5 Little Known Ways to Lower Your Blood Glucose
Part of type 2 diabetes management involves achieving or maintaining the best weight for you! These foods when enjoyed in the right amounts can help you with blood glucose control and contribute to weight loss. After all, each healthy habit builds up to one healthier you!
Satisfy your chocolate craving
Dark chocolate contains special plant compounds, called flavanols, which may help to improve insulin sensitivity. Dark chocolate has also been found to decrease blood lipids, including total cholesterol, and LDL levels. A square of dark chocolate (shoot for at least 70% cocoa) a day is a delicious way to keep heart disease at bay. Also, you can try raw chocolate nibs. They have no added sugar and are packed with magnesium, an important mineral for type 2 diabetes. Heat up a cup of frozen fruit like cherries or mango chunks with a couple tablespoons raw chocolate nibs. The fruit will give them that sweet taste and you’ll satisfy your cravings. You can also try mixing cocoa with ricotta cheese or peanut butter and serve with a smear of raspberry jam on top of brown rice cakes. Yum!
Don’t have a cow—at least not on Mondays
Eating lots of meat—in particular red and processed meat—has been associated with increased weight gain and diabetes. Replacing just serving of red meat per day with a serving of nuts, low fat dairy, and whole grains has been found to decrease risk of Type 2 Diabetes by 16-35%. Vegetarian diets have been shown to improve insulin sensitivity in those with Type 2 Diabetes, even more than traditional diabetic diets. But you don’t have to be a vegetarian to go meatless once a week.
If your lunch salad leaves you hungry for more, try adding a handful of dry-roasted almonds or walnuts. Nuts are not only satisfying, but they are packed with unsaturated fats that may help reduce belly fat and improved blood sugar control. Get creative! Nuts aren’t for snacking only. They are fantastic as part of dips, or even crushed on top of chicken dishes. There are countless ways to enjoy nut butters, try peanut butter in a Thai peanut dipping sauce for fresh spring rolls (not fried!).
Sweeten it up
Including cinnamon in your diet might be beneficial to your weight loss efforts due to its blood sugar and lipid lowering properties. In addition, cinnamon’s sweet taste may allow you to decrease the amount of added sugar in foods you enjoy like coffee or hot cereals. As an added bonus, cinnamon has antibacterial and antifungal properties that are beneficial to your health. Cassia cinnamon, the common cinnamon found in stores, added to your diet as 1-2 teaspoon a day may help lower blood glucose and blood cholesterol. Cinnamon is a healthy way to add flavor to your diet—without added sugar. Enjoy cinnamon by sprinkling it on tea, coffee, or apple cider; stirring it into hot breakfast dishes and sweet squash soups.
Animal studies show that cilantro may help stimulate secretion of insulin and lower blood glucose levels. Cilantro can be easily added to salads, tacos and fish dishes. Make a big bowl of julienne style, chopped jicama mixed with cilantro and a few tablespoons of orange juice. Snack on this during the week, or enjoy it as your vegetable serving for lunch. Additionally, in another animal study, parsley has been shown to have blood glucose lowering affects. Plus, herbs are antioxidant powerhouses, making them especially important for people with type 2 diabetes. You’ll be helping prevent heart disease and cancer by adding daily herbs in your diet.
Incorporating these tips into your diet will promote your health even further. Controlling blood sugar is the main goal when living with diabetes, and achieving and maintaining a healthy weight is one of the best ways to do it.
Were the financial costs of type 2 diabetes surprising to you?