A healthy, nutrient-dense traditional Mediterranean diet is known to maintain ideal levels of blood sugar in the body and prevent, or reduce, the risk of type 2 diabetes. An assortment of various foods from countries surrounding the Mediterranean Sea, this diet is a medley of many food groups, some in increased amounts, others in moderation, and some others in negligible proportions. Given below are some benefits of a Mediterranean diet, particularly for diabetics.
- Fresh vegetables like aubergine, lettuce, tomatoes, peppers, broccoli, lettuce, cucumbers, spinach, green beans, and onions that are rich in vitamins provide not only a healthy but also a very appetizing meal simply with the variation in their colors and textures. They are packed with fiber, so it helps you feel full without loading on unnecessary calories. You can have generous servings, about 4-5 cups of vegetables every day.
- Adequate servings of low carb fruits like berries, apples, avocados, apples, cherry, grapefruit, kiwi, orange, grapes, pear, and strawberries meet daily nutrient requirements. They provide soluble fiber that prevents sharp spikes in blood glucose levels. Have at least 3 or 4 servings of fresh fruits every day.
- Legumes, beans, nuts, and whole-grain rice, bread and pasta are laden with nutrients like fiber, protein, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. The slow digestion of such foods prevents both hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia. You can choose to have one serving of these every day.
- A Mediterranean diet includes chicken and other poultry, eggs, fish, and seafood in moderate quantities. Lean protein sources such as these stabilize blood sugar. You can enjoy them once a week.
- Diabetes can increase the risk of high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease, especially if you are obese. But a Mediterranean diet that is rich in monounsaturated fat provides calories from healthy fat sources like fresh feta and mozzarella cheese, avocados, olive oil, almonds, walnuts, and peanuts. Oleic acid, found in olives, lowers insulin resistance in the body. Hence, this diet is better than a typical low-fat diet that is usually followed for losing weight, especially for diabetics.
- Also, prolonged research has shown that diabetics following a Mediterranean diet need lesser medication in the long run than those on a low-fat diet.
- Improved cholesterol levels are a positive side effect of the Mediterranean diet because of the replacement of saturated and trans-fat with healthy monounsaturated foods. It helps lower your blood sugar levels and improves insulin control.
The Mediterranean diet is quite easy to follow. It is a nutritious, plant-based diet that’s ideal for regulation of glucose in the body.