Diabetes refers to a group of metabolic diseases that is characterised by high blood sugar levels. Diabetes is due to either our pancreas not producing enough insulin, or our cells not responding well to the insulin that we do produced. Type 2 diabetes occurs when we experience the latter of the two; insulin resistance; where our cells do not respond to insulin.
Some Causes of Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is primarily the result of genetics and/or unhealthy lifestyle factors. Unhealthy lifestyle factors that can lead to the onset of type 2 diabetes include:
carrying excess body fat
having a high BMI
lack of physical activity and
consuming a poor diet
The good news is that because type 2 diabetes most often than not caused from lifestyle choices, the prevention and treatment options for type 2 diabetes include healthy lifestyle choices; consuming a healthy diet, staying active, having a normal body weight, and minimising alcohol consumption.
Some Common symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes includes:
• an increased need for urination
• increased thirst
• and increased hunger
Carbohydrates: Amount & Type
Carbohydrates are one of four macronutrients. When we consume and digest carbohydrates they get broken down into a more simple form; glucose. Glucose is our brains preferred source of energy so it is an essential part of our diet. But, carbohydrates have the biggest impact on our blood sugar levels. For a non-diabeteic person, the Dietary Guidelines suggest carbohydrates should make up to approx. 65% of our total daily intake. So for the average adult consuming 2,000 calories, about 1200 of those calories should come from carbohydrates. The recommendations for the average adult with diabetes is to consume less. The type of carbohydrate is important to consider too. Although carbohydrate produce glucose spikes when we digest them, different types of carbohydrates result in different spike rates. Someone who is diabetic should be looking for low GI foods. Low GI foods may be tolerated by someone with diabetes.
The management of diabetes is individual. There are a number of factors to consider such as the amount and type of insulin, lifestyle factors, and other health implications. If you have type 2 diabetes, managing your carbohydrate intake is key. Make sure you speak you consult with a professional health carer for an individualised manage plan.