Living with diabetes requires diligence in meal planning and eating habits. In fact, many people with Type 2 diabetes are able to manage their blood sugar (glucose) levels by following a strict diet that prevents glucose spikes.
At OakBend Medical Group, we offer weight loss surgery to help people with Type 2 diabetes live a healthier life. Surgery can lower your risk for diabetes and obesity-related complications like neuropathy (nerve damage), stroke, and cardiovascular disease.
Our bariatric surgeons Christopher Reilly, MD, FACS, Steven M. Thomas, MD, FACS, and Genna Lubrano, MD, also provide dietary recommendations you can follow after surgery to manage Type 2 diabetes better and protect your weight loss results.
How your diet affects your blood glucose
Blood glucose spikes describe the rapid rise and fall of your blood sugar levels. Eating sugar foods and refined carbohydrates can cause these spikes and cause low energy levels and increased hunger.
If you don’t yet have diabetes, frequent glucose spikes can increase your risk of Type 2 diabetes. Over time, unregulated blood glucose levels can harden and narrow your blood vessels, leading to stroke or a heart attack.
If you’re overweight or obese, your risk for cardiovascular disease increases even more.
4 diet tips to stabilize your blood glucose levels
What you eat matters just as much as how you eat when it comes to preventing blood glucose spikes. Here are some diet tips you can follow to keep your blood sugar levels stable:
1. Focus on low-carb foods
Unhealthy high-carb foods like bread, potatoes, and pasta convert into simple sugars that enter your bloodstream soon after eating. These foods can cause your blood sugar levels to rise quickly and stimulate your pancreas to release insulin hormones. Insulin helps your sugar levels drop by prompting your cells to absorb sugar from your blood.
Swap unhealthy carbs for low-carb options like eggs, chicken, seafood, and fresh vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, and eggplant.
2. Skip processed carbs
Processed or refined carbs are found in table sugar, soda, breakfast cereals, and white rice. These foods lose all of their nutrients during processing. Your body also quickly digests them, leading to rapid blood sugar spikes.
Add more non-starchy, whole grain, and unprocessed foods to your diet. Snack on nuts, yogurt, and other foods with no added sugars to keep your blood sugar levels healthy.
3. Increase your fiber intake
Fiber contains plant materials that your body can’t digest. Including more fiber in your daily diet helps you feel fuller for longer and reduces the amount of food you eat.
Soluble fiber can help prevent blood glucose spikes because it slows your gut’s absorption of the carbs you eat. Eat legumes, oatmeal, oranges, and non-starch vegetables to increase your soluble fiber intake.
4. Add dietary supplements to your diet
Minerals like magnesium and chromium offer several health benefits, including better blood sugar control. These minerals may increase your body’s response to insulin, so your cells absorb more sugar from your blood.
Chromium is naturally found in tomatoes, shellfish, and broccoli. You can also eat magnesium-rich foods like almonds, avocados, and spinach.
If you’re interested in exploring your options for bariatric surgery to control Type 2 diabetes, call OakBend Medical Group in Richmond, Texas, today to schedule a consultation. You can also book an appointment online.