The Truth about Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is also known as non-insulin dependent diabetes. It can sometimes be managed with a healthy diet and exercise. It is known to appear in adulthood however can affect children especially if they are obese.
Those with diabetes may not produce enough insulin or may have an insulin resistance. Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas that help the body bring sugar from the blood into the cells as a source of energy.
The goal of treatment is to maintain blood sugar levels, prevent complications and to control symptoms
The recommended diet for those with this diagnosis is:
- Limit refined sugars like the sugar in candy or soda
- Limit salt in diet
- Limit fat
- Drink alcohol in moderation
- Focus on eating starches, vegetables, fruit and proteins low in fat
It is important to manage blood sugar levels because with increased sugar in the blood it puts a person at risk for heart disease, kidney disease and vision loss.
Some Important Facts About Type 2 Diabetes:
• With a lack of insulin there is excess sugar in the blood which acts like glass shards tearing at the arteries lining. This causes scarring and a smaller passageway for blood to pass (Arthrosclerosis).
• Excess sugar and atherosclerosis increases the risk for heart attack and heart disease
• Because it is so easy for the sugar to damage arteries in the kidneys there is an increased risk for kidney disease
Debunking the myths:
• All those diagnosed with type 2 are overweight.
FALSE But it is more likely.
• You cannot eat any carbs.
FALSE carbs should be limited but can be eaten.
• Food that is labeled “Diabetic” can be eaten as much as you want.
FALSE They can be high in sorbitol and fructose.
• You will know if you have type 2 diabetes.
FALSE Type 2 diabetes is often described as insidious and many are not aware of their symptoms. It is type 1 diabetes where people are more symptomatic
The most reliable sources state that the risk for type 2 is higher when the person is overweight but not always because diet and insulin production vary in every person.
Because carbs can be a source or energy it is not recommended to eat 0 carbs, but to limit them as explained in the video below
Mathews, M. J., Liebenberg, L., & Mathews, E. H. (2015). How do high glycemic load diets influence coronary heart disease?. Nutrition & Metabolism, 12(1), 1-15. doi:10.1186/s12986-015-0001-x
Nazarko, L. (2010). Treatment of type 2 diabetes. British Journal Of Healthcare Assistants, 4(3), 124-1
Mellor, D. (2012). A review of the current nutritional guidelines for diabetes. Practice Nursing, 23(5), 234-240.