The order in which different food groups are eaten during a normal meal impacts the insulin and glucose levels of type 2 diabetes patients.
A new study coming from the the Weill Cornell Medical College looked to sort this dilemma out with view to a Western balanced diet that includes carbohydrates, protein, fats and sugars.
The main finding of the study suggests that particularly obese patients that are also diagnosed with type 2 diabetes should eat carbohydrates at the end of the meal, giving precedence to proteins and vegetables.
The importance of the study lies in the fact that instead of changing a patient’s entire diet, clinicians can now advise for a change in the order of food intake.
Of course, diet recommendations concerning cut in meal sizes or a healthy diet still stand. But with patients suffering from type 2 diabetes, obesity or others at a high-risk, it was found that it is difficult to comply with drastic changes. Rather, keeping with a diet but changing the order of foods so that carbohydrates are the last to be eaten is the easier, yet efficient option.
Lead author Dr. Louis Aronne stated:
“We’re always looking for ways to help people with diabetes lower their blood sugar. We rely on medicine, but diet is an important part of this process, too. Unfortunately, we’ve found that it’s difficult to get people to change their eating habits.”
It is a realistic approach to a critical health problem that leads to cardiovascular conditions aggravation and possibly death. Carbohydrates are known to raise the sugar levels in blood. Yet, it someone it advised against their consumption, people are reluctant to overhaul their diet.
This way, cutting off sugar and insulin levels becomes an easier task.
Self-testing of type 2 diabetes patients usually includes a finger prick test. It is important to keep both insulin and sugar levels in check throughout as high levels or constant spikes lead to unwanted complications.
The Cornell University study was conducted on 11 type 2 diabetes patients and involved a random changing of the order in which they ate the mix of vegetables, proteins and carbohydrates.
All patients were also treated with metformin, a drug indicated for this diagnose. The carbohydrates consisted of orange juice and ciabatta bread, while the rest of the meal was composed of chicken breast with a side of tomato and lettuce salad and an added steam-cooked broccoli topped with butter.
Patients had this meal twice, seven days apart. 12 hours after they had their last meal, the researchers tested their glucose level. After the meal, it was tested again at intervals of 30 minutes, 60 minutes and 120 minutes.
During the first week, the carbohydrates were the first on the menu. The second week, the order was reversed, with the carbohydrates featuring last. After the order was reversed, the glucose levels after the meal measured significantly lower.
They decreased by 39, 37 and 17 percent after each timely check. Insulin levels decreased too, pointing that the order in which food is eaten is indeed important for type 2 diabetes patients.
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