Diabetes mellitus (known commonly as diabetes) is a health condition that affects over 244 million people worldwide and leads to millions of deaths every year.
Diabetes comes in two varieties: type 1 and type 2. Both types of diabetes are characterized by disruptions in how the body processes glucose. In type 1 diabetes, the body doesn’t produce enough insulin or any at all. In type 2 diabetes, the body produces insulin but doesn’t respond to it properly.
Controlling your blood sugar levels is essential for managing your diabetes and maintaining good health. One of the most effective things you can do to manage your chronic condition is to reduce your overall sugar intake to make it easier for your body to regulate your blood glucose concentration.
Below, we’ve discussed some of the best strategies for reducing your sugar intake if you suffer from diabetes.
Choose Low-Sugar Breakfasts
Traditional American breakfasts like pancakes and waffles are packed full of sugar, and they contribute significantly to your daily sugar intake. Starting your day with a low-sugar breakfast sets you off on the right foot and increases the chances of you making better decisions for lunch and dinner.
Great low-sugar breakfasts include:
- Vegetable omelet
- Scrambled eggs on toast
- Smashed or sliced avocado on toast
- Baked oats
- Low-sugar granola
- Chia seed pudding
- Low-sugar banana loaf
Be careful with adding too many fruits to your breakfasts. Although high in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, fruit is abundant in natural sugars, which contributes to your overall glucose intake.
If you plan on making smoothies for breakfast, choose a couple of pieces of fruit and bulk them up with oats, chia seeds, vegetables, and protein powder to keep the sugar content down.
Avoid Pre-Packaged Foods
Junk foods and pre-packaged snacks are often packed full of added sugars. It’s best to avoid all of the enticing cookies, cakes, biscuits, and pastries when you’re walking through the grocery store.
Rather, give priority to whole meals such as whole grains, lean meats, and fresh produce. These foods contain a lot more nutrients and a lot less sugar, so they are perfect if you’ve got diabetes and want to optimize your health.
Of course, you can still indulge in your favorite treats every now and then, but keep an eye on your overall glucose intake throughout the day and monitor your insulin levels closely using an at-home monitor or diabetic watch.
Cook at Home When Possible
Many of the meals and snacks you can find in the grocery store contain added sugars to enhance flavor, texture, and shelf life. While it’s okay to consume some of these foods. It’s better to cook your meals and bake your snacks from scratch at home.
Cooking at home enables you to monitor how much sugar you’re consuming and adjust your insulin usage accordingly. It also enables you to adapt recipes to reduce the total amount of sugar in the meals and snacks. You’re eating, making diabetes management easier.