Veganism is a type of vegetarian diet that eliminates all animal products, including meat, poultry, fish, eggs and dairy. Vegans choose this diet for a variety of ethical and health reasons. While it takes a bit more planning than a meat-based diet, a well-rounded vegan diet provides sufficient protein, calcium, vitamin D and iron, nutrients that are typically found in lower quantities in and harder to absorb from vegetarian foods. However, when strictly adhered to the diet can still be deficient in vitamin B12, which is only found in animal products. Certain health advantages, including improved management of blood sugar levels, may be possible with a vegan diet.
Vegan food for People With High Blood Sugar Levels
Fiber and Glycogen
A vegan diet may improve your blood sugar control by increasing your levels of dietary fiber, according to nutritionist Debra Wein. Fiber slows down the release of sugar into the bloodstream, providing even energy levels throughout the day. Complex carbohydrates also promote the production of glycogen, your body’s short-term storage form of glucose, which is then released slowly to meet your energy demands, helping to control blood sugar levels.This type of diet also provides high levels of antioxidants that help prevent damaging effects of excess blood sugar on cells throughout the body, a process known as glycation.
Fasting Blood Sugar
A meta-study conducted at the University of Cincinnati found that 12-week vegan diets resulted in 12 to 27 percent lower fasting blood sugar levels and promoted weight loss in patients with Type 2 diabetes. HgbA1c levels – a measure of blood sugar over a three-month period prior to the tests – were also lower on a vegan diet. The researcher concluded that a vegetarian diet is more effective than a conventional diet for managing diabetes.
Low Fat and High in Vitamins
A low-fat vegan diet may help you reduce the amount of diabetes medication you require, according to the book “Vegetarian Times: Everything Vegan.” Vegetarian foods contain higher levels of B-complex vitamins, which your body requires to metabolize carbohydrates. Eating a high-quality vegetarian diet consisting of fresh fruits, vegetables and grains provide more B-complex vitamins, helping your body process carbohydrates and sugars more effectively. An added benefit of a vegan diet is that it increases your metabolism after meals to a greater degree than an animal protein-based diet, which helps you burn a few more calories, keeps your blood sugar down and helps you manage your weight.
All Vegetarian Types
A study published in the October 2011 issue of the journal “Nutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases” found that among 41,000 participants on vegetarian diets 0.54 percent of those on vegan diets developed diabetes compared to 1.08 percent of Lacto ovo vegetarians, who ate dairy products and eggs, and 1.29 percent of pesco-vegetarians, who ate fish in addition to a plant-based diet. Non-vegetarians showed a 2.12 percent rate of developing diabetes during the two-year study period. Researchers concluded that vegan and other vegetarian diets offer significantly greater protection from diabetes than meat-based diets, with veganism providing the greatest benefits overall.