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The worst foods for diabetics


If you are a diabetic, the quality of what you eat is one of the most important things you should consider to stay healthy. “The primary goal of nutrition for people with diabetes is to avoid high blood sugar,” says Gerald Bernstein, director of the diabetes management program at the Friedman Diabetes Institute in New York.



Some foods like candy and soda can be dangerous for diabetics because the body absorbs these simple sugars almost instantly. But there is a need to monitor all types of carbohydrates, and high-fat foods, especially unhealthy fats, are also a problem because people with diabetes are at risk of developing heart disease, says Sandy Andrews, director of education at the William Sansom University Diabetes Center in Santa Barbara. California.

Here are some of the worst foods for diabetes, and the best foods for diabetes:

The worst foods for diabetics

White Rice

The more white rice intake, the higher the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, according to a 2012 review. In a study of more than 350,000 people, those who ate white rice were more likely to have type 2 diabetes, and the risk increased by 11%. For each additional daily serving of rice.

Basically, says Andrews, anything that is highly processed such as fried pancakes made with white flour should be avoided. White rice and pasta can cause high blood sugar similar to that of sugar.

Alternatively: brown rice or wild rice. These whole grains do not cause high blood sugar thanks to the fiber, which helps to slow the rush of glucose into the bloodstream. What’s more, a study in the Harvard School of Public Health found that two or more weekly servings of brown rice were associated with a lower risk of disease. Diabetes.

Blended coffee

Coffee mixed with syrup, sugar, cream, and other toppings can contain as many calories and fats as milkshakes, making it a poor choice for people with diabetes. For example, a Frappuccino can contain 500 calories, 98 grams of carbohydrates, and 9 grams of fat.

Instead: Ask about light blended or fat-free coffee with fewer than 60 to 200 calories and sugar substitutes, Andrews says, “Blended coffee that is lighter in calories and fat will not work on high sugar, especially if you walk. After that, she adds, ideally, black coffee is the best.

Banana and melon

All fresh fruits are packed with vitamins and fiber, making them a healthy part of any diet. However, some fruits contain more sugar. “Bananas and melons and fruits like peaches and nectarines are on the high sugar side,” says Cathy Doria Medina, an endocrinologist in Los Angeles. These may cause blood sugar to rise more than other fruits, although this may not be true for everyone.

Instead: Apples are low in sugar, berries, etc.are lower in sugar. Doria Medina says: “But what may benefit a diabetic patient may not work for another patient, so you have to find which fruits work best for you.”

“Combining the fruit with peanut butter or low-fat cheese (making sure to cut the portion in half) is also a good way.” A blood sugar test should be done two hours after eating to see how your body is responding.

Chinese food

The high calories, high fat, high sodium and high carbohydrates in Chinese food can cause blood sugar to spike dramatically and keep it high for a while, Andrews says. The inappropriate Chinese menu includes fried appetizers like orange chicken and sweet and sour dishes, which contain breadcrumbs and float in a sugary sauce.

Alternatively: If you enjoy Chinese food, a modified recipe can be prepared at home using steamed vegetables, reducing sodium, and using low-fat condiments and flavorings. Limiting sodium can help lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart attacks. Skip white rice and pasta to brown rice or wild rice instead.

Breakfast pastries

Avoid cakes, pastries, sweets and other baked goods if you want to keep blood sugar under control. “They are made from processed white flour and are high in fat, carbohydrates and sodium,” Andrews says. The cinnamon rolls could be worse, containing more than 800 calories and up to 120 grams of carbohydrates.

Instead: Eat half a wholegrain English bun or brown rice cake with peanut butter and low-sugar jam, Andrews notes. “They are made with less fats, carbohydrates and sodium.”


Fruit juices

Fruit juices are known as healthy refreshments, but they can be a sugary disaster if you have diabetes. Doria Medina, a diabetes expert with the Health Care Group of Medical Partners in Los Angeles, says jumbo juice contains 510 calories and 92 grams of carbohydrates. “Drinking a large cup of jumba juice is like drinking three cans of soda.”

Alternatively: You can make your own juice so you can control exactly what works for your health, using low-sugar fruits like green apples and berries and eating vegetables like kale or spinach is very good.

Trail Mix

Trail Mix is ​​a mixture of nuts, dried fruits and milk chocolate.

Nuts are an unsafe bet for diabetics and should be eaten in moderation as they can be high in calories. The drying process of the fruits makes the natural sugars become super concentrated. Especially when a diabetic eats large pieces that contain dried apricots, and Dr. Doria Medina says, “It is easy for you to eat a lot of them without realizing them.”

Instead: Make your own trail mix with a low-carb blend with sunflower seeds, walnuts, soybeans, roasted peanuts, and almonds with small amounts of unsweetened coconut. Eating nuts in moderation (one ounce per serving) might reduce blood sugar spikes when eaten along with carbohydrates such as bread, and they are also linked to a lower risk of heart disease.

Sweetened breakfast cereals

Sweetened breakfast cereals can cause a spike in blood sugar, but the response can vary. “The interactions of blood sugar with pills vary greatly from person to person,” says Dr. Doria Medina. Even oatmeal, which is recommended as a good option, can be a problem if it’s the quick-baked kind.

Instead: swap your cereal breakfast for a high-protein meal instead, and Dr. Doria Medina suggests an omelette with vegetables and bacon with a small slice of low-carb bread (7 grams).

The cholesterol in egg yolks may contribute to an increased risk of heart disease and diabetes, making egg whites a healthier option. Slow-cooked, traditional oatmeal is a better choice than other types of oatmeal because it’s less likely to spike your blood sugar, Andrews says.

Light energy meals

They aren’t completely off-limits, but you need to read their ingredients before eating them, Andrews says. “It may seem like a good choice as a healthy snack, but many of them contain high levels of sugar and carbohydrates, up to 450 calories and 60 grams of carbohydrates.” Look for those where there is a balance of protein and carbohydrates with little fat (about 3 grams) and healthy ingredients, says Andrews, “I suggest talking to a dietitian to determine which ones suit your needs.”

Instead: In addition to taking the advice of your dietitian to choose a low-carb snack, try one cup of light popcorn, 10 crackers, a slice of cheese, and 15 almonds or sugar-free frozen ice cream, all of which contain less than five grams of carbohydrates. , According to the American Diabetes Association.

Thick sauces like Alfredo pasta sauce

Alfredo pasta sauce consists of concentrated cream, parmesan cheese, and lots of butter. Pour over the white pasta and the ingredients for your meal will easily be higher – 1,000 calories, 75 grams of fat, and nearly 100 grams of carbohydrates. “White pasta with a high-fat, high-sodium sauce can raise blood sugar over a long period of time due to the sauce’s high fat content,” Andrews says.

Instead: Have whole wheat pasta with tomato sauce.

Potatoes are fried

Andrews describes the fried potatoes as “low-carb sponges soaked in fat.” At 25 g of fat, 500 calories, fried potatoes can wreak havoc on your blood sugar. The American Diabetes Association notes that starchy foods like potatoes, corn and peas are “great sources of vitamins, minerals, and fiber,” but recommends skipping those with added fat or sodium. You can test your blood sugar two hours after eating to see the effect of any particular food on your blood sugar.

Alternatively: French fries are usually the default when ordering a burger or sandwich, but most restaurants offer fresh fruit or a low-calorie side salad as you request.

Fatty meats

People with diabetes are at risk of developing heart disease. Although meat is rich in protein and does not contain carbohydrates (which increase blood sugar), some sources of protein are better than others and try to avoid meats that are particularly high in saturated fats (such as red meat), baked, fried. , Or laden with sodium (like processed meats).

Have this instead: Eat more plant-based proteins such as beans, peas, lentils, and soybeans (bearing in mind that some sources of plant-based protein do not contain carbs). You can choose fish, seafood, and chicken, which tend to be lower in saturated fats and contain more heart-healthy fats. Avoid food that is covered in high-calorie sauces, or high-fat skin (like chicken).