Reduce your risk of getting type 2 diabetes
Here are some ideas to help you reduce your risk of getting Type 2 diabetes:
Sugar-loaded processed cereals put huge demands on the body for insulin. This increases the likelihood of becoming insulin resistant and getting Type 2 diabetes. They are not good for children or adults.
Good breakfast ingredients are oat or buckwheat porridge, berries, unsweetened natural probiotic yogurt, eggs, fish, avocado, vegetables (e.g. peppers, tomato and onion in an omelet), quinoa flakes, nuts & seeds, soda, multigrain or rye bread.
Fruit juices (freshly squeezed, cartons or bottles) contain more glucose than sweet fizzy drinks. Eating the whole fruit is the healthiest way.
Regular consumptions of sugary drinks or fruit juice (even fresh fruit juice) will put many people at risk of getting Type 2 diabetes. Some manufacturers have replaced a percentage of the sugar in their fizzy drinks, with artificial sweeteners, to avoid the impending sugar tax. I believe that diet drinks are very unhealthy too. Artificial sweeteners may trick the body into thinking it needs to produce insulin, as it would for sugar/carbohydrates.
Water or unsweetened herbal tea help to stabilise blood sugar. Best drank throughout the day rather than drinking large quantities all at once.
Fish is a great choice, but not the breaded variety. Salmon and mackerel are excellent because they contain Omega 3 healthy fat, which is great for blood sugar and also for heart health.
Processed white bread, pasta and process burger baps are very unhealthy, particularly when eaten with chips. Naan bread has a very high carbohydrate count, making it a poor accompaniment to meals containing rice.
Many restaurants now serve meals with rice, chips and bread, causing the meal to be very carbohydrate heavy, which causes a huge demand for insulin. It is easy to ask for just one type.
Beans (butterbeans, black beans, chickpeas etc.) and lentils give good slow release carbohydrate and fiber. They can replace potato, bread or rice.
Try my recipe for wholemeal scones. They are suitable for freezing and are great for lunches or a quick meal with lean meat, fish or cheese and salad.
Jam and marmalade contain at least 50% sugar. There is no such thing as sugar-free or ‘diabetic jam’. They all contain sugar from the fruit. A dessertspoon of jam or marmalade contains at least half a dessertspoon of sugar.
Eliminating or drastically reducing fast food, white bread, pasta & sweets will drastically reduce your risk of getting Type 2 diabetes. Children shouldn’t get adult sized portions of any food.
One of the best things you can do for children’s health is to teach them how to cook. You could learn together if you haven’t cooked before. Cooking and baking is an insurance policy against many illnesses.
A small amount of lean protein helps to stabilise blood sugar and keeps us full for longer. Cheap fatty meat, processed frozen burgers, chicken or fish nuggets are not lean protein.
Reduce your intake of salt if it is high. Excessive consumption of salt can lead to high blood pressure which is a contributory factor to Type 2 diabetes. Try adding herbs & spices instead.
Occasional treats won’t increase your risk of getting Type 2 diabetes if your diet is healthy the rest of the time and you get regular exercise. Why not share desserts and treats?
Excessive alcohol consumption increases the risk of obesity, insulin resistance & Type 2 diabetes. Having an alcoholic drink with or soon after a meal is the healthiest way to enjoy a drink. Drinking on an empty stomach increases your risk of many diseases. Cider, some cocktails and lagers have a high sugar content, making them a poor choice.
Staying within the safe drinking limits will prevent alcohol from increasing your risk of getting Type 2 diabetes.
Exercise has a beneficial effect on blood sugar levels and is an ideal preventative measure. Even 10 minutes a day will help, but for the maximum benefit 30 minutes most days is recommended.
It’s well worth making small changes to reduce your risk of getting Type 2 diabetes and all the very unpleasant complications it can bring.
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease and can’t be prevented.