The list below is not all the foods. However one important point to help us guard against diabetes is to reduce processed foods in our diet. Apart from processed foods, it is also important to avoid transfats as much as possible and include regular exercise to help keep blood sugar under control. Remember also that excess of it results to stress which is a minus in our effort against diabetes. Here are some of the foods that are common in our local markets:
All legumes in the beans category, black, pinto, navy, kidney and black eyed cowpea are all rich in protein and fibre to keep us feeling full for longer periods instead of snagging on foods that raises blood sugar.
2. Leafy Green Vegetables:
These includes: spinach, collard greens, pumpkin leaves, moringa leaves and others are all high in nutrients with low carbohydrates content. They are also low in calorie making it possible to eat as much as desirable
3. Citrus fruits
Grapefruit, oranges, lemons and other citrus fruits are good for the heart because of their high content of vitamin C. Whole fruits are better than juices, since the fruit contains the fiber, which slows down the body’s absorption of sugar.
4. Sweet potatoes
They are better than other types of potatoes, because they have a low glycemic index. This means that sweet potatoes will not cause blood sugar levels to spike. They are also high in vitamin A. It is necessary to eat them in moderation and it is definitely not an everyday food.
6. Whole grains:
These includes: Oats, Millet, I like to ferment my millet and prepare them like semovita and other flour or wheat floor. It is good for controlling blood sugar and rich in nutrients too. Oatmeal could be prepared same way and they are smart substitutes in our environment where people like stocking their stomachs with starchy foods like pounded yams, foo foo, etc. which are not more convenient in terms of nutrients, calorie and other benefit especially when compared to millet and other grains
Nuts are high in omega-3 and other good fatty acids. These kinds of fats protect and help the heart rather than burden it. However, one should not eat too much, as they are high in calories. A small handful, is enough for a healthy snack. We have cashew nuts, peanuts, walnuts in this group and other nuts and are all beneficial against diabetes..
8. Milk and Low Fat yogurt
Both are rich in calcium and vitamin D and are also good choices to help keep cravings under control. Calcium is essential for overall good health
9.Dark unsweetened Cocoa
This is bitter in its original state and should not be mistaken with sugar laden chocolates in our market designed to attract children. Cocoa is healthy food with high level of antioxidants
Garlic: Garlic is known for its anti inflammatory powers, enabling to help ward off diabetes and other degenerating disease. It is a natural antibiotic to help keep bacteria and other infections under control.
13. Cinnamon: This is a super spice that should be included in your main meals each day. It is an a source of magnesium and iron. It helps burn fat and improve the way your body responds to sugar. When you include cinnamon spice in your white rice, I personally notice that the blood sugar is improved positively as against when you consume your white rice without cinnamon. If you want to say NO to diabetes, then include cinnamon in your list.
14. Bitter leaf and other bitters: Most of us are usually concerned with consuming tasty meals, yes tasty meals are good but as you approach your 40s and 50s, taste should not be everything anymore but your health. Bitter leaf whether eaten raw, that is after washing it about twice, the leaves could be eaten raw or boiled in clean water and the water drunk occasionally during the week especially first thing in the morning, by doing this, you are saying NO to diabetes and blood sugar is regulated. This applies to other bitters too like bitter cola, bitter melon and the rest bitters. If you snack on these bitters occasionally
In addition, to the above, moderate exercise and proper hydration will all work positively in your bid to saying NO to diabetes. Other tips in saying NO to diabetes include: maintain ideal body weight, reducing stress, NO to alcohol, including raw foods in your regular diet, having sufficient sleep. All these play positive roles in regulating blood sugar levels. It is also necessary to avoid highly processed foods as much as possible.