Don't Be Afraid Of Fruit
Don't Be Afraid of Fruit by Berkeley Wellness | July 01, 2011 Eat more fruits and vegetables—who could argue with that simple advice? Well, amazingly enough, the fruit part is being questioned, mostly by advocates of low-carb diets, such as science writer Gary Taubes and lifestyle guru Tim Ferriss. Some warn that fruit is almost as “evil” as sugar and white bread when it comes to weight control and overall health. Fruit: guilt by association What scares some people about fruit is that not only do nearly all of its calories come from carbs, but most of those carbs are sugar, and much of that sugar is fructose. Say fructose and most people think high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS)—our No. 1 sweetener, added to so many soft drinks and processed foods. HFCS is slightly more than half fructose; plain old table sugar (sucrose) is also half fructose, while honey is about 40 percent fructose. Some recent research suggests that fructose, at least in the large quantities many Americans are now consuming, can have adverse effects on blood cholesterol and triglycerides, worsen blood sugar control, promote abdominal weight gain and pose other health risks. But fresh fruits supply only a small fraction of the fructose Americans consume. You would have to eat several servings of fruit to get as much fructose as in a can of soda. Moreover, fruits are complicated foods, not just a serving of fructose. Their fiber and other components help slow the absorption of fructose, compared to sugary beverages. Some fruits, such as apples, pears and mangoes, are higher in fructose and other sugars and thus calories, but they’re still only moderate sources. Some are relatively high on the glycemic index (a measure of the effect of carbohydrates on blood sugar), but most are moderate. It’s h Continue reading >>
Cinnamon: Can Eating Apple Pie Lower Your Blood Sugar?
Is it possible that eating apple pie can actually lower your blood sugar? The answer is yes, but ONLY if it contains this one critical ingredient. The idea of using this special ingredient medicinally is far from new. Chinese, Ayurvedic and naturopathic medicine all utilize it for a variety of conditions, including nausea, bloating, GI upset, and libido enhancement. However, it was the accidental discovery of its benefits for treating and preventing type 2 diabetes that has made this special ingredient one of the world’s most celebrated spices. You may be surprised to learn that this special ingredient is something that you’ve likely used dozens, if not hundreds of times before: cinnamon. Dr. Anderson’s Accidental Discovery… While cinnamon was deemed to be more precious than gold by the ancient Egyptians and considered to be a gift fit for a king by the Romans and Greeks, it was Dr. Richard Anderson, a researcher at the U.S. Department of Agriculture, who made this sweet spice truly valuable. Dr. Anderson was trying to discover the effect that apple pie had on blood sugar levels. In fact, he was hoping to show that apple pie would dramatically increase blood glucose levels. Instead, they were lowered1. Yep, lowered…as in, eat dessert and decrease your glucose levels. Dr. Anderson was as baffled as you likely are. How on earth could a sweet, baked pie lower blood sugar levels? He quickly realized that it was the cinnamon in the apple pie that was responsible for the lowering of blood glucose levels by acting on the true underlying cause of type 2 diabetes. Cinnamon Improves Insulin Sensitivity… More specifically, Dr. Anderson discovered that cinnamon contains a polyphenol called methylhydroxy chalcone polymer (MHCP)2 that can improve the metabolism of glucose Continue reading >>
Fruits For Diabetes: All You Need To Know
Eating fruit is a delicious way to satisfy hunger and meet daily nutritional needs. However, most fruits contain sugar, which raises questions about whether they are healthy for people who have diabetes. Is fruit unhealthy for people with diabetes? This article will look at what you need to know about fruit and diabetes. Contents of this article: What is fruit? Most people can probably name several fruits such as oranges and apples, but not know why they are fruits. Fruits contain seeds and come from plants or trees. People eat fruits that are stored in many ways - fresh, frozen, canned, dried, and processed. But aren't tomatoes and cucumbers also fruits because they have seeds? There are many foods that are classed as fruits that may surprise some people. Tomatoes, cucumbers, avocados, peas, corn, and nuts are all fruits. It's fine to think of tomatoes and cucumbers as vegetables rather than fruits, however. What's important is how much energy (calories) and nutrients each food has. The bottom line: it's not important to know the difference between fruits and vegetables but to know that both are good for health. Does eating fruit play a role in managing diabetes? Eating enough fiber plays an important role in managing diabetes. A diet high in soluble fiber can slow the absorption of sugar and control blood sugar levels. Many fruits are high in fiber, especially if the skin or pulp is eaten. Many fruits are filling because they contain fiber and a lot of water. Diets containing enough fruits and vegetables can reduce the risk of obesity, heart attack, and stroke. Obesity has been linked to type 2 diabetes. Fruits are high in fiber and nutrients, so they are a good choice in meal planning. Fruits that have been processed such as applesauce and fruit juices have had their Continue reading >>
Reduce Your Diabetes Risk With Apples
A 2013 study led by the Harvard School of Public Health found that eating apples, blueberries and grapes significantly lower one’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Researchers examined data from 187,382 participants in three studies, looking specifically at overall fruit consumption. They found that people who ate at least two servings each week of certain fruits reduced their risk for type 2 diabetes by 23 percent in comparison with those who ate less than one serving per month. Though the fruit’s low glycemic index score was not a significant factor in the study, it is important for diabetes patients, or those at risk for developing diabetes. The glycemic index measures how rapidly carbohydrates in a food boost blood sugar, and apples have a low score of 38. Apples also contain soluble fiber, including pectin, which supplies galacturonic acid, which helps control blood sugar by releasing it slowly into the bloodstream. This helps diabetes patients regulate blood sugar and bowel function, while also having an anti-inflammatory effect. Want to know more about apple nutrition and how to include apples in your daily diet? Read our blog post: 31 Nutritious Ways to Enjoy Apples & Pears. Continue reading >>
Does Apple Cider Vinegar Help With Blood Sugar Control?
In the United States alone, there are nearly thirty million people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes, and over eight million of those are unaware that they are living with this serious ailment. According to the WHO, diabetes will be the leading cause of death in 2030. The United States market of diabetes medication is currently over thirty billion dollars, and the world market is at well over fifty billion dollars, with that number expected to rise alongside the number of projected diabetes cases in the coming years. Fortunately, effective doses of certain substances may help manage blood sugar and/or delay the consequences of diabetes. Apple cider vinegar has been shown to have anti-glycemic and anti-obesity properties, not to mention it has potent fat burning and delayed gastric emptying effects. This article will outline the ways in which apple cider vinegar helps control your blood sugar along with tips on how you can incorporate apple cider vinegar into your diet, and precautions you must take when using apple cider vinegar. What Is Diabetes? Diabetes is a disease in which your blood sugar levels are too high. When food is processed and broken down, it is converted into glucose. Insulin is a hormone that shuttles glucose into cells for to supply them energy. There are two types of diabetes, type 1 and type 2. Type 1 Diabetes In type 1 diabetes, the body is unable to produce insulin because the immune system attacks the cells that create insulin. Insulin is produced by the pancreas to help prevent blood sugar levels from spiking up or down. Type 1 cannot be cured. The cause, much like other autoimmune disorders, is not yet fully understood, but recent studies have suggested that this type of diabetes may be hereditary. (1) Type 2 Diabetes In type 2 diabetes, the body Continue reading >>
10 Foods That Lower Blood Sugars In Diabetics
While a low carb diet appears to be useful on the whole, there are also many foods shown to help. Either by lowering blood sugars and/or improving insulin sensitivity. This articles looks at 10 of the best foods and supplements for lowering blood sugars, based on current research. Just know they should never be used in place of your diabetes medication, but rather alongside. 1. Resistant Starch Lowers Sugars After Meals Starches are long chains of glucose (sugar) found in oats, grains, bananas, potatoes and various other foods. Some varieties pass through digestion unchanged and are not absorbed as sugar into the blood. These are known as resistant starch. Many studies show resistant starch can greatly improve insulin sensitivity. That is, how well the body can move sugar out of the blood and into cells for energy. This is why it’s so useful for lowering blood sugar levels after meals (1, 2). The effect is so great that having resistant starch at lunch will reduce blood sugar spikes at dinner, known as the “second meal effect” (3). Problem is many foods high in resistant starch, such as potatoes, are also high in digestible carbs that can spike blood sugar. Therefore resistant starch in supplement form – without the extra carbs – is recommended. Summary: Supplemental resistant starch is a fantastic option for those struggling to control sugars or have hit a plateau. 2. Ceylon Cinnamon Several cinnamon compounds appear to prevent the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream, minimising blood sugar spikes. It may also dramatically improve insulin sensitivity (4, 5). In a recent clinical trial, 25 poorly-controlled type 2 diabetics received either 1 gram per day of cinnamon or placebo (dummy supplement) for 12 weeks. Fasting blood sugar levels in the cinnamon gro Continue reading >>
Foods That Lower Blood Sugar And Taste Great
Millions of Americans are diabetic or pre-diabetic. Its an epidemic thats not only treatable, but preventable. What we eat helps. These foods that lower blood sugar are plant-based, effective and just also happen to be delicious. They may just be the best plant-based food ever: protein, fiber, amino acids, vitamins, even healthy fats. And get this: beans and legumes slow the release of glucose (thanks to all the fiber), making them excellent in preventing blood sugar spikes. Nothing tastes as scrumptious as a fresh, vine-ripened-right-in-your-garden tomato , right? And it turns out, its also one of the healthiest foods that lower blood sugar too. Gazpacho, anyone? Its not just for salad dressing (or cleaning your house!). Vinegar has been shown to reduce blood sugar levels, particularly if consumed just before a meal. Mix 1-2 tablespoons with warm water and drink 30 minutes before a meal. As sweet as they are, berries are an excellent source of quercetin, which has been shown to reduce blood sugar levels. Theyre also loaded with lots of other delicious nutrients. Enjoy them fresh or frozen, but never canned. An apple a day may not only keep the doctor away but also the insulin. Another quercetin-loaded fruit, apples can reduce the risk of diabetes and heart disease. This may just be the blood sugar miracle food. Studies have shown that eating just a teaspoon of cinnamon a day can make cells more sensitive to insulin and convert blood sugar into energy more easily. With more vitamin C than an orange, studies have pointed to a correlation between low vitamin C levels and diabetes. For the same reason as bell peppersadding C rich citrus fruits can aid in reducing blood sugar levels. This may seem counterintuitivechocolate is often associated with being sweetbut research s Continue reading >>
Type Ii Diabetes: 6 Fruits To Help Control Your Blood Sugar
Type II Diabetes: 6 Fruits to Help Control Your Blood Sugar Controlling your diabetes could be as easy as losing weight. There are many things that you can do to control you blood sugar and increasing your intake of certain fruits is one of them. Natural sugar is easier to break down than processed or man-made sugar. This is why adding fruit, a great source for natural sugar, to your diet in moderation could prevent your body from building an insulin intolerance. Here are our favorite fruits to add to your diet if you are looking to naturally control your blood sugar, or decrease the amount of insulin that you use each day. 1. Avocado Avocado is thought by many to be a vegetable. On the contrary, it is actually a fruit. This fruit is high in monounsaturated fats which are one of the healthy fats that you should ingest on a regular basis. These fruits also improve heart health. They have a very low percentage of low-quality carbohydrates and can improve the sensitivity you have to your insulin. This means that simply snacking on avocado, eating guacamole, or adding it to a sandwich could decrease the amount of insulin that you have to take. 2. Grapefruits Grapefruits are a great source of chromium. Recent studies have shown chromium to significantly lower blood sugar levels. A grapefruit with breakfast can help break down the dietary sugars that are in your cereal as well. It also contains a very low amount of carbohydrates but most of these carbohydrates are considered healthy fiber so they won’t cause a serious increase in blood sugar. 3. Pineapples Pineapple does not prevent blood sugar spikes. However, it has a low glycemic index, which means that it raises your blood sugar slower and does not cause rapid spikes. This means that when your blood sugar starts low, it Continue reading >>
Stop Spiking Those Sugars!
Many people (and their doctors) use A1C and fasting blood glucose levels to gauge their diabetes control. But those numbers only tell half the story. To prevent organ damage, we also have to keep glucose from spiking after meals. How can we do that? Do You Spike? If you just check your blood glucose levels in the morning and maybe at bedtime, you will miss these spikes. Say your numbers at those times usually run about 125 mg/dl. If your blood sugar levels were like that all day, your A1C would be about 6.0%. But maybe when the doctor tests your A1C, it might be closer to 7.6%. You know then you are spiking after meals high enough to raise your average sugar to 170, which means spiking well over 200. You can find a good calculator for converting A1C to average glucose here. Glucose levels above 140 can lead to inflammation of blood vessels and organs. The higher the spike goes and the longer it lasts, the more damage there is likely to be. With any type of diabetes, we want to get those spikes down, and it takes a lot of monitoring and experimenting to get it right. Gary Scheiner, MS, CDE, who has Type 1, wrote here that for Type 1s, it’s about managing your insulin so that it peaks when blood glucose is peaking and drops off when glucose levels do. You can only do that with fast-acting insulin injections or a pump. But even then, you have to know how much a given meal is likely to raise your sugar to know how much to give and when to give it. Scheiner recommends testing about an hour after completing a meal or snack. That’s when sugar levels tend to be highest. Jenny Ruhl at Diabetes Update says different people and different foods spike differently. So to find the very highest spike, you might have to try different times. “Meals heavy in fat digest more slowly t Continue reading >>
Apples Are Good For People With Diabetes
Apples are undeniably good for you—especially if you have diabetes. Fall's favorite fruit has lots of good-for-you nutrients. Plus, research has linked apples with certain health benefits related to diabetes. Nutrition Profile of Apples A small apple (about the size of a tennis ball) delivers roughly: 60 calories, 16 grams of carbohydrate and 3 grams of fiber. It's also a good source of vitamin C. Additionally, apples contain quercetin, a type of phytochemical known as a flavonoid, which is found in the apples skin. Animal research and research using cell cultures have found the quercetin may help to protect against certain cancers and help to kill cancer cells. In a 2015 study in Pharmacognosy magazine, researchers found that quercetin improved glucose metabolism in liver and skeletal cells when studied in test tubes. Apples also contain soluble fiber—the kind that helps keep you full, slows down the absorption of nutrients (such as sugar) into your bloodstream, and helps to lower your cholesterol. In addition to helping to regulate blood sugar and bowel function, soluble fiber is thought to have an anti-inflammatory effect that may help people with diabetes recover faster from infections. The recommended daily intake for fiber is 25 (for women) to 38 (for men) grams a day. A skinned apple is still good for you, but with skin an apple provides 3 grams of fiber—about 12 percent of the recommended total daily intake. Apples and Diabetes Research There's no denying fruits and vegetables are a healthy and important part of the diet for everyone, including those with diabetes. Registered Dietitian (RD) and Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE), Audrey Koltun, says: " Many people with diabetes are afraid to eat fruit because they think the sugar content is unhealthy for th Continue reading >>
12 Powerfoods To Beat Diabetes
Can controlling your blood sugar and preventing diabetes complications be as simple as eating the right foods? Yes. Certain foods are packed with nutrients that stabilize blood sugar levels, protect your heart, and even save your vision from the damaging effects of diabetes. These 12 foods can give you an extra edge against diabetes and its complications. 1. Apples In a Finnish study, men who ate the most apples and other foods high in quercetin had 20 percent less diabetes and heart disease deaths. Other good sources of quercetin are onions, tomatoes, leafy green vegetables, and berries. 2. Cinnamon A study at the Human Nutrition Research Center in Beltsville, Maryland, found that if you use ½ teaspoon of cinnamon daily, it can make cells more sensitive to insulin. Therefore, the study says, the cells convert blood sugar to energy. After 40 days of taking various amount of cinnamon extract, diabetics experienced not only lower blood sugar spikes after eating, but major improvements in signs of heart health. And you can sprinkle cinnamon on just about anything. 3. Citrus Fruit Studies show that people with diabetes tend to have lower levels of vitamin C in their bodies, so antioxidant-packed citrus fruit is a great snack choice. It may seem quicker to get your C from a pill, but since fruit is low in fat, high in fiber, and delivers lots of other healthy nutrients, it's a better choice. 4. Cold-Water Fish Heart disease strikes people with diabetes twice as often as it does people without the illness, according to the American Diabetes Association. Diets high in omega-3 fatty acids—the "good fat" in cold-water fish such as wild Alaskan salmon, sardines, and Atlantic mackerel—can help lower artery-clogging LDL cholesterol and triglycerides while raising levels of HDL Continue reading >>
7 Surprising Things That Make Blood Sugar Control Easier
Being asleep. Being awake. Hot weather. Cold weather. Seems there’s no end to the number of things that can raise your blood glucose levels. No wonder diabetes management can be such an obstacle course. But it’s not all doom and gloom. For every factor that unexpectedly sends your blood sugars spiralling out of control, there’s an equally unexpected – and often enjoyable – way to keep them under control. 1. Peanut butter We know that peanuts are great for people with diabetes. But one group of researchers from Brazil were more interested in peanut butter (and why wouldn’t they be). The team split participants into three groups: the first ate 1.5 ounces of peanuts; the second had three tablespoons of peanut butter with breakfast; and the third had no peanut butter or peanuts. They all ate the same lunch of white bread and strawberry jam. Interestingly, the researchers found that the peanut butter was better for blood glucose levels than the peanuts. The second group felt fuller for long, and had lower blood sugars when they were tested after lunch. Not all peanut butter is as good for you, of course. But the researchers found that the healthier brands can do you a lot of good. Turns out that peanut butter has a lovely combination of high protein, fibre and healthy oils. So you no longer have to feel ashamed for eating it straight from the jar with a tablespoon. I certainly won’t. 2. Red wine Red wine lowers blood sugars by stopping the intestines absorbing glucose. Recently, plenty of researchers have become very interested in the effects of red wine on weight loss and blood glucose levels. A number of studies reckon it could be beneficial. That said, drinking too much of it can cause problems (such as a build-up of fat around the liver), so everything in m Continue reading >>
The Best Foods To Control Blood Sugar
Making healthy food choices and keeping track of your eating habits can help you manage your blood sugar. A high level of blood sugar can damage your organs such as the eyes, kidney and the heart. Avoiding a high-calorie diet is the first step towards regulating your blood sugar. Adding some specific foods into your daily diet could also go a long way in controlling your blood sugar levels. Dietary fiber found in plant foods plays a major role in the health of your body. Fiber is divided into two types; soluble and insoluble. Sources of insoluble fiber include peels of fruits, such as grapes, apples and blueberries. The soluble fiber on the other hand is absorbed in water and forms a gel–like substance in the digestive tract. The University of Maryland explains that this inhibits the intestines from absorbing sugar and starch. This means a high-fiber diet reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes and lowers insulin and blood sugar levels. Soluble fiber can be found in the soft parts of fruits, peas and dried beans, for example. According to Worlds’ Healthiest Foods, cinnamaldehyde, cinnamyl acetate and cinnamyl alcohol are the three essential oils that give cinnamon its unique therapeutic properties. Using cinnamon to season a high-carbohydrate food lessens its impact on your blood sugar levels. A study by the "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition" that was published in 2007 showed that adding cinnamon to food high in carbohydrates lowered the rate of gastric emptying. This significantly lessened the rise of the blood sugar levels after a high-carbohydrate meal. A paper published in “Diabetes Care” in 2003 shows that a daily consumption of 1 to 6 grams of cinnamon reduces blood sugar levels and reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes. Nuts A study by researchers at St. Continue reading >>
Do Apples Raise Your Blood Sugar?
Apples are a quick, sweet and crunchy snack that can simultaneously satisfy your craving and deliver nutrients the body needs to function. Because they contain carbohydrates in the form of sugar, apples will, indeed, raise your blood sugar -- though only slightly. A medium apple is a low-glycemic-index food, meaning it releases sugar slowly into your bloodstream. If you are counting carbs due to concerns about blood sugar levels, eat your apple with the skin on. The fiber in the skin reduces the amount of net carbs in the apple. Video of the Day Starches and sugars are carbohydrates that raise your blood sugar, while fiber is a carb that doesn't. The skin on apples is made of insoluble fiber, which helps digestion. The amount of fiber is counted in the total carbs, but because fiber doesn't raise your blood sugar, the amount of fiber gets subtracted from the total carbs. One large apple contains 28 grams of carbs and 5.8 grams of fiber. Pairing carbs with high-protein foods -- like an apple with low-fat cheese -- is another way to keep them from raising your blood sugar too quickly. Continue reading >>
Are Apples Good For Keeping Blood Sugar Steady?
Foods with carbohydrates affect your body's blood sugar levels differently, depending on their individual ingredients and nutrient profile. Foods rich in sugars and refined grains are more likely to raise your blood sugar levels, while foods rich in fiber are less likely to affect blood sugar levels, thus helping you keep your levels steady. Apples are rich in fiber and won't have a large effect on your blood sugar. Total carbohydrates in apples comprise starches, sugars and fiber. Sugars are the most abundant type of carbohydrate in apples, while starches are present in small amounts. One medium gala apple with skin contains 24 grams of total carbohydrates. Nearly 18 grams of that total are from sugar, and 4 grams are dietary fiber. The rest is starch. Green apples contain slightly fewer carbs, evident by their tarter taste. One medium Granny Smith apple contains a little less than 23 grams of total carbs. Of that total, 5 grams are fiber, 16 grams are sugar, and the rest is starch. Glycemic Index of Apples You can use the glycemic index to estimate how much of an impact a carbohydrate food will have on your blood sugar. The glycemic index is a scale from one to 100 that measures a food's effect on blood sugar compared to straight glucose, which has a rating of 100. A rating of 55 or less is low, meaning that food isn't likely to raise blood sugar levels significantly. Apples have an average rating of 39, which means they're a low-glycemic food. Comparison to Other Fruits Apples are one of the lowest-glycemic fruits you can choose, which means they're good news for your blood sugar levels. Ripe bananas are considerably higher on the glycemic index, with a rating of 62. Grapes are also higher, with an average rating of 59. Watermelon has one of the highest scores of all Continue reading >>