Nutrition and Diabetes
Diabetes is very common in the U.S. population. Many diabetics face an additional challenge because they are overweight and/or suffer from cardiovascular disease. The good news is that nutritional support can help to better manage these health challenges.
One very valuable tool is low glycemic impact (GI) eating. Low GI foods avoid a rapid rise in blood sugar and insulin levels avoiding a metabolic switch being thrown signaling the body to store fat. Low GI foods help you to burn calories more efficiently. These foods include a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and protein and represent a healthy way of eating that will lead to improved body composition. Low GI eating helps you feel full faster and longer.
Eating low GI is also heart healthy and you can reduce your cardiovascular risk (reduce cholesterol and triglycerides) by learning to eat healthy carbohydrates. A recent reference by Jenkins et al published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA 2008 Vol. 300 pg. 2742) reported that type 2 diabetics who followed a low GI program for six months saw a 0.5% decrease in their HbA1c levels and a 4.7% increase in HDL levels which is associated with about a 10% reduction in cardiovascular risk. We observe big improvements in triglycerides in as little as a week long before any significant weight loss has occurred.
Eating high fiber, low glycemic diets has been associated with improved management of blood glucose levels as well as insulin and free fatty acid responses in adults with type 2 diabetes. There are literally dozens of publications supporting this nutritional approach. Why havent you heard much about it? The newest research is only a couple of years old and it takes a while for information to get from the medical and nutritional scientific journals into the popular press. Several commercial weight loss programs use this approach but the ones whose names you would recognize require you to purchase food from them so you never learn everything you need to know about individual foods so you can plan meals, shop and eat out successfully. Education is very important and you want to know how to read labels, how to determine the impact carbs in a food/meal, which fats are good and bad, how much you need to eat to avoid stalling your metabolism and the role of exercise and stress reduction.
Long-term success can come from a lifestyle change incorporating
Low glycemic impact (GI) foods,
Stress reduction techniques,
Appropriate nutritional supplements, and
A 4-part program that includes low GI eating, nutritional supplements, stress reduction and exercise is not a diet its a lifestyle change. Lifestyle changes lead to long-term results and this approach can help you reduce your cardiovascular risk, better manage (or avoid) diabetes and a great side benefit is that you will achieve and maintain a healthy weight. Isnt it time you transition into a healthy new lifestyle?