Diabetes Mellitus is a disease in which our blood sugar levels rise as the hormone insulin fails to metabolise glucose. Left untreated, the disease can cause serious damage to vital organs such as the heart, kidneys, nerves and the eyes. Hence, diabetics patients are kept on a diet which helps them keep their blood sugar levels in check, in addition to insulin medications. During the winter months, sugar levels are said to rise because of stress from the cold. Mentioned below are foods that can help diabetic patients keep well.
Carrots, radish, beetroot, spinach, mustard greens, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, bitter gourd, green beans, peas and corn are some of the vegetables that are safe for diabetic patients to consume. Carrots, radish and beets are rich in fibre and vitamins A, B6, C, E and K and. They are also storehouses of notable nutrients like zinc, calcium, phosphorus, copper, iodine and magnesium. Zinc, in particular, is essential for diabetics as it regulates insulin release.
Citrus fruits are the most beneficial to diabetic patients as they contain vitamin C, which is a strong antioxidant. Oranges, sweet lime, apples, pears, pomegranates and kiwi fruit are excellent for diabetes. They are rich in soluble fibre, micronutrients and macronutrients, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, which prevent degeneration of body tissues.
Protein is necessary to repair damage to tissues caused by the rise in blood sugar. Animal protein sources that diabetic patients can consume are lean meats, fishes that have omega-3 fatty acids and eggs because they are low in carbohydrates. Red meats should be avoided.
It is important to note that carbohydrate restriction is mandatory for every diabetic patient. Rice and potatoes are rich in carbohydrates and should be avoided or consumed in moderation. White rice and potatoes also have a high glycaemic index and diabetics should exercise caution. One can try brown rice, which is just unprocessed rice. Despite its carbohydrate content, brown rice is also rich in fibre and essential nutrients which can help in managing blood sugar levels.