Type 2 diabetes can be a 'devastating diagnosis' says expert
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Rates of type 2 diabetes are rising inexorably across the globe but the direction of travel can be changed. That’s because type 2 diabetes can be managed and even reversed by controlling blood sugar levels. Improving your diet is key to slowing the rise of blood sugar – the main type of sugar found in blood.
As a general rule, foods that rank low on the glycaemic index (GI) have a more modest impact on blood sugar levels.
The GI is a rating system for foods containing carbohydrates. It shows how quickly each food affects your blood sugar (glucose) level when that food is eaten on its own.
In a study published in the journal BMC Research Notes, benefits of hot green tea in the morning calamansi juice was shown to have a value that puts it on the lower end of the GI index.
The researchers also observed a reduction in blood levels “30 minutes after consumption”.
Calamansi juice is a refreshing drink made from the fruits of the calamansi tree – a citrus tree bearing fresh, plump and juicy fruits that look like limes.
The study – based on the report of a joint consultation between the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and World Health Organisation (WHO) – was conducted between January and May of 2018 at the teaching laboratory of the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak.
Consenting 18 to 19-year-old males were advised to abstain from alcohol and sleep for at least six to eight hours, and fast for eight to 10 hours prior to each test.
A total of four tests were conducted: three for glucose (i.e., reference drink) and one for calamansi drink (i.e., test drink); tests were conducted within one to two weeks after the previous test.
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Each test lasted for two hours. Blood glucose was measured 30 minutes post consumption of the reference drink (75 grams of glucose dissolved in 250 mL of drinking water).
Urine and blood were again tested at every 30-minute interval until the two-hour mark.
The same procedures were repeated with the test drink – 250 mL of a commercially sourced calamansi drink.
“Post-prandial [after eating] blood glucose at 30 min after consumption of either reference drink (glucose) or test drink (calamansi) showed that blood glucose peaked at 9 mmol/L for reference drink (glucose) and 7.9 mmol/L for test drink (calamansi),” the researchers observed.
The findings showed a slower rise of blood sugar following consumption of the calamansi juice when compared to the reference drink.
In their concluding remarks, they noted “the GI for the test drink (calamansi) was estimated as 37, showing that it has a low potential for raising blood glucose levels”.
Other low GI foods include:
- Some fruit and vegetables
- Wholegrain foods, such as porridge oats.
“Some low GI foods, such as wholegrain foods, fruit, vegetables, beans and lentils, are foods we should eat as part of a healthy, balanced diet,” says the NHS.
Many people have type 2 diabetes without realising. This is because symptoms do not necessarily make you feel unwell.
Symptoms of type 2 diabetes include:
- Peeing more than usual, particularly at night
- Feeling thirsty all the time
- Feeling very tired
- Losing weight without trying to
- Itching around your penis or vagina, or repeatedly getting thrush
- Cuts or wounds taking longer to heal
- Blurred vision.
According to the NHS, you should see a GP if you have any of the symptoms of type 2 diabetes or you’re worried you may have a higher risk of getting type 2 diabetes.
“You’ll need a blood test, which you may have to go to your local health centre for if it cannot be done at your GP surgery.”
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