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World Diabetes Day 2019: Best And Worst Drinks For Diabetes

The month of November is observed as National Diabetes Awareness Month and World Diabetes Day is celebrated on 14 November every year. This global awareness campaign aims at increasing diabetes awareness, its complications and how to prevent it.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), about 1.6 million deaths were caused by diabetes in 2016. In 2017, 72 million cases of diabetes were reported in India and the number is expected to double up to 134 million by 2025.

Diabetes is a chronic disease that occurs when the pancreas is unable to produce enough insulin or when the body can't use the insulin it produces. So, to manage diabetes, a healthy diet and low-calorie drinks are advised for diabetics [1] .

The American Diabetes Association suggests low-calorie drinks to prevent a spike in blood sugar levels. In this article, we will focus on the best and worst drinks for diabetes.

Best Drinks For Diabetes

1. Liquorice tea

Liquorice is a herb which is known to have many health benefits including lowering blood sugar levels. A study showed that consuming liquorice extract may have the ability to help reduce blood sugar levels in diabetic people [2] .

2. Plain water

People with diabetes should drink enough water to help the body eliminate excess glucose through urine. A study reveals, drinking plain water in higher amounts lower type 2 diabetes risk [3] . The Institute of Medicine recommends that women should drink 9 cups of water and men should drink 13 cups of water.

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3. Coffee

Researchers found that people who drink two to three cups of coffee per day can lower type 2 diabetes risk [4] . Coffee contains active components like quinic acid, chlorogenic acid, lignan secoisolariciresinol and trigonelline which are said to improve glucose metabolism.

4. Flavoured water

Water infused with slices of citrus fruits, such as lemon and lime, berries, etc. is called flavoured water or fruit-infused water. This aids in lowering blood sugar levels because it has zero calories [5] . A study found that adding aloe vera pulp to water can also benefit people with diabetes because aloe vera possesses antidiabetic properties.

5. Milk

A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that consuming dairy products including milk during adolescence can reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes [6] .

6. Green tea

Research studies have shown that drinking green tea can reduce type 2 diabetes risk due to the polyphenol antioxidants present in it. Diabetic people should drink green tea as it aids in better functioning of the metabolic system [7] .

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Worst Drinks For Diabetes

1. Diet soda

Diet soda contains artificial sweeteners which may have a negative effect on the gut bacteria. This, in turn, may increase insulin resistance, which can either cause or worsen diabetes, according to a study published in the journal Nature [8] .

2. Energy drinks

Drinking energy drinks in large amounts can lead to a large spike in blood sugar levels. It is because these energy drinks are packed full of artificial sweeteners, which can elevate the risk of type 2 diabetes and obesity [9] .

3. Alcoholic drinks

If you have diabetes, you should avoid drinking alcohol in excess. A study published in the journal Diabetic Medicine found that men who drank alcoholic beverages had a higher risk of type 2 diabetes [10] .

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4. Store-bought fruit juices

Store-bought fruit juices contain high levels of sugar or corn syrup. This can cause a spike in blood sugar levels and increase weight. So, consider drinking real fruit juice extracted from fruits as they contain natural sugars that don't cause a spike in blood glucose levels [11] .

To Conclude...

For people with diabetes, selecting the right drink can help manage the disease and lower the risk of complications. Keep it simple when it comes to selecting a drink and if you are craving for little sweetness, try adding fruits to it.

View Article References
  1. [1] Atlas, D. (2015). International diabetes federation.IDF Diabetes Atlas, 7th edn. Brussels, Belgium: International Diabetes Federation.
  2. [2] Shahabinezhad, M., MR, R., KhaksariHadad, M., Sepehri, G. H., Mahmoodi, M., & Karimghasemi, E. (2007). The effect of licorice root extract on blood sugar level in streptozotocin induced diabetic rats.Journal of Rafsanjan University of Medical Sciences,6(4), 237-244.
  3. [3] Carroll, H. A., Davis, M. G., & Papadaki, A. (2015). Higher plain water intake is associated with lower type 2 diabetes risk: A cross-sectional study in humans.Nutrition research,35(10), 865-872.
  4. [4] Van Dam, R. M., Willett, W. C., Manson, J. E., & Hu, F. B. (2006). Coffee, caffeine, and risk of type 2 diabetes: a prospective cohort study in younger and middle-aged US women.Diabetes care,29(2), 398-403.
  5. [5] Dick, W. R., Fletcher, E. A., & Shah, S. A. (2016). Reduction of fasting blood glucose and hemoglobin A1c using oral Aloe vera: A meta-analysis.The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine,22(6), 450-457.
  6. [6] Malik, V. S., Sun, Q., van Dam, R. M., Rimm, E. B., Willett, W. C., Rosner, B., & Hu, F. B. (2011). Adolescent dairy product consumption and risk of type 2 diabetes in middle-aged women–.The American journal of clinical nutrition,94(3), 854-861.
  7. [7] Iso, H., Date, C., Wakai, K., Fukui, M., & Tamakoshi, A. (2006). The relationship between green tea and total caffeine intake and risk for self-reported type 2 diabetes among Japanese adults.Annals of internal medicine,144(8), 554-562.
  8. [8] Suez, J., Korem, T., Zeevi, D., Zilberman-Schapira, G., Thaiss, C. A., Maza, O., ... & Kuperman, Y. (2014). Artificial sweeteners induce glucose intolerance by altering the gut microbiota.Nature,514(7521), 181.
  9. [9] Nowak, D., Gośliński, M., & Nowatkowska, K. (2018). The Effect of Acute Consumption of Energy Drinks on Blood Pressure, Heart Rate and Blood Glucose in the Group of Young Adults.International journal of environmental research and public health,15(3), 544.
  10. [10] Cullmann, M., Hilding, A., & Östenson, C. G. (2012). Alcohol consumption and risk of pre‐diabetes and type 2 diabetes development in a Swedish population.Diabetic Medicine,29(4), 441-452.
  11. [11] Apovian, C. M. (2004). Sugar-sweetened soft drinks, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.Jama,292(8), 978-979.
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