Being a diabetic, it is better to stick to a high-protein, low-carb diet. Everything we eat is energy, but carbs break down differently than fats and proteins.
Protein takes longer to break down and doesn’t break down into what is essentially sugar. It gives us a longer-lasting form of energy than say, refined sugar. It’s even better than fruit-derived sugars, which act as a quicker burst of energy. The body breaks these down more easily and turns them into useable forms of power.
Insulin is the key
Insulin is a hormone produced in your pancreas that allows all the energy (food) your body takes in to be used as energy. Insulin unlocks cells to let in carbs to be burned as fuel for your moving, working system. Diabetics have a hard time making insulin.
You see, type 1 diabetics don’t make any insulin and therefore are entirely dependant on artificially manufactured insulin (which comes at a cost: depending on insurance, insulin can cost anywhere from $40-120+ per 30ml vial.)
Type 2 diabetics are some degree of insulin resistant. Some type 2 diabetics’ bodies are more resistant than others’ and many type 2 individuals can control the metabolic disorder with diet, exercise, and oral medication. Others need injections and routine checkups.
Be A Diabetic-Friendly Cook
What’s a fantastic way to keep your body happy and healthy? Whether you’re diabetic or not, you should really watch what you eat. Carb-heavy meals are great for marathon runners, but will spike your blood sugar (and therefore insulin) levels if not monitored.
You’re much better off eating a balanced meal: green veggies with almost no carbs (celery, lettuce, spinach – you know, salad), carby vegetables (carbs aren’t ALL bad, just in the right amounts and from the right sources like potatoes, grains, rice), and protein (usually from animal meats, but also from legumes and nuts) as well as healthy fats (from animals like fish, yogurts, nuts, avocado). Of course you’ll want something sweet as well – just make sure your insulin responds to your blood sugar spikes.
Here’s an exclusive recipe from nutritionist Tara Murali, at Diabetacare. Loaded with nutritious ingredients that become this delicious, balanced, hormone-healthy meal for diabetics.
- 1 cup soaked chickpeas
- ½ cup shredded spinach
- 300 gm cooked long grained rice
- 2 tsp oil
- ½ cup thinly sliced onions
- 1 tsp ginger-garlic paste
- ½ cup finely chopped capsicum
- ½ cup finely chopped tomatoes
- ¼ tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 1 tsp coriander-cumin seed powder
- Salt to taste
First, you’ve got to soak your chickpeas overnight in water. When they’re ready to add to the dish, make sure you wash them well to rinse off any residue.
- Heat the oil in a big non-stick pan, add the onion and sauté on a medium heat for 1 to 2 minutes, or until it lightly browns.
- Add the ginger-garlic paste and heat on medium for a few seconds.
- Add the capsicum and tomatoes and sauté on a medium heat for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Add the spinach, turmeric powder, chilli powder, coriander-cumin seeds powder and 2 tbsp of water. Mix well and cook on medium for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Add the chickpeas and salt and mix well. Add the rice, mix well and continue to cook on medium for 1 to 2 minutes.
This delightful diabetic-friendly dish serves 4 and will fill you up. You’ll feel satisfied knowing that you’ve eaten well without sending your endocrine system into shock.