Ten foods to enlist in the fight against diabetes
Favorites like pasta, rice, or breads, as well as sweets, can cause potentially dangerous increases in blood sugar and ultimately could shorten one’s life.
Fortunately, there are tasty, nourishing foods that will help a diabetic maintain a healthy diet and control his or her blood sugar.
Fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel, and herring, a loaded with beneficial Omega-3 acids. These acids are beneficial to heart health and will reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, for which diabetics are at increased risk. Fatty fish are also full of protein, which curbs hunger and makes people feel fuller longer.
Broccoli is something of a wonder food for diabetics. It is low calorie and low carb, as a half-cup contains only 27 calories and 3 grams of digestible carbs. It is a great source for magnesium and Vitamin C. Studies also suggest broccoli may help lower insulin levels. As an added bonus, some studies are showing that broccoli may help prevent eye diseases, another important factor for diabetics.
Another wonder vegetable for diabetics is squash. Squash has beneficial antioxidants and contains high levels of lutein and zeaxanthin, which can protect against various eye diseases of concern to diabetics. Some animal studies indicate squash may help reduce insulin. Keep in mind that winter squash, such as pumpkin or butternut, will have more digestible carbs than summer squashes such as zucchini, however, both varieties are beneficial to diabetics.
Eggs are increasingly becoming well-known for their benefits to diabetics. They keep a person feeling full. They also improve insulin sensitivity, decrease inflammation, and increase healthy HDL cholesterol. They are high in protein, help lower blood sugar, and help protect the eyes from diseases.
Leafy green vegetables contain very few digestible carbs, which will increase blood sugar. Plus, leafy vegetables like lettuce, spinach, and kale are rich in nutrients, include eye-protecting antioxidants, and are low in calories.
Craving sweets? Berries can be a huge benefit and fit in with a regular diabetic diet or a low-carb diet such as Atkins or Ketogenic. Blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, and raspberries, along with other berries, are filled with antioxidants, fiber, and of course, vitamins. Plus, they can help satiate that sweet tooth. Just be careful as some varieties have more carbs than others.
Avocados are a popular food. One cup of chopped avocados only has 3 grams of digestible carbs but is a great source of healthy oleic acid, vitamin C, and potassium. While it can be a high-calorie food, it does help control hunger cravings.
A summer favorite, tomatoes, are low in digestible carbs – one cup has about 4 grams – and are great sources of vitamins A, C, and K. They contain lycopene, which is shown to prevent prostate cancer, and are high in potassium.
One cup of raw white mushrooms has about 1 gram of digestible carbs. A great addition to salads, sauces, and other dishes, mushrooms add flavor and can be filling. As an added bonus, they have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that can improve health.
Asparagus contains about 4 grams of digestible carbs per one-cup serving and his a good source of several types of vitamins. A tasty vegetable, some studies have shown asparagus may help prevent certain types of cancers.
All the aforementioned foods are flexible in that they can be prepared in a variety of ways and to suit a variety of tastes. Most importantly, they are low in digestible carbs and will help diabetics control their blood sugar, as well as provide other health benefits.