Nutritional Habits

Diabetes is a very serious physiological disorder that is rather assuming an epidemic proportion the world over. It is caused by the inability of the pancreas to secrete enough insulin to work on the sugar (glucose) that has been ingested. It is treated by putting the patient on supplementary insulin and can be controlled by controlling the diet of the person afflicted with diabetes. This means reducing carbohydrate and increasing protein intake.

The most important things in maintaining nutritional health of diabetics is to keep the blood glucose, blood lipids (fats) and blood pressure within an acceptable range. The acceptable range is shown thus:

1.Blood glucose should be 6-7% during fasting and before meals; and 90–130 mg/dl 2 hours after the start of a meal: <180 mg/dl:

2.Blood pressure should be kept under 130/80 mmHg:

3. Blood cholesterol, for Low Density Lipoprotein (LDP), should be kept under 100 mg/dl. High Density Lipoprotein (HDL), for men above 40 mg/dl, above 50 mg/dl for women above 40. Triglycerides: under 150 mg/dl.

A key to achieving healthy status and to feeling good and preventing long-term complications of diabetes is healthy eating. This how ever may be difficult to do.

Studies have shown that losing ten to twenty pounds can help diabetics get their blood glucose, blood lipids and blood pressure into better control. This may allow them to stay off of some blood glucose-lowering medications for a time or take smaller doses or fewer medications. The same is true for managing diabetics’ blood lipids and blood pressure. Regardless of the medications taken to manage diabetes, a healthy eating plan should always be an important part of the diabetes care plan.

For a woman 5 4” tall and weighing 158 pounds, the body mass index limit has been exceeded which means she is obese or mildly put, overweight. Thus she needs to lose about 20 ponds to stay within the right/healthy weight.

The important plan she has to implement is to get active and start doing some real physical job to increase the rate at which food is burned. She also, as a matter of priority, have to create a dietary plan that ensures she attains a suitable body mass.

Good dietary plan ensures she sticks with the healthy eating recommendation for all Americans. These include: Eating a variety of foods within and among the basic food groups while she stay within her caloric needs; controlling the amount calories she eats to get to and stay at a healthy body weight; she eats whole grain starches that provide fiber and more nutrition without added fats and sugars; eats more fruits and vegetables; she fits in more non-fat or low-fat milk and milk products into she diet each day; she chooses and prepares foods with little salt and buys fewer processed foods; she keeps the amount of saturated fat and trans fats she eats as low as possible.

When she uses fats and oils, she chooses those that contain mainly polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats; if she consumes alcoholic beverages she should do so with moderation. Maybe a glass of wine before meals will do.

In choosing physical activities to engage in it is good look at those physical activities that are of interest to her. This will make her to do them without reluctance but with a lot of zest and enthusiasm. If she is a type that likes to dance, she can be encouraged to take up aerobics or regular dancing sessions.

When she gets more active, probably takes strolls in the evening and visits the gym at least thrice a week, she increases cardiovascular activity and thus puts the heart into good condition. Increasing physical activity also takes the mind off food and thus consumption rate reduces and so the dietary plan may be followed through.

1. American Society for Nutrition J. Nutr. 136:1453-1456, June 2006