Type 2 diabetes can be a 'devastating diagnosis' says expert
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Type 2 diabetes is the result of a dysfunction in the way the body produces insulin – a hormone that regulates blood sugar. Poor insulin production means blood sugar levels skyrocket if alternative measures are not taken to curtail them. Fortunately, a breakfast drink has been shown to stabilise blood sugar levels throughout the day.
According to research published in the Journal of Dairy Science, drinking high-protein milk at breakfast keeps blood sugar levels stable even after lunch.
H. Douglas Goff, PhD, and the team of scientists from the Human Nutraceutical Research Unit at the University of Guelph, in collaboration with the University of Toronto, examined the effects of consuming high-protein milk at breakfast on blood glucose (sugar) levels and satiety after breakfast and after a second meal.
Milk consumed with breakfast cereal reduced blood rises after eating compared with water, and high dairy protein had an even greater effect compared to normal dairy protein concentration.
The high-protein treatment also reduced appetite after the second meal compared with the low-protein equivalent.
The team examined the effects of increasing protein concentration and increasing the proportion of whey protein in milk consumed with a high-carbohydrate breakfast cereal on blood glucose, feelings of satiety, and food consumption later in the day.
Although the team only found a modest difference in food consumption at the lunch meal when increasing whey protein at breakfast, they did find that milk consumed with a high-carbohydrate breakfast reduced blood glucose even after lunch, and high-protein milk had a greater effect.
Milk with an increased proportion of whey protein had a modest effect on pre-lunch blood glucose, achieving a greater decrease than that provided by regular milk.
According to doctor Goff and colleagues, “This study confirms the importance of milk at breakfast time to aid in the slower digestion of carbohydrate and to help maintain lower blood sugar levels. Nutritionists have always stressed the importance of a healthy breakfast, and this study should encourage consumers to include milk.”
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Other important dietary tips
To steer clear of high blood sugar levels, you should refer to the glycaemic index (GI).
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.
Carbs that are broken down quickly by your body and cause a rapid increase in blood glucose have a high GI rating.
High GI foods include:
- Sugar and sugary foods
- Sugary soft drinks
- White bread
- White rice.
Low or medium GI foods are broken down more slowly and cause a gradual rise in blood sugar levels over time.
They include some fruit and vegetables, pulses and whole grain foods, such as porridge oats.
“Low GI foods, which cause your blood sugar levels to rise and fall slowly, may help you feel fuller for longer,” notes the NHS.
“This could help control your appetite and may be useful if you’re trying to lose weight.”
Do you have type 2 diabetes?
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.
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.
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