Prediabetes is of a fairly recent origin. This stage denotes the onset of the condition associated with higher than usual glucose in your blood. It was first coined in 2003 and has since gained acceptability among the medical fraternity engaged in finding better and newer ways to manage the chronic condition.
When your blood sugar levels are higher than usual but not yet in the diabetic range, you may be a prediabetic. There is no cause for concern yet, but you have to be cautious. This is the time when you can check the progression of this condition into the more prevalent form of Type-2 diabetes. A combination of diet, exercise, and maintaining a healthy weight can bring your blood sugar levels down to the regular.
Eating the right foods is an essential part of prediabetes management. If you are dealing with borderline high blood sugar levels, then you need to have a diet plan in place with foods that can help arrest the surge in blood sugar. Is corn good for diabetes? Let us find out.
How a healthy diet helps
Being diagnosed with prediabetes does not necessarily mean you will develop Type-2 diabetes. With some basic lifestyle changes, including a change in the way you eat, you may be able to prevent or delay the onset of Type-2 diabetes. Monitoring your diet can help you lose weight, which will further lower the risk of developing diabetes. As part of the prediabetes management diet, the important thing is knowing what not to consume. You will have to avoid certain foods altogether, and eat some in moderation. Lowering your carbohydrate intake and eliminating sugar from your diet is a good place to begin.
For beginners, checking the Glycemic Index (GI) of foods can go a long way in prediabetes management. Always go for the Low GI foods. These foods release sugar slowly into the bloodstream. It does two things: It prevents an immediate spike in blood sugar, helping you maintain the ideal glucose levels in your body. The slow release of sugar also makes you feel fuller and prevents the urge to snack unnecessarily between meals. Citrus fruits and high-fibre vegetables are both examples of low GI foods.
Can corn be a part of my regular diet?
Being diagnosed with high sugar levels can make you question all your food choices. If you are asking yourself, ‘Is corn good for diabetes?’ you are already on the right track. Evaluating the nutritional values of different foods and consuming them in moderation is the key to fighting high sugar levels. It is the most widely produced grain in the world!
Corn is a versatile food. There are several ways corn is consumed by people around the world. In its natural state, maize, as it is also called, is edible simply by plucking the corn cobs and steaming/boiling them. Roasted corn is popular in South Asia, including in India, where it is famous as bhutta. Corn flour is used in soups in oriental dishes. Tortillas and nachos are popular corn-based food items in Mexican cuisine. And the most famous and utilitarian versions of corn are cornflakes and popcorn.
Corn or maize has a friendly GI value. On a scale of 100, the GI of corn in its natural state is 52. Foods turning up a value of less than 55 are considered low on the GI scale. But corn is rich in carbs and natural sugars. Now, here is the most important thing that you need to know about corn. Corn in its natural state may throw up a favourable GI, but the other forms in which it is consumed are very unhealthy and not recommended for prediabetes management.
The GI of cornflakes is a whopping 81/100. What is supposed to be a healthy and ready-to-eat meal for people around the world is not a great option for people with prediabetes or diabetes. Similarly, if you are ordering popcorn buckets while watching a movie, keep your hands off it. It has a moderate GI of 65. If you are planning to include corn in your diet for prediabetes management, then consume it in moderation and under the supervision of your dietician or physician.
Some alternatives to corn
The following foods can help with prediabetes management:
Fibre-rich foods: Foods that are high in fibre can help in prediabetes management. Examples of high-fibre foods are whole-grain cereals, barley, quinoa, vegetables, and fruits with edible skin.
Low GI foods: Foods with a high-fibre content are generally low on the Glycemic Index. Try eating wholewheat bread and steel-cut oats instead of instant oats. Avoid starchy foods and have more sweet potatoes, corn, beans, and greens.
Protein-rich foods: Have eggs for breakfast. These are low in carbs and high in protein, which also makes you feel fuller for a longer period and help with prediabetes management. You can make lean meat like fish, avocados, and Greek yoghurt a part of your diet. All of these are good sources of protein and healthy fats.