5 dangerous foods

5 Dangerous Foods Any Diabetic Should Avoid

While there are many factors that contribute to living a healthy lifestyle with diabetes, nutrition is the most important aspect that directly affects your lifestyle. It is important to know which foods are beneficial and which foods you should avoid.

1. Candy

Candy, cookies, syrup, and soda are all a diabetic’s worst nightmare. These foods lack nutritional value, cause extreme spikes in blood glucose levels, and contribute to weight gain. All three of these factors lead to worsened complications with your diabetes. Instead of eating these low-quality carbohydrates, try to consume high-quality carbs like fresh fruit instead. Apples, berries, oranges, grapes, and pears all have that sweet juicy taste of candy and contain large amounts of fiber which help slow the absorption of glucose. In order to lessen the impact on your blood sugar even more, try pairing a snack filled with protein when you eat fruit. String cheese, nonfat yogurt, or a handful of nuts can be very helpful in reducing the spike that may come along with eating carbohydrates.

2. Packaged Snacks and Pastries

Almost everyone has ordered from one of those convenient snack machines that are always stocked with packaged snacks. However, these are probably some of the worst foods that a diabetic can consume. The combination of sugar and refined flours spikes blood glucose levels and interferes with the body’s ability to utilize insulin. Also, these foods contain a type of fat called trans fat. These fats raise cholesterol levels and risk of heart disease and are very dangerous for diabetics.

3. Fried Food

Fried foods, like French fries, potato chips, and doughnuts, are very bad for your blood sugar and can lead to weight gain. These foods are especially bad for people with diabetes because of their high carbohydrate and starch ingredient levels. Other fried foods, like fried chicken or shrimp, are coated with bread before it is fried. This coating raises the already large amount of calories to an even higher number. Hydrogenated oils also make fried food very unhealthy due to the trans fats.

4. Dried Fruits

Raisins and other dried fruits are a much better option than candy or cookies, but they will still spike your blood glucose levels. Fruits’ natural sugars become very concentrated during the dehydration process. This leads to your body absorbing high amounts of sugar in a very short amount of time. If you are going to be eating dried fruits, you might as well be eating the whole, fresh fruits instead because of how much better they are for you!

5. Refined Starches

White bread, white rice, white pasta, and anything made with white flour are all refined starches. These are not good for diabetics because starches, once in the body, act a lot like sugar, meaning they spike blood sugar levels. If you can, you should choose the whole wheat option in lieu of refined starches. Whole wheat products are rich in fiber and cause a much slower, steady rise in blood sugar.

While it really isn’t a question of what’s dangerous as much a question of HOW MUCH is dangerous, it’s a good idea to abstain from these foods. Instead a healthy meal plan combined with exercise is can significantly decrease the complications of diabetes.

By: DiabeticCare editorial team; Published: 2-6-2014, 2:00 PM

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