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Sunday, October 23, 2016

Maxy sez : 6 Spices for a Type 2 Diabetes Diet

 Flavor With a Side of Diabetes Health

Who knew a diabetes diet could lead to fun exploration of your green thumb and your global palate? Type 2 diabetes cooking can be both tasty and healthy once you learn about the health benefits of certain spices. “Spices should take the place of sodium in your diet, and they have health benefits — they’re rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds,” says Juli Adelman, LD, CDE, with the Harold Schnitzer Diabetes Health Center at the Oregon Health & Science University in Portland. “I encourage people with type 2 diabetes to grow their own herb gardens and boost up their spice racks.”

Many herbs, such as parsley, mint, and dill, pack a flavor punch that simply makes eating or drinking more pleasurable, while others could help with managing type 2 diabetes. Enjoy eating and growing herbs and spices; just don’t consider them a substitute for other type 2 diabetes treatment. “Moderation is key,” says Gustavo Ortega Jr., RD, with Kaiser Permanente 
in West Los Angeles. “The idea is to use spices as part of a balanced diet instead of as a supplement.”

Here are six spices that can make your diabetes-friendly meals more tasty and healthy.
                         Basil
“Basil has a lot of flavonoids and goes well with tomatoes, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and mozzarella,” Adelman says. Eating plenty of basil may improve blood pressure control, according to a research roundup published in April 2014 in the Journal of Research in Medical Sciences. High blood pressure can be a concern with type 2 diabetes. Two of three people with diabetes have high blood pressure, according to the American Diabetes Association, so it might be worth growing a basil plant to enhance your meals.
                                                                         Cinnamon
“Cinnamon is an antioxidant that’s been shown to improve insulin sensitivity and reduce fasting blood sugars,” says Ortega. Antioxidants are man-made or natural substances that can prevent or slow cell damage, according to the National Institutes of Health. Cinnamon’s ability to improve insulin sensitivity is highlighted in a review of plant-based compounds for people with diabetes. The review appeared in November 2014 in the International Journal of Molecular Science. Adelman suggests adding cinnamon to oatmeal or mixing it into chili and stew.
            Garlic
Garlic appears to be linked with lower fasting blood glucose levels, according to an analysis published in December 2015 in the Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Adelman suggests including it in hummus, mashing cooked garlic into cauliflower, or adding cooked garlic to steamed spinach. Garlic may thin your blood or interact with medications, so talk to your doctor or pharmacist before incorporating it into your diet. In general, always check with your doctor or a dietitian about your nutritional needs before making any changes to your diet, Ortega says.
                                                                        Rosemary
“Rosemary is an antioxidant and best when used with bell peppers, legumes, or cabbage,” Ortega says. It also goes well with fish and lean meats, like chicken breast. Rosemary is a hearty herb that you can grow and maintain in a pot or garden, and research suggests it may have anti-inflammatory and other beneficial properties.
                         Thyme
Tiny thyme leaves deliver strong flavor to roasts and sauces and go well in many dishes, from eggs to soups. Thyme is also rich in antioxidants, according to a laboratory study of the plant published in August 2015 in the journal Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine.
                                                                          Turmeric
Turmeric is a yellow spice often used in Indian and Middle Eastern dishes like curries. Turmeric may improve insulin sensitivity and reduce blood sugar levels, according to research published in October 2014 in the International Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism. Add turmeric to stir-fry, lentil soup, or sprinkle it into chicken or tuna salad (with yogurt instead of mayo as the base) for a zesty twist.

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