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Prevent diabetes diet

Prevent diabetes diet


An excerpt from The Blood Sugar Solution book by Dr. Mark Hyman

Food is the biggest weapon you have in fighting diabetes and other insulin-related disorders.

Type 2 diabetes and other insulin-related health disorders such as metabolic syndrome are the biggest global health epidemic of our time. What we eat is the most important factor in preventing them.

When your diet is full of empty calories and an abundance of quickly absorbed sugars and refined carbohydrates, your cells slowly become resistant or numb to the effects of insulin.

This six-week program uses food as medicine to regulate your metabolism, blood sugar and insulin levels.

Get the full recipes here.

How it works:

  1. Eat food that improves your genes To turn off the genes that lead to diabetes and turn on the genes that lead to health, the key is the type of food you eat ñ plant-based whole foods rich in nutrients. This type of diet will also regulate your hormones, improve digestion and metabolism and keep your stress levels down.
  2. Eat food with a low glycaemic index (GI) Low-GI foods don’t spike blood sugar and insulin.
  3. Spend two weeks preparing Measure your height, weight, waist size, blood pressure, body mass index (BMI) and waist-to-height ratio before you start. It is also recommended that you get tested for other biochemical imbalances. The results may require you to take supplements or make dietary changes. Tools for measuring and tracking your health are available at
  4. Clean toxic foods out of your kitchen and stock it with the foods that create health.
  5. One week before the program begins, cut out all sugar, flour products, highly processed carbs and stimulants such as caffeine, alcohol and sedatives.

Recommended foods

  • Slow-burning, low-GI vegetables These should be the basis of your diet. These include broccoli, asparagus, spinach, silverbeet, kale, cabbage, bok choy and cauliflower. Aim for five serves a day.
  • Garlic and onions Eat them every day if you can. They lower cholesterol and blood pressure, contain antioxidants and are anti-inflammatories.
  • Heathy animal products These include omega-3-rich fish such as wild salmon and sardines; mercury-free fish, prawns and scallops; omega-3 or free-range eggs; and (organic if possible) grass-fed poultry.
  • Seaweed Kombu, nori, hijiki and wakame are all extraordinarily high in minerals, protein and healing compounds.
  • Green tea It contains anti-inflammatory, detoxifying and antioxidant phytonutrients. The small amount of caffeine is usually well tolerated by most.
  • Whole soy products These include tempeh, tofu and miso.
  • Nuts The best are almonds, walnuts, macadamias, hazelnuts and pecans. Stick with 10 to 12 nuts once or twice a day.
  • Seeds Pumpkin, sunflower and sesame seeds are all high in fibre, protein, vitamins and minerals.
  • Gluten-free wholegrains Eat up to half a cup a day of brown, black and red rice, quinoa, amaranth or buckwheat.
  • Beans or legumes They are rich in protein and filled with fibre, minerals and vitamins that help balance blood sugar.
  • Berries Blueberries, cherries, blackberries and raspberries are filled with phytonutrients.
  • Apple, pears and stone fruit They are healthy and full of fibre and healing chemicals. Limit to one to two pieces a day.

This is an edited extract from The Blood Sugar Solution (Hachette, $29.99) by Dr. Mark Hyman. You can find the full article, including foods to limit, foods to avoid, and meal ideas on this Body and Soul website.