Squash Is Mostly Starchy Carbohydrates But Insulin-regulating - Upi.com
SANTA MONICA, Calif., Nov. 9 (UPI) -- Squash is mostly starchy carbohydrates but studies show it has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-diabetic properties, a U.S. food expert says. "Squash includes both winter and summer varieties, some examples include, zucchini from the summer and butternut, buttercup, acorn, pumpkin and kabocha from winter," Phil Lempert , a food industry analyst, trend watcher and creator of supermarketguru.com, said in a statement. "Many of the carbs in winter starch come from polysaccharides found in the cell walls. These polysaccharides include pectins -- specially structured polysaccharides that in winter squash often include special chains of D-galacturonic acid called homogalacturonan. An increasing number of animal studies now show that these starch-related components in winter squash have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, as well as anti-diabetic and insulin-regulating properties." Although the squash is botanically classified as a fruit, many consider it a vegetable for culinary purposes. The carotenoids, including lutein, zeaxanthin, and beta-cryptoxanthin, give many squash its signature orange color and are good for eye health. Squash contains vitamin C, potassium, fiber, manganese and folate, omega-3 fatty acids, B vitamins and copper. Most varieties of squash start out green and turn orange when ripe but some are actually ripe when green. When choosing for cooking or baking, look for fruits that are heavy for their size with a hard shell, Lempert advised. Continue reading >>
The 16 Best Foods To Control Diabetes
Figuring out the best foods to eat when you have diabetes can be tough. The main goal is to keep blood sugar levels well-controlled. However, it's also important to eat foods that help prevent diabetes complications like heart disease. Here are the 16 best foods for diabetics, both type 1 and type 2. Fatty fish is one of the healthiest foods on the planet. Salmon, sardines, herring, anchovies and mackerel are great sources of the omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA, which have major benefits for heart health. Getting enough of these fats on a regular basis is especially important for diabetics, who have an increased risk of heart disease and stroke (1). DHA and EPA protect the cells that line your blood vessels, reduce markers of inflammation and improve the way your arteries function after eating (2, 3, 4, 5). A number of observational studies suggest that people who eat fatty fish regularly have a lower risk of heart failure and are less likely to die from heart disease (6, 7). In studies, older men and women who consumed fatty fish 5–7 days per week for 8 weeks had significant reductions in triglycerides and inflammatory markers (8, 9). Fish is also a great source of high-quality protein, which helps you feel full and increases your metabolic rate (10). Fatty fish contain omega-3 fats that reduce inflammation and other risk factors for heart disease and stroke. Leafy green vegetables are extremely nutritious and low in calories. They're also very low in digestible carbs, which raise your blood sugar levels. Spinach, kale and other leafy greens are good sources of several vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C. In one study, increasing vitamin C intake reduced inflammatory markers and fasting blood sugar levels for people with type 2 diabetes or high blood pressure Continue reading >>
Kombucha: Is It A Healthy Drink For People With Diabetes?
Kombucha is a fermented tea drink that contains gut-friendly bacteria or probiotics that may aid in digestion and boost the immune system. Kombucha hasn't been extensively studied in humans but lab tests indicate that it may have a positive impact on blood sugar. Kombucha is a fizzy, fermented tea drink with a flavor that is just slightly sweet and at the same time, slightly acidic and sometimes a little bitter, not unlike sparkling apple cider or nonalcoholic beer. With its low-cal, low-sugar nutritional profile, sparkling kombucha is a great soda substitute for people with diabetes. And unlike artificially sweetened diet drinks, kombucha is a natural product with built-in health and nutrition benefits. Those benefits start with kombucha’s probiotic effects, which come from the bacteria and yeast that form during the fermentation process. Like the live cultures in yogurt, kefir, aged cheese, fresh sauerkraut, kimchi and other fermented foods, the microorganisms in kombucha that are responsible for its tangy flavor also help keep the natural population of bacteria in your digestive tract balanced and healthy. And that, in turn, helps keep the rest of you healthy! The bacterial culture in kombucha—known as a tea fungus or SCOBY (which stands for symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast)—forms a slippery, mushroom-like organism that, when added to a slightly sweetened tea mixture and brewed properly at controlled temperatures, results in a sparkling beverage that’s more fun to drink than plain water or plain seltzer, but equally refreshing. You can buy kombucha in the refrigerated section of most supermarkets and health food stores or you can learn to brew your own at home which is a fairly easy process and a less expensive way to enjoy it. (A 16 oz. commercially-b Continue reading >>
Kombucha And Diabetes
Kombucha is a mix of bacteria and yeasts that is placed in tea to create a health tonic of sorts. It's said to help regulate blood sugar and possibly help with high blood pressure and high cholesterol, making it a drink of interest to diabetics. The question remains, however, of whether it works. The jury is still out. Video of the Day Kombucha is a "scoby," or symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeasts. Physically, it is a gelatinous colony that may remind you of a mushroom. Used for centuries in China, Japan, Korea and Russia, kombucha is steeped in tea and sugar for several days. The result is a drink that tastes something like sparkling apple cider, depending on the type of tea you use. The mixture produces a range of vitamins, minerals and acids that proponents say are healthful for a range of conditions, including diabetes. Kombucha tea is said to have a number of effects that make it of interest to diabetics. For example, if you use a more sour tea, kombucha may help by moderating fluctuations in blood sugar. In addition, it reportedly helps with diabetic complications such as high blood pressure and improving your cholesterol profile. It's also said to increase energy and improve digestion. Unfortunately, little modern scientific evidence exists to support any of these claims. The NYU Langone Medical Center reports the earliest investigations of kombucha took place in Germany in the 1930s, but more recent studies have been examining kombucha as a probiotic. For example, a January-March 2011 article in the "Journal of Indian Society of Periodontology" studied the promise of kombucha and other healthful bacteria in fighting periodontal disease, of which diabetics are at greater risk than nondiabetics. Scientists also suspect that changes in the bacteria in the gut c Continue reading >>
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Is Pumpkin Good For Diabetics?
Diabetes is a complicated disease; this is commonly referred to as the silent killer. When the blood sugar levels are not under control, various other associated problems may arise. The food intake for a diabetic patient is very important. Processed food should be avoided as much as possible; natural food is the best to stick to. Lentils, broccoli, salmon, chia seeds and sardines are a few of the food that can be added to the diet of a diabetic patient. Is pumpkin good for diabetics? This is a serious question asked by many diabetic patients. The happy news is that pumpkin, which belongs to the cucurbitaceae family, is one of the best foods for diabetic patients. This family also includes cucumbers, melons and squash. There are various ways in cooking the pumpkin. When it is ripe it can be steamed, baked, boiled and roasted. Pumpkin is also famous in the mashed form. They are also edible as soups, pies and purees. These different forms of cooking will help it make it an easy ingredient for a diabetic patient. The pumpkin flesh is rich in Vitamin A and C, potassium, folic acid and protein and the pumpkin seeds are rich in iron and unsaturated fats. There are various reasons as to why pumpkin benefits in diabetes. A few of the reasons are mentioned below. Rich in Vitamin C Vitamin C is basically used to control the diabetes mellitus; this is done by simulating insulin in a diabetic patient. Vitamin C is a good source for simulating insulin in the body and when administered orally this can help control diabetes. Therefore, because of its very high vitamin C content, we can easily answer ‘yes’ to the question is pumpkin good for diabetics. Iron and Unsaturated Fats The pumpkin seeds are rich in iron and unsaturated fats that are good for heart health as well. This is an Continue reading >>
Healthy Carbs For Diabetes
1 / 9 Making the Best Carb Choices for Diabetes "When you say 'carbohydrate,' most people think of sugar," says Meredith Nguyen, RD, a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator at the Methodist Charlton Medical Center Diabetes Self-Management Program in Dallas. But that's only half the story. Carbohydrates are also starches and valuable fiber, which are found in many nutrient-rich foods that should be part of a diabetes diet. Sugar is the basic building block that, depending on how it's organized, creates either starches or fiber. You need about 135 grams of carbohydrates every day, spread fairly evenly throughout your meals. Instead of trying to avoid carbs completely, practice planning your diabetes diet with everything in moderation. "There's nothing you can't have," Nguyen says. "The catch is that you might not like the portion size or frequency." Use this list of healthy carbohydrates to help you stay balanced. Continue reading >>
Eating Squash Regularly Could Possibly Do Wonders For Diabetes
Eating Squash Regularly Could Possibly Do Wonders For Diabetes New studies about squash show it has powerful antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-diabetic properties, a food expert says. Squash includes both winter and summer varieties, some examples include, zucchini from the summer and butternut, buttercup, acorn, pumpkin and kabocha from winter, Phil Lempert, a food industry analyst, said in a statement. Many of the carbs in winter starch come from polysaccharides found in the cell walls. These polysaccharides include pectins specially structured polysaccharides that in winter squash often include special chains of D-galacturonic acid called homogalacturonan. An increasing number of animal studies now show that these starch-related components in winter squash have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, as well as anti-diabetic and insulin-regulating properties. Squash contains also essential minerals like potassium, manganese and copper. Although the squash is really a fruit, many people use it as a vegetable for culinary purposes. Squash can be prepared by baking it, cut into fries, put into soups or boiled. Continue reading >>
Seasonal Eats: Winter Squash
By Tracey Neithercott; recipes by Robyn Webb, MS, LN Candy has ruined October. Instead of anticipating the month's harvest, most people focus on the annual candy-corn-and-mini-Snickers binge that comes with Halloween. That's a shame, since there's a much healthier way to treat your sweet tooth: by cooking up some succulent seasonal squash. A rainbow of squashhunter green, peachy tan, tangerine, jade, and buttercreamis available at most markets and is a good source of key nutrients like beta-carotene, vitamins A and C, potassium, and fiber. Winter squash, the tougher-skinned sister to summer squash like zucchini, is harvested in September and October and can keep through January. No matter its variety, a good winter squash should feel heavy for its size and be free from any cuts, breaks, or soft spots. To make sure your squash is as tasty on New Year's Day as it is on Halloween, store it in a dry room cooled to about 40 or 50 degrees. "Traditionally, people would store [squash] in their old farmhouse in the bedroom. People would keep them under the bed. Those conditions are best for squash," says Ryan Voiland, owner of Red Fire Farm in Granby, Mass., who has been growing squash for decades. The condition of the squash is also an important factor in how well it stores. "Unless you want to eat it right away, you don't want any nicks," Voiland says. Before you head to your local market to shop for squash, note that there are differences among varieties. "There are probably hundreds, or more than hundreds, of different varieties of squash," says Voiland. "Different varieties have different characteristics. Some are moister. I'd consider the butternut to be a very moist squash. Other varieties are drier. The kabocha is dry and almost flaky inside." If you've tried squash bef Continue reading >>
Diabetic? Kombucha Can Help!
One of my patients recently asked for my advice on a meal plan that she should stick to in order to help manage her diabetes. I recommended healthy foods rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals, as well as a variety of vegetables, fruits, and lean meats. When it came to beverages, I suggested she try kombucha tea. “Kombucha?” she asked confused. “Sounds like a board game.”Not quite! Kombucha has been around for centuries and provides essential vitamins, minerals, and acids that are crucial for several health conditions, including diabetes. Ad Did you know that there is an ancient Chinese technique that is clinically proven to significantly reduce blood pressure without drugs? In this special report, you’ll get all the details on how you can use this technique yourself to lower your blood pressure and get many other health benefits as well. Click here to see now. What Is Kombucha? Kombucha is a mixture of good bacteria and yeast; kombucha tea is made by fermenting a mixture of kombucha cultures, sugar, and tea for a few days to a few weeks. It is brewed with a SCOBY (symbiotic colony of yeast and bacteria), which results in an acidic probiotic drink. During the fermentation process, most of the sugar gets absorbed by the bacteria and yeast, so it has minimal effect on the body’s blood sugar levels. Kombucha Benefits for Diabetics Did you know that diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in the U.S.? The disease affects nearly 26 million Americans, so patients are always looking for new ways to manage their diabetes effectively. Kombucha has become especially popular as research shows it relieves diabetic complications: Keeps your blood sugar levels within a normal range Normalizes high blood pressure and improves cholesterol levels Improves your metaboli Continue reading >>
Spotlight On... Diabetic Diets
A healthy, balanced diet is key to keeping your blood sugar levels in check and your diabetes under control... What is diabetes? Diabetes is a lifelong condition caused by a failure of the blood sugar regulation mechanism in the body. This is controlled by a hormone called insulin. Diabetes results when the pancreas does not secrete enough insulin or cells of the body become resistant to insulin so blood sugar levels are not controlled as they should be. Without the proper function of insulin, sugar cannot enter muscle or fat cells, causing serious secondary complications such as heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, neuropathy and other complications. Type 1 diabetes Insulin dependent, less common and usually develops before the age of 30. Type 1 diabetes occurs when the pancreas stops producing insulin. The exact cause is unknown but some believe that it is an autoimmune response in which the body attacks its own pancreatic cells. People with Type 1 diabetes must take insulin for life. Type 2 diabetes Non-insulin dependent, used to be most common in later life but is becoming increasingly more prevalent in younger generation largely due to an increase in obesity. In Type 2 diabetes, the pancreas still produces insulin, but either it is not producing enough or the body does not respond to it properly. The most common cause of type 2 diabetes is obesity. In many cases, Type 2 diabetes can be avoided through eating a healthy, balanced diet and taking regular exercise and often can be controlled in the same way if diagnosed. However, some cases will require medication and your doctor should be the one to determine whether this is necessary. Recent research has reported interesting evidence to support the reversal of type 2 diabetes. Research funded by Diabetes UK and per Continue reading >>
Gestational Diabetes: What Should I Do?
You have Gestational Diabetes. If you hear that statement when you are pregnant, dont be frightened. Even though its not a desirable diagnosis we would like to hear while we are growing a baby, but theres ways you can do to keep it under control without needing to take insulin. Diabetes (high blood sugars) that is diagnosed during your pregnancy is called Gestational Diabetes Mellitus (GDM). According to American Diabetes Association, the prevalence of GDM is as high as 9.2%. Pregnancy naturally increases your insulin resistance due to the growth hormone releases from the placenta, therefore all expectant mothers are at risk for developing GDM and we all have to go through the gruesome glucose tolerance test around 26-28 weeks of our pregnancy to ensure we dont develop it. Gestational diabetes is not to be taken lightly. Uncontrolled blood sugar level will negatively affect your growing baby in vitro and also putting your newborn baby at risk for very low blood sugar at birth, increases their risk for obesity and developing Type 2 diabetes in adulthood. So, what can you do?Best way to keep your blood sugar in check is to watch the amount of carbohydrate intake daily. Therefore, knowing what kind of foods contains carbohydrate is the first step. When you have GDM, morning blood sugar is the hardest to predict and control due to the highest concentration of pregnancy hormone during the morning. Therefore, it is recommended to only have 2 carbohydrate choices or 30g of carbohydrate foods during breakfast time and eat a higher protein meal to keep hunger at bay. In addition, it is advised to avoid fruits and fruit juices in the morning as the simple fruit sugars are easily digested, which in turn raises the blood sugar too quickly. One way to keeping blood sugar stable is Continue reading >>
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12 Thyroid-friendly Foods That Stabilize Your Blood Sugar
Do you know how important your blood sugar is to your body? When you ignore your blood sugar, you run the risk of serious health consequences. Give your blood sugar the attention it deserves, and find foods that stabilize your blood sugar today. After all, It’s never too late to start eating with your health in mind. Why Blood Sugar Matters Our bodies are constantly dealing with swings in blood sugar, and blood sugar problems are not simply reserved for those dealing with conditions like diabetes. When we keep our blood sugar in check, we keep our body operating properly. The blood in our system drives our bodies, and when our blood sugars are all out of whack we run the risk of those areas (like our brain, for instance) not working properly. In the past, I’ve shared some tips of my own to get the conversation started (1). Today, we’re going to talk even more about eating with your blood sugar in mind. First, let’s pay attention to what a “normal” blood sugar level looks like. This means that we also need to understand the difference between normal and optimal. Normal is where your blood sugar should be, and optimal is where you want your blood sugar to be. In Conclusion: When it comes to your blood sugar, you should always be looking to achieve that optimal status. You should never be settling for less than normal. For your morning fasting glucose level… Normal: <99 mg/dl Optimal: 75 – 85 mg/dl For your post-prandial glucose level (which is 1 – 2 hours after a meal)… Normal: <200 mg/dl Optimal: <120 mg/dl Anxiety Hunger Moodiness Energy crashes There are also less common, but just as serious, symptoms like: Headaches Muscle pain When we start to identify the forces underpinning these symptoms, we might start looking at more serious diseases behind o Continue reading >>
Is Green Squash Low Glycemic?
Janelle Commins started writing professionally in 2007. She has written for the "UCLA Total Wellness" magazine on nutrition and fitness topics that are of interest to young adults. Her work has also appeared in various online publications. She holds a Bachelor of Science in nutrition science from University of California, Davis, and a Master of Science in public health from University of California, Los Angeles. An assortment of green summer squash on a table.Photo Credit: MalyDesigner/iStock/Getty Images The glycemic index of green squash depends on the specific type of squash. The two most common types of green squash are green zucchini and kabocha squash. Each of these types has a different GI rank; green zucchini has a GI score of 50, which makes it a low-GI food. Kabocha squash, like others with intensely orange flesh, has a GI score of 75 making it an intermediate-GI food. The glycemic index (GI) is based on how much blood sugar rises after consuming a specific food as compared to the rise in blood sugar after consuming a known amount of glucose or refined white bread. High-GI foods have a score of 75 or above. Intermediate-GI foods have a score between 55 to 75. Low-GI foods have a score less than 55. The GI is useful for meal planning for diabetics and people wishing to prevent an extreme rise and fall in blood sugar. Green zucchini is a low-GI food also considered a "free" food because it causes no appreciable elevation in blood sugar. Green zucchini is a type of summer squash and is very low in calories and high in fiber and vitamin A. One-half cup of cooked zucchini has 15 calories, less than 0.5 g fat and less than 5 mg sodium. One cup of cooked zucchini provides up to 20 percent of the recommended daily allowance for vitamin A and manganese, and 10 percent Continue reading >>
Japanese Food And Beverages For Diabetics And Low-carb Eaters
Since I was diagnosed with pre-diabetes, I've been doing a lot of research into what is recommended for diabetics in Japan to eat. There are several issues to keep in mind when eating or making Japanese style dishes, so I thought I'd share these here. Whether you're planning to travel to Japan or are just a fan of Japanese restaurants, I hope you'll find this useful. (Note: I'm going to throw around terms like blood glucose level, glycemic index (GI) and glycemic load (GL) here. If you have diabetes or pre-diabetes, or otherwise have to watch your blood glucose levels, you probably already know what I mean. If not, I highly recommend perusing the information available at David Mendosa's site. It explains these things in clear layman's terms, with very little of the axe-grinding that plagues similar sites about diabetes.) I should mention here that, for the moment anyway, I have decided to take a low-GI index or low-carb approach to keeping my blood glucose levels down. I know there are other theories out there for how to achieve this, but please keep this in mind when you read the following. (I did say low-carb. I haven't entirely eliminated carbs from my diet. I have cut out most sugar though. So far it seems to be working fairly well, since my blood sugar levels have gone down slightly in the month or so since leaving the hospital, and I've lost weight too.) Japanese people get diabetes? But aren't they all skinny? Even though obesity rates are quite low in Japan, plenty of Japanese people do suffer from diabetes, both the Type 1 and Type 2 kinds. One study I read estimates that 4,000 people die of diabetes-related complications every year in Japan. Obesity may not be the only cause of diabetes anyway, though that's another issue. In any case, Type 2 diabetes is known Continue reading >>
The 15 Best Superfoods For Diabetics
beats1/Shutterstock Chocolate is rich in flavonoids, and research shows that these nutrients reduce insulin resistance, improve insulin sensitivity, drop insulin levels and fasting blood glucose, and blunt cravings. But not all chocolate is created equal. In a 2008 study from the University of Copenhagen, people who ate dark chocolate reported that they felt less like eating sweet, salty, or fatty foods compared to volunteers given milk chocolate, with its lower levels of beneficial flavonoids (and, often, more sugar and fat, too). Dark chocolate also cut the amount of pizza that volunteers consumed later in the same day, by 15 percent. The flavonoids in chocolate have also been shown to lower stroke risk, calm blood pressure, and reduce your risk for a heart attack by 2 percent over five years. (Want more delicious, healthy, seasonal foods? Click here.) Jiri Vaclavek/Shutterstock Broccoli is an anti-diabetes superhero. As with other cruciferous veggies, like kale and cauliflower, it contains a compound called sulforaphane, which triggers several anti-inflammatory processes that improve blood sugar control and protect blood vessels from the cardiovascular damage that’s often a consequence of diabetes. (Heart disease is the leading cause of death for people with diabetes, so this protection could be a lifesaver.) Sulforaphane also helps flip on the body’s natural detox mechanisms, coaxing enzymes to turn dangerous cancer-causing chemicals into more innocent forms that the body can easily release. Blueberries funnyangel/Shutterstock Blueberries really stand out: They contain both insoluble fiber (which “flushes” fat out of your system) and soluble fiber (which slows down the emptying of your stomach, and improves blood sugar control). In a study by the USDA, peopl Continue reading >>