Many people when they are first diagnosed with diabetes ask if a diet can help to control their diabetes. Most doctors will explain that a diet low in carbohydrates and sugars (think breads, cookies and candy) will help people with diabetes avoid many of the complications that are associated with this disease.
If you have diabetes you need to know that you may have a difficult time processing foods that contain sugars and starches. In fact these types of foods can increase the glucose in the bloodstream. The result is that problems can occur with the kidneys, liver, eyesight, heart and blood circulation since the glucose can’t be digested normally.
Most often your doctor will prescribe either medication or insulin to control your diabetes. This will help to process the sugars in the blood and help to break them down so your body can expel the sugars. It is important to note that insulin and medications are not a substitute for a healthy diet. You will still need to watch the amount of sugar and carbohydrates you consume. It is essential that a person with diabetes not only take their medication or insulin as directed, but also adhere to a diet that is recommended for people with diabetes. This means getting familiar with which foods should be avoided and which foods can be eaten sparingly from time to time.
The Glycemic Index was established in 1981 to rate carbohydrates to help people with diabetes. The carbohydrates that are high on the list, such as white bread, take longer to digest and should be avoided. In fact, recent studies indicate that foods with gluten should be avoided as they tend to increase blood sugar in the body. Carbohydrates that have low scores on the Glycemic Index include brown rice which can be eaten in moderation.
You might be surprised to know that a chocolate bar is rated in the intermediate group on the Glycemic Index. This does not mean, however, that you can consume all the chocolate you want. The purpose of the Glycemic Index is to help establish which foods should be avoided and which foods can be eaten in moderation.
Eating a proper diet with foods that won’t raise you blood sugar is an important part of controlling diabetes. While it may not be possible to cure diabetes, a good diet that follows the information in the Glycemic Index by avoiding high glycemic foods and eating foods like protein can help an individual with this condition live a longer, healthier life. If you want to learn more about the Glycemic Index there is lots of information available either at your local book store or online. The Glycemic Index is one way to make sure you are eating the right foods that can help to control your diabetes.