Understanding nutrition is the crux of knowing what foods will help or hurt a person with diabetes. Knowing the difference between high carbohydrate versus low carbohydrate meals can mean whether a person’s blood sugar levels stay stable or not.
The foods you choose will bring either a higher or lower quality of life. Let’s take a look at how a low carbohydrate diet is a healthier choice for someone with diabetes.
What Should I Eat For Breakfast?
It’s breakfast time. What are the best options to regulate blood sugar after many hours of fasting while you were sleeping? To have a morning with sustained energy, consider what types of foods have the longest energy releasing capacity. In this case, we’re talking about fats.
Healthy fats are foods like eggs, avocados, nuts and fish. The fat in these foods provide fuel that burns slow and steady throughout the day. If you want a quick energy boost with breakfast, one slice of multigrain bread full of seeds, half a cup of blueberries, one small apple or half a cup of low-fat plain yogurt.
The low amount of carbohydrates in these foods provides immediate energy to the body. In addition, the low glycemic index for these foods means they will make your blood sugar levels rise the lowest after eating them. As you go through your day, look for foods that have a low glycemic index and a low glycemic load (glycemic load refers to the number of carbohydrates per serving for that food).
What Should I Eat For Lunch?
Lunchtime. A few hours after you ate a low carb, high protein, and moderate fat breakfast, you might notice that your energy levels are dropping and you’re starting to feel hungry. This is a normal response considering that you’ve used up the energy from breakfast since it all went into use immediately and you didn’t store any excess energy as fat. Back to the kitchen.
Now you have a medley of fresh vegetables to choose from. Salad greens, celery, pea pods, onions, bean sprouts, and other vegetables can be part of your salad. The key here is high fiber. Fiber acts as a buffer to maintain a slow release of sugar into your bloodstream.
Next, a bowl of steamed vegetables like cauliflower, kale, broccoli, and asparagus are good with some olive oil drizzled on top. You can even add some cheese or a grilled lean meat like chicken, turkey or fish. Olive oil provides monounsaturated fats that helps the lining of your cells to stay healthy while the proteins in the animal products help replenish your body’s tissues. We’re moving along nicely.
What Should I Eat For Dinner?
It’s the last meal of the day. You need to consider how to keep your body fueled through the night into the next morning. Go back to your fuel source that has long-lasting energy, fat, and the nutrient that will help your body’s restorative functions, protein.
A soup made with lentils, mushrooms, carrots and onions provide protein and fiber. An oven baked animal protein like chicken or fish with Brussel sprouts and walnuts adds more protein and fat helping your blood sugar levels stay stable through the night. It also makes for a delicious dinner.
The goal of a low carb diet is to prevent blood sugar levels from spiking up and down throughout the day. Stable blood sugar levels give your pancreas steady signals to release insulin in small quantities throughout the day.
Steady insulin levels mean you don’t gain weight and you don’t release more of the stress hormone cortisol. I like those types of effects for people.