The Connection Between Carbs & Diabetes - Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare

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Published on December 02, 2013

The Connection Between Carbs & Diabetes

Are you pre-diabetic? You’re not alone – research shows that nearly one in five people have pre-diabetes. The good news is early treatment, exercise and eating right can help prevent Type 2 Diabetes for some pre-diabetics. Paying attention to nutrition, such as learning to count carbs, is an effective method for some people with pre-diabetes to return blood glucose levels to the normal range.

What is Carbohydrate Counting or “Carb Counting?”

Carb counting is a meal planning technique for managing your blood glucose levels. With carbohydrate counting, you can pick almost any food product off the shelf, read the label and use the information about grams of carbohydrates to fit the food into your meal plan goals.

While meals that have 45-60 grams of carbohydrate is a good starting place, meal planning for the pre-diabetic is individualized based on patient needs. It’s especially important to meet with a dietitian to determine what’s best for you.

What is the Connection Between Carbohydrates & Pre-Diabetes?

The carbohydrates in food makes blood glucose levels go up. The key to keeping blood glucose levels at your goal is to balance the food you eat with your physical activity and any medications you take. If you eat more carbohydrate than usual, you can expect your blood glucose levels to be higher than usual. Likewise, if you eat less, you can expect your blood glucose levels to be lower. Finding the balance for yourself is important so you can feel your best, do the things you enjoy, and lower your risk of diabetes complications.

Healthy Eating Tips for Pre-Diabetes

  • Focus on healthy sources of carbohydrates
  • Measure your food – portion control
  • Use healthier cooking methods without added fat
  • Limit unhealthy saturated and trans fats
  • Choose lean protein sources
  • Limit / avoid sweets, soda, salty snacks

For More Information

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