Pre-diabetes is a health condition when blood sugar levels in the body are higher than normal, but not high enough to be diagnosed as type 2 diabetes.
The condition is an early warning sign of high diabetes risk. Previous research has shown that people with pre-diabetes may have a 10 to 20 times greater risk of type 2 diabetes.
But the good news is that people can change their lifestyle habits to improve their health condition and reduce diabetes risk.
They can eat healthy foods, exercise regularly and control their body weight.
A recent study has shown that when people do these things, they could lower the risk of type 2 diabetes by almost 60%.
So what type of food should people with pre-diabetes eat or avoid?
First and foremost, eating lots of vegetables and fruit is important.
A recent review of published studies found that people who had the highest intake of vegetables and fruit had a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes compared with people who had the lowest intake of these foods.
Researchers suggest that green leafy vegetables are beneficial to people with pre-diabetes, including spinach, cabbage, kale, Asian greens, lettuce, broccoli, and watercress.
Second, a plant-based diet could be quite beneficial.
Research has shown that people who included lots of plant foods and few animal foods in their diet could have a lower risk of diabetes.
In addition, people who included the most healthy plant foods (whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, vegetable oils, tea/coffee) in their diet could have an even lower diabetes risk.
Third, pay attention to the glycaemic index (GI)
GI is a figure showing the relative ability of a carbohydrate food to increase the level of glucose in the blood.
Food with a high GI are digested more rapidly, which can cause a greater increase in blood sugars after eating. A GI value of less than 55 is considered low.
Eating food with lower GI may help control blood sugar levels.
Fourth, drink some coffee may help regulate blood sugar.
Coffee contains bioactive molecules that help regulate blood sugar levels. For example, chlorogenic acid can improve glucose metabolism and insulin sensitivity.
Caffeic acid can boost the rate of muscles use up glucose.
Research has shown that people who drank three or more cups of coffee a day had a lower risk of type 2 diabetes.
But it is important not to drink too much coffee (e.g., more than 6 cups a day). Excessive coffee drinking may harm heart health.
Fifth, do not drink sugar-sweetened beverages.
A sugary drink may increase the risk of diabetes, increase body weight, damage heart health and even lead to cancer.
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