Everyone is fond of snacking on the foods they love. However, is this a good practice for people with diabetes? Experts say that snacking isn’t the problem, but the amount and variety of food items are the issue. If you’re a diabetic, controlling the blood sugar level is essential, and a well-balanced diet that is rich in nutrients is a great instrument to maintain it under control. A lot of us eat refined meats, sweetened yogurts, and fruit juices high in chips, fructose, fries, burgers, and energy drinks. These aren’t only bad for people with diabetes but for healthy people.
In an interview with members of the OnlyMyHealth Team, Smita Khanna Roy Chowdhury, Lifestyle Coach and Nutritionist at Golf View Healthcare and Research Institute, Kolkata, shares healthy and safe ways to eat healthy snacks for diabetes patients.
Understanding Diabetes And Factors That Put One At Risk
The chronic medical issue affects around 42.2 million people and results in 10.5 lakh deaths per year, in the estimation of the World Health Organization (WHO). This is a condition that alters how your body processes sugar (sugar) in the blood. It is defined by the elevated levels of blood glucose that can eventually result in grave harm to your heart, blood vessels, eyes, kidneys, and nerves, as per the WHO.
There are two main kinds of type 2 diabetes. Type 1. Type 1 as well as Type 2.
Type 1 diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is an auto-immune disease in which your body’s immune system accidentally attacks and destroys beta cells that produce insulin inside the pancreas. In the end, those who have Type 1 diabetes must rely on other insulin sources, usually via the injection of insulin or through an insulin pump, to control their sugar levels. It’s usually diagnosed during the adolescent years or in childhood and requires ongoing insulin therapy as well as careful monitoring of blood sugar levels.
Type 2 diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is the most frequent and usually develops late in the lifespan, but it can occur at any time. This kind of diabetes is defined by insulin resistance. It occurs when the body isn’t able to produce enough insulin or when the body’s cells don’t respond properly to insulin. Factors in the lifestyle like unhealthy diet, inactivity, obesity, as well as genetic factors can increase the chance of developing Type 2 diabetes.
Importance Of Keeping A Check On Diabetes Diet
A fasting glucose reading above the 126-milligram per deciliter (mg/dL) or an unintentional glucose level that exceeds 200 mg/dL indicates the presence of high blood sugar levels. The food you consume has a huge impact on the level of blood sugar. If you’re a diabetic patient, the effects could be even more severe.
Some of the most important guidelines are to monitor your intake of carbohydrates by focusing on complex carbohydrates, making sure you eat foods with fiber content, and allowing yourself to indulge in portion control to maintain an appropriate weight.
In addition, adding healthy fats and lean proteins to your diet may help stabilize blood sugar levels as well as promote general well-being for people with diabetes.
Snacking Tips To Keep Your Blood Sugar Levels In Control
Below are some nutritious snack suggestions for people with diabetes:
Select foods with a high nutrition content.
For people with diabetes, avoid processed foods, and for those that have an elevated Glycemic Index (GI), processed sugary foods must be kept away from. Instead, it is best to opt for complex carbohydrates rich in fiber high-fibre food items that are filling and healthy for the body.
Chowdhury offers an array of healthy diabetic snacks:
- Salad with Sprouts
- Mixed vegetable salad
- Green salad
- Chickpea salad
- Chicken or egg salad
- Foxnut chat
- Ragi chilla
- Barnyard cutlet
- Cutlets of pearl millet with vegetables
- Brown flaked rice roasted in brown flake
- Wheat puffs
- Idli that has been steam-cooked
Make sure you choose foods that are low in glycemic.
Choose snacks with a lower glycemic index (GI), which means they have less effect on blood sugar. Examples are raw vegetables and fresh fruit (with the skin), as well as whole grains and legumes.
Portion control is essential.
Controlling the amount of food consumed plays an essential part in maintaining the blood sugar level and also preventing sudden spikes. It also helps those with diabetes keep more control over their diabetes.
By keeping track of and limiting portions, particularly in relation to carbohydrate-rich food items, individuals can better control their blood sugar levels.
This can also help with weight control, which is vital for people who have diabetes because excessive body weight can make insulin resistance more severe. Recognizing the right portion sizes, analyzing the labels on food items, and getting advice from an experienced registered dietitian are excellent methods to incorporate portion control in a diabetes management program.
Make your own snacks
When you can, make snacks at the kitchen. In this way, you will be in control of the ingredients and choose healthier options.
If you’re suffering from diabetes or care for someone affected by the disease, make sure that you pay close attention to your diet. Although eating snacks isn’t harmful in its own right, the amount and variety of foods will make a significant difference. Talk to a doctor or a dietician for the most effective plan for managing diabetes.