Does this sound familiar?
Consuming too many carbohydrates will give you diabetes or even worse, carbohydrates need to be avoided as much as possible if you actually have diabetes.
The monumental flaw in this way of thinking is the process of grouping all carbohydrates together.
Carbohydrates and Blood Sugar
There are two basic types of carbohydrates:
- simple, refined carbohydrates
- complex carbohydrates
Everyone, diabetic or not, should avoid — or at least limit — their simple, refined carbohydrate intake.
Simple, refined carbs include foods like soft drinks, candies, pastries, white flour, white rice and any highly processed grain where the fiber has been removed.
Fiber slows down the metabolism of carbohydrates keeping your blood sugar level stable which is ultimately the goal of anyone trying to prevent or reverse diabetes. Complex carbohydrates are full of fiber and include fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes.
Simple carbohydrates hit the bloodstream hard and fast making your blood sugar levels spike.
What happens then?
Insulin is released from your pancreas to escort the sugar out of your bloodstream and into your cells where it belongs. The sugar (glucose) will either be used for energy or stored for later use.
What happens when the glucose can’t enter your cells?
Your blood sugar stays high, more insulin is released and the cycle repeats, resulting in an even higher blood sugar level.
Why can’t the glucose enter your cells?
Here is the interesting part! Dr. Neal D. Barnard, M.D., author of Dr. Neal Barnard’s Program for Reversing Diabetes, compares our cells which are unresponsive to glucose to locks with gum jammed in them.
The key can’t get in.
The glucose can’t get in!
Eating a meal of complex carbs will temporarily raise your blood sugar; however, this is only temporary. The real problem is the cells have too much fat surrounding them.
Hence no entry!
Diet and Type 2 Diabetes
So where does that leave us?
Less carbs or less fat in the diet? Less fat!
Dr. Barnard advises us to consume a plant-based diet consisting of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes.
- plant-based foods
- low-fat foods
- foods with a low glycemic index (GI)
The higher the glycemic index of a food the faster it releases sugar into the bloodstream.
Read Dr. Barnard’s book for more details about the recent research into the causes behind the diabetes epidemic and what you can do to avoid it.