If you’ve just been diagnosed with diabetes, your head is probably swimming with information about the lifestyle changes you’ll need to make. That’s understandable. Diabetes is a serious condition, and to successfully manage blood sugar levels requires significant modifications to the way you live.
Diet is one of the trickiest areas so to help keep you on the right track as you adjust your habits, follow these simple Do’s and Don’ts:
- Eat plenty of vegetables and legumes (beans)
- Eat adequate amounts of lean protein, such as fish, poultry, or tofu
- Eat healthful fats, which can be found in cold-water fish, raw nuts and seeds, and extra-virgin olive oil
- Eat modest amounts of fruit (one to two servings per day)
- Replace sugar with xylitol or stevia
- Eat carbohydrate-dense, starchy foods such as pasta, cereals, and other grain-based foods
- Eat too many processed foods
- Eat a lot of red meat (limit to one serving per week)
- Eat desserts
- Use sugar or artificial sweeteners to enhance the flavor of food, or consume products that contain these ingredients
Exercise also plays a big role in blood sugar control. You’ll need to commit to at least 30-45 minutes of moderately intense physical activity four or more days a week. Additionally, I recommend taking a brisk 10-minute walk after meals as this helps clear glucose out of the bloodstream, and helps maintain blood sugar levels.