Type 2 Diabetes – Healthy Carbs Contain Fiber!

Being diabetic means having to rely heavily on monitoring your carbohydrates. But where does fiber come into the picture? If you look on a food label it is listed in the carbs section, yet, it doesn’t add calories due to the fact it can’t be broken down in the body. So why all the confusion?

The bottom line is fiber is a diabetic’s friend. Fiber slows down the absorption of other nutrients eaten at the same meal, including carbohydrates. Since it isn’t broken down, it means it in no way affects your body’s blood sugar levels. In order for carbs to adversely affect the sugar levels, it would need to be broken down.

Even though fiber is listed in the carbs section, it doesn’t have to be counted as carbs.

Aside from not contributing to your blood sugar, fiber holds a variety of health benefits. We all know that we should eat a balanced diet containing reasonable amounts of fiber. But diabetics should know consuming the appropriate amounts of fiber every day actually benefits their blood sugar levels. How? Fiber is the part of the plant that cannot be digested or absorbed by your body. It is a carbohydrate obtained from vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds. It is either water-soluble or water insoluble. Water-soluble fiber is especially good for people with diabetes as it delays the rate at which food passes through your stomach. This allows a slower rate of absorption of sugar into your bloodstream, which reduces the ups and downs of blood sugar levels. As well it improves your body’s sensitivity to insulin, combating insulin resistance and helps insulin do it’s job of helping sugar enter your cells.

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Fiber does wonders for the digestive tract by moving food through at the right intervals. Plus, a properly functioning digestive tract aids in warding off a host of other complications that can be harmful to anyone – not just diabetics.

Consuming fiber is also a wonderful way to lower LDL, or “bad” cholesterol. This is good for your heart and the entire cardiopulmonary system, which also benefits diabetics. It is vitally important for anyone to maintain low triglyceride and cholesterol levels and fiber is an easy, safe, and natural way to do just that.

Fiber is also a wonderful way to control eating. It has the ability to bulk up and give you the sensation you are fuller than you might actually be. This means eating less, which not only helps with portion size, but also helps to monitor your weight. Fiber-rich foods are all around us and are healthier options, too. In fact, many foods are high in fiber and we might not even be aware of it. Insoluble fiber is the roughage found in vegetables and their skins, and outer coatings of grains, fruits, and legumes. Soluble fiber, (it dissolves or forms a gel-like substance when mixed in water), is abundant in beans, oats and fruits.

How much fiber should you eat each day? According to medical standards, the average person should be eating approximately 25 to 30 grams of fiber every day (an apple contains close to 10 grams of fiber). But some experts have noted that diabetics who doubled that amount found it much easier to control their sugar levels. Since fiber holds such a positive response to the human body, adding more to your diet is one of these situations where more is definitely better.

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