25 Foods That Improve Your Health, Lower Risk of Diabetes

Part One

These foods will improve your overall health and can be consumed without fear of aggravating diabetes. This post from Cure Joy unveils 25 healthy foods that keep diabetes and heart disease in check.

To eat or not to eat—that is the question diabetics ask when it comes to food. Whole foods that are not processed, such as fruits and vegetables, are considered as the best foods for diabetes. Less of refined carbohydrates, lots of lean protein and more good fat helps control blood-sugar levels and reduces the risk of diabetes-related complications. Making these healthy foods a part of your diet improves your nutritional intake and lowers the risk of diabetes and heart disease. Including at least some of the superfoods on this list into your diabetes meal plan will help improve your overall health.

Healthy foods for diabetics

Here are 25 foods that diabetics can be consumed without any fear of aggravating diabetes. These foods are high in fiber, antioxidants, minerals and vitamins. Their easy availability ensures that you can buy them from the neighborhood supermarket or the convenient store around the block.

1 Apples. We all know the familiar proverb about apples and doctors. The good news is that apples also protect us against diabetes.

The Harvard School of Public Health found that people who ate five or more apples a week had a 23 percent lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The American Diabetes Association recommends including fiber-rich apples in a diabetes meal plan. Apples contain sugar, a form of carbohydrate, which the body converts into glucose. The key to maintaining an optimum level of blood-glucose levels is to eat moderate portions of carbohydrate-containing foods and to spread the intake of these foods through the day. Diabetics must consider the portion sizes that they consume. Moderation is crucial, and consuming too much may increase blood sugar levels. Antioxidants in apples help reduce LDLs, a key cause of heart diseases.

2 Asparagus. Asparagus is rich in glutathione, an anti-oxidant that prevents the effects of aging and many diseases including diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. Asparagus also helps control blood-sugar levels and boosts insulin production.

3 Avocados. Avocados contain high amounts of unsaturated vegetable fats. An important connection has been found between avocados and diabetes. A study in 2008 found that women who consumed the highest amount of good fats were 25 percent less likely to develop type 2 diabetes compared with women who ate the least amount. So, include this fruit in your diet in the form of salads and sandwiches.

4 Beans. Researchers have found that eating a cup of legumes every day can help you efficiently control blood-sugar levels for both, blood glucose and A1C, and reduces blood pressure. Consuming ample fiber regularly also reduces the risk of a first-time stroke.

5 Blueberries. High fiber content found in blueberries has shown to reduce the risk of diabetes, cognitive decline, and help control blood-sugar level. Blueberries also prevent cancer by suppressing tumor growth and decreasing inflammation. Anthocyanins found in blueberries lower risk of type 2 diabetes. Research has shown that people who consume blueberries regularly reduce the risk of developing type 2 by 23 percent.

6 Broccoli. Compounds containing sulfur called glucosinolates are found in large quantities in cruciferous vegetables like broccoli. These compounds are famous for their anticancer properties, and they may also play a crucial role in lowering risk of heart disease and related deaths. In general, cruciferous vegetables are said to reduce the risk of death from heart disease.

7 Carrots. Carrots are high in beta-carotene antioxidants, which produce vitamin A, crucial for good eyesight and efficient immune function. It also helps prevent the development of some types of cancers. Beta-carotene can reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes among people who are vulnerable to genetically contract diabetes.

8 Cranberries. Apart from preventing urinary-tract infections, cranberries do a world of good to those who include it in their diabetic meal plan. They contain phytonutrients, including anthocyanins. Evidence suggests that the antioxidants in cranberries lower heart disease risk by reducing LDL cholesterol, improving HDL cholesterol and lowering blood pressure.

9 Fish. Not only is seafood low in saturated fat and cholesterol, it is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Sardines, mackerel, salmon, lake trout, tuna, herring and halibut are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which help in reducing the risk of arrhythmia, which can cause sudden death. However, some fish like king mackerel, swordfish and shark may contain mercury in high amounts. A diet that includes fish can reduce the risk of stroke occurring due to diabetes, But avoid eating fried fish, as it increases the risk. (To be continued)

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