live with physical challenges.
I am NOT a DOCTOR!!! I don't even play one on TV!!! It is my goal to live a more healthy lifestyle. Living well and being happy is what this blog is all about.

"Nothing,' wrote Tolstoy, 'can make our life, or the lives of other people, more
beautiful than perpetual kindness."

- Gretchen Rubin

I write about my own experiences and what works (or does not) for me. Nothing I write is to be taken as medical advice.

Only your health care provider, personal physician,Disclaimer:
I am not a doctor - I don't even play one on TV! This
or pharmacist can provide you with advice on what is safe and effective for your unique needs.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

The Fiber Factor

Let me begin by saying I am all for a low carbohydrate diet to manage blood glucose.  Right off the bat I want you to understand that this is not a post about how low carbohydrate diets are wrong - because they definitely are not!  It's a proven fact that lowering your intake of carbohydrates has a direct effect on blood glucose levels.  OK - having said that, let me introduce one more piece of the puzzle:  fiber.

Before I talk about fiber, I want to review how a low carbohydrate diet helps lower blood glucose levels.  Insulin is a storage hormone that is responsible for putting food into fat cells, storing it as body fat.  Think of insulin as a prison guard, watching over the stored fuel (food) and making sure fat finds its way into cells and keeps it locked inside.  When you limit carbohydrate intake, your body releases very little insulin which allows the stored body fat to escape from prison (the cell) and leave your body - and you lose weight and control blood sugar as a result. 

I keep hearing that diabetics should eat low carbohydrate foods.  I agree.  My question is:  Wouldn't it be better if we took a close look at the fiber content in some of our low carbohydrate choices?  If I have a choice between a low carbohydrate food with little or no fiber, or a low carbohydrate food with high fiber - um...  well, I'm going to choose the one with high fiber!

We've all seen the list of low carbohydrate foods, but let's break the list down even more.  Let's take a look at low carbohydrate foods with little or no insoluble fiber:
  • meats - beef, chicken, fish
  • eggs
  • milk
  • cheese
  • heavy cream
  • butter
  • salad dressings (not low-fat)
Viable choices - perfectly legitimate if all you are considering is the carbohydrate count.  Now, let's take a look at the list of low carbohydrate foods with insoluble fiber:
  • flax seeds
  • chia seeds
  • mustard greens
  • collard greens
  • chicory
  • endive
  • unsweetened coconut
  • avocado
  • raw spinach
  • chard
  • broccoli
  • cauliflower
  • blackberries
  • asparagus
  • celery
  • eggplant
  • romaine lettuce
  • mushrooms
  • radishes
  • red raspberries
  • cabbage
  • bell peppers
  • snow peas
  • zucchini squash
  • strawberries
  • cucumbers
  • apples
  • lemons
  • limes
  • bok choy
  • onions
  • bean sprouts
Look - I don't have a problem with eating meat, eggs or dairy.  These are great low carbohydrate options for us.  I am just suggesting a little balance, such as some steamed asparagus or broccoli to go along side that steak.  I'm just concerned that a lot of diabetics are going low carbohydrate but not high fiber.  

Why am I so passionate about it?  Well, my mom died of colon cancer and it's my belief that she did that very thing.  She began to eat a diet that was very low carbohydrate, but not very high fiber.  Of course I can't prove it was her diet that made her sick, but it's what I suspect.  

I want to challenge you to keep up the low carbohydrate diet to manage your blood glucose, but please please think about how much fiber you are including in your diet as well.  There are folks who think it's an either/or choice - and it's not!  There are plenty of low carbohydrate choices that are also high fiber. 

Nutrition is easy.


Today is I WANT YOU TO BE HAPPY DAY!!!!!!!!!!!  So celebrate with someone and make them happy!


Anonymous said...

Highly descriptive blog, I enjoyed that a lot. Will there be a part 2?

my homepage: diets that work

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