Diabetes Care

Nutritional Help for Type 2 Diabetes

Diabetes mellitus is a Greek term. The literal meaning of this term is to pass urine that is rich in sugar. In this disorder, the pancreas does not generate sufficient amount of insulin or the body develops a resistance to insulin and is not able to utilize it effectively to metabolize glucose.

Diabetes is a very serious disorder and can have serious consequences if not managed and treated properly and in time. In a normal person, the pancreas releases insulin after a meal so that the body can handle the surge in glucose levels immediately after a meal. In the case of diabetes, the pancreas either stops producing insulin or cannot use the secreted insulin effectively.

Nutrition plays an important role in the management of diabetes. It is important that a person, who is suffering from diabetes, does not eat foods that have a high glycemic index. A food has a high glycemic index if it can be converted to sugar in a very short time after ingestion. Going by such characteristics, foods that contain a high amount of sugar are very high on the glycemic index. Other foods that are high on the glycemic index are foods that contain simple starch such as rice and potatoes.

Foods high on the glycemic index are not desirable for diabetic patients. If they are to be taken, they should be taken under moderation and only after the patient has a good idea of how the foods will contribute to blood sugar levels.

On the other hand, foods that are low on the glycemic index such as beans, barley, oats and whole grains are desirable foods. These foods take time to be assimilated by the body and converted to sugar.  As a result, these foods do not result in situations where the blood sugar levels rise reach a peak or become uncontrollable.

Regular exercise, cutting down on weight, and limiting the intake of alcoholic drinks are also equally important in the management of diabetes.