In the spirit of Diabetes Awareness month, I thought it would be appropriate to walk you through why Type II Diabetes, as a preventable lifestyle disease, can be prevented and even often cured when smart and realistic steps are taken from someone who is motivated to positively change their life.
“The growing prevalence of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and some cancers is tied to excess weight.” So although we know that being overweight and type II diabetes are closely linked, unfortunately, often people struggle getting started on making change- whether it’s from lack of knowledge, a poor support system or they simply feel that getting started is daunting or too time consuming. But that is where I come in. As YOUR nutritionist, I am here to lay it out for you, be your support system and cheerleader. This is my job and I love it.
I often hear from my clients, that once they begin sessions with me, a lot of the fears they had about changing their diet and lifestyle that the process is no longer scary. Once they know that I’m here for them through the whole process, without judgment and only for their best interest, they are calm and ready to dive in.So what does diving in look like?
Well for everyone it is different. It depends on where each person is starting from.
- How much weight do they need to lose?
- How high are their blood sugars?
- How long have they been this way?
So lets dive in with 4 simple, food based suggestions I want you to add into your diet today that will help you lose weight and begin to lower and better balance your blood sugars.
1. Cinnamon: This fragrant spice is amazing for naturally lowering blood sugars. I give this to all of my clients who have blood sugar concerns and weight to lose. Cinnamon is a tasty addition to smoothies, oatmeal, plain Greek yogurt and even coffee and tea. How much you ask? I say, add cinnamon to as many foods as you can through your day.
2. Green Tea: is being touted as an awesome natural support for blood sugar management. “Various studies have shown the beneficial effects of green tea, not only on cardiovascular diseases but also on obesity and type 2 diabetes itself”. If you don’t like it hot, consider buying an infused green tea, such as lemon or raspberry infused green tea and cool it down with lemons and limes and store in your fridge. If you really want to hide the taste, use cooled green tea as a base for your smoothie instead of using water or juice.
3. Turmeric: Talk about a potent antioxidant rich food! Pay attention if you don’t use this food yet in your diet. As a member of the ginger family, this plant is a powerhouse in my option and should be used by everyone. In the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry researchers “found that Turmeric could prevent diabetes from developing”. How to use: add a pinch to smoothies or salad dressings, sprinkle over cooked veggies for a touch of flavor, add to rubs for fish or poultry or enjoy in a stir-fry.
4. Fish and Hemp seeds: I wanted to include these two omega-packed protein sources in this list to demonstrate the importance of both fatty acids and protein in blood sugar management. I meet very few individuals in my practice who eat enough protein and this can wreak havoc on our blood sugars. Protein helps to balance sugars from foods, slowing them down in our blood stream- hugely important to anyone trying to lose weight, but especially vital for type II diabetics.
Pick ideally 3-4 servings of clean and lean protein per day. Examples include: plain Greek yogurt, eggs, chicken and protein powders (one of my favourites are Fermented Vegan Proteins + by Genuine Health).
If you are anyone you know is struggling with type II diabetes, my hope is that you share this article with them.
If you decide you want to learn more about healthy weight loss, please check out my newest book, Your Weight Loss G-Spot – The woman’s how-to weight loss system for a healthy, sassy you!
It is a make-it-happen weight loss book that combines the fundamentals of nutrition and healthy eating with the mind–body–heart targeted coaching required to get you to your goal and to make it stick. To find out more about it, go here: www.weightlossgspot.com –Coming November 14th 2015!
i Parvez Hossain, M.D., Bisher Kawar, M.D., and Meguid El Nahas, M.D., Ph.D. (2007). Obesity and Diabetes in the Developing World — A Growing Challenge.N Engl J Med 2007; 356:213-215 January 18, 2007 DOI: 10.1056/NEJMp068177
ii Diabetes Metab J. 2013 Jun; 37(3): 173–175. Published online 2013 Jun 14. doi: 10.4093/dmj.2013.37.3.173 PMCID: PMC3689013 The Effects of Green Tea on Obesity and Type 2 Diabetes Hyun Min Kim and Jaetaek Kim
Picture credit: ichdhealthcare.org