Carbohydrates (or simply carbs) are the greatest instigator to skyrocketing blood sugar levels in diabetics!
All dietary carbohydrates are broken down by our digestive system into glucose, which then is added to the blood
Diabetes is a primarily a disease of insulin resistance or insulin deficiency or resistance. In diabetes, the physiological action of insulin, which is keeping the blood sugar levels in control is compromised. Therefore,blood glucose levels are higher than normal in diabetics and carbohydrates aggravate the problem by adding more blood sugar
This point is even more relevant for Indians, as we eat carb-heavy diets, due to our cereal and pulse based food habits. The increasing trend of cold drinks, coffee with sugar, other beverages and dessert consumption, do not help much!
Typically, Indian diabetics try to manage their carbs is by completely giving up on sugar/sweets, potato and rice, but such blanket restrictions make life miserable ! Find information on how to eat healthy carbs in healthy quantity…
Therefore in Indian context, NIN/ICMR recommends that diabetics should aim to plan their carb intake such that only 50-60% of all calories come from carbs. For most Indians this would mean eating a diet lower in carb content than their usual diet
To get a diet plan which keeps your carb intake in check, try Food FHI Ideal diet plan for diabetics
Simple sugars should be avoided as much as possible, because they provide empty calories and do not have other essential nutrients, which whole grains, fruits or other healthy carb foods have; these nutrients include dietary fiber (which help you remain fuller for longer amount of time), vitamins and minerals (which are essential nutrients for the body) and proteins
Choose healthy carbs such as whole grain food items, whole fruits etc. and avoid processed carbs and added sugar, on routine basis.
Learn ‘carb counting‘, which once learnt, will help a diabetic lifelong in managing her diabetes and enjoying her food at the same time
Make clever substitutions, based on carb counting, to indulge yourself once in awhile!
So, remember to count your carbs, choose healthy carbs on most days. You can indulge once in awhile, only do it smartly!
CHECK OUT: Our references for diabetes mellitus