Diabetes can be a difficult thing to live with, but the good news is that much of this condition can be controlled through lifestyle changes that a person can make, changes like regular exercise and a healthy diet. And who says that a diabetic diet has to be boring? Here are six diabetic super foods to make the summer truly sizzle, and all of them are diabetic-friendly.
Few people realize it, but watermelon — one of the best treats of the summertime — has a load of health benefits in every slice. Being high in anti-oxidants makes it useful for treating conditions like diabets, heart disease and arthritis; one of its anti-oxidants called lycopene is known for reducing the risk of macular degeneration and prostate cancer. It is also high in Vitamins A and C and in potassium, which promotes the health of muscles and nerves and regulates the body’s electrolyte and acid-base balance.
This vegetable can be the focus of a number of hot-weather treats, including soups and salads, and also brings with it a wealth of benefical properties. They are high in fiber and contain the nutrient lignan, which helps to fight cancer by promoting bacterial health in the digestive tract. It is recommended that organic cucumbers be purchased if possible, as the wax on commercially grown cucumbers can contain harmful chemical residues.
This hybrid fruit, crossed between a plum and an apricot, are naturally sweet, nutritious and a welcome addition to any diabetic or weight-loss diet. They are rich in Vitamins A and C, high in dietary fiber, and low in fat and sodium. They are wonderful served in a summer salad or fruit-based dessert.
4. Swiss Chard
Although it does not always get as much press as leafy green vegetables like kale, Swiss chard definitely qualifies as a super-food to add to the health-concious diet. To judge from its colors, it is not suprisingly an excellent source of phytonutrients, plant-based compounds long-valued for their anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Studies have shown it to contain flavinoids which slow the breakdown of carbohydrates into simple sugars, making this an excellent diabetic food.
This wonderful dark-purple vegetable, an important part of the Mediterranean diet, can be roasted or grilled and used in entrees or side dishes. A nutritional powerhouse, it contains fiber as well as manganese, molybdenum, magnesium, copper, and Vitamins C, B and K. Research has shown that one of its anti-oxidants, a compound called chlorogenic acid, can also help lower LDL cholesterol and reduce risk of heart disease.
Most people cannot imagine trying to get through the summer without fresh, home-grown tomatoes, and the good news is that tomato consumption can help fight conditions like diabetes and cardiovascular disease as well as prostate cancer. It is rich in a multitude of nutrient, including Vitamins A, B6, C, E and K as well as fiber, lycopene, potassium, manganese and magnesium, all of which can give the overall health a real boost.
Summer is actually a wonderful time to be a diabetic. The fresh fruits and vegetables that are available this time of year are friendly to a diabetic diet and offer a wealth of nutrients as well as a whole world of taste!