Everything you need to know about diabetes and women
Compliment your food choices with regular exercise, reduced stress and beat diabetes the Indian way!
By virtue of my profession, I am constantly in touch with women of all ages, professions and locations. I can't be happier to notice that women are taking charge and striving for their share in every aspect of life. While women are striving for equality, here is one sector we are at par with our male counterparts – The incidence of Diabetes. Sorry to be the bearer of sad news but even though we are affected equally, the consequences are far worse for us. Diabetes is on the rise in India and it is best to prevent, than to cure .Our Indian local foods are the magic to bringing sugar levels down.
Carbohydrate care – Hold on, I'm not going to ask you to cut them out. In fact, they are very essential to maintain energy and prevent binging later in the day. The key is to choose the right carbohydrates that provide plenty of fibre and are easily digested. Whole grains like wheat, barley, nachni, jowar, bajra are lower on the glycaemic scale.
Protein power – Having a balanced Indian meal is the trick to bringing down sugar levels. Our dals, sambhars and whole pulses like moong, chickpea and black-beans should accompany every meal. Protein is required to build muscles and carry out all the metabolic processes smoothly.
Fat is where it is at – Fats are an integral part of our meals. Add healthy fats like desi cow's ghee, coconut oil and other cold pressed oils when preparing poriyals, dosas and Idlis orany of your food. Wondered why we always need ghee to mix in our podis? It's because fats absorb phytochemicals from spices, many of which help lower sugar levels. Healthy fats are also present in nuts and seeds like almonds, cashews, walnuts, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds etc snack on them.
Seasonal pick – I can't stress enough on the importance of including seasonal local vegetables. It is the season for the fibre rich leafy greens like spinach, cabbage, and Fenugreek. Don't skip out on the anti-oxidant providing aubergine, carrot and radish that this season brings along. Protein rich vegetables like flat beans french beans and peas are also a great pick.
Fruit factor – Fruits have always gained a bad rep when it comes to diabetes. But this seasons fruits like strawberries, oranges and papaya are low on sugar, high on fibre and anti-oxidant rich. In fact, Guavas help reduce sugar levels. The phyto chemicals that local, seasonal produce provide, help flush out toxins, which help control blood sugar.
Spice, nice – Cinnamon, cloves, fenugreek seeds, kokum and curry leaves are known to lower sugar levels. Herbs like fresh turmeric, ginger, garlic, also aid in lowering blood sugar. Add these to your vegetables and dal and temper the your rasam will keep away the sugar.