DiabetesHealth ConditionsLifestyleNutrition

Debunking Diabetes Diet Myths

Debunking Diabetes Diet Myths

“Consuming too much sugar will give you diabetes”. One in ten people has probably heard this statement and believed it accurate. However, diabetes is not caused because you consume too much sugar. Instead, diabetes is a metabolic disorder caused by faulty insulin secretion or insulin action; insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas responsible for maintaining blood glucose levels.

Unfortunately, diabetes has become an epidemic in recent years, particularly in urban areas. And as diabetes becomes more prevalent, so do the myths. Since diabetes is a widely misunderstood disease, we will be debunking a few diabetes myths to help people who suffer from the disease manage it, understand the risks and break the stigma associated with it.

Let’s go ahead to debunk five diabetes diet myths.

Myth – Individuals who have diabetes should not eat fruits

Fruit is a healthy option that, along with vegetables, should make up a large part of a well-balanced diet. Fruit contains more natural sugars than vegetables but less sugar than cakes, cookies, and sweets, and it also has other nutrients and fibre.

If you have high blood glucose levels, the fruit in your diet is unlikely to be the cause. Before you cut back on fruit, consider other sources of sugar in your diet.

Myth – Diabetes is caused by overeating sugar.

This is not surprising, given that diabetes is a condition associated with high blood glucose levels. Diabetes, on the other hand, is NOT caused by overeating sugar. In a large European study, sugary drinks, such as soda, sweet tea, fruit juice, and energy drinks, have been linked to type 2 diabetes. Because these drinks are often high in calories and low in nutritional value, it is best to drink more water to reduce your risk. Eating too much sugar raises your chances of being overweight, obese, or developing type 2 diabetes, but it does not cause diabetes directly.

Myth – Diabetes patients must adhere to a special diet.

Diabetes patients should follow the same diet as everyone else: a healthy, balanced diet. This includes plenty of fruits and vegetables, pulses, fish, eggs, lean meat, and low-fat dairy.

Limit sugary foods such as cakes, cookies, and sweets and stick to sugar-free beverages such as water and unsweetened tea or coffee.

Myth – Diabetes patients are unable to consume dessert.

Simply because you have diabetes does not mean you should abstain from eating cookies, cake, and chocolate. Restriction can lead to bingeing or overeating. A small portion of sweets in moderation can be enjoyed by you and your body as long as you follow a balanced diet. However, remember to balance your dish by limiting your carbohydrate intake during your meal to account for your treat. You could also eat your higher carbohydrate meal by choosing lower carbohydrate versions of your desserts. 

Myth – If you have diabetes, you cannot consume alcohol.

If you have diabetes, you can still drink alcohol, but you should limit your intake to no more than a recommended amount per week. If you drink this much, have some alcohol-free days every week.

If you are trying to lose weight, remember that alcoholic beverages can increase your calorie intake while stimulating your appetite and lowering inhibitions, making it challenging to stick to healthy eating plans.

Certain diabetes medications (insulin or sulphonylureas) can make you more likely to have a hypo if you drink alcohol. This effect can last up to 24 hours, so ensure you are prepared and that those around you are aware of this.

Diabetes is a chronic disease that affects the entire body. As the infection spreads, we must raise awareness and share the truth by debunking myths about diabetes. Do not let what you hear from someone cause you to believe outrageous myths. Always try to be appropriately informed. You can speak to any of our doctors HERE for further information or inquiries.

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