Cancer and heart disease are, respectively, the number one and two killers in America today. But, ranked as number seven by the Centers of Disease Control, Diabetes is rapidly rising in the ranks. In fact, the American Diabetes Association predicts that 1 in 3 adults will have diabetes by 2050. And if this follows current statistics, the vast majority of these adults will have Type 2 diabetes.
What’s sad, is that Type 2 diabetes is preventable. Unfortunately, the typical American diet is low in nutrients and rich in junky foods that can elevate blood sugar, reduce insulin sensitivity—increasing type 2 diabetes risk. Want to reduce your risk? Stay far, far away from these five health destroyers.
Stay away from refined sugary garbage like sugar-sweetened beverages (ditch the soda) and doughnuts. Don’t hate me, but fruit juices are best avoided as well. This is because they are devoid of the fiber that would slow the absorption of glucose into your bloodstream. Refined sugars of any kind abnormally raise blood sugar levels, and boost advanced glycation end products (AGEs) in the body. These AGEs do really bad things like stiffen your blood vessels and accelerate aging.
White Flour and White Rice
If you eat white flour products, you might as well be eating a white napkin—there’s no nutrients, to speak of, in either! Garbagy carbohydrate products like white rice, white pasta, and white bread are missing the fiber from the original grain. The lack of fiber raises your blood sugar to the skies unlike unprocessed grains like, whole wheat or whole oats.
I know, I know, you love French fries. But, unfortunately, eating fries and their buddies, potato chips, doughnuts, and any other starchy foods you can stick into a fryer, is like holding up a sign that says: Diabetes Welcome Here! Starchy fried foods rapidly raise insulin levels and encourage weight gain—one of the major risk factors for Type 2 Diabetes.
Trans fat is commonly found in many processed foods. Check food labels—If you see hydrogenated oils of any kind, steer clear. Trans fats are terrible for your heart and they have also been linked to elevated glucose and insulin levels—leading to a greater risk of diabetes.
Processed and Red Meats
Hold the sausages and hamburgers! Many studies have shown that a high intake of meat increases the risk of diabetes. In a survey of several of these studies, Diabetes Care journal reported that higher levels of meat consumption increased Type 2 diabetes risk as much as 21 percent. And processed red meat fared even worse, with a 41 percent increase in risk.
In addition to avoiding these dastardly foods, be sure to add lots of whole plant foods including fruits, veggies, whole grains, and beans to your diet. Doing this will help to keep you free of Type 2 diabetes for life.
To your good health!