Can prediabetes be overcome with nutrition?
Prediabetes occurs when blood sugar is higher than what is considered normal, but not high enough to be type 2 diabetes. A healthy diet is key to eliminating prediabetes.
In fact, there are no foods, herbs, drinks or supplements that reduce blood sugar. Only medication and exercise can.
But there are things you can eat and drink that have a low glycemic index (GI). This means that these foods will not raise your blood sugar and can help you avoid a rise in blood sugar. In addition to changing your diet, it is also important to exercise or stay active.
Find out below what is the best food to reduce blood sugar.
13 Best Foods That Won’t Raise Blood Sugar
Find out what foods you can add to your diet. You may be able to prevent prediabetes or type 2 diabetes by adding more of these foods, spices and drinks to your diet.
Eat them as a healthy alternative to sugar, high GI carbohydrates or other treats.
Polyunsaturated fatty acids and monounsaturated fatty acids are important components of a healthy blood sugar diet plan. They can improve insulin sensitivity.
They can also help increase feelings of satiety and have a healthy impact on blood pressure and inflammation. Monounsaturated fatty acids are a key nutrient in avocados.
Studies have shown that avocados can lower the risk of metabolic syndrome. This is a group of risk factors that can increase the risk of diabetes. It can also increase the risk of blood vessel disease like heart disease and stroke.
Avocados also have a low GI. For a unique dessert adapted to diabetes, try to make a natural, without added sugars, raw chocolate pudding from avocado.
2. Fish with omega-3 fatty acids
Protein helps the body maintain and rebuild. Since protein does not affect blood sugar levels, it does not have a GI ranking and will not increase blood sugar levels.
Protein also increases satiety, so relying on protein to feel full instead of bread, rice or pasta is a good way to manage your blood sugar.
Fish is a great source of protein. Fish contains few unhealthy fats and is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids.
Good options include:
- albacore tuna
Fish is also prepared quickly and easily. Season the fillets with salt, pepper and lemon and put in the oven at 215 ° C, and bake for 20 minutes until the meat is browned.
Garlic can help manage blood sugar. Reports show that garlic intake can lower blood glucose. Similar studies also suggest that onions have positive effects on blood sugar levels.
Garlic does not have a GI ranking because it does not have carbohydrates and will not increase blood sugar levels.
Although all fruits can raise blood sugar levels, some have a lower GI score – like cherries.
Pickled cherries have a chemical called anthocyanins. Studies have produced experimental evidence that anthocyanins can protect against diabetes and obesity.
If you’re a fruit lover, try eating more cherries instead of bananas, pears and apples.
5. Apple cider vinegar
Acetic acid in apple cider vinegar reduces certain enzymes in the stomach. One study reported that apple cider vinegar can improve insulin sensitivity after a meal.
Try drinking 20 grams of apple cider vinegar in 40 grams of water before eating to reduce blood sugar spikes.
6. Green leafy plants
Leafy greens are rich in fiber and nutrients like magnesium and vitamin A. These nutrients can help lower blood sugar. Leafy greens that you will add to your diet include:
- beet green
Eating a portion of leafy greens per day was associated with a 14 percent reduction in the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
All leafy greens have a low GI. Spinach even has a GI scale of less than 1 per 1 cup. Kale has an estimated GI score between 2 and 4.
7. Chia seeds
Chia seeds are beneficial and rich in fiber, healthy fats, omega-3s, calcium and antioxidants. Studies have shown that a diet with chia seeds can help lower triglycerides and LDL cholesterol.
Chia seeds have a GI of 1 and are a great addition to recipes.
Cocoa is a pod seed that is used to make chocolate spreads and treats such as cocoa butter and chocolate. Before confectioners add sugar, it is bitter and unsweetened, like dark chocolate.
Cocoa seeds contain a large amount of antioxidants. They also contain a flavanol called epicatechin, which regulates glucose production by activating key proteins. It can help stabilize blood sugar, even in those who already have diabetes.
Replace milk chocolate with dark chocolate that contains 70 percent cocoa or more, and limit your intake to one to two cubes.
You can also use cocoa as an additive for your yogurt, smoothie or dessert.
9. Blueberries and blackberries
Blackberries and blueberries will not increase blood sugar levels like other fruits.
These berries are foods rich in fiber and have the highest concentration of anthocyanins. Anthocyanins inhibit certain digestive enzymes to slow digestion. They also prevent a spike in blood sugar after eating starch-rich meals.
One study reported that adding blueberries (22.5 grams) per day improved insulin sensitivity to insulin resistance.
The glycemic load of blueberries is 5.
10. Almonds and other walnuts
Almonds can help regulate and reduce blood sugar rises after meals and prevent diabetes.
One study found that people who consumed 60 g of almonds a day had lower levels of glucose and insulin. Another study found that consuming almonds can reduce insulin sensitivity in people who have prediabetes.
The GI score for almonds is estimated at 0. This is due to the small amounts of carbohydrates found in almonds and other nuts.
Opt for nuts like pistachios, walnuts and macadamia instead of crackers and other snacks the next time you get hungry.
11. Whole grains
When buying or eating out, opt for whole grains (like millet or quinoa) instead of refined grains.
Refined grains have a large amount of carbohydrates and can cause an increase in sugar. Whole grains contain higher amounts of fiber, phytochemicals and nutrients and can help reduce blood sugar.
One study found that consuming whole grains favors insulin sensitivity. Insulin rates after fasting were 10 percent lower after consumption.
Whole grain bread has a GI score of 51 and whole grain pasta has a GI score of 42.
Eggs are one of those foods that got a bad name because they contain a higher amount of cholesterol. But eating eggs doesn’t seem to hurt those who have prediabetes.
It is also believed that dietary cholesterol is not so important, at least for those who do not have type 2 diabetes.
Like all sources of pure protein, eggs have a GI rating of 0. Eggs can also increase satiety and reduce food cravings. But what you add to the eggs can compromise their health benefits.
It is safe for healthy people, unless the doctor has advised otherwise, to consume eggs in moderation, but hard-boiled eggs can serve as a satisfying snack or quick breakfast.
There is research that suggests that increasing coffee intake (decaffeinated and decaffeinated) with one cup a day can lower the risk of type 2 diabetes by more than 10 percent.
But what you add to coffee is also important. Avoid adding too much sugar, syrup and milk to your coffee.
To prevent diabetes and prediabetes through your diet, avoid foods that have a high GI score. Reduce the amount of carbohydrates and sugars you consume. Foods with low GI are foods that have a rating of 55 or less.
There are several apps that make it easier to discover healthier diet choices. With these apps, you can check the carbohydrate and sugar content of food. This can help you avoid spikes in blood sugar or sugar and carbohydrate intake.
The most important way to avoid diabetes if you are insulin resistant is to lose weight, exercise and eat a balanced diet with whole foods.
No single method, food or exercise will replace the long-term benefits of a healthy diet.