Not only diabetics, low carbohydrate diets are popular for many people in order to lose weight, control blood sugar levels, and reduce carbohydrate intake.
In general, there is no fixed rule of thumb in undergoing a low carbohydrate diet. Those who do this diet will usually adjust to their level of comfort in living it. For example, some people choose to reduce the amount of carbohydrates that go in compared to what they normally consume, while others calculate precisely the number of calories that enter their body.
The benefits of undergoing a low carbohydrate diet for people with diabetes
For diabetics, a low carbohydrate diet is considered as one of the appropriate types of diet to help control blood sugar levels in the body. In fact, as reported by HealthLine, a low carbohydrate diet is used as a therapy for diabetics before the discovery of insulin. Diabetics generally cannot process carbohydrates properly because of the failure of insulin in the process of inserting carbohydrates that are in the form of glucose into the body to be broken down into energy.
A low carbohydrate diet can be run by people with any type of diabetes. People with type two diabetes run this diet to keep their blood sugar levels within normal limits. Meanwhile, a low carbohydrate diet carried out by type 1 diabetics also helps them have stable blood sugar levels and makes the body more predictable and controlled.
A low carbohydrate diet works well when done with discipline and for a long period of time. In one study, patients with type two diabetes who underwent this diet program for six months managed to control their diabetes for up to three years. Similar to those with type two diabetes, patients with type 1 diabetes also show an increase in blood sugar levels for more than four years.
Some other benefits of undergoing a low carbohydrate diet are:
- Lower HbA1C levels
- Helps to lose weight safely
- Reduces the possibility of a surge in blood sugar levels
- Reduces the risk of severe hypoglycemia
- Produce more energy
- Reduces the habit of snacks and sugar-containing
- Reduces the risk of health complications
Is a low carbohydrate diet safe for everyone?
Even though it is proven to help control blood sugar levels well in patients with diabetes, it does not mean that this diet can be done carelessly. You still need advice from a medical expert and perhaps your nutritionist about this problem.
If you have kidney problems or have experienced eating disorders, you should contact your doctor before taking this diet. Low carbohydrate diets sometimes make us consume more protein. While foods high in protein can worsen kidney disease experienced.
Even though it has proven to have a good influence on type 1 diabetics, there are still things that must be considered. Because of its low carbohydrate, the body will produce more energy from the burning of protein and fat. Fat burning produces acidic ketones for the body. Excess ketones in the body will bring you to the condition of ketoacidosis. Consult your doctor before taking this diet, because the diet you do will make your body adjust so that the administration of the drug sometimes needs to be adjusted as well.
Type of low carbohydrate diet
A low carbohydrate diet is divided into two types based on the substitute composition:
High protein . This type allows people who live it to add more protein as a substitute for carbohydrates. Usually, people who take this type of diet will consume a lot of animal products (like meat) and know to get a source of protein.
High fat . This diet is done by increasing the consumption of meat fat, chicken, fish, and several other high-fat foods such as milk, olive oil, avocados to store calories as an energy source. If this diet is done with a very small amount of carbohydrates, this diet is called the keto diet.
How much carbohydrate intake is needed for people with diabetes who are on this diet?
There is no known exact amount regarding the limits of carbohydrate consumption that can be used as a reference. Usually, those who undergo this diet program can determine for themselves how much carbohydrate they consume so that this diet provides optimal impact. Because, everyone responds to carbohydrates in different ways.
Research conducted in 2008 as reported by diabetes.co.uk classifies the categories of daily carbohydrate intake as below:
- Enough carbohydrates: 130-225 grams
- Low carbohydrate: below 130 grams
- Very low in carbohydrates: under 30 grams
It is important to determine the amount of carbohydrate intake that will bring maximum results to your diet program. For example, those with type 1 diabetes may not really need weight loss, so 130-225 grams of carbohydrate needs can work well on them. While for type two diabetics who may have excess weight so that the reduction in body weight is one target, a very low carbohydrate diet (also known as the keto diet) can be their choice.
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