Food and drink for diabetes

Eating healthily is one of the main ways in which you can manage your diabetes and help keep your heart and blood vessels working efficiently. You may be overweight if you have Type 2 diabetes. If you want to lose weight, it’s good to know which foods to choose.

Types of food

What different types of food are there?
There are a number of main food types that, in combination, provide a healthy and balanced diet.

Why is it important not to eat too much salt, sugar, and fat?
Eating too much salt increases your risk of high blood pressure or makes high blood pressure worse if you already have it. Too much sugar can cause you to put on weight and make it more difficult for you to control your blood glucose level. Fat is high in calories and eating more than the recommended amount can lead to weight gain. Eating too much saturated fat also increases your risk of heart disease.

What are antioxidants?
Antioxidants are a group of healing substances found in foods. Vitamins A, C, and E, beta-carotene, and selenium – as well as many substances found in plants (phytochemicals) – have an antioxidant action. Eating foods that are rich in antioxidants has many health benefits, including protecting you from heart disease.

Can I take pill supplements such as fish oils, vitamins, and minerals?
You can, but a balanced and varied diet will provide all the nutrients you need to stay healthy. The only reason you might be advised to take nutritional supplements is if your healthcare team have diagnosed a deficiency. If you believe that you are deficient in a particular nutrient, your health professional will discuss possible actions with you.

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