Reading food labels is a no-brainer. And, it’s important for diabetes management. So, check out these 4 things diabetics should look for on food labels.
Carbs can wreak havoc on the blood sugar. However, food labels often list “total carbohydrates.” And that makes it difficult to determine exactly which carbs are included.
So, when in doubt choose complex carbs instead of refined. Whole grains have less sugar and more nutrients. And this, in turn, helps prevent sugar spikes.
Next, sugar is also harmful to a diabetic diet. So watch out when sugar is listed high on the ingredients list. Food labels will list ingredients from the highest weight first.
Additionally, look for other sugar names such as:
- malt syrup
- corn syrup
- corn sweetener
Not all food label ingredients are bad for diabetics. Fiber, for example, is known to decrease blood sugar spikes and increase insulin sensitivity. So, look for foods that have at least 3 grams per serving.
Furthermore, watch out for food with “added fiber.” These types can cause an upset stomach. One way to find out if the food has added fiber is looking at the food label.
Watch out if you see the following items in the ingredients list:
- resistant starch
- chicory root extract
- cellulose, inulin
Lastly, fats may help cause diabetes. And, continuing to eat them may make the diabetic condition worse. But, not all fats are bad.
In the “total fat” area of the label, look for mono and polyunsaturated fats. These “good fats” have many health benefits. However, avoid saturated and trans-fats when you see it.
These “bad fats” are hidden in plain sight. Look for “partially hydrogenated oils” on the list. This is one way to tell if there are trans-fats in your snack.
There are many things diabetics should look for on food labels. But, these are the most important. And, looking closer at food labels may help manage blood sugar in the long run.