How to eat to reverse and prevent diabetes (5 foods to eat and 6 to avoid). Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in the US and  doubles  the risk of heart attack and  stroke .

In addition, it has an enormous cost in health, since it accelerates aging; it damages the kidneys, cardiovascular system, eyes and nervous tissue, and increases the risk of cancer.

However,  type 2 diabetes is a lifestyle-related disease – our food choices can prevent or promote insulin resistance and lead to diabetes.

Prevention is possible speaks of devastating complications and premature deaths associated with diabetes. The main cause of increases in obesity and diabetes is a diet without nutrients.

New  research  has shown that what mothers have been telling their children for so many years was always true: “eat your vegetables, they are good for you.”

Learn what things you can eat to prevent diabetes and what are the best foods to eat if you already have diabetes.

5 best foods to reverse and prevent diabetes

Many conventional diabetes diets rely on  meat  or grains as the main source of calories. However, these foods have serious drawbacks.

Foods rich in nutrients and with a low glycemic load (GL) are the optimal foods for diabetics. And these foods also help prevent diabetes in the first place.

1. Green vegetables

Nutrient-dense green vegetables (  leafy greens, cruciferous vegetables ,   and other green vegetables) are the most important foods in the prevention and reversal of diabetes .

Having a higher intake of green vegetables is  associated  with a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes, and among diabetics, a higher intake of green vegetables is  associated  with lower levels of HbA1c .

2. Non-starchy vegetables

Non-green, non-starchy vegetables such as  mushrooms , onions,  garlic , eggplants, bell peppers, etc., are  essential components of a diabetes prevention (or reversal) diet .

These foods have  almost non-existent effects on blood glucose  and also contain tons of fiber and phytochemicals.

3. Beans

Lentils,  beans,  and other legumes are an  ideal source of carbohydrates .

These have a low glycemic load due to their moderate levels of protein and abundant  fiber  and resistant starch, which are carbohydrates that are not broken down in the small intestine.

This reduces the number of calories in the beans; In addition, resistant starch undergoes a fermentation of bacteria in the colon,  forming  substances that protect against colon cancer.

Consequently, the consumption of beans and legumes is  associated  with a lower risk of diabetes and  colon cancer .

4. Nuts and seeds

Since they are low in glycemic load, nuts and seeds  promote  weight loss and  have  anti- inflammatory effects   that can prevent the development of insulin resistance.

The Nurse’s Health Study found a 27% decreased risk of diabetes in nurses who ate  five or more servings of nuts per week .

Among nurses who already had diabetes, this same amount of nuts  lowered  the risk of heart disease by 47% .

5. Fresh fruit

Fruits are rich in fiber and  antioxidants , and are also an excellent nutrient-  dense  option for satisfying sweet cravings.

Eating  three servings of fresh fruit each day  is  associated  with an 18% decreased risk of diabetes.

For those who are already diabetic, it is best to keep the consumption of fruits to those that are low in sugar such as berries, kiwi, oranges and melon to minimize the glycemic effects.

The 6 worst foods for diabetics and to prevent diabetes

The worst foods for people with diabetes – those that raise blood sugar, reduce insulin sensitivity, and increase the risk of type 2 diabetes – are the foods that are most common in the standard American diet.

1. Added sugars

Diabetes is characterized by causing elevated levels of glucose in the blood. Therefore, it is advisable that you avoid foods that can cause dangerously high spikes in blood glucose. Mainly refined and processed foods, such as  sugary drinks .

Fruit juices and sugary foods and desserts have similar effects. These foods promote hyperglycemia and insulin resistance. They also promote the formation of advanced glycation end products (AGEs) in the body.

EFAs disrupt the normal and healthy function of cellular proteins, stiffen blood vessels, accelerate aging, and promote  diabetes complications.

2. Refined grains (white rice and white flour products)

Carbohydrates like white rice, white pasta, and white bread lack the fiber found in the original grain. Therefore, they raise blood glucose to higher levels and faster  than raw grains.

In a six-year study of 65,000 women, those who had diets high in refined carbohydrates such as white bread, white rice, and pasta were 2.5 times more likely to be  diagnosed  with type 2 diabetes compared to those who ate foods with low glycemic load, such as whole grains and whole wheat bread.

An analysis of four prospective studies on white rice consumption and diabetes  found  that each daily serving of white rice increased the risk of diabetes by 11%.

3. Fried foods

French fries, donuts, and other fried starches are high-glycemic foods that also pack a lot of low-nutrient calories.

On the other hand, like other cooked starches, fried foods contain AGEs.

4. Trans fats (margarine, shortening, fast food, processed baked goods)

Diabetes accelerates the development of cardiovascular disease. Because  the vast majority of diabetics ( over  80%) die from cardiovascular disease , any food that increases  cardiovascular risk  can be really problematic for people with diabetes.

Trans fat intake is a very serious dietary risk factor when it comes to  heart disease ; Even a  small  amount of trans fat consumption can   significantly increase your risk.

In addition to cardiovascular effects, saturated fats and trans reduce insulin sensitivity,  so  that  cause high levels of glucose and insulin and increased risk of diabetes.

5. Red and processed meats

At first glance, it may seem that the effects of diet on diabetes are only relevant for foods that contain carbohydrates. The more low-carb, high-protein foods in your diet, the better, as these foods do not directly raise blood glucose.

However, that is an overly simplistic view of the development of type 2  diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is not only driven by elevated glucose levels, but also by   chronic inflammation , oxidative stress ,  and disturbances in circulating lipids (fats) .

Many diabetics come to believe that they should avoid consuming sugar and refined grains and other high-glycemic foods, and instead eat more animal protein to keep their blood glucose levels under control.

However, several studies have confirmed that a  high consumption of meat can increase the risk of diabetes .

A meta-analysis of 12 studies  concluded  that a high intake of meat increased the risk of type 2 diabetes by 17% over a low intake, a high intake of red meat increased the risk by 21%, and a high intake of processed meat increased the risk. risk 41%.

6. Eggs

Eating 5  eggs  each week or more has been  associated  with an  increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes .

When it comes to heart disease, eggs still open up a controversial topic. However, for people with diabetes, there is really no controversy; There are clear links in many observational studies that prove the increased risk of diabetes when eggs are consumed.

Large prospective studies such as the Nurse’s Health Study, the Health Professionals Follow-up Study, and the Physicians’ Health Study reported  that  diabetics who eat more than one egg a day  double  their risk of cardiovascular disease or risk of death compared to diabetics who ate less than one egg per week.

Another  study  with people with diabetes  reported  that those who ate  an egg a day or more had a five-fold increased risk of death  from cardiovascular disease.

By Dr. Eric Jackson

Dr. Eric Jackson provides primary Internal Medicine care for men and women and treats patients with bone and mineral diseases, diabetes, heart conditions, and other chronic illnesses.He is a Washington University Bone Health Program physician and is a certified Bone Densitometrist. Dr. Avery is consistently recognized in "The Best Doctors in America" list.

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