WESTFORD — The following piece was submitted by member Cheryl Major for publication and distribution by WestfordCAT.
What about your diet and diabetes? If you take only one thing away from reading this, it should be that your diet is the single most important factor when it comes to your health.
Exercise is of course important if you’re going to be as healthy as you can possibly be. However, fitness gurus, personal trainers and nutritionists will all tell you the foods and beverages you put into your body have the most significant impact on your health. Regular sleep, reduction of stress and staying hydrated also greatly influence your health.
It cannot be overstated that as much as 60% to 75% of your overall fitness, mentally and physically, is determined by what you eat!
As far as preventing diabetes is concerned, eating right is easily the best way to reach your goal of keeping yourself from becoming diabetic. As many as 90 to 95 out of every 100 cases of diabetes are Type 2 Diabetes, and the good news is this type of diabetes is nearly always preventable. This is tremendously empowering!
We know the single most important cause of Type 2 diabetes is a poor diet. It you consistently eat the wrong kinds of foods, you risk damaging your heart health, becoming overweight or obese, developing diabetes and/or suffering from a laundry list of other health problems.
An unhealthy body is more prone to becoming diabetic than is a healthy body. If it sounds like I am repeating over and over how important a diet is for you to live a healthy, happy, and fulfilling life, I absolutely am intentionally doing so. What you choose to put into your body will create the health and life you experience.
There are a few different ways to identify what foods you should be eating and which you should be avoiding as a person with diabetes or if you are trying to keep from developing diabetes. Addressing carbohydrates is a good place to begin, so we’ll focus on that today.
The Difference between Good and Bad Carbohydrates
Carbohydrates get a bad rap, and not all carbohydrates are bad…even when we’re talking about diet and diabetes.
While some diets will say that carbohydrates are bad for you, complex carbohydrates are actually good for you. It’s the simple carbs with empty calories that will do you damage. The nutrition provided by complex carbohydrates will always be higher in value and quantity than what you get out of simple carbohydrates.
How do you know which carbs to eat? Very basically, packaged foods like chips, crackers, desserts, candy, soda and the like are considered simple carbohydrates and are not good for you. If you’re reading this and thinking you could never have another chip or candy bar again, I have good news. You don’t have to be perfect to improve your health. You just have to be better. In most cases, you can eat less than healthy food every now and then if you don’t overdo it.
What are some “good” carbs that you can eat and feel confident are good for your health? Here’s a list for you: vegetables (pretty much all of them although white potatoes should be eaten occasionally), whole fruits like apples, bananas, strawberries, legumes like lentils, kidney beans, peas, etc., nuts like, walnuts, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts and almonds (I advocate avoiding peanuts), chia and pumpkin seeds, whole grains and more! Lots and lots to choose from!
Some food is better than other choices that you may make at mealtime. You can eat less than healthy food every now and then if you don’t overdo it in most cases. You don’t have to be a saint or the food police. Just remember an apple is far better for you than a cupcake even though the cupcake make be calling to you.
The key to change is to make small shifts that you feel comfortable doing. This isn’t a sprint. Changing and making better diet choices is a marathon. Start small. Pick a piece of fruit, or add more vegetables. Try new, healthier versions of the foods you already like. Each shift you make will take you in the right direction.
Helping You Achieve Major Wellness!
Cheryl A Major, CNWC
I’m author, health coach, and entrepreneur Cheryl A Major, and I would love to connect with you! If you’re new to the world of creating better health, both mental and physical for yourself, please check out my training on how to get gluten out of your diet. Becoming Gluten Free Me is where to check it out. Learn how gluten affects us and how to go about reducing or eliminating it from your diet. You don’t have to suffer with Celiac Disease to benefit from getting gluten out of your life!
Be sure to look for my upcoming book about how to preempt prediabetes due out in late 2022 and follow me on Twitter so you won’t miss my daily postings for health, wellness and mindset!
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