August 31, 2016

Diabetes Terms to Learn – Part 3

Part 3 of 3 parts

Obese: Refers to someone with a BMI of 30 or higher, who is carrying a large amount of excess body fat. Too much body fat may cause or worsen health problems, including type 2 diabetes.

Overweight: Refers to someone with a BMI of between 25 and 29.9, who is carrying excess body fat. Someone who is overweight has an increased risk of health problems such as type 2 diabetes.

Protein: A substance made up of amino acids that your body needs to function. You'll find protein in meat, poultry, fish, legumes, tofu, eggs, nuts, seeds, and dairy products. Meats don't contain carbohydrates, so they won't raise your blood glucose unless your meal plan becomes high protein and high fat. At that time, your body can convert about 50 percent of protein into glucose.
Sodium: A mineral found in salt. Getting too much -- as most Americans do -- can raise your blood pressure, and, in turn, raise your risk of heart attack and stroke. Since these problems are often tied to diabetes, it's important to watch your intake. Processed foods tend to be very high in sodium.

Starch: A type of carbohydrate found in grains, as well as in starchy vegetables such as peas, corn, beans, and potatoes. Just like sugar (another type of carbohydrate), starch can raise your blood glucose; so, it's important to pay attention to how much you're eating.

Strength training: Physical activity designed to build muscle strength or muscle mass. Some examples include lifting free weights, working with weight machines, and exercising with resistance bands. Also called resistance exercise, it can help make your body use insulin more effectively.

Sugar: A type of sweet-tasting carbohydrate. Includes glucose, fructose, and sucrose.

Sugar alcohols: A type of low-calorie sweetener that's often used in "diet" and "sugar-free" foods. These usually end in "-ol." Examples include erythritol, sorbitol, and xylitol. Foods containing these sweeteners may still have carbs and can increase blood glucose, so be sure to check the nutrition label. Sugar alcohols may cause stomach upset in some people.

Whole grains: Grains that have the entire grain kernel, including the nutrient-rich bran and germ. Refined grains (such as white bread), on the other hand, have had the bran and germ removed and contains only the starchy endosperm. Whole grains have more fiber than refined ones, so they're digested more slowly and won't cause your blood sugar to rise as fast. This needs to be watched carefully and many breads that claim to be whole grain

More terms can be found here, here, and here. David Mendosa's blog about terms can be found here. There are always terms that need to be learned and I will probably have more later.

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