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Food
In additional to following general guidelines for healthy eating (as discussed in the Foods Section under Weight Management), for Diabetes care some additional guidelines need to be followed, as under:
Plan Carbohydrate Intake Carefully
The most important meal planning activity for diabetes is the total amount and type of carbohydrates consumed for meals or snacks.  This is because carbohydrates directly influence your blood sugar levels. One need to control not just the total carbohydrate intake per meal, but also take care that the carbohydrates consumes are of the type that raise blood glucose levels relatively as compared to others.
The following guidelines are recommended for planning your meals:
·         American Diabetes Association recommends that people with diabetes should limit their carbohydrate intake to 45 to 60 grams per meal and 135 to 180 grams per day. However, there are considerable variations from person to person. Therefore, the best way is to test your pre-meal sugar level, then consume measured amount of carbohydrates in your meal and then test post-meal glucose levels (after 2 hours), and make adjustments depending on the results.
·         Some carbohydrates raise blood glucose levels faster than the others. This is measured by a parameter called Glycemic Index. For better glucose control, it is advisable to be aware of the Glycemic Index and Glycemic Load of the food you consume and follow the guidelines for keeping them in recommended range, as explained below:
o   Glycemic Index(GI) of a food is the rate at which the food raises blood glucose levels. Pure glucose has GI of 100. Foods are divided as low (GI less than 55), moderate (GI between 55 to 70) and high (GI more than 70) GI foods.
o   Glycemic Load(GL) of a food is GI multiplied by the carbohydrate amount in grams divided by 100, i.e. GL = GI X (carbohydrate quantity in grams)/100. GL indicates the effect of the food consumed on the glucose level
o   Glycemic Load of 0-10 is considered low, 11-19 as moderate and 20+ as high. Plan your meals such that a single meal has a GL at low to moderate levels, and does not exceed 25 in any case.
o   Information on GI and GL of common foods is available at www.glycemicindex.com
 
Take High Protein Diet
A high protein diet (> 20% of daily calorie intake; > 1 gram/Kilogram of body weight) is good for diabetes, because of the following reasons:
·         Protein does not raise blood glucose levels during absorption as carbohydrates and it does not supply as many calories as fats
·         Proteins help in lowering blood sugar levels of type 2 diabetes patients by amino acid stimulation of insulin secretion. This helps to compensate for the defect in glucose mediated insulin secretion, observed in many patients.
·         Protein rich diets promote satiety, which helps in weight control.
Fats
Diabetes increases the risk of high cholesterol levels and thereby increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Therefore, the total daily dietary fat intake should be minimized. It should be no more than 25- 35% of total calorie requirements. Saturated fatty acids intake should be less than 7%, trans-fatty acids less than 2% or even totally eliminated. Fats should come mainly from polyunsaturated and monosaturated fatty acids. It is advisable to avoid animal fat sources and get the required fat from vegan sources.