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  • Writer's pictureShruti GOCHHWAL

What to Expect During a Pre-Diabetic Diet?

Have you been diagnosed with the pre-diabetic condition? Do you know the pre-diabetic condition is referred to as borderline diabetes? Well! Pre-diabetic condition is where a person becomes highly vulnerable to develop diabetes in future. However, the condition can be reversed with certain dietary and lifestyle modifications.

What is a Pre-Diabetic Condition?

Pre- diabetes is also called borderline diabetes because the levels of blood sugar are higher than average, but also far from type 2 diabetes. It is an alarming situation and can be reversed by preventive measures.

When are You Considered to be Pre-Diabetic?

 You may be considered pre-diabetic if you have:

  1. Fasting blood sugar level- 100 to 125 mg/dl

  2. Glycosylated hemoglobin falls between 5.7 to 6.4%.

  3. Oral glucose tolerance test range from 140 to 199 mg/dl.

What is the Glycemic Index?

The Glycemic Index (GI) is a ranking of food containing carbohydrates, based on how much they affect your blood glucose levels upon consumption. It is basically calculated as the time taken by the body to raise the blood sugar levels immediately after the food is consumed.

For example, high glycemic foods (sugary beverages, wheat bread) will easily increase your glucose blood sugar, and vice versa.

Foods with high GI should be avoided by diabetic or pre-diabetic people as it may cause a spike in blood sugar levels, which can cause various other health problems.

How can the Pre-diabetic Diet Condition be Reversed?

And without taking medicine, the prediabetic disease can be easily cured and treated. You just need to follow the right pre-diabetic diet plan, along with healthy lifestyle habits like exercise, limiting alcohol and avoiding smoke. This may certainly require some dedication but it’s worth it.

What to Expect During a Pre-Diabetic Diet Plan?

There are multiple factors which you need to consider while planning or choosing a pre-diabetic diet plan for you. Some of which include your age, digestive capability, physical fitness, body mass index, health condition, and many more. This makes it impossible for a single best pre-diabetic diet to be determined. However, we will talk about some essential food sources in this article that will help to control your blood sugar.

  1. Polyphenol rich foods-  Polyphenols can be obtained from various fruits, grains and vegetables like grapes, berries, apples, pears, green tea, cocoa (chocolate), red onions, spinach, olives, whole grains, dry legumes, and nuts.

Polyphenol-rich fruits, vegetables and nuts

Polyphenol-rich fruits, vegetables and nuts, Credits: Pixabay

How can they help? 

Polyphenol rich diet has reportedly improved insulin resistance in people with pre-diabetic and diabetic conditions by inhibiting glucose absorption in the gut, influencing blood sugar levels by exerting anti-inflammatory effects. It has also shown to fight oxidative stress damage to the pancreatic beta cells which are known to produce insulin.

  1. Foods that have a low glycemic index Carbohydrates provide energy and please our satiety centers, which makes it difficult for us to stay away from them. However, eating food with a high glycemic index will rapidly increase the blood sugar level (glucose) in comparison with food that is slowly digested, ingested and metabolized into the body with a low glycemic index.

You can take your daily carbs from whole grains, legumes, fruits, certain vegetables, and dairy products. These foods have a low glycemic index and are consumed slowly by the body, which slowly increases the blood sugar levels. Sugar, added fats or sodium food should be avoided.

  1. The DASH diet and insulin sensitivity

The DASH diet – DASH diet is the  Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension. Diabetic or prediabetic patients are often found to have high blood pressure. In these circumstances, blood pressure regulation may play an important role in lowering the blood sugar.

Turnips, beets and carrots

Turnips, beets and carrots, Credits: Pixabay

DASH diet suggests having foods that are rich in essential minerals like potassium, magnesium and foods that are a rich source of nitrates like beets, carrots, and turnips, or low-fat dairy products. Consuming these foods may play an important role in preventing hypertension as well as type 2 diabetes.

How does it help?

The consumption of food high in nitrates facilitates blood vessel vasodilation resulting in lower blood pressure. Studies of research indicated that after a DASH diet, glycosylated hemoglobin A1c may adjust favorably, lower blood glucose and insulin levels may avoid type 2 diabetes. The DASH diet and the control of weight can also encourage greater sensitivity to insulin.

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