A healthy low-carb diet consisting of fresh produce can help diabetics better manage blood sugar levels, avoid complications, and aid weight loss.
New Delhi: People living with type 2 diabetes have a higher risk of developing several health complications, including heart disease and kidney damage. Now, a recent study led by the Queen Mary University of London and the University of Glasgow has found that diabetics are at an increased risk of liver disease with many patients being diagnosed with potentially deadly liver cirrhosis and liver cancer. Yet, a low-carb diet consisting of fresh produce can help diabetics better manage blood sugar levels, avoid complications, and aid weight loss.
The problem is that carbohydrates can elevate blood glucose more than any other food. In fact, blood glucose can remain high for hours after consuming carbs especially in people with insulin resistance. Carbs can also result in blood sugar spikes in people with type 1 diabetes whose bodies d not make enough insulin. Hence, a low-carb diet is often recommended in both type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
How to create a healthy low-carb meal to manage blood sugar, aid weight loss and prevent diabetes complications
While low carb-diets can help you lose weight, improve blood sugar control and manage diabetes, it can be difficult for patients to get specific nutrients without proper planning. Also, eating too much of protein on a low-carb diet can accelerate kidney damage in diabetics, especially if they already have kidney problems. Therefore, it’s extremely important to know some basic things, such as how many calories a person needs, what foods to eat and avoid when devising a low-carb meal plan.
Following are a few tips and ideas to help you create a healthy, balanced low-carb meal.
For your breakfast: Try having –
- Hard-boiled eggs
- Eggs and veggies fired in extra virgin olive oil
- Scrambled eggs with a slice of whole-wheat toast
- A hearty handful of nuts like almonds with a small serving of low glycemic-index fruit, such as an apple, berries, a peach, etc.
For your lunch and dinner: You could eat –
- Tuna – including packaged tuna and tuna steaks
- Other seafood such as shrimp
- Baked or grilled chicken
- Chicken stuffed with vegetables and cheese
- Lentil salad with garlicky sausage
- Whole-grain pasta with vegetables or fish
- Cauliflower rice with vegetables
- Non-starchy vegetable salads — such as celery, carrots, cucumber and broccoli and carrots can be mixed with a (low-carb) dipping sauce.
For your snacks: You could have –
- Hummus with fobre-rich veggies
- Low-glycemic fruits like cherries, apples, dried apricots, etc
- Veggie chips
- Steamed edamame
- Low-fat yogurt and berries
Ideally, most of the calories in a healthy and well-planned low-carb diet should come from –
- Lean protein – such as eggs, fish, nuts, tofu
- Healthy fats from natural sources such as olives or avocados
- Fruit in moderation
A low-carb diet may effectively help people with diabetes manage their condition. It can help improve blood sugar control, boost weight loss, curb cravings for sugar and other sugary snacks, decrease the needs for medication, lower the risk of complications, and even reverse the course of the disease. However, you must talk to your doctor before making any dietary changes to your diet.