Eating Protein And Veg Before Carbohydrates Can Help Control Blood Sugar Levels

| July 14, 2015

For anybody who has type 1 or type 2 diabetes, or who wants to avoid developing type 2 diabetes, keeping to a low-carbohydrate, low glycaemic load (low GL) diet needs to be the front line treatment approach as part of helping to control your blood sugar levels.

This has been the advice from nutritionist Martin Hum to our readers at The Real Diabetes Truth all along and it was recently backed up by a major review from an international team of specialists. Studies have also shown that a low-carb diet is more effective than a low-fat one for weight loss and is also better for reducing cardiovascular risk factors.

Now a new study, published in the journal Diabetes Care, has revealed that the order in which we eat our food may be just as important as the foods themselves. Research from Weill Cornell Medical College in New York suggests that eating protein-rich foods and vegetables before tucking into the carbohydrates will not only keep you fuller for longer, but can also help control blood sugar levels.

For the study, the researchers recruited 11 obese or overweight people with type 2 diabetes. The participants were also taking the gold standard diabetes treatment metformin, which helps to control blood sugar levels.

Each participant fasted for 12 hours overnight before consuming a typical 628 calorie meal of protein, carbohydrates and fat — consisting of a skinless chicken breast, buttered broccoli, salad, ciabatta bread and a glass of orange juice.

In the first week of the study, the group ate the bread and drank the juice first and then ate the protein and the veg 15 minutes later.

During the second week, the participants ate the same meal in the reverse order, first eating the chicken and greens, followed by the bread and juice.

The researchers measured the blood sugar levels of each participant for the duration of the study just before eating and then 30, 60 and 120 minutes after the meal.

The results showed that the blood sugar levels were 29 per cent, 37 per cent and 17 per cent lower when researchers checked them at 30, 60 and 120 minutes, respectively, when the group had eaten the chicken and veg first. Insulin levels were also lower when participants had eaten the veg and protein first.

Commenting on the results, lead researcher Dr Louis Aronne, said: ‘When we saw the result, we were really encouraged that this is something that could potentially benefit people.”

For type 1 and 2 diabetics, these findings could be particularly useful, since they must constantly control their blood sugar levels to avoid health complications. The fact is, lifestyle interventions — basically diet and exercise — are increasingly becoming recognised as real alternatives to drug therapy for people with diabetes. And they are far superior to drugs since they address the root causes of diabetes rather than simply treating the symptoms, while supporting overall health instead of further damaging it.

Here’s to healthy living,

Francois Lubbe
Real Diabetes Truth

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Bear in mind we are not addressing anyone’s personal situation and you should rely on this for informational purposes only. Please consult with your own physician before acting on any recommendations contained herein.


Diabetic? Then eat protein and veg before carbs, say scientists, published online 29.06.15,

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Category: Diet and Exercise

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