help to provide you with the fiber and protein you need which will regulate the glucose levels.

Carbohydrates have the largest impact on your blood glucose levels. You can still eat them; just choose which ones you want to eat wisely. Instead of white bread, opt for whole wheat bread as it contains more fiber and less refined sugars, which can hurt your blood sugar. You need to try and consume fiber and protein with each meal as this is the best way to improve your blood sugar problems. Fiber and protein allow the body to regulate the blood sugar throughout the day as they slow the digestion process, causing glucose to be slowly released into the bloodstream.

Healthy eating habits

You must learn how to develop healthy eating habits if you have diabetes. It can take a month or longer to train the body to adjust to healthier eating so you need to be extremely careful of what you eat during this time. Go through your fridge and cupboards and get rid of all the unhealthy foods like soda, candy bars, and other things that can cause rapid blood sugar spikes. Here are some other tips to follow when you are trying to figure out a healthy diet with diabetes:
  • Always eat 3 meals a day. Never skip meals, especially breakfast because it can cause your symptoms (dizziness, etc.) to get worse. It will throw your blood sugar out of whack and can leave you with multiple problems. Try to have at least 2-3 snacks in between meals to make sure you are getting enough food and food from all of the right food groups.

  •  Include more protein and fiber in your diet

  • Drink at least 64 ounces of water per day
  • Avoid refined sugars and fatty foods

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