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Low-carb diets have been proven to help those living with type 2 diabetes control their blood sugar and lose weight more effectively, however it remains uncertain if a ketogenic approach would prove more helpful or sustainable over the longer run.
A keto diet involves eating foods high in fat and moderate in protein to allow your body to use its own fat reserves for energy instead of depending solely on glucose from carbohydrates.
Studies conducted over the past several years have demonstrated that following a keto diet can help those with diabetes control their blood sugar levels more effectively, including reducing A1c, the long-term measurement of how well your blood sugar is managed.
Though its exact mechanism remains unknown, many researchers believe that ketogenic diets can help lower blood glucose levels by decreasing your body’s ability to convert carbohydrates to sugar for circulation in your bloodstream and increasing fat-burning as energy source.
Your body can then adjust itself more easily to lower blood sugar levels and bring your A1c within its target range, as well as decreasing your need for diabetes medications.
To follow a keto diet, it’s necessary to consume plenty of healthy fats from sources such as nuts, avocado, olive oil and fish. Furthermore, carbohydrate-rich foods must be limited while non-starchy vegetables should also be included as sources.
Lowering Blood Sugar
The keto diet is known to help lower blood sugar. If you have diabetes, however, there are certain aspects to keep in mind when following it.
Avoid foods high in simple carbohydrates such as candy, chips, white bread and pasta as these typically lack sufficient fiber or nutrition.
Second, make sure that you consume plenty of vegetables and fruits, which contain essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that can boost overall health.
Select protein sources carefully. Protein can provide calories while also leading to an increase in blood sugar.
Chromium is an essential mineral for managing blood sugar. It does this by increasing insulin activity, which moves glucose out of the bloodstream and into cells for energy storage. You can find it in foods such as nuts and leafy greens.
Are You Searching for Weight Loss Solutions? Consider Keto Diet as One Solution
Ketogenic diets can also help manage blood sugar, lower HbA1c levels, reduce inflammation and improve insulin sensitivity. They boost HDL cholesterol while decreasing triglycerides.
Keto may pose certain health risks and is not recommended for pregnant women, lactating mothers, children or those with renal disease. Furthermore, keto can cause dehydration and should not be used by patients taking SGLT2 inhibitors.
Keto can have adverse long-term repercussions for heart health, since most calories come from fat sources. If you are a heart patient, work closely with your physician to make sure you’re getting sufficient protein while eating plenty of low-fat fruits and vegetables.
Nonstarchy vegetables make an ideal addition to a keto diet, providing many essential nutrients and antioxidants such as broccoli, cauliflower, green beans, zucchini and spinach.
On a keto diet, it’s essential to monitor your cholesterol levels carefully. High levels can put you at greater risk for heart disease and increase the likelihood of having a heart attack.
Dieters who follow a keto diet typically see either no change or decreases in LDL cholesterol levels.
Cholesterol is an oily substance produced in your body to build cell membranes, hormones and vitamin D production. Additionally, cholesterol plays a significant role in controlling blood pressure through producing proteins which regulate its levels.
Too much cholesterol, however, can lead to atherosclerosis – the buildup of fat deposits in your arteries – which ultimately threatens its own life.
One large study concluded that following a keto diet can significantly lower cholesterol levels.
On a keto diet, it is important to incorporate lots of healthy fats such as avocados, olive oil and nuts. You should replace saturated fats with monounsaturated ones while limiting trans-fat consumption.