Carbohydrates are an important source of energy in our diet, whether we are diabetic or not. Glucose is a vital source of energy for all our body tissues, including the brain:
- our body tries to maintain stable blood sugar levels consistently
- in normal circumstances when blood sugars rise after a meal of carbohydrates, excess sugar is removed with the help of insulin and taken up by our body cells to give energy
- any excess is extremely converted to fat and stored away
It is not just food that contains carbohydrates … if you want to lower your blood glucose faster and lose weight, watch what you drink.
1. To help keep your blood glucose levels down and control your weight, eat fresh fruit and limit juices. When a fruit is juiced, all the fiber that normally slows down digestion is removed and the calories are concentrated. This then means you can drink much more than you can eat … your sugar and calorie / kilojoule take is then increased.
You probably would not eat three or four oranges in one sitting but you could find yourself drinking their equivalent in sugar on a hot day. Each time you are drinking half a glass of juice you are eating the equivalent of one orange.
What if the fruit juice is natural with no added sugar? It does not really make much difference as the sugar content of fresh juice is already high. They are already very sweet.
2. Cut down on fizzy drinks . These beverages have no nutritional value but each 12.5oz / 375ml can of cola or fizzy drink contains 156 calories (655kj) of sugar which is equal to ten teaspoons. Also studies show calories from these drinks do not fill you up the same way as food does. So you end up consuming more calories through the day. And again sending your blood sugar levels high.
3. Consuming excess alcohol may result in gain gain and obesity. Those who drink moderately are not considered to be at risk. A standard can of beer contains:
- 12.5oz / 375ml is equal to 110 calories (460kj)
- 12.5oz / 375ml is equal to 75calories (315kj)
A nip of spirits contains 65calories (272kj)
When you drink your liver considers alcohol a toxin. In order for it to cleanse your blood of the toxin, its ability to release glucose is reduced. At this time hypoglycemia becomes a real risk for those with diabetes.
If you have type 2 diabetes and want to lose weight and lower your blood glucose levels faster, a start is to watch what you drink.