As anyone with diabetes will tell you, a large part of keeping one’s diabetes under control is to watch what one eats on a daily basis. We’re sure we don’t need to tell you to avoid any foods which are high in sugar.
But it’s a bit deeper than this simple piece of advice. For example, there could be some seemingly ‘healthy’ foods which hide much more fats and sugar than they lead on. After all, it’s the sugar you should avoid as fats and carbs also play a part in heightening your blood glucose levels.
But instead of getting into details and statistics, here is a simple list of 20 foods you should avoid if you have diabetes.
1. Dried Fruit
Even though at first glance one thinks nothing can be wrong with this ‘snack’, and indeed they are rather high in fiber and nutrients, but dried fruits are not good news for type II diabetes.
The reason is that, since the fruit needs to go through a dehydration process, its natural sugar (fructose) content becomes highly concentrated. Don’t get us wrong, it certainly is a healthier alternative than, say, cookies, but your blood sugar will still soar from it.
So why not play it safe and opt for fresh fruit instead? Grapefruit or strawberries are always a good choice.
2. White Flour, Rice, and Bread
Even though if you’re diabetic you already know far too well to steer clear of sugar, most of you pay no mind to how much carbs you consume.
And that’s a fatal mistake indeed. For example, low-quality carbohydrates such as rice, or those made with white flour like pasta or bread, have a very similar effect to sugar once the whole digestive process starts.
In other words, you can bet they interfere with your glucose levels. However, that does not mean you should give up on carbs. Simply to a healthier variety. For instance, whole grains such as barley, oatmeal, and brown rice will aid you in keeping the bad carbs’ influence at bay.
3. Full-Fat Dairy Products
It is already a well-known fact that these products are rich in saturated fat which not only increases your bad LDL cholesterol but also your risk of developing heart disease.
So, as someone with diabetes, you’d do best to steer clear of whole-milk dairy products, such as ice cream, full-fat yogurt or cream cheese. Saturated fats are also damaging to your health in other ways: they can increase your insulin resistance.
Once again, this doesn’t mean you should avoid dairy products altogether. Instead, look for fat-free or low-fat dairy the next time you go shopping.
4. Fatty Meat Cuts
You should avoid these for the same reason you’d avoid the dairy products. The main reason being their overly high saturated fat content which increases your cholesterol as well as your risk of developing heart disease.
Not to mention they can be a cause of inflammation throughout your entire body. The best thing you can do is replace these meat cuts with lean protein like fish, skinless chicken, turkey, etc.
We know they are tempting. Pastries such as doughnuts, muffins or cinnamon rolls are murder for you since they are made from processed white flour, which in turn is extremely high in sugar, fat, and carbs. Three big ‘no-nos’.
To make things worse, they are also rather high in sodium content and may even contain the dreaded trans fats. If you find you simply cannot resist, then always make sure to opt for the sugar-free and fat-free alternatives.
And your best bet is homemade pastries using healthy ingredients. That way you can be sure you’re getting the proper stuff since you or someone close to you has made them in the comfort of your home.
6. Fried Foods
Do we even need to warn you against these? Even if you do not have diabetes, foods of the fried variety are generally damaging to your health in so many ways. You should be especially wary of them if you have type II diabetes.
This includes, among many others, French fries, fried chicken, and potato chips. Deep fried foods are especially dangerous, since they bathe in so much oil that, other than being extremely unhealthy is also packed with so many unnecessary calories.
Furthermore, there is no shortage of fast food restaurants which fry their food in so-called hydrogenated oils. This also makes these already unhealthy foods high in trans fats.
There is no safe boundary when it comes to the consumption of fried foods, so take special care to avoid them as much as you can.