This is a photo of a meter that registers your blood sugar levels with a very small prick to the finger. I have one because diabetes runs in my family and I like to monitor my glucose levels.
November is National Diabetes Month, so I wanted to make a few comments about this “disease,” since diet plays a large part. Not being a doctor, I am including information from Dr. Arnold Meshkov, which appears in Natural Awakenings Magazine, a free national magazine with interesting regional and national articles. (Not sure if this article appears nationally or only in my regional issue.)
In this short, but informative article, Dr. Meshkov notes that diabetes is a “disease of metabolism,
the biochemistry that allows our bodies to convert sugar, or glucose, in our food to energy that our body cells can use..”
The good doctor also notes that insulin, made in the pancreas, is the molecule/hormone that transports this glucose. The insulin goes into our bloodstream when sugar levels in the blood increase. However, according to the article, when the pancreas produces more than normal amounts of insulin, the latter does not work as well and we have what is called “insulin resistance.” This is followed by the statement: “And the cause of this resistance is obesity.”
Additionally, other articles I have read in addition to this one, make note that there is a strong link between diabetes and heart disease. I have also read that there maybe a link between diabetes and Alzheimer’s; in fact, some medical-minded people call Alzheimer’s Type III diabetes.
The good news is that diet, exercise, and other life style changes, as well as medication if needed, can help reduce or eliminate diabetes and its long-term side effects as a result of daily insulin (ex.eye problems). One site has a colorful Home Page that shows pictures of dishes under the title “Healthy & Tasty Recipes.” One example is their Broccoli/ Mushrooms / Cheddar Omelet; another is the Greek Salad; and another is their crunchy veggie wraps. Sounds like what I eat!
Meat recipes also included on their site. I picked non-meat ones. Many years ago I spoke with a dietitian at the local community college who claimed a meatless diet could be harmful for diabetic, but this has long been discarded, as witnessed by the number of meatless diets listed on the
If you go to this site below you will find the top 25 foods for diabetes, many of which are what I have been eating since giving up meat in 1976, such as fresh and lightly cooked organic, fresh produce, whole grains, nuts, seeds, etc.
Perhaps more important are the foods to avoid, although I don’t agree with all the choices, such as egg yolks being limited, but this quote I do agree with ” …Other foods, which are considered the worst choices for diabetics, are white flour, white rice, fruit drinks, canned fruits that contain sugary syrup, whole milk and fatty meats, notes WebMD.”(www.reference.com)
In summary, what I have deducted from all the literature on diabetes is that the same recommendations show up for many diseases. They include lots of fresh foods; reducing highly processed foods that are high in sugar, salt and additives; an exercise program that includes a variety of modalities (strength training, walking, swimming, yoga, tai chi, etc.); and a positive attitude that includes managing stress.
I believe that most of my recipes (Click on Recipe Index in the right side of the Home Page) would fall into the category of healthy and suitable for preventing or treating diabetes, but my suggestion is that if pre-diabetes or diabetes is an issue, consult your doctor or dietitian or alternative practitioner for information on foods that are best for you and foods that you need to avoid except perhaps on special occasions, like pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving!
P.S. www.activebeat.com lists 15 foods to help manage diabetes with lovely photos that are suitable for diabetics, most of which I have in my recipes, from apples & blueberries to tofu and to yogurt. Here’s the link: http://www.activebeat.co/health-news/15-foods-to-help-manage-diabetes/14/.