The Best Foods for Diabetes
If you already follow a healthful meal plan filled with whole grains, fresh fruits and veggies, and lean protein, congratulations! You’re on your way to a long, healthy life and are taking a major step in controlling your weight and blood sugar levels. Plus, you’re probably already eating a bunch of the foods on this list.
For those who are taking the baby-steps approach to eating better, this list is even more helpful. Not only are these power foods high in fiber, antioxidants, and vitamins and minerals, they’re also familiar and easy to find. That means you don’t have to hunt down any exotic ingredients or shop at specialty grocery stores to find foods that will help you get on track with a healthful meal plan.
An apple a day keeps the doctor away — specifically the cardiologist. A 2012 study at Ohio State University published in the Journal of Functional Foods found that eating just one apple a day for four weeks lowered LDL (bad) cholesterol by 40 percent. The professor leading the study explained that not all antioxidants are created equal, and that a particular type of antioxidant in apples had a profound effect on lowering LDLs, a contributor to heart disease. The study was funded in part by a grant from the U.S. Apple Association, among other supporters.
More reasons why apples are good for a diabetes diet.
This crunchy fruit also appears to offer protection against diabetes. The Harvard School of Public Health examined the diets of 200,000 people and found that those who reported eating five or more apples a week had a 23 percent lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes compared with subjects who did not eat any apples.
More good news: A medium-size apple contains 3 grams of fiber, which includes both soluble and insoluble fiber. How ’bout them apples?
Do remember, however, that one small apple has about 15 grams of carb. Some of the large apples in the grocery store are equivalent to two servings of fruit.
The best foods for diabetes are most often whole foods that are not processed, such as fruits and vegetables. Including these extra-healthy power foods in your diet will help you meet your nutritional needs as well as lower your risk of diabetes complications such as heart disease. Of course, the foods on this list shouldn’t be the only foods you eat, but incorporating some or all into your diabetes meal plan will help improve your overall health.