Yet though we live in a pill-popping, drug-oriented culture, progressively people are beginning to realize that food is really our better medicine. In 90% of all chronic and degenerative diseases, poor diet are either the direct cause or a significant factor.
This is specially true for Type two diabetes. There’s no stage of Type two that can’t be helped by making a few smart dietary changes. And the earlier they’re made, the more dramatic the health improvements will be.
Top 5 Diabetes Super Foods
Extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
If you’ve diabetes or prediabetes, controlling blood sugar has a huge impact on how you feel and this marvelous monounsaturated oil can really help. A 2006 study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine put people on either a low-fat diet, a Mediterranean diet emphasizing EVOO, or a Mediterranean diet emphasizing nuts. Those getting more olive oil and nuts had significantly lower blood sugar levels than those on the low-fat diet.
Thanks to the powerful antioxidant, oleocanthal (responsible for the strong, peppery “bite” freshly-pressed olive oil produces when consumed) EVOO also reduces inflammation, one of the root causes of diabetes. Getting inflammation under control is essential for healing — and reversing Type two and prediabetes. The study mentioned above also found that the olive oil diet lowers C-reactive protein, an indicator of systemic inflammation.
Unfortunately, the olive oil in your supermarket may not be strong enough. EVOO’s inflammation-fighting properties begin to fade after pressing. The longer it sits around, the weaker it gets. (Most supermarket olive oil can be a year old — or older.)
Worse, the olive oil industry is rife with scandals. Because of the premium price them commands, many companies are tempted to fluff up their products with cheaper oils, such as soybean and rapeseed, to their products to maximize profits. Try to find freshly pressed olive oil from a local farm or at your local health food stop.
Onions are among the top food sources for the trace mineral chromium, which produces a powerful benefit on blood glucose levels. Research shows that chromium helps your body use insulin more efficiently, maintains steady blood sugar levels, and reduces the need for diabetes drugs.
Chromium deficiency and diabetes often accompany each other, according to a study published in Diabetes Care. This Is not a surprising when you realize that the symptoms of chromium deficiency (specified out-of-control levels of glucose, insulin, triglycerides, and high cholesterol) resemble those of prediabetes.
A recent study published in Biochemistry shows that chromium is an insulin potentiator, meaning that it makes your insulin better. For people with insulin resistance or full-blown diabetes, this is a big benefit because chromium lessens your need for your body’s own insulin (or your insulin dose) to normalize your blood sugar levels.
One cup of raw onion (about ½ cup cooked onion) gives you 24mcg of the government’s “adequate intake” recommendation of 25 -35mcg of chromium. So sauté up a big batch of onions, add some garlic and herbs, and throw them on salads, toss them in soups and fritattas, and use them to smother a juicy, grass-fed burger.
This little diabetes-busters are bursting with healthy fats, vitamins, and lots of minerals. If you’re prediabetic, or want to avoid Type two, eating nuts will cut down your risk. If you already have diabetes, nuts help you manage your blood sugar and weight.
Almonds are particularly beneficial because they are high in protein and antioxidants, and have a low glycemic index (GI). According to a study published in Metabolism, eating almonds with a meal reduces the GI load of the entire meal!
Nuts contain monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs), which reverse insulin resistance. And remember the diabetes-heart disease connection? Nuts are a different weapon in your heart-healthy arsenal, as studies show that daily consumption of nuts cuts the risk of heart attack by 35%.
Pacific wild-caught salmon
In 2010, University of California researchers discovered that the omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA in cold-water fish improve insulin sensitivity and reduce inflammation. These is good news for folks with some type of blood sugar disorder, but the story keeps getting better.
A 17-year-long study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that elevated blood levels of omega-3 protect against sudden death from heart disease while lower levels actually increase the danger. Here’s why these is important: 75% of diabetic fatalities are caused by heart attack or stroke. That is an astonishing number!
It is easy to see why preventing and healing cardiovascular disease is so important if you’ve diabetes which is why omega-3 fish is a true “diabetes superfood.” You should try to eat two or three servings per week, but make sure to go “wild,” and avoid farm-raised fish.
Farmed salmon is notoriously low in omega-3’s and contains unhealthy chemicals such polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE), is frequently genetically-engineered “Frankenfish” and is raised in ecologically “dirty” conditions.
In Alaska, wild salmon are protected, while farmed salmon are banned. As you purchase salmon labeled “wild Alaskan,” you are getting a clean product with high levels of omega-3.
Chances are you’ve a cinnamon in your spice cupboard. And chances are you never thought of cinnamon as medicine. However, cinnamon has been used medicinally since ancient times. These popular spice was applied in ancient Egypt, China, and India for culinary and medicinal purposes. Cinnamon has been shown to help lower blood glucose levels in people with Type two diabetes and even increase the amount of insulin produced in the body.
A study published in the journal Diabetes Care in 2003 looked at sixty men and women with Type two diabetes who were taking diabetes pills. The participants took either 1, 3, or six grammes of cassia cinnamon or a placebo, in capsule form, for forty days. After this time, blood glucose levels dropped between 18% and 29% in all three groups that received cinnamon.