That excessive thirst, feeling very hungry despite eating to satisfaction, complaining of an often call of nature, losing or gaining weight all of a sudden are among the complaints list of many today. While most people are unaware of what is going on and keep living without paying attention to these changes, this could lead to a death bed. Diabetes has come about in Kenya today as the leading cause of death for many. Elevated blood sugar goes unnoticed when symptoms check-in and are disregarded as elements of a “busy” life or normal fatigue.
Research carried out by the Kenya Diabetes Management indicates that the real number of people living with diabetes is unknown and people only realize their status when it is too late. But just how does diabetes come about? Is it about eating “sweet” and “sugary” foodstuff? No! Diabetes is a condition whereby the body does not regulate the sugar stored as glucose in the blood. When you consume food rich in carbohydrates, for example, rice, potatoes, and ugali, your body breaks them into sugars. These sugars are transported by the blood to the rest of the body for use as energy. To regulate this process, the hormone insulin is responsible to ensure that the process is successful. If a person’s body does not make this insulin or does not respond well to insulin, blood sugar increases automatically thus causing diabetes. Your normal sugar level should always be between 3 to 7 mmol as per the Kenya Diabetes management institute. It is not therefore about sugary food but excessive glucose stored from the food we eat mostly carbohydrates.
All is not lost I say. You can manage your sugar levels by the food you eat. It all goes back to the habits and practices you uptake. In fact, statistics released recently indicate that you can prevent diabetes from spreading to your family if diagnosed to have it. This is because the food you eat and the lifestyle you lead is almost similar at home. To beat the diabetes menace, make sure that from the food you eat, you take half of your plate with vegetables, a quarter as the proteins, and the other quarter as the carbohydrates. It is all about balancing the food portions. For example in a meal of ugali, sukumawiki, and chicken, divide your plate into three. Half of the plate, fill with sukumawiki, the other quarter with ugali, and the final quarter with meat.
Another vital change in your diet is the number of meals you take in a day. The modern person today does not have time to sit and eat. We forget our meals and end up eating one wholesome meal at the end of the day as a “reward for a hard day’s work”. We end up gaining excess weight that is a risk to diabetes. Instead, have breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and supper like a pauper. By this, I mean that you eat in a reducing technique by the day ensuring you do not miss meals along the way. Again when you set to eat supper ensure that it is about 3 to 4 hours before you can go to sleep. This ensures that the food you eat is digested and does not just sit in the stomach causing storage of extra sugars in the body. Incorporating exercise is important. Use the stairs instead of the lift. Walk instead of taking your vehicle. This ensures the utilization of stored energy in the body reducing sugar levels significantly.
How about the herbal supplements that cure diabetes? Most of these supplements do not necessarily cure diabetes but help in loss of weight. One such supplement is flour by the name FAFA-D in the market that helps in loss of weight for diabetics. The flour helps your body’s metabolic processes so that you do not feel hungry more often. Overall, it’s all about your feeding practices that will beat diabetes to a manageable level. Before you can self-medicate, visit a doctor who can verify to you what type of diabetes you have. Anyone can get the disease, from children and young adults who contract juvenile diabetes to adults, adolescents, and younger people who contract type 2 diabetes.
It is believed by many that a diabetic diet is fully sugar-free. However, the diabetic diet still incorporates sugar but in reduced quantities. As well, other people believe that the diabetic needs “different food” from what others eat but he or she needs to derive meals from all food groups. The food a diabetic eats needs to however strictly be low in fat and high in fiber.
Here is a quick meal plan for such foods you can use if diagnosed with diabetes:
You can send me a request to personalize your diet on [email protected]!