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  • Writer's pictureMagaly Ariela Stvil

The Pre-Diabetes Diet: The Foods You Should Be Eating to Avoid Diabetes

Pre-diabetes is defined as a blood glucose level between 100 and 125 mg/dL, and according to the CDC, pre-diabetes affects nearly 80 million Americans. When left untreated, pre-diabetes can lead to diabetes and other health problems, such as heart disease and stroke. Fortunately, following an effective diet plan can help keep your blood glucose levels in check and prevent them from reaching unhealthy levels—a key element of the pre-diabetes diet.

Eat Plenty of Fruits and Vegetables

Not only are fruits and vegetables loaded with fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants—which can help protect against many diseases like diabetes—but they’re also very low in calories. A study by Harvard researchers published in a 2011 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine found that consuming more produce was associated with a lower risk of type 2 diabetes. Researchers believe that antioxidant phytochemicals (namely, anthocyanins) may have some protective properties.

Cut Down on Sugar

When you eat too much sugar, your blood sugar and insulin levels rise. Too much of either hormone can cause extra fat to pack onto your waistline and into other parts of your body like your liver or muscles. That’s where pre-diabetes comes in.

Limit Alcohol Intake

Alcohol is loaded with calories, which are converted to fat when they’re not used. In addition, alcohol contains no fiber and contributes to excess sodium to your diet. Excess sodium can raise blood pressure and cause further damage to your arteries. Finally, alcohol consumption may contribute to obesity, since heavy drinkers tend to gain weight over time.

Eat Protein at Every Meal

Protein is an essential part of any weight loss diet. Whether it’s from fish, chicken, beef or beans, protein helps stabilize blood sugar levels and keeps you feeling full for longer. It also boosts your metabolism so that you burn more calories throughout your day. Healthy body weight is key to avoiding diabetes, and eating enough protein can help keep your body trim and toned. YHWH

Eliminate Processed Foods and Focus on Fresh Ingredients

Processed foods are high in sugar, sodium a

nd fat. These ingredients have been linked to obesity and diabetes. Cutting out processed foods and increasing fresh ingredients will help you lose weight, lower your blood pressure and decrease your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Drink Water Instead of Sugary Drinks

Sugary drinks cause your blood sugar levels to spike, which causes your body’s insulin levels to increase. This leads to both weight gain and pre-diabetes. Drink water instead of sugary drinks—even soda counts as a sugary drink! Water can also help you lose weight. When you’re dehydrated, your body cannot efficiently process calories and fat—so it holds on tighter (and more stubbornly) than normal.

Prepare Your Own Meals Whenever Possible

Preparing your own meals is a great way to stay on top of what you’re putting into your body. It’s also a good idea because it can help prevent diabetes. If you prepare your own meals, then you know exactly what goes into them and how they were prepared. To make eating healthy as easy as possible, only shop at grocery stores with plenty of fresh produce and lean meats available.

Don’t Forget About Exercise

Exercise is critical for avoiding diabetes, maintaining weight loss, and keeping overall health. If you are overweight or obese, exercise can be as effective as diet in helping you avoid developing diabetes. For those who already have type 2 diabetes, regular physical activity can improve blood sugar control, decrease insulin resistance and reduce cardiovascular risk factors such as high blood pressure and triglycerides. Exercise may also increase your feel-good hormones by releasing endorphins and dopamine in your brain.

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