According to the World Health Organisation, over 100 million people in the world are diagnosed with diabetes because of unhealthy eating habits, improper diet, stress, and obesity. A major cause of blindness, diabetes can also lead to stroke, kidney failure, heart attacks, and lower limb amputation.
Most of the food we eat is turned into glucose, so that it can be transformed into energy for various activities. The pancreas, an organ that lies near the stomach, makes the hormone insulin to help glucose enter the cells of our body. However, if a person has diabetes the body either does not produce enough insulin or cannot use the insulin produced.
“The Glycemic Index, or GI, measures how a carbohydrate-containing food raises blood glucose. Food low in GI is good for maintaining the blood glucose level,” says dietitian Jasleen Kaur, founder and mentor, Just Diet Clinic.
She adds that since black beans are low in GI, they are called the super food in diabetes. Black beans, with a GI level of less than 55, helps maintain the blood glucose levels. Some other foods with low GI levels are oatmeal, oat bran, muesli, bran, peas, and legumes,” she says while sharing a few things people suffering from diabetes should and should not do, and the foods they should consume to maintain their blood sugar levels.
What to eat to maintain your blood sugar levels:
Bitter gourd (karela)
Drinking bitter gourd juice in the morning helps keep the blood sugar in control. Bitter gourd is rich in vitamin A and vitamin C. Bitter gourd can also be consumed in the cooked form.
How to make bitter gourd juice at home:
*Peel the bitter gourd and take out the seeds.
*Cut them into pieces and soak in salt water for about 20 minutes – this will help reduce the bitterness a bit.
*Put the soaked pieces in a juicer. You can add some water and lime juice to cut down the bitterness.
*Pour the juice in a glass and add salt according to taste before drinking it.
Amla is a super food and should be consumed as a vegetable or chutney, as it improves digestion, provides immunity to the body and maintains the blood glucose levels. It also contributes to good skin health.
How to make amla chutney at home:
*Take about 4 amlas and cut them into half.
*In a blender, add the amla, a two-inch slice of ginger, a sprig of fresh mint leaves and coriander, and a slice of raw mango.
*Grind until it forms a fine paste.
*Sprinkle some pink salt and serve.
Powdered jamun helps lower blood glucose levels. It helps in removing toxins from the liver.
Fenugreek seeds (methi)
Soak fenugreek seeds in one cup of water overnight and drink it in the morning. It helps keep blood glucose levels in control.
Fibre plays a very important role in keeping the blood glucose levels in control. Taking Isabgol post dinner can help. If you want to increase the intake of fibre in diet, include jowar, bajra, bran flour in your diet.
Do’s and don’t if you are suffering from diabetes:
– Avoid alcohol
– Avoid refined food such as maida, chocolate, canned fruits.
– Have almonds, peanuts, chanas, walnuts.
– Have a protein rich diet – include sprouts in meal.
Fruit and Vegetable Juices That Enhance the Immune System
Everyone knows that fresh fruits and vegetables are loaded with nutrients that offer a wide range of benefits for the mind and body. Certain fresh produce help enhance your immune system, making it possible for you to easily avoid various infections and diseases. Juicing the following allows you to boost your immunity in a truly refreshing and delectable way:
The sweetness of carrot juice makes it loved by kids and adults alike. Carrots get their characteristic bright orange color from its rich supply of beta carotene, a nutrient converted into vitamin A for sharper vision and better eye health. More importantly, vitamin A is an essential nutrient for a stronger immunity.
Vitamin C in lemons makes these citrus fruits excellent boosters of your immune system. Vitamin C is a well-known powerful antioxidant that protects the body from colds, cough, flu and others. Lemon juice may be acidic, but it has an alkalizing property once ingested, helping to restore optimal pH balance in the body.
Other than vitamins and minerals, apples also contain plenty of insoluble fiber. This type of carbohydrates that cannot be digested by the body works as a broom that sweeps out toxins along the intestinal tract. With all of those accumulated poisonous substances out of your body, your immunity is in top-form.
When it comes to fruits, some of the best sources of vitamin C are kiwis. Other than this super antioxidant, kiwis also contain vitamins A and E, both of which are necessary for a stronger immune system. Insoluble fiber and potassium in these fruits are also highly favorable for your cardiovascular system.
Cranberry juice is admired for its ability to bolster the urinary tract system. However, it also contains plenty of vitamin C that helps safeguard you from illnesses brought about by invading microorganisms such as bacteria and viruses.
A vegetable that makes for an excellent immune-boosting juice is broccoli, thanks to its rich supply of beta carotene and vitamin C. Every glass of broccoli juice also provides your body with sulphur, a mineral with powerful antimicrobial properties. Sulphur promotes healing as well because it detoxifies the body at a cellular level.
What makes beet juice capable of supporting the immune system is its long list of vitamins and minerals. Some of them include vitamins A and C, iron, calcium, potassium and manganese. When juicing, it’s a good idea to mix beets with other fruits and vegetables of your choice due to its strong, earthy flavor.
Reduce asthma symptoms with Omega-3
A new study has found that consuming a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids is linked to fewer childhood asthma symptoms which are triggered by indoor air pollution.
The study published in ‘American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine’, lays out that families and health care providers may be able to protect children from harmful effects of indoor air pollution by serving a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids while reducing foods rich in omega-6 fatty acids such as soyabean oil and corn oil.
“Our group is working on ways to reduce the levels of indoor air pollution in Baltimore City homes,” said lead author of the study, Emily Brigham. “Results are promising, but we don’t want to stop there,” Brigham added.
The study found that for each additional gram of omega-6 intake, children had 29 per cent higher odds of being in a more severe asthma category.
Conversely, with each 0.1-gram increase in levels of omega-3 fatty acids in the diet, researchers saw 3 to 4 per cent lower odds of daytime asthma symptoms.
Indoor air pollution, from sources including cooking, cleaning activities and cigarette smoke, is a known trigger for asthma symptoms.
Omega-3 fatty acids, which are found abundantly in fish and certain nuts and seeds, are considered healthy as they are known to reduce inflammation.
Omega-6 fatty acids, primarily found in vegetable oils (including corn, soybean, safflower, and sunflower), as came out in other studies, have mixed effects on health, but have the potential to promote inflammation.
The researchers, however, noted that it doesn’t prove the relationship between fatty acids and asthma severity.
“Among populations known to be disproportionately affected by asthma, we may find that improving diet and air pollution together has the greatest impact on health,” said Brigham.
New cell that can heal hearts discovered
Researchers have discovered a previously unidentified cell population which could lead to new treatments for patients with injured hearts.
The cell, described in the journal Immunity, was discovered in the pericardial fluid found in the sac around the heart of a mouse with heart injury. The researchers from the University of Calgary in Canada found that a specific cell, a Gata6+ pericardial cavity macrophage, helps heal an injured heart in mice.
The same cells were also found within the human pericardium of people with injured hearts, confirming that the repair cells offer the promise of a new therapy for patients with heart disease. “Our discovery of a new cell that can help heal injured heart muscle will open the door to new therapies and hope for the millions of people who suffer from heart disease,” said Paul Fedak, a professor at the University of Calgary.
“The possibilities for further discovery and innovative new therapies are exciting and important,” said Fedak. Heart doctors had never before explored the possibility that cells just outside the heart could participate in healing and repair of hearts after injury, researchers said.
Unlike other organs, the heart has a very limited capacity to repair itself which is why heart disease is the number one cause of death in North America, they said. “We always knew that the heart sits inside a sac filled with a strange fluid,” said Fedak. “Now we know that this pericardial fluid is rich with healing cells. These cells may hold the secret to repair and regeneration of new heart muscle,” he said.