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Have you been told you’re at risk of developing diabetes?
Maybe your doctor called it pre-diabetes or impaired glucose tolerance, but regardless of the terminology, you’re not sure what to do about it.
Don’t worry you aren’t alone!
While it seems that half the population has been diagnosed with some sort of form of diabetes or pre-diabetes.
Very few people actually know what it means and how to reverse prediabetes with diet.
What is Prediabetes?
Prediabetes is a state of metabolism characterized by persistently elevated blood glucose levels.
There are two types: impaired fasting glucose (IFG) and impaired glucose tolerance (IGT).
Both IFG and IGT are frequently associated with metabolic syndrome, but in general, IGT has a more benign prognosis, while IFG is considered an early form of diabetes.
This means that prediabetes will usually go away on its own if you lose weight.
However, it could become full-blown diabetes over time if left untreated.
This can be avoided by improving your diet, through exercise and eliminating potentially harmful foods like those high in fructose.
How Does Diet Relate to Prediabetes?
Your diet plays a huge role in whether or not you develop prediabetes.
In fact, research shows that nearly half of people who develop prediabetes are overweight or obese, while a quarter is physically inactive.
It’s important to keep in mind that you can be fit and healthy, but still, have prediabetes because excess weight puts undue strain on your pancreas and increases insulin resistance.
To prevent developing prediabetes, it’s important to control your weight.
You should also exercise regularly at least 2 hours per week and get your blood pressure checked at least once a year.
Preventing and Reversing Diabetes Through Diet
If you’re concerned that you may have prediabetes, a condition characterized by higher-than-normal blood sugar but not high enough for a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes, working with your doctor is vital.
But it’s also important to be proactive about what you eat and how active you are since research suggests that diet plays an important role in maintaining healthy blood sugar levels.
The good news?
While there’s no guaranteed way to completely prevent or reverse diabetes (which has many causes).
A heart-healthy eating plan and regular exercise can go a long way toward improving your odds.
In fact, more than half of people who develop prediabetes which usually strikes people at least 40 years old don’t progress to full-blown type 2 diabetes within 10 years.
That tells us that we can do something with our lifestyle choices to offset some risk factors.
What Does A Prediabetic Diet Include?
A prediabetic diet should include plenty of fiber.
Fiber, also known as roughage or bulk, makes you feel full faster and longer.
Choose fiber-rich foods like whole grains (like brown rice, wild rice and oats), vegetables, fruits, legumes and beans.
You can also find fiber in certain breakfast cereals. Include about 25 to 30 grams of fiber each day from these sources.
If you’re a man over age 50 or a woman over age 70, younger people should eat even more fiber.
If you already have diabetes or are at risk for it, talk to your doctor about how much dietary fiber is right for you.
He may want you to get tested every three months while following a high-fiber diet plan to see whether blood glucose levels are improving as intended.
If you eat until you’re full, then it’s no surprise if your blood sugar spikes.
By controlling how much you eat, and how often, you can help reduce overall blood sugar levels.
One of the main culprits behind why people have high blood sugar is because they consume too many simple carbohydrates (sweets, juices) in one sitting.
Instead, try eating smaller meals throughout each day; not only will you be less likely to overeat and binge on sweets, but also doing so will allow you to practice portion control as well!
Or consider meal replacement shakes which are a quick way to drink a few hundred calories worth of food without overindulging on mindless snacking.
Eat whole-grain bread, brown rice, and other high-fiber foods.
These foods help keep your blood sugar stable by releasing sugars more slowly.
Whole grains are low on the glycemic index (GI), which is a measure of how quickly foods raise your blood sugar level.
Foods with a lower GI take longer for your body to digest and absorb. This makes you feel fuller longer as well.
Fiber also helps prevent type 2 diabetes because it keeps you regular and helps clear excess cholesterol from arteries.
To stay healthy, aim for 25 grams of fiber every day.
Good sources include whole-wheat flour, oats, beans and legumes, vegetables like broccoli and squash, fruits such as oranges and apples and even chocolate!
Reduce Alcohol Intake
This can help reduce blood sugar levels and thereby prevent or delay prediabetes from turning into type 2 diabetes.
For individuals who do not want to give up drinking, some suggest limiting alcohol intake to two drinks per day for men and one drink per day for women.
Others say that once you’ve reached 35 years of age, it’s better to cut out alcohol altogether if you have risk factors for type 2 diabetes.
In any case, knowing your blood sugar response to alcohol is an important step in preventing type 2 diabetes down the road.
By limiting your intake of red meat and replacing it with more lean cuts of protein, you’ll be able to reverse prediabetes.
Leaner meats like chicken breasts have less cholesterol than red meat and are generally a healthier choice overall.
And while we don’t recommend cutting out all animal products (for example, cheese is a delicious way to get healthy saturated fats).
These low-fat options make great substitutes for red meat in most cases.
Be careful though, not all low-fat options are really that low in fat!
Check nutrition labels for total grams of fat per serving before purchasing anything that won’t add nutritional value to your meals.
Start your day right and stay healthy by drinking enough water.
While one glass of water may not seem like much, it’s an essential part of hydration that helps keep your body running smoothly.
Additionally, it is recommended that you drink at least 8 ounces of water when you wake up in order to kickstart your digestive system and get it going for the day.
As your day goes on, continue drinking about 10-12 8oz glasses per day for optimal health.
Your urine should be clear or very light yellow all days of the week.
If you have dark-coloured urine then you need to drink more water!
It may take a few days or even weeks before your body adjusts.
But keep drinking lots of H2O because it will greatly improve how well your entire body functions throughout each day!
Natural Pays to Prevent Prediabetes
The best thing you can do for your health is to prevent prediabetes from occurring in your body.
This can be done through a mix of regular exercise and healthy eating.
Often, diabetes symptoms are ignored because there are no noticeable symptoms during their earliest stages.
However, it is vital that you pay attention to them even if they seem minor at first so that you’re able to take immediate action.
Here are some of the things that should trigger your attention:
Though these are just several possible symptoms of prediabetes, there are others as well.
It would be better to consult your doctor immediately after identifying any sign or symptom that is associated with prediabetes.
Remember, prevention is much better than cure!
Exercise could help you reverse prediabetes If you have either pre-diabetic or type 2 diabetes.
engaging in physical activity will help keep blood sugar levels stable.
While improving your diet is a good idea if you have prediabetes, you shouldn’t rely on it as your only strategy for reversing prediabetes.
Along with losing weight and exercising more, taking medications that slow your liver from producing glucose can also help treat prediabetes and reduce blood sugar levels.
Working together with your doctor, these strategies can help lower blood sugar and put prediabetes into remission.