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Diabetes mellitus is a serious medical condition in which your body does not produce enough insulin, the hormone that breaks-down sugar, or is not able to use it properly. So, what happens is that your blood sugar levels shoot up damaging your kidneys, heart, brain, nerves, eyes, and blood vessels. It is diagnosed through a blood test after you have fasted overnight.
Type 1 diabetes is different from type 2 diabetes. Type 1 is predominantly a genetic disorder and is found in even babies but type 2 diabetes is the one we develop as adults mostly because of our eating habits, lifestyle and diet.
If you have diabetes, your doctor will counsel you about making serious changes to your diet to reduce your risk of developing complications. Your doctor will also mandate losing 5-10 percent of your body weight if you are overweight and exercising more to get rid of blood sugar by burning it.
Portion size control for diabetics
- Portion control which essentially means how much you eat at every meal—is key in helping you manage type 2 diabetes.
- Portion control also reduces your calorie intake and leads to weight loss which in turn improves your body’s insulin sensitivity and leads to manageable blood glucose levels.
- Truth be told, if you have type 2 diabetes, you need to lose weight even if you are not obese. Carrying even a slight bit of extra weight can increase insulin resistance which means that your body can no longer properly use insulin.
This is why portion control is critical to managing diabetes. So downsize your portions and get rid of carbs, especially the processed carbs like pasta, cookies, dessert and sodas, to stay healthy.
What goes on your plate?
According to the American Diabetes Association, your plate at each meal must have lots of non-starchy vegetables and smaller portions of starchy foods like potatoes. Proteins and fats especially the healthy fats are good for you as they don’t trigger insulin.
Here are some tips for portion control at mealtimes
- Draw an imaginary line in the centre of your plate.
- Divide one side of your plate yet again so your plate is split into 3 sections.
- Half of your plate should be filled with non-starchy vegetables like carrots or cauliflower.
- One fourth of your plate should be filled with protein or lean meat like egg, turkey or tuna.
- The other one-fourth of your plate should be filled with a good carb like whole grain bread.
- This method can be followed for breakfast as well.
For the first meal of the day, eat small portions of healthy foods like a bowl of oatmeal with a banana and 2 tablespoons of peanut butter for protein. Following these portion control basic guidelines will lead to guaranteed results in your weight as well as your blood glucose levels. But you need to be patient. It takes about 3 months for the results to start showing so keep up the hard work for your health. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can ask a free question.