It is great to see that the NHS has taken an approach to managing the diabetes epidemic using a lifestyle and diet programme. We have known for the last decade that diet and lifestyle largely gives rise to chronic disease globally.
As with all recommendations which the NHS makes, there has to be some clinical evidence. Professor Taylor has done that with a small group of diabetic patients, leading to the implementation of the Healthier You Programme.
You can find out more from your GP if you are eligible to be selected to go onto the scheme. It is advisable that you seek advice before you make any changes to your diet and lifestyle, especially if you are taking any prescribed medications.
Our recommendations are for information only and must not be used as a treatment plan in managing your condition.
- Reduce the daily intake of calories by ½ of what you normally eat. Eat lower fat foods and higher fibre foods with a quality protein. Fibre helps to reduce the blood sugar surges.
- Avoid refined high glyceamic foods such as: white rice; white flour products; pasta; starchy foods.
- When eating carbohydrates ensure that they are low glyceamic loading, this means that they will not cause the insulin levels to shoot up rapidly.
Low glyceamic foods include asparagus; broccoli; cabbage; green beans and other low starch vegetables and fruits. Note that potatoes are very starchy and these are best avoided.
- Drink plenty of fresh clean water during the day.
- Eat quality proteins from vegetarian sources rather than animal sources. Helping with lowering the calorie intake during the day. Animal protein also contains higher levels of unhealthy fats.
- Avoid saturated fats ; trans fats; hydrogenated fats or partially hydrogenated fats; simple sugars. All of these will greatly increase the risk of diabetes & cardiovascular disease.
- Beneficial fats,which can be incorporated into the healthy diet include (only in moderation): extra virgin olive oil; almond oil; nuts and seeds. However, you must remember that the aim is to reduce the calorie intake, and any fats even the beneficial fats are higher in calories. So, make sure that you make the necessary adjustments.
- Regular exercise: Some research has indicated that taking regular exercise can have an insulin like effect, so helping with regulating the blood sugar levels in the body. Exercise results in weightloss, along with a healthy diet, not just exercise on its own. 80% is diet, 20% exercise for weight loss.
- Motivation: You have to be motivated to lose the weight to help manage the risks of diabetes. Join a class or a club, as being around other people with the same goals can be psychologically effective in meeting your own targets.
JUICING: Over the last few years, there has been a rise in juicing fruits and vegetables at home, especially with all the gadgets which are available on the market. In clinic, I do not recommend juicing when someone is faced with a chronic disease.
Juicing fruits and even vegetables leads to a higher intake of simple sugars. It is vital to understand that when a fruit/vegetable is juiced that it is the sugars which are separated, leaving behind the complex fibres (which are also required by the body). The juice will be very high in sugar, hence higher in calories. For example, an 8 oz glass of juice will contain around 30 grams of carbohydrates. The average person drinks more that 8 oz of juice in one go, so if you do the maths, that is a high level of carbohydrates in a glass which contains nothing but simple sugars.
Juicing also means that most of the good stuff the fibre from the fruits and vegetables is thrown away. Further, throwing away the fruit/vegetable fibre is financially wasteful (given that you paid to buy the entire food item) and not very environmentally friendly.
Whilst, juicing every now and again is fine for the healthy person who has no other chronic illness, it is detrimental to individuals who are diagnosed with diabetes.
My advice, put that juicer away in the back of the cupboard if you are a diabetic. If you are not a diabetic, make sure that you only have a pure juice every now and then. Once per week would be fine as long as you have a balanced diet.
Making sure that you are taking simple steps and looking after your diet with a healthy plate of food will help to prevent disease in the long term.
The above information is for guidance only and is not a treatment plan. Please seek advice from your healthcare professional before making any changes to your lifestyle, diet or medication. Copyright Mrs G Nandhra April2016. Wellbeing Range.