Legumes for Diabetes
Why Are Legumes for Diabetes a good choice? One of the most discussed health issues across the world is diabetes, which has been affecting lives of humans since centuries. And legumes can help to control your diabetes. Yet sadly people rely more on myths and gimmicks about diabetes than real scientific facts.
The awareness about diabetes, which is deemed one of the major slow killer diseases in the world, is extremely important. How the condition affects the vital organs of the body, the nervous system, the metabolism, and quality of life, must be learned to avoid or delay the damages.
Some changes made to the body by diabetes are unavoidable and irreversible. But one can take critically important steps and make vital lifestyle changes to maintain a better quality of life and health even after acquiring diabetes, and this is where legumes play a very important role too.
However, to understand the negativity of diabetes, and positivity of naturally derived foods like legumes in avoiding it, you need to get educated about it.
Acquiring the right information is the first step towards making important lifestyle and dietary changes. Only then you may get equipped from inside to fight the condition, and live better and longer.
Things You Need to Know About Diabetes
You are reading this article for some probable reasons. One reason may be that you already have diabetes, and want to find out more about it and its remedies. Another reason may be that you don’t want to get diabetes, and want to stay safe beforehand so that it doesn’t catch you.
There are people with a history of diabetes in their families. And then there are people who had none of their ancestors diagnosed with diabetes, and yet they acquired it strangely.
Why you may get diabetes, and whether heredity has a role in it, and how much lifestyle has a role to play, are some of the important things to learn. Moreover, there are two types of diabetes that are diagnosed, and you must know what they are, how they affect you, and how you can fight them. Only when you know more about the disease, the better you would be able to relate to the remedies, cure, and protective measures.
The Two Types of Diabetes
There are clinically two types of diabetes. They are called Type 1 and type 2. Type 1 is the more serious stage and Type 2 marks the beginning with this condition, which may later lead to Type 1 with time, if enough care is not taken.
And this is caused due to the body’s inability to produce insulin or respond to the available insulin. Its insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas, which controls the amount of blood glucose and helps the cells absorb the glucose.
In Type 1 diabetes the body stops producing insulin. Therefore no blood sugar gets processed the right way to get absorbed in the cells and get utilized. That’s why the body simply cannot process the glucose in blood.
Both types of diabetes take toll on the entire body, the organs, and the various body systems, while affecting the nervous system very badly. Hence whatever stage your diabetes is in, it must be treated with care, and protective measures in lifestyle and diet has to be taken to protect the body’s systems from ongoing damage from the condition. Diabetes has no cure, but the body can be protected from its devastating effects with lifestyle changes.
You get Type 2 diabetes, which is the pre-diabetic stage of Type 1 diabetes, when your body initially doesn’t responds to insulin and later doesn’t produces enough insulin. And if this condition is left untreated and no precautionary measures are taken, then it may lead to Type 1 diabetes. Some patients acquire Type 1 diabetes directly, and some acquires this from type 2 diabetes.
Symptoms of Diabetes
The most common symptoms of both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes are as follows:
- Urination gets frequent
- Hunger pangs increase- one may feel hungry most of the time
- Body feels fatigued most of the time
- Vision gets blurred with time and often more when one is hungry
- Ongoing feel of thirst and tendency to drink lots of water and liquid.
- Injuries, inflammations and cuts heal very slowly or don’t tend to heal properly.
In case of Type 1 diabetes the symptoms appear fast, but in many cases of type 2 diabetes symptoms get unnoticed or don’t show up for many days and months. The affected person may be having an ongoing damage of nerves and organs inside the body due to the condition, and yet may learn about it much later when thing gets too intense.
How Diabetes Affects Your Body
Diabetes is called a slow killer. That’s because it doesn’t alter anything overnight, but slowly and gradually changes many things in the body. The effects are slow and gets visible after some time has passed. And sadly the changes are irreversible in most of the cases. That’s why, damage done to the body by diabetes must be prevented on time to stay well and live a better life.
There are more than one ways the body gets internally damaged due to any form of diabetes. However people talk more about damages done to eyesight, kidneys, heart, and the other problems like high blood pressure, excess urination, mood changes etc. But one of the areas that often stay untouched by many people, patients, learners, and enthusiasts is nervous damage.
The nervous system and nerves in the body gets severely damaged over time due to diabetes. And this is one such problem, which itself is a problem and leads to many other related problems together with it. Hence awareness about nerve problems in diabetes is very important to prevent many other problems in the body and its various organs.
If damage to nerves from high blood sugar levels can be guarded, then many other damages can be prevented and taken control of. To know more about the extent of nerve damage in diabetes, and how legumes can help in the prevention of all that, you must read on.
Effect of Diabetes on the Nervous System
The excess levels of sugar in the blood damages the nerves, but gradually. The nerve endings get damaged by the excess glucose, and gradually the nerves stop responding, and lose much of their sensitivity. Many damaged nerves don’t work after being exposed to the high sugar environment for quite much time. Eventually all signaling systems associated with the damaged nerves get interrupted.
This condition is called diabetic neuropathy. Diabetic neuropathy refers to problems with the nerves due to damage from excess blood glucose in diabetes of Type 1 or Type 2. And this problem is quite common in diabetic people. Some people can sense it early on, while some detects it late.
The extent of damage and the area of damage make the symptoms and feelings different in different cases of diabetic neuropathy. The feeling may be of pain, numbness, tingling, and dull or sharp pain in the limbs.
Also other associated issues may be from trouble at the heart, urinary system, blood vessels, and the digestive system. The symptoms also vary from being mild to moderate to severe in various patients.
The good news is that, diabetic neuropathy can be completely prevented or avoided to a great extent, with tight control and care of the blood glucose levels. With proper lifestyle and dietary regulations, the diabetic can keep the blood glucose under optimum levels, thereby reducing chances of any nerve damage.
How to Keep Blood Glucose Levels Under Control
The key to stay fit and prevent deterioration of health and quality of life in diabetes is to keep the blood sugar under control. And this is not a process dependent only on medicines or insulin shots, which most people believe in. This is dependent on exercises and diet mainly. Diet plays a very important role in controlling blood glucose levels in diabetes.
The Role of Legumes in the Diabetic Diet
Legumes play a very important role in the diabetic diet. Legumes have the power to keep the blood glucose levels under control as they get digested differently than whole wheat products and other food items. Studies on the way legumes work in reducing and controlling blood sugar have been done worldwide.
A recent study done by the American Medical Association on 120 participants, and published by the Archives of Internal Medicine, has revealed that, the consumption of Legumes has shown significant decrease in blood glucose levels and better metabolism in patients affected from Type 2 diabetes.
Since Type 2 diabetes is often deemed as the pre-diabetic condition and precursor to Type 1 diabetes, and often leads to Type 1 diabetes over course of time, hence this study is of great use for diabetics. Half of the participants who were given a minimum of one cup of legumes every day in their diet had much better control on their blood sugar levels, than the other half participants who were given whole wheat products instead of legumes.
This study done over a three months time, revealed very well the role of legumes in lowering and controlling blood sugar levels.
What are Legumes?
Legumes or pulses are high in proteins and low on carbohydrates. They are the healthiest naturally derived sources of protein. The most popular legumes consumed worldwide are, beans, chickpeas, various pulses, peas, alfalfa, soybeans, peanuts etc. They can be added to any food. Legumes are consumed in powdered form, as paste, boiled, fried, and in many types of foods.
How legumes work to control blood sugar
All legumes and pulses have insoluble fiber in them. Although wheat also have a lot of fiber in it, but the glycemic index of legumes is much low. Being a food type to have a low glycemic index, legumes release glucose in the blood very slowly and gradually.
That’s why right after consumption, legumes do not spike the blood sugar levels. Instead they keep on giving a constant release of blood glucose over a course of time.
While being fibrous they give the stomach a feeling of fullness, and helps avoid pangs of hunger and feeling of emptiness. On the other side they also get digested slowly and release glucose slowly in the body. This ensures that the body gets a sustained, slow and controlled release of glucose. This system helps greatly in avoiding any spike in blood sugar.
How Legumes Help Throughout With Diabetes
Diabetics often fight with this feeling of hunger frequently through the day. The consumption of legumes and their inclusion in most meals help greatly in making the meals heavier for the stomach while lighter on the blood sugar levels.
That’s why with legumes in the diet the diabetic person would not feel hungry often, and would not feed or munch on items without planning. Moreover the low glycemic index of legumes makes it a great natural food item to keep the blood glucose under control.
If you are successful in incorporating a natural and side-effect-free food that has low glycemic index and high fiber in your diabetic diet, then it can be one of the best and most effective steps to control your blood sugar without relying on external medications as much.
Medicines definitely support the way the body processes the blood sugar, and exercises also supports greatly. But food has its own pivotal role in controlling blood sugar in diabetes, which can be made to work by including a variety of legumes in your daily diet.
Legumes for diabetes are definitely a wise selection in helping to keep your blood sugar levels normal and therefor with aiding in controlling your diabetes. If the blood sugar level is within control, then much of the worry with diabetes management vanishes.
It’s the blood sugar after all, which has to be controlled in diabetes. And when the food plays the key role in controlling blood glucose, then chances of nerve and organ damages gets reduced to great extent, and can be prevented for most of the life.
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