Diabetes has become a global health challenge, with over 422 million people worldwide and 80 million in India suffering from the disease, according to the World Health Organization. In India, the situation is alarming, with an estimated 135 million people at risk of developing diabetes by 2045. The disease not only affects overall health but also increases the risk of other serious conditions such as kidney disease, liver disease, heart disease, and eye problems. Unhealthy dietary choices and a sedentary lifestyle are among the leading causes of diabetes in the modern world.
Here are some dietary choices that individuals, especially those with diabetes, should avoid to help control their blood sugar levels:
1. Refined Wheat Flour: In North India, wheat flour is a staple in most households, but it is essential to be cautious. Most commercially available wheat flour is highly refined, stripping away the outer husk, which is rich in fibre. This process elevates the glycemic index of wheat from 30 to 70, making it detrimental for individuals with diabetes. Therefore, those with diabetes should minimize their consumption of wheat flour.
2. Maize Flour (Corn Flour): While maize is a good source of protein, corn flour should be avoided by individuals with diabetes. Cornbread, a popular corn-based food, is high in carbohydrates, causing a rapid spike in blood sugar levels. As such, it is not suitable for those looking to manage their diabetes effectively.
3. White Rice Flour: Rice flour is another high-glycemic food that can lead to blood sugar spikes. Doctors often advise people at risk of diabetes to limit their rice consumption, as it is rich in carbohydrates and can adversely affect blood sugar control.
4. Refined Carbohydrates: Foods made from refined carbohydrates, such as white bread, white pasta, and white rice, can have a significant impact on blood sugar levels. These starches undergo extensive processing, removing the bran and germ of the grain. As a result, they cause rapid spikes in blood sugar. People with diabetes should strictly avoid such foods and consider whole grains as healthier alternatives.