Whether you’re trying to manage your diabetes or are just working to keep your blood sugar levels controlled, finding the best diet to follow can be confusing. With keto and paleo and everything in-between, there’s a plethora of diets to choose from which promise more stable blood sugar — so which one do you choose? Luckily for us, experts over at the Cleveland Clinic have come up with a list of three diets that, according to research, have shown to be the most effective for diabetics and those looking to control sugar levels. Check them out below.
The DASH Diet
DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension, and while this plan was originally developed to help control blood pressure, it shows promise for stabilizing blood sugar as well. According to the Mayo Clinic, the DASH Diet is a well-rounded plan that you can adopt for the long-term, which is key when it comes to blood-sugar management. It’s loaded with vegetables, fruits, and whole grains, while being relatively low in fat and sugar. In fact, one study has shown that subjects following the DASH diet for eight weeks had improved insulin resistance, less hyperlipidemia (concentration of fat in the blood), and had lost weight. For more about the DASH diet and how to follow it, check out this article!
The Mediterranean Diet
One of the most talked-about diets to date, the Mediterranean diet is another plan that the Cleveland Clinic recommends for diabetics. The diet is based on eating patterns commonly found in areas like Greece, southern parts of France, and Italy. While following the Meditterranean Diet, you’re encouraged to eat whole grains, fruits and vegetables, and healthy fats from nuts, seeds, avocados, olive oil, and fatty fish like salmon. Research has also suggested that the Mediterranean diet can help you control your blood sugar and manage diabetes. Read more about how, here!
A Plant-Based Diet
“Plant-Based” can refer to a vegan diet (where no meat, eggs, or dairy is consumed), vegetarian diet (where no meat is consumed but eggs and dairy are allowed), or flexitarian diet (where some meat is consumed, but mostly plants are eaten). At the end of the day, the Cleveland Clinic suggests that eating mostly plants is a good approach to controlling blood sugar. What’s more, plant-based diets often eliminate processed carbohydrates as well as artificial sugars which can raise blood sugar levels in a harmful way.
In one review of studies including over 300,000 people, those following a primarily plant-based diet had a 23 percent lower risk of diabetes, while those who followed a healthier plant-based diet rich in more veggies and fruits had an even lower risk. But if you’re not ready to go vegan, don’t worry! Following a flexitarian diet can still help you lower your blood sugar and manage diabetes. Read more about the Flexitarian diet, here!
There you have it — the experts have spoken. So if you’ve been confused about which diet is the best for managing your diabetes or controlling your blood sugar levels, give one of these plans a try.
Here’s to eating your way to a healthier, more vibrant you!