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9 Superfoods for Diabetics!

Ms. Ayesha Nasir

3 min read

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If you are diabetic, or has a genetic predisposition to it, your doctor will probably enlist the help of a dietitian to develop a healthy diet plan for you. The plan will help you keep your blood sugar in check, maintain a healthy weight, and manage risk factors for heart diseases, like high blood fats and high blood pressure. Foods included in a diabetes diet are basically nutrients rich and low in calories and fat. This will help you control your blood sugar. Here are some super foods for diabetics that can help you burn fat, reduce blood sugar, and lower inflammation:

1- Broccoli

This is an anti-diabetes vegetable. Broccoli contains sulforaphane, a compound that is anti-inflammatory. It keeps blood sugar in check and also protects blood vessels from the potential consequences of diabetes such as cardiovascular damage. This is crucial as heart diseases are a major cause of the death of diabetic patients. Moreover, sulforaphane also boosts the natural detox mechanism of the body.

2- Cinnamon

A lot of studies have shown that cinnamon can help reduce blood sugar. One study observed that people suffering from type 2 diabetes lowered fasting blood sugar by 30 % by consuming one or more grams of cinnamon every day, compared to the volunteers who did not. Moreover, their triglycerides, LDL cholesterol, and total cholesterol also reduced by more than 25%. Cinnamon contains the mineral chromium that boosts the effect of insulin. Cinnamon also contains polyphenols as well as antioxidants that fight free radicals. Cinnamon is also anti-inflammatory.

3- Beans

Beans are high in fiber and also contain a lot of vitamins and minerals like potassium and magnesium. Even though beans contain carbs, a half cup of bean contains as much protein as an ounce of meat but without the saturated fat. You also have a lot of options such as navy, kidney, pinto, and black beans. You can even buy canned beans but you must drain and rinse them in order to get rid of the added salt.

4- Leafy Greens

Leafy green vegetables such as spinach, kale, and collards are full of vitamin and minerals like vitamins A, C, E, and K, calcium, iron, and potassium. Leafy green vegetables are low in calories as well as carbohydrates. You can add leafy greens to soups, salads, and soups. You can also make green smoothies.

5- Fish

Fish contains omega-3 fatty acids that can help reduce the risk of inflammation and heart diseases. Salmon is particularly high in these. Sardines, mackerel, herring, albacore tuna, and trout are also high in omega-3. Instead of breading and boiling fish, bake, broil, or grill to keep it low carb and low calories.

6- Oats

Oatmeals can decrease the risk developing type 2 diabetes. It has a lot of magnesium, which helps your body consume glucose and secrete insulin properly. Oatmeals also contain fiber, antioxidants, and nutrients that help to keep blood sugar stable.

6- Unsweetened Greek yogurt

Studies have shown a 14 percent lower risk of type 2 diabetes with daily yogurt consumption.

With a low GI score, unsweetened Greek yogurt is full of healthy probiotics, calcium, and protein. It’s also a better option that regular yogurt due to its higher protein and lower carbohydrate content.

Always check nutrition labels, as some brands have a higher carbohydrate content than others, due to additions such as syrup flavorings, sweeteners, toppers, or fruit preserves.

Top unsweetened Greek yogurt with nuts and low GI fruits such as blackberries, blueberries, or raspberries.

7- Oranges and other citrus

The pulpiness of oranges and grapefruit provide a great source of fiber. To maximize this, make sure to eat the whole fruit rather than drink just the juice.

One study in 2008 found that eating citrus fruits could lower the risk of diabetes in women, but drinking the fruit juice could increase that risk.

The average orange has a GI score of 40 while unsweetened orange juice has a GI score of 50.

The citrus with the lowest GI score is grapefruit. With a score of 25, grapefruit has one of the lowest GI scores of all fruits.

8- Tomatoes

Whether eaten raw or cooked, tomatoes are full of lycopene. This a powerful substance that may reduce the risk of cancer (especially prostate cancer), heart disease, and macular degeneration.

Like other non-starchy fruits, tomatoes have a low GI ranking.

One study in 2011 found that 200 grams of raw tomato (or about 1.5 medium tomatoes) each day reduced blood pressure in people with type 2 diabetes. Researchers concluded tomato consumption might help reduce cardiovascular risk that’s associated with type 2 diabetes.

9- Blueberries and other berries

From vision-protecting vitamin C to filling fiber, blueberries are antioxidant powerhouses.

These berries have some of the highest antioxidant levels of any fruit or vegetable and may reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer. They also have anti-inflammatory properties.

Strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are also excellent choices for people with diabetes

Disclaimer: The contents of this article are intended to raise awareness about common health issues and should not be viewed as sound medical advice for your specific condition. You should always consult with a licensed medical practitioner prior to following any suggestions outlined in this article or adopting any treatment protocol based on the contents of this article.

Ms. Ayesha Nasir - Author Ms. Ayesha Nasir is a Dietitian practicing in Lahore. Ms. Ayesha Nasir has the following degrees: M.Phil Food and Nutrition, B.S Home Economics and has 5 years of experience. You can book an appointment with Ms. Ayesha Nasir by calling us or using the 'book appointment' button. Ms. Ayesha believes that a healthy diet is more than half of what constitutes good physical health. She thus tries to make the public aware about some basic healthy diet principles.

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