Living with diabetes means you have to do away with the main culprit – sugar. It is important that you do this because people with diabetes are at a greater risk of developing mental health disorders like depression and have nearly double the risk of developing complications like heart disease, hypertension and kidney failure.
The key to coping with diabetes is to lose weight and this can be achieved through the lowering of your sugar intake. A weight loss of 5% to 10% of your total weight can help you lower your blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
Even if you have already developed diabetes, it is never too late to make a positive change. By eating healthier, being more physically active and losing weight, you can reduce your symptoms or even reverse diabetes. HelpGuide.Org has come up with a number of tips on how to reduce your sugar craving:
- Reduce your craving for sweets by slowly reducing the sugar in your diet a little at a time. This will give you taste buds some time to adjust to the idea of having no more sugar in your diet.
- Hold the carbohydrates in your meal if you want dessert. Eating sweets during meal time adds extra carbohydrates so cut back on the other carbohydrates like bread, pasta or rice in the same meal.
- Add some healthy fat to your dessert. Fat slows down the digestive process and because of this, sugar levels do not spike as quickly. Healthy fats include peanut butter, ricotta cheese, yogurt and nuts.
- Eat sweets with a meal, rather than as a snack. When eaten as a snack, sweets cause your blood sugar to spike. But if you eat them along with other healthy foods as part of your meal, your blood sugar will not rise as rapidly.
- When you eat dessert, enjoy every bite. Make your indulgence count by eating slowly and paying attention to the favors and textures. You will enjoy it more and the chance of you overeating will be less.
- Reduce soft drinks, soda and juice. Cut down on creamers and sweeteners you add to tea and coffee.
- Don’t replace saturated fat with sugar. Many replace saturated fat such as whole milk dairy with refined cards, thinking that this is a healthier choice. Low fat does not mean healthy when the fat has been replaced by added sugar.
- Sweeten foods yourself. Buy unsweetened iced tea, plain yogurt, or unflavored oatmeal, for example, and add sweeteners or fruit yourself.
- Check labels and opt for low sugar products and use fresh or frozen ingredients instead of canned goods. Take note of the sugar content of cereals and sugar drinks.
- Avoid processed or packaged foods like canned soups, frozen dinners or low fat meals that often contain hidden sugar. Prepare more meals at home.
- Reduce the amount of sugar in recipes by ¼ to 1/3. You can boost sweetness with mint, cinnamon, nutmeg or vanilla extract instead of sugar.
- Find healthy ways to satisfy your sweet tooth. Instead of ice cream, blend up frozen bananas for a creamy, frozen treat. Or enjoy a small chunk of dark chocolate rather than a milk chocolate bar.
- Start with half of the dessert you normally eat, and replace the other half with fruit.
Eating a diabetic diet does not mean eliminating sugar altogether, but like most of us, the chances are you consume more sugar than is healthy. If you have diabetes, you can still enjoy a small serving of your favorite dessert now and then. The key is moderation.
About the Author:
Anne Ruth Dela Cruz is a seasoned writer who has interests in health, wellness and business start ups. She has also dabbled in corporate communications and public relations. A mother of four, Anne also loves videoke sessions and reading a good book. My posts appear on: Negosentro, World Executives Digest, Executive Chronicles, Get Health Access, and Trade & Travel Journal.