So How Can I Prevent or Delay Type 2 Diabetes?
Monitor your Carbohydrate Intake: Carbohydrates are the bodies’ primary source of energy, but when eaten in excess, they are stored as fat. And when your body is not using sugar efficiently, excess carbohydrate intake can cause blood sugars to remain elevated. In order to lose weight and lower blood sugars, you should reduce the intake of carbohydrates, particularly sugary beverages (including fruit juice), white breads, cookies, cakes and ice cream. The key is to eat a modified carbohydrate diet, not a carbohydrate free diet.
When choosing carbohydrates you will want to choose complex, high fiber ones that are portion controlled. It’s best to meet with a Registered Dietitian or Certified Diabetes Educator to come up with the right diet plan for you. However, some simple tips for modifying your carbohydrate intake include:
- Practice the Plate Method: Aim to make ½ your plate non-starchy vegetables (salad, broccoli, spinach, cauliflower, onions, peppers, eggplant, etc). This will provide volume, water, fiber and limited carbohydrate. ¼ of your plate or about 1 cup should be dedicated to your starch – whole grains such as quinoa, barley, bulgar, and other complex carbohydrates including, sweet potato (with the skin), squash, and beans. And the other ¼ of your plate or about the size of a deck of cards should be lean protein – white meat chicken, turkey, fish, lean beef.
- Eliminate all Sweetened Beverages and Added Sugars: Sugary beverages can cause fluctuations in blood sugar and weight gain. Avoid juice, soda, sweetened iced tea, and adding sugar to your coffee. Instead, drink water with lemon or lime, unsweetened tea and coffee and seltzer.
- Increase Exercise regularly