Diabetes is a tricky condition as there are so many factors that can effect your blood sugar. These are some easy things you can do to get better control...
Much research has been conducted on the best types of diet for a diabetic. And when you understand how much diet can affect someone with diabetes, or influence someone’s development of the disease, it’s easy to understand why. While diet is key there are other factors that have been researched, too. Here is a selection of interesting recommendations – food-related and other – that have been proven to maintain healthy blood glucose and insulin levels, courtesy of Reader’s Digest’s Best Health.
1. Let loose and laugh!
Japanese scientists have established that laughter is the best medicine! Diabetics who watched a comedy after dinner experienced lower blood sugar levels than others who listened to a boring lecture.
2. Do not forget your daily dairy
A study of 3,000 people found that overweight people who ate a lot of dairy, were 70% less likely to develop insulin resistance than those who didn’t. This is because “the lactose, protein and fat in dairy products improves blood sugar by filling you up and slowing the conversion of food sugars to blood sugar."
3. Master magnesium
A study of women found that higher intakes of magnesium reduced diabetes risk by about 10% overall, and by about 20% in overweight women. Find magnesium in avocados, spinach (an absolute winner), leafy greens, nuts, and fish.
4. Cue cinnamon
In a Pakistani study, people with type 2 diabetes took 1 g/3 g/ 6 g of cinnamon and saw a drop in their blood sugar levels of 18-29% in relation to the amount used. And it’s so easy to use – drop a smidge in your coffee, tea, yogurt, you name it!
5. Get your 8 hours
Numerous studies have found that not getting enough sleep has a serious effect on your blood sugar and insulin levels.
6. Drink and be healthy!
A study on women showed that those who drank a glass of wine a day cut their risk of diabetes in half compared to teetotallers and the same effects were found for beer. But take your drink with dinner - an Australian study found that drinking a glass of wine immediately after eating is actually detrimental.
7. Cut back on fat
The results from an American study on 3000 people showed that you have a much higher chance of developing diabetes if you have high levels of saturated fat in your diet.
8. Walk it off
A large American study found that walking 2 km a day would cut the risk of dying from diabetes by a third and that by walking the 10 km each week would also reduce a diabetic’s chance of dying from heart disease by 34%.
9. Go grrrapefruit
“American researchers asked 50 obese patients to eat half a grapefruit with each meal for 12 weeks and compared them to a group that didn’t eat any. Those patients who ate the grapefruit lost an average of 1.6 kg. They also had lower levels of insulin and glucose after each meal, suggesting a more efficient sugar metabolism,”
10. Decide on decaf
According to British researchers, a cup of decaf is best when the sweet tooth takes over. The combination of decaf and the sugars found in cakes and biscuits reduces the resultant rise in the blood sugar.
11. Snoring? Get to the bottom of it
In a Harvard research study, it was found that “women who snored were more than twice as likely as those who didn’t to develop diabetes – regardless of weight, smoking history or family history of diabetes."
12. Lay on the legumes
Ignore those old childish taunts about beans. Studies have found that by eating 75 g of beans a day your blood sugar and insulin levels can stabilise.
A study has found that after just 10 minutes each day of tensing then relaxing each muscle in your body, blood sugar levels, particularly in people with high sugar levels, are significantly improved.
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