It is well-known that having good nutrition is essential for living a healthy and active life. However, for older adults, a healthy diet is particularly important in order to maintain their health, improve their mobility, and reduce any potential chronic conditions. Eating good food is paramount for elderly individuals in order to provide them with the nutrients and energy that they need to live life to the fullest.
Eating nutritious meals that are high in protein, vitamins, minerals, and important macronutrients are all essential for providing elderly adults with their daily needs of sustenance and energy. Protein is important for tissue repair, muscle growth, and even reducing age-related declines in muscle mass.
Poor nutrition has become a major factor in the prevalence of type 2 diabetes among older adults. Studies have found that poor nutrition, coupled with aging and sedentary lifestyles, puts older adults at much higher risk for diabetes as well as a host of other health problems.
Research has shown that older adults who consume a diet that is high in fat and carbohydrates and low in fiber and other important nutrients such as calcium, Vitamins A and C are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those who consume a healthy balanced diet. In addition, a diet high in refined sugars, such as those found in sodas and snack foods, can lead to increased insulin resistance, which is a precursor to diabetes.
In order to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes among older adults, it is essential that they are provided with the resources and support to make healthy food choices in this article I will reveal 10 common foods that causes diabetes especially for older adults.
What is diabetes:
Diabetes is a chronic health condition that affects a person’s ability to regulate sugar levels in their body. When the body is unable to properly regulate sugar levels, the result is an excessive accumulation of sugar in the blood. This can lead to a number of complications that can even be fatal.
Diabetes can be divided into several types, depending on the cause or root of the condition. The most common type is Type 1 diabetes, also known as juvenile diabetes, or “insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus.” In Type 1 diabetes, the body stops producing insulin, the hormone that regulates glucose levels in the body. Without insulin, the body is unable to move glucose from the bloodstream into the cells, causing an increased level of sugar in the blood.
Type 2 diabetes, also referred to as “non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus,” occurs when the body produces insufficient insulin or is unable to use the insulin it does produce. This causes the body’s cells to be resistant to insulin, leading to high levels of sugar in the blood.
A third type of diabetes, gestational diabetes, is primarily seen in pregnant women. In this condition, the body of the expectant mother produces too much insulin and glucose for the body’s needs.
Diabetes can cause life-threatening complications and impair normal body functioning if left untreated. High levels of glucose in the blood can increase a person’s risk of cardiovascular problems, stroke, and kidney damage. Moreover, it can damage the nervous system and eyes, leading to vision-loss.
Those suffering from diabetes should maintain a healthy and balanced diet, and monitor the levels of sugar in the blood.
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Right Food Better Health A guide to healthy diet
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Symptoms of diabetes
Common symptoms of diabetes include frequent urination and long-term thirst. Significant, unplanned weight loss is another symptom, as is itching and tingling in the hands and feet. Diabetes can also cause blurred vision, fatigue, slow-healing wounds, and recurrent yeast infections. Generalized confusion, headaches, mood swings, and irritability are also common, as are recurrent skin, gum and bladder infections.
In terms of physical signs, diabetes can cause sores that do not heal, unusually dry skin, and changes in skin color due to high blood sugars. People with diabetes may develop darkening in the armpits and/or neck, a condition known as acanthosis nigricans. They might also have patches of darkened skin, most often found in the back of the neck and in the armpits. Diabetes is a serious condition, and the best way to avoid its consequences is to first understand the signs and symptoms.
10 common foods that causes diabetes for older adults
For older adults, a healthy and balanced diet is essential. Unfortunately, some of the most common ingredients and food items in daily diets can be causing more harm than good. Among those are ten foods that are known to contribute to an increased risk for developing type 2 diabetes for older adults.
1. Refined Grains – Refined grains, such as white bread, white pasta, and white rice, have been stripped of their natural fiber and nutrients and offer little health benefits. On the other hand, these products contribute to higher blood sugar levels and can raise the risk for diabetes.
2. Sugary Drinks – Sugary drinks, such as soda, fruit-flavored beverages, and energy drinks, are composed of empty calories that can lead to weight gain. Weight gain can increase an individual’s risk for diabetes.
3. White Potatoes – White potatoes are a favorite starchy side dish for many meals, however, they are high in carbohydrates and contain no fiber. Therefore, they are known to cause a spike in blood sugar levels.
4. Red Meat -processed or cured red meats are high in saturated fats, which can be detrimental to health. A diet high in saturated fats can contribute to weight gain, which in turn raises the risk for diabetes.
5. Fried Foods – Fried foods, such as french fries, doughnuts, and chicken tenders, are synonymous with certain medical conditions, such as diabetes. These foods are high in saturated fats and have a high glycemic index, which can raise blood sugar levels.
6. Sweets –Sweets and candies are usually made from added sugars, which can contribute to weight gain and, therefore, elevated blood sugar levels.
7. High-Fat Dairy -High-fat dairy products, such as whole milk, butter, and cheese, offer little to no health benefits. Studies have found a link between a diet high in dairy and an increased risk for diabetes.
8. Baked Goods -Baked goods, such as cakes, cookies, pastries, and pies, are typically made with high amounts of added sugars. Foods high in added sugars contribute to weight gain, which in turn, increases the risk for diabetes.
9. Sugary Cereals – Breakfast cereals, such as corn flakes and oat-based cereals, often contain added sugars. Although these products may seem like a healthier option, they can be just as damaging as the other sugars.
10. Processed Snacks – Many quick snacks are made with added sugars and artificial sweeteners. These snacks may offer convenience, but they can contain large amounts of sugar, which can contribute to weight gain, and as a result, diabetes.
For older adults, it is important to know which foods to avoid for a healthier diet. If possible, adding more healthy and nutrient dense foods, such as vegetables, legumes, and whole grains, is encouraged. Ultimately, these modifications to dietary habits can help reduce the risk of diabetes and improve overall health.
15 foods that can reduce the risk of diabetes for older adults
Older adults are at a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes than younger adults. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, those aged 65 and older are about twice as likely to be diagnosed with diabetes as those between the ages of 45 and 64. There are, however, several types of food that can help reduce the risks of type 2 diabetes for older adults. We take a look at 15 foods that are particularly beneficial for managing blood sugar levels and reducing the risks of developing type 2 diabetes.
1.Oats: Oats are a breakfast favorite and have a host of health benefits. They are rich in dietary fiber and have a low glycemic index, which means they can help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.
2.Blueberries: Blueberries are packed with antioxidants and vitamins that can help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. Eating blueberries regularly can also help protect eyesight, which is important in older adults with diabetes.
3.Avocados: Avocados are a good source of healthy fats and have been shown to have anti-inflammatory and anti-diabetic effects.
4.Citrus fruits: Citrus fruits such as oranges and grapefruits are high in flavonoids, which can reduce inflammation and protect against type 2 diabetes.
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5.Kale: Kale is a leafy green vegetable that is high in vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber. It has a low glycemic index and can help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.
6.Garlic: Garlic is an effective natural remedy for diabetes. Studies have found that garlic can help reduce blood sugar levels, decrease inflammation, and improve overall insulin sensitivity.
7.Nuts: Nuts are high in protein, healthy fats, and dietary fiber, making them a great snack for older adults. Eating a handful of nuts daily can help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.
8.Fatty fish: Fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel, and sardines are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which can reduce inflammation and improve insulin sensitivity.
9.Chia seeds: Chia seeds are packed with fiber, protein, and healthy fat, which makes them an excellent food for reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes.
10.Chickpeas: Chickpeas are a good source of protein and fiber, which can help keep blood sugar levels stable.
11.Cinnamon: Studies have found that consuming small amounts of cinnamon can help improve blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.
12.Soy: Soy products such as tofu, tempeh, and edamame are good sources of protein, fibre, and essential vitamins and minerals. They can help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.
13.Quinoa: Quinoa is a whole grain food that is packed with protein and dietary fibre. It has a low glycemic index, which can help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.
14.Ginger: Ginger is an effective natural remedy for diabetes. Studies have found that consuming ginger can help improve insulin sensitivity and reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.
15.Green tea: Green tea contains powerful antioxidants that can help reduce inflammation and improve blood sugar control. Drinking two to three cups of green tea daily can help lower the risk of type 2 diabetes.
Incorporating these 15 foods into your daily diet can help you reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes and stay healthy as you age. If you have any questions about diabetes or nutrition, Click here speak to Our herbal therapist or join our wellness club.