Can diabetics go on the Paleo diet? That’s a pretty common question for people new to a diagnosis of diabetes and those new to the Paleo diet. Not only is it possible, it is highly recommended. First, here’s a little understanding of diabetes and the types and how exactly the Paleo diet can help manage symptoms or even reverse diabetes altogether. Diabetes is a disease where you have elevated blood sugars and your body cannot produce enough insulin to meet demand, or the insulin is not being used properly.
Types of Diabetes
There are two types of diabetes: Type I and Type II. Both can strike at any age and can bring with them a host of complications. To make it easier to understand the difference between the two, with Type I diabetes your pancreas doesn’t function properly or at all, the condition is manageable. Only about 10% of diabetics have this type, there is no cure and you will likely be insulin dependent for the rest of your life, but you can manage it successfully and lead a normal life. Type II diabetes is a result of lifestyle choices, bad diet and a lack of exercise. Type II diabetes goes hand in hand with obesity, and while you may need medication initially Type II diabetes is reversible and the Paleo diet can help reverse it.
The Diabetic Epidemic
The statistics on the increase in obesity and Type II diabetes are staggering especially amongst children. Since the root causes of this type of diabetes are lifestyle related, it’s time we took a look at our lifestyle. We move less and eat more. The standard American diet is filled with grains, sugars and processed foods, which convert to glucose in the body. Insulin production can’t keep up with the demands our diet makes and as a result we are becoming more obese and diabetes is at an all time high.
How Does the Paleo Diet Help?
The key to how the Paleo diet helps reverse Type II diabetes is in what you do and don’t eat on Paleo. Paleo allows grass fed meats, seafood, fruit and vegetables, along with nuts and seeds. What it doesn’t allow is sugars, grains and processed foods all of which have been connected to the onset of diabetes. All of which convert to glucose in the blood making demands for more insulin. So by eliminating the contributors you can stop exacerbating the condition and start treating it.
Research also backs this up: A study was done at the University of Lund in Sweden that put the Paleo diet up against the Mediterranean diet and the American Diabetic Association diet over a three month period. They looked at factors like blood sugar, waist circumference and cholesterol. In every single factor the patients eating the Paleo diet came out ahead. So the Paleo diet is a great way for diabetics to control their blood sugar and live a healthy life!