By Dr. Renee
I am of West Indian heritage and we eat a lot of white rice. That is not a realistic way to live anymore with the threat of diabetes. I now substitute white rice with quinoa or brown rice. Rice takes on the flavor of what you cook it in, so I cook my brown rice and quinoa in chicken broth.
I no longer use syrup, and use agave nectar or honey instead because they have a low glycemic index. Low glycemic index simply means that these foods are slow to raise your blood glucose, which is what we want to avoid. You do not want blood sugar spikes because they will wreck your metabolism and cause your liver to store sugar as fat. This leads to weight gain and being overweight can lead to multiple health issues like diabetes.
Studies show if you eat a diet rich in low glycemic foods you will lose weight and keep it off.
Low Glycemic Index Foods:
- Fiber-rich vegetables (dark, leafy greens), beans (all of them), and fruit (apples, pears, peaches and berries have a lower glycemic index than tropical fruits, like papaya and mangoes).
- Limit potatoes to small side dishes.
- Eat grains in their least processed state. Instead of processed cereals like cornflakes and instant oatmeal, stick with old-fashioned oats or cold cereals that have at least 4 grams of fiber per serving.
- No more than 1 cup of 100% fruit juice daily.
- Eat protein and fat at most meals and snacks. Vegetable and lean animal sources (including dairy) are your best options for protein. Olive oil, nuts, avocados, seeds and nut butters are healthy fats. Cut back on saturated fats and banish trans fats completely.
Some people have been diagnosed with prediabetes. This diagnosis means that you do not have diabetes yet, but if you are not careful you could develop type 2 diabetes. Changing your lifestyle to include a healthier diet can help you avoid diabetes.
I have been very successful in my efforts and I’m more than happy to help as many people as I can. If you need recipes or have questions, don’t hesitate to ‘Ask Dr. Renee’. You can also follow me on Twitter @AskDrRenee.