If diabetes happens to run in your family, you’re more likely to have develop diabetes in your lifetime. And if you have more than one family member with diabetes, you have an even higher chance of developing the disease, which is based on a study released in Diabetologia.
We assume that you already know what you should be doing to get more exercise—run more, walk more, bike more, swim more, etc.—so keep reading to learn about some of the best eating habits you should follow if you would like to avoid diabetes in the future.
1 — Eat more plants.
A key eating habit for preventing diabetes is enriching your diet with a lot of plant foods. “The big mistake some people make is believing they should stay away from carbs,” said education and certified diabetes care specialist Kim Rose. “That is a misconception.”
Skipping all the carbs will actually undermine your efforts and could actually trigger blood sugar increases when your cravings beat your willpower. “You should space out your carb intake throughout your day, so you have a steadier source of energy and consume quality carbs from vegetables, whole grains, fruits, nuts, and seeds,” she said. “Aim for three gm of fiber or more each serving.”
A 2017 study discovered that consuming a plant-based diet that is high in fiber from foods like beans, oats, fruits, sweet potatoes and whole grains was much more effective at improving your blood sugar levels than a normal diabetes diet that focused on putting limits on carbs and sugars. Study participants who ate an average of 40 gm of dietary fiber each day eating mainly plant-based foods noticed the greatest success in improving their insulin sensitivity.
2 — Limit restaurant and fast-food eating.
Forget about carbs and sugars for a minute and let us talk calories. Even when you avoid the bread, a sit-down-restaurant or fast-food hamburger is very high in calories and while it might not send your blood sugar super high when you consume it, it might indirectly increase your diabetes chances. “Over time, excess calories could result in gaining weight and weight gain could lead to higher insulin resistance,” warns Rose. So, try to make a habit of thinking about calories, not just sugars and carbs when you go out to eat.
3 — Eat your lunch outside.
Vitamin D is thought to help improve the body’s insulin sensitivity; the hormone that helps regulate blood sugar levels. Recent studies have indicated there is a connection among people who have lower levels of vitamin D to being at a higher risk for type 2 diabetes.
But adding vitamin D to your body is not as easy as drinking a cup of milk and consuming a lot of fatty fish. It is difficult to get vitamin D from the food we eat, which is why you should start eating your sardines in the sunlight on a sunny day to receive vitamin D into your skin.