Blood glucose levels can go up or down depending on which foods you eat. Diabetes “Free” foods can be eaten without raising blood glucose levels significantly.
Not surprisingly, the majority of foods that will not greatly affect your blood glucose levels fall into the vegetable category. Most vegetables are low on the glycemic index, and are low in calories, fats and cholesterol.
The following list of “Free” foods that should not have a great effect on your blood sugar comes from the publishers of DiabetesDaily.
- bean sprouts
- beet greens
- brussel sprouts
- green beans
- green peppers
- orange peppers
- red peppers
- swiss chard
- tomato (Limit 1)
- yellow beans
- salt & pepper (beware of high sodium in salt)
- Most vinegars and seasonings (check for sodium content)
Although these foods may not raise your blood sugar (glucose) levels, that is not to say that all of these foods are good for your diabetes or your overall health. All meats and cheeses, for example, contain some amount of fat, which is high in calories. Consuming too many calories will cause weight gain, which is a contributing factor in diabetes. Meats also contain some amount of saturated fats and cholesterol, which besides being high in calories can also raise blood cholesterol levels. Some of these foods are high in sodium as well, which can lead to hypertension, or high blood pressure. This is another disease that diabetics often suffer from.
Vegetables contain no fat, saturated fat or cholesterol, which makes them your best bet for lowering your blood glucose, lowering your cholesterol, lowering your blood pressure and maintaining your best overall health. With the exception of some mushrooms and bean sprouts (technically, the sprout portion is a vegetable and the bean itself is a legume), most vegetables on the list are either very low or completely lacking in protein. Since good nutrition requires the intake of some type of protein on a regular basis, it is probably wise to consume either some meat or vegetables each day that are high in protein, yet low in fat, saturated fat and cholesterol.
Sticking to a diet which contains foods low on the glycemic index, as well as containing little or no fats, cholesterol, sodium and a minimum of calories can not only eliminate blood sugar “spikes” and long-term high blood glucose levels, but for some diabetics could lead to a (nearly) permanent reversal of diabetes itself.