Upon research, many people are surprised to find that there is no ADA diet. This is because there is no detailed meal plan that outlines what people should and should not eat. Any meal plan that exists is some form of a diabetic diet. The ADA diet is, therefore, a dietary strategy that helps diabetics manage blood sugar. By managing insulin production and reducing calories, you can lose weight safely and successfully.
The ADA Diet Eating Strategy
Diabetes is basically a chronic condition where sufferers are unable to produce insulin in a normal way. This is why diabetics have to take medication to regulate their production of this substance. Food plays a very important role in the regulation because different foods cause different reactions. There are some foods that can cause an overproduction of insulin. On the other hand, if foods are lacking in nutrients, it can lead to a dangerously low amount of insulin.
Food, Glucose and Insulin Production
To understand how food affects blood sugar, it is important to know the relationship between foods, glucose and insulin. Whenever you eat, the carbohydrates in the food are broken down into glucose. Glucose is energy and fuel that the body needs to keep working. Too much glucose in the system causes insulin overproduction, which is needed to counter high blood sugar. Too little glucose means little insulin, which is equally dangerous. The under and overproduction of insulin are called hypo and hyperglycemia, which can lead to harmful health symptoms.
Best ADA Diet Foods
Given the effects of your daily diet on blood sugar, it is wise to choose foods that help control the amount of glucose that is released into your system. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) recommends filling your plate with whole grains, vegetables, lean protein and legumes. Whole grains contain complex carbohydrates, which release glucose gradually into the body. Both vegetables and whole grains also have fiber, which help maintain a good digestive pace.
Lean meat and legumes are sources of protein. Protein is healthy for diabetics because it hardly disturbs the levels of sugar in your blood. In addition, it helps control the appetite by filling you up for longer.
Worst ADA Diet Foods
Whether you suffer from diabetes or not, the worst foods you can eat are processed ones. Processed foods are usually canned, bottled, packaged or commercially baked. These foods are very high in simple carbohydrates, which break down easily and release a lot of glucose in a short amount of time. These foods spike insulin, which is not only dangerous to your health, but also encourages the glucose to be stored as fat.
How to Lose Weight with ADA Diet
While controlling insulin is important to weight loss, you also need to create a calorie deficit for maximum results. If you usually eat 2000 calories a day, try cutting it down to 1500-1600 to shed pounds. Add a 3-5 day workout routine to your diet and you’ll be in shape in no time. This is not a rapid weight loss solution. It is a long-term lifestyle adjustment that promotes healthy, steady weight loss.
The ADA diet aims to teach diabetics and non-diabetics what and how to eat in order to maintain a good weight and normal blood sugar levels. Understanding how foods affect your insulin and glucose levels can help you make wise food choices. As a result, you can lose weight at a steady pace and protect your health at the same time.