|What should I eat?|
Food is important in keeping your body healthy, whether you have diabetes or not.
However, most people don’t pay much attention to their basic nutritional needs. Diabetes highlights the importance of a well-balanced eating pattern.
If you have diabetes, there are three important benefits from a nutritionally sound diet –
Eat plenty of breads and cereals (preferably wholegrain), pulses, vegetables and fruit. These foods offer a number of benefits and should make up the bulk of your diet.
They contain plenty of carbohydrate, fibre, vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals and, if you eat them regularly, will help control your diabetes.
Limit your sugar intake
Sugar (cane sugar) has a medium GI rating and so having diabetes does not mean a total ban on sugars. It means you can eat small amounts without making your blood glucose levels rise excessively. However, eating too much sugar is not a good idea as it adds to your total carbohydrate and kilojoule intake and will replace the nutritionally better and more filling carbohydrate foods.
General guidelines for choosing food
The Glycaemic Index (GI)
The glycaemic Index is a rating of foods according to their actual effect on blood-glucose levels.
Timing your meals
To help you control your blood glucose levels, you should eat regular meals at regular intervals. The ideal is three meals and a bedtime snack each day.
Some people with diabetes will need to include a mid-morning as well as a mid-afternoon snack.