Type 2 Diabetes – Managing Your Weight With Healthy Eating Plans, Part 2

If you’re a Type 2 diabetic who is overweight, losing weight is one of the most important steps you can take to help manage your diabetes and even reverse it. Since there are so many options for diet plans and eating styles, here is a review of even more weight loss plans…

1. Vegetarian Diet. This is more of a lifestyle than a diet. There are different types of vegetarianism. Most types avoid meat, fish, and poultry, but still eat dairy products and eggs. A vegetarian diet can be healthy or unhealthy, depending on the foods you choose. You could eat lots of white bread and pastries on a vegetarian diet – but that wouldn’t be healthy and definitely wouldn’t be good for Type 2 diabetics and their blood sugar levels. If you choose whole grains, fruits and vegetables, and lean protein sources, a vegetarian diet can work. And you’ll likely lose weight, as vegetarians eat fewer calories in general.

2. Vegan Diet. This is also a lifestyle choice. Vegans avoid all animal products, so dairy and eggs are avoided along with meat, fish, and poultry. The main foods eaten are…

  • fruits,
  • leafy greens and other vegetables,
  • whole grains,
  • legumes,
  • seeds, and
  • nuts.

Vegans usually eat fewer calories so you’ll likely lose weight, and the diet is acceptable for diabetics. The downside of this diet is it is very restrictive, and dietitians usually advise against diets that restrict too many foods.

3. Glycemic Index Diet. This diet was actually created for people diagnosed with diabetes. The idea behind it is that all carbohydrate-containing foods have a glycemic index indicating how slowly or quickly they are actually digested. On the diet, you eat mostly foods with a low glycemic index, like whole grain cereal and vegetables, and avoid high glycemic index foods, like instant mashed potatoes and doughnuts. But more recent research on the diet shows it may not help you lose weight. It does not include portion size or any guidelines on non-carbohydrate foods, so other diets may be a better choice.

Along with all these diets, exercise is also worth mentioning. Any diet that tells you there is no need to exercise is probably too good to be true. Exercise has so many benefits for weight loss…

  • exercise burns calories, so your calorie deficit doesn’t have to come from only eating less.
  • exercise also increases your metabolism, so you continue to burn calories even after you have completed your exercise routine.

And for Type 2 diabetics, during exercise you’ll be able to move sugar from the blood to the cells even without using injectable insulin. Exercise also increases your insulin sensitivity, so blood sugar levels will be more stable most of the time.

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