According to the National Healthcare Center and the American Diabetes Association, diabetes is the new epidemic that is seen affecting the world at large. It can occur as a result of excessive tension and stress or pass down on a hereditary basis.
But whatever might be the cause, once diagnosed with diabetes, it is imperative to keep a check on it. This is because it is indeed a tedious job to manage diabetes if one is unaware of the right methodologies.
A wrong move can have fatal consequences as well. Diabetes is therefore like a roller-coaster ride, which goes up and down, depending on your tension level or improper food habits.
Diabetic patients are often in a dilemma as to which food is best for them to consume. The main objective is not to control diabetes but also eat foods which will prevent the occurrence of complications in diabetes or heart ailment.
So, given below are 16 best foods which will help in controlling diabetes and let you enjoy a happy life.
1. Fatty Fish
Anchovies, salmon, herring, mackerel, and sardines are some of the healthiest fatty fish which are beneficial for diabetic patients. Enriched with omega-3 fatty acids like EPA and DHA, these fish also protect the heart condition and reduce the chances of heart disease that can be caused as a result of diabetes. Besides, the Omega-3 fatty acids also help in protecting the cells which line the blood vessels, improving the function of the arteries and reducing inflammation. Studies reveal that people who consume fatty fish on a daily basis are at a lower chance of dying as a result of heart attack. Moreover, fish can induce your metabolic rate and are a rich source of protein as well.
2. Leafy Greens
The health benefits of consuming leafy green vegetables are known to one and all. These are low in calories and are extremely nutritious. Consuming kale, spinach and other leafy green vegetables that contain vital nutrients, minerals, and Vitamin C can help. It helps in reducing fasting blood sugar level for the type 2 diabetic patients or the ones suffering from hypertension. They also have the potential to reduce inflammatory markers and are a rich source of antioxidants like zeaxanthin and lutein. These antioxidants help in protecting your eyes from cataract and macular degeneration, caused as a result of diabetes complication.
One of the most common kitchen ingredient, cinnamon has shown effective results in lowering the blood sugar level and improving the insulin sensitivity. It has antioxidant properties, which can also lower the triglyceride levels in type-2 diabetes and cholesterol. If consumed for a period of 3 months, cinnamon can control the hemoglobin A1c, which determines the level of long-term diabetes. It also aids the type-1 diabetes level, but one must limit its consumption to 1 teaspoon daily.
Eggs are the favourite food of any individual from children to adults. They are a rich source of protein and help to satiate your stomach for a longer span of time. Results show that by consuming eggs on a daily basis, heart disease can be averted. Besides, they help in improving the insulin sensitivity, reduce inflammation and increase the good HDL cholesterol and decrease the bad LDL cholesterol. Enriched with antioxidants like zeaxanthin and lutein, eggs also protect our eyes.
5. Chia Seeds
If you wish to control the blood sugar level, then consuming chia seeds is the best option. This is because they contain a low amount of digestible carbs and are a rich source of fiber that keeps a check on the blood sugar level. The chia seeds reduce the speed at which the food consumed moves through the gut and gets absorbed in the body. Chia seeds help in healthy weight gain and keep you away from hunger for a long time. It also reduces inflammatory markers and hypertension.
Turmeric, a commonly found kitchen spice which savors the taste of the foods, has several medicinal properties as well. Curcumin, an active ingredient in turmeric, helps in lowering the blood sugar, inflammation, and decreases the potential chance of having a heart ailment. It also improves the kidney health which gets worst affected in case of diabetes.
7. Greek Yogurt
In order to control the blood sugar level and reduce the risk of developing heart disease, consuming Greek yogurt can be beneficial due to its probiotics content. This dairy product not only helps in weight loss but improves the body composition of type 2 diabetic people as well. Besides, Greek yogurt is far more beneficial than normal yogurt and contains a higher level of protein that can satiate your hunger pangs for a long span.
Nuts such as hazelnuts, almonds, pecans, Brazil nuts, pistachios. Cashews, macadamia, and walnuts make a delicious snack for your afternoon hunger. These are a rich source of fiber and contain low digestible carbs.
Studies reveal that daily consumption of these nuts can help in controlling the blood sugar level and reduce inflammation, LDL cholesterol level, and insulin level, which can cause obesity.
Broccoli, one of the commonly available vegetables contains three grams of digestible carbs and 27 calories and is a rich source of magnesium and vitamin C. The nutritious value of broccoli helps in lowering the insulin level and prevents the harmful radicals from affecting the cells. It also contains antioxidants like zeaxanthin and lutein, which prevent the occurrence of eye disease.
10. Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
A rich source of oleic acid, extra-virgin olive oil helps in escalating the HDL cholesterol level and triglycerides level for the type 2 diabetes patients. Consumption of this oil has shown an increase in the GLP-1 hormone and reduced the risk of heart disease. Extra-virgin olive oil is also a rich source of polyphenols, an antioxidant which can protect the cells that are linked to the blood vessels, reduce inflammation and hypertension, and reduce the level of LDL cholesterol.
11. Flax Seeds
In order to control the blood sugar level and improve the heart health, consumption of flax seeds is a healthy option. People who are suffering from type 2 diabetes have shown an increase in the hemoglobin A1c level after consuming flax seeds for 12 weeks. The high-viscous fiber helps in improving the gut health, reducing the risk of heart attack and strokes, preventing the occurrence of blood clots, increasing insulin sensitivity, and satiating the hunger pangs for a long span.
12. Apple Cider Vinegar
To improve the insulin sensitivity and lower the fasting blood sugar level, consuming apple cider vinegar is the best option. When consumed with a carbs-enriched meal, apple cider vinegar can reduce nearly 20% of the blood sugar level. Consuming two tablespoons of this vinegar during bedtime can lead to 6% reduction in the blood sugar level. Besides, it gives a feeling of fullness and prevents the occurrence of gastroparesis, a condition occurred due to an empty stomach, especially for type 1 diabetes patients. Thus, in a glass of water, add one tablespoon of vinegar and have it on a daily basis.
Enriched with antioxidant anthocyanins, strawberries are one of the most nutritious fruits that one can eat. This antioxidant helps in reducing the insulin level after the meal and lowers the cholesterol level as well. Besides, it also reduces the risk of a heart ailment and controls the blood sugar level for type 2 diabetes patients. Strawberries also contain vitamin C, which further provides additional inflammatory benefits to improve the heart health.
A herb with immense nutritional benefits, garlic not only enhances the taste of the food but controls the blood sugar level, inflammation, and LDL cholesterol for type 2 diabetes patients as well. Consuming a clove of garlic every day can also help in reducing the blood pressure level.
Squash is a rich source of antioxidants like zeaxanthin and lutein which aid in protecting the eyes from macular degeneration and cataract. Besides, it also aids in controlling the insulin level and obesity. So, consuming both the winter and summer squash is beneficial for the diabetes patients.
16. Shirataki Noodles
Consuming Shirataki noodles can aid in controlling the body weight and work wonders for diabetes patients. The noodles contain a high amount of glucomannan fiber that is extracted from the roots of Konjac. This fiber gives a feeling of fullness and satiates your hunger for a longer span of time, as it lowers the hunger hormone Ghrelin level in the body. Its medicinal benefits render in a lower level of blood sugar and improve the health by eliminating the factors that can trigger the heart problems. For preparation, rinse the noodles thoroughly and cook it on high flame for a few minutes without adding any fat content.
So, these are the few foods which can help in controlling the blood sugar level and protect the other organs which get affected as a result of an increase in the blood sugar level.