Add these diabetes-friendly foods to your diet to avoid a blood sugar spike

You can manage your blood sugar levels by eating the right foods. Check out this list of diabetes-friendly foods that you should eat!

Diabetes is a debilitating disease that affects the hormone insulin, responsible for regulating blood sugar levels. What you eat and avoid during diabetes is important as diet plays a pivotal role in keeping your blood sugar levels in check. While sugary and starchy carbohydrates can increase your blood sugar, the right amount of food can help you keep your meals balanced. If you have been wondering about diabetes-friendly foods and what to avoid, read on!

What is the role of diet in managing diabetes?

A healthy diet is important to keep your health in check, especially if you are a diabetic. It is important for people with diabetes to eat the right foods to keep their blood sugar levels in check. A diabetes diet generally means eating healthy foods that are rich in different nutrients and low in calories in moderate amounts.

The intake must be in line with the expenditure or there will be misfit and discomfort. It is a given that diabetics must eat right to balance their sugar levels, but diet becomes even more important when the diabetic is on oral hypoglycaemic medications and insulin, explains dietitian Bhuvaneshwari K.

A diabetes diet should strike the right balance of carbohydrates, protein and fats, along with fibre and micronutrients, that help you achieve the correct glycemic load of the whole meal, she adds.

Eat a healthy diet to keep your blood sugar levels in check. Image courtesy: Freepik

What constitutes a healthy diet for diabetics?

A nutritious diet for diabetics includes a significant portion of vegetables, comprising over 50 percent of the meal, whether cooked or raw. A diet rich in complex carbohydrates, such as whole grains and millet, should make up 25 percent of a meal, while the remaining 25 percent should come from protein sources, such as lentils, egg whites, paneer, mushroom, chicken breast, and fish. It is essential to incorporate a non-sweet fruit daily along with buttermilk and yogurt to stay hydrated and boost immunity, recommends the expert.

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Diabetes-friendly foods you must eat!

Include healthy carbs, fibre, and โ€œgoodโ€ fats in your diet if you have diabetes. Such foods that can help you keep your blood sugar levels in check, include:

  • Jowar
  • Wheat
  • Bajra
  • Millets
  • Pulses
  • Plain oats
  • Ridge gourd
  • Bottle gourd
  • Ash gourd
  • Bitter gourd
  • Beans
  • Papaya
  • Avocado
  • Pomegranate
  • Protein-rich foods
  • Guava
  • Almonds
  • Walnuts
  • Pistachios
  • Seeds
  • Omega-3 fatty acids
  • Antioxidant-rich foods

Worst foods for diabetics

1. Cakes and pastries

Made with flour, sugar, and dairy, pastries and cakes are a high-carb dessert that can cause your blood sugar levels to spike, making it difficult for you to manage your condition.

2. Bread

Eating carb-rich foods can increase your blood sugar levels which can have damaging consequences such as heart disease, vision loss, and kidney disease. So, avoid eating bread, especially if you are allergic.

3. Biscuits

Most biscuits are high in carbohydrates and sugar, which can be harmful for diabetics. So, it is best to avoid eating biscuits if you have diabetes. Even if you are eating biscuits low in carbs and sugar, you should not ho overboard.

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4. Refined flour

Refined flour or maida contains more than 70 percent starch, some protein, and little to no vitamins, minerals, or fibre. Eating it regularly can increase the chances of getting insulin resistance and, thus diabetes. For this reason, it is not good for diabetics as well.

5. Sugar

Sugar is not good for you if you are diabetic so it is better to cut back on sugar. However, the American Diabetes Association found that people with diabetes can have sweets, chocolates, or other sugary foods but only as a part of a healthy diet and in moderation.

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Avoid sugar to keep your blood sugar levels in check. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

6. High fructose corn syrup (HFCS)

Also known as glucose-fructose, glucose-fructose syrup, HFCS is a sweetener made using corn starch. A study published in the Global Public Health found diabetes prevalence was higher in countries with high availability of HFCS in comparison to countries with low availability.

7. Processed foods

There are no good processed foods for diabetics because they contain endocrine disrupters and AGEs (advanced glycation end products) which can cause cancer and premature aging in addition to diabetes complications, explains the dietitian.

It is best to avoid these foods and eat a healthy diet to keep your blood sugar levels in check.

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