We all know that nutrition plays a vital role in your overall health. For those struggling with type 2 diabetes, the food that is ingested will directly affect how you feel and function more dramatically than those without diabetes. If you have type 2 diabetes, then you have, more than likely, experienced what a poor food choice can do to your physical health.
Processed and nonorganic foods are often loaded with additives and lack proper nutrients, giving rise to unknown food allergies and sensitivities; they can also cause immune responses resulting in chronic inflammation and intestinal damage.
The ready-to-heat, ready-to-eat food varieties, also known as ultra-processed foods, are all too common in the Westernized diet.
Studies have also connected them to an increased risk of chronic disease as well as promoting a pro-inflammatory state within the body. Despite the high-calorie content most processed foods bring, their lack of nutrients can cause a malnourished state.
Here are 3 nutritional guidelines to promote better health.
1. Say no to starchy, sugary foods.
Most people with type 2 diabetes are aware that foods with a high glycemic index cause glucose and insulin levels to spike quickly.
Soda, cookies, candy, cakes, and alcohol should all be avoided, but there are a few other foods that diabetics often overlook. Bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, beans, and corn can wreak havoc on blood sugar levels as well and should be categorized in the do-not-eat list. Corn is not a vegetable, but a grain, and can cause significant glucose spikes. Avoid starchy vegetables like peas, potatoes, squash, and yams which are also high in carbohydrates and can cause unhealthy alterations in glucose levels.
2. Go Paleo
Approximately 75% of your diet should be vegetable-based to get the right amounts of fiber and micronutrients.
The best way for people with diabetes to meet these needs is by following the “hunter-gatherer” or Paleo diet plan. The Paleo diet focuses on nutrient-rich plant-based fats like avocados, olives, and raw nuts and seeds, and healthy proportions of non-starchy vegetables. Paleo also emphasizes eating proteins and healthy fats, specifically wild, organically-raised or free-range animal proteins like chicken, beef, turkey, lamb, eggs, and fish.
3. Choose quality over convenience.
Processed foods are, most of the time, more convenient and less expensive, but they are also high in calories and sugar, lacking essential nutrients and jam-packed with additives and toxins. They are also a major cause of chronic disease.
Whole foods may mean a little more money out of pocket and a little more time in the kitchen, but it could also mean a longer life and vitality!
Organic produce and wild or pasture-raised meats will provide your body with the necessary nutrients to help ward off harmful toxins and disease.
Making these adjustments to your nutrition can mean a longer and healthier life!