What foods should I avoid if I have diabetes?


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If you have diabetes then the general advice is to eat a healthy, balanced diet. This means that you should be aiming to eat three meals a day and include all the five major food groups in your diet in the proportions recommended by the food standards agency. You should try to avoid eating high fat meals especially if you have type II diabetes and are obese. Saturated fats and (to a larger extent) trans fats have been found to increase cholesterol levels in your blood and therefore increase your risk of coronary heart disease and stroke if taken in large amounts in your diet. This is an especially important fact if you are a diabetic as you will already have a higher than average risk of developing heart disease. So, if you are diabetic then you should aim to reduce the amount of saturated fat and trans fat which means minimizing the amount of processed foods, fast foods, high fat dairy products and high fat meat. In addition to this, you should try to avoid eating very sugary meals as they will create a spike in your blood sugar level that you will find difficult to control. This could lead you to become hyperglycaemic (when your blood sugar level is well above normal) and any excess sugar will be stored as fat by the cells of your body which could cause you to gain further weight. However, a small amount of sugar in your diet is absolutely fine! In a similar way you should aim to limit your alcohol consumption to a reasonable amount because alcohol increasing your risk of hypoglycaemia and can cause pancreatic damage if taken in excess. You should also try to eat a low salt diet as this will help you to keep your blood pressure from increasing which is important because diabetes will have the effect of increasing your blood pressure which puts you at risk of heart disease and stroke among other problems. 


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