Diabetes is among the chronic diseases, in which blood glucose level augment, the insulin role is to help the sugar pass from the blood into cells and then produces energy. There are two diabetes types; Type 1; is where the diabetics’ body can’t produce insulin, whereas type 2, the body cells are incapable of using the insulin produced by the body.
Gestational diabetes is one of the important diabetes types because it concerns pregnancy, and it is about high blood glucose, detected during the second trimester of pregnancy. According to the American Diabetes Association, millions of women experience gestational diabetes after the first term of pregnancy. Gestational diabetes doesn't mean that a woman was affected by diabetes before pregnancy, nor will she be after giving birth; the good news about is that it will go away by the end of pregnancy. Gestational diabetes needs serious control during pregnancy until giving birth.
1. Diet for different diabetes types
The average blood sugar level during the day is between 70 and 130 milligrams/deciliter, and it must not exceed 180 milligrams/deciliter after two hours from eating. Therefore, it’s better to have a good diet for both diabetes types:
1.1. A diet for diabetes type 1
It should be recognized that there isn't a common diet for type 1 diabetes; however, there are some points to take into consideration concerning the diet to be followed, such as the duration of eating, how the body will respond to some food and the daily control of carbohydrates, proteins, fats, and others.
Carbohydrates are transformed into sugar in the digestive system to be absorbed in the bloodstream, which leads to the raise of glucose, and we should consider that there are three types of carbohydrates, namely; starches, sugar, and fibers. The quantity of carbohydrates that a diabetic of type 1 needs is according to insulin needs and according to blood glucose manages. But it is preferable to start taking about 15 grams of different carbohydrates among the meals, and then test the sugar rate in the blood; if it is always low, it means you can add about 15 grams.
Some of the best choices of carbohydrates found in;
- Whole grains, such as brown rice.
- Sweet potato.
- ¼ cup of fruits juice
- One fresh fruit of about 113 grams
- From 4 to 6 pieces of biscuits
- Two big tablespoons of raisin
- One big tablespoon of honey
The other bad choices of carbohydrates are:
- Processed grains, such as white rice
- Cereals with few grains and lots of sugar
- White bread
- French fries
You can consume fresh fruits, because it is a natural source of sugar, and you should know the number of carbs in one piece of fruit to manage the sugar levels and insulin in the blood.
Some of the best fruits to choose are:
- Fresh fruit
- ½ cup of canned fruits
- A small piece of fresh fruit
- 85 grams of Grapes
- A cup of berries or melon
The worst choices are:
- Canned fruit with heavy sugar syrup
- Regular jam, jelly, and preserves (unless you have a very small portion)
- Sweetened apple sauce
- Fruit punch, fruit drinks, fruit juice drink
Vegetables divided according to the content of starches into; starched vegetables and non-starched vegetables. The former one contains a big number of carbs compared to other vegetables, which need regular consumption. Whereas the non-starched vegetables are rich in vitamins and fibers which you can eat three cups of them as they contain about 15 grams of carbohydrates or less without affecting the sugar level if no salt added.
- Green vegetables, such as spinach, lettuce.
- Low sodium or unsalted canned vegetables
- ½ cup of corn
- 90 grams of roasted potato
- ½ of sweet potato
- ½ of green pea
It is better to eat an amount of 50 % of whole grains, such as; white rice than other grains.
Proteins are among the nutritive elements that do not raise the sugar level in the blood, but any excess of it will affect the body; indeed, it will complicate diabetes. Proteins are essential for body health as they give healthy muscles and wound healing. We have a lot of choices of proteins, including beef, chicken, fish, eggs, cheese, and tofu.
Fats have a big role in improving brain and heart functions. Some of the sources of the fat are: Avocado and nuts, despite that fats, do not affect the sugar level in the blood directly, but you must reduce eating industrial beef that contains a big number of fats and sodium.
1.2. Diet for diabetes type 2
A good and healthy selection of added items to meals and its consumption in regular quantity, in addition to sports and medicines consumptions regularly, is one of the important steps to reduce diabetes complications of type 2.
Carbohydrates control containing in each meal help to manage diabetes, knowing that a piece of these products contains about 15 grams of carbohydrates; namely:
- 1/3 cup of rice or pasta
- ½ cup of potato
- ½ cup of pea or corn
- One small apple or orange
- 133 grams of banana
- Two big tablespoons of raisin
- a ½ cup of canned unsweetened fruit
- ½ cup of juice
- One cup of non-fat milk or 1% of fats
- 177 milliliter of no or low-fat milk
- One cup of soya milk
Non-starched vegetables contain small amounts of carbohydrates and calories. Still, they provide a significant amount of vitamins, minerals, and fibers, such as green leaves vegetables, cucumbers, tomato, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, and mushrooms.
Whole grains are an excellent choice for diabetics of type 2.
Beef is a source of proteins, but some of them contain a big number of fats that don't affect the sugar amount in the blood. Instead, they increase some heart disease complications and blood vessels; therefore, it's preferable to choose a low-fat beef such as fish and chicken.
It's better to choose monounsaturated fat that contained in some kinds of foods, such as olive oil. And to choose polyunsaturated fat, such as; vegetal oils and walnuts, as it is advisable to consume fats regularly to avoid calories.
Fruits, in addition to vegetables, help to manage the body weight and to reduce the risk of brain stroke and heart diseases. Meanwhile, fruits may cause a high level of sugar in the blood, mainly dry fruits; thus, it is preferable to reduce it in addition to some of the canned fruits and jelly, and finally, it is better to eat a whole piece of fruit than drink its juice.
2. Meals planning
There are different ways for good meal planning that suits diabetes types, but the best and easy one is to divide the nutritive kinds of a meal into two categories:
The first category contains non-starched vegetables, such as spinach, carrots, lettuce, beans, broccoli, cabbage, tomato, cucumber, onion, pepper, and turnip.
The second category divided into two types:
- A quarter of starched carbohydrates, such as whole grains, beans, and cooked grains, oat flour, in addition to potato, peas, corn, and sweet potato as well as non-fat popcorn and biscuits
- A quarter is containing a protein source such as meat and substitutes like un-skinned chicken, fish, prawns, eggs, and low-fat cheese.
It is possible to add some fruits, healthy fats, and low dairy products as needed, like:
- A no or a low-fat cup of milk, or 180 grams of yogurt
- One portion of fruit or a half cup of fruit salad
- A little amount of some healthy fats such as nuts.
3. Important tips
It's better to follow some tips to keep the sugar levels in the blood for diabetics’ people; namely
- Eating a small or light meal during a day will help to arrange the sugar levels in the blood, and which will reduce the possibility of peaking or spiking.
- Sport and body activities help to reduce the sugar amount in the blood, as the sugar amount in blood should be under control after an intense exercise.
- The blood sugar levels should be controlled, to avoid a diabetes complication of type 1, and consulting a doctor or a dietitian to help in planning a good diet according to insulin needs to control the blood level.
- It’s better to keep the same time as eating every day.
- Pay attention to nutrition facts label on food products
- You can replace salt by lemon juice, to enhance the vegetables, fish and pasta flavor,
- Use of healthy oil instead of butter while cooking
- Use of balance cups to adjust weights and ingredients
- Avoid sweets and sweetened drinks, such as soda
- Increase the consumed fibers into 25-38 per day.
- Decrease the sodium amount used in daily food to less than 2300 milligrams.
4. Diabetes symptoms
Some of the people of both diabetes types can feel some symptoms, such as:
- Blurred vision
- Frequent urination
- Extreme fatigue
- Feeling thirsty and hungry
- The fault of wound healing
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Originally published on Live Positively.