Ruth Buttigieg, BSC (Hons), MSc, ANutr is a qualified nutritionist who works at Natural Ketosis, where she helps people to better their health by changing their diet and lifestyle by following a low-sugar, low-starch approach. Ruth read biochemistry for her undergraduate degree and she also has a Masters in Public Health Nutrition from Queen Margaret University. Here she blogs for us on a question that often comes up when it comes to diabetes and nutrition – are starchy foods really needed for a healthy diet?
Not a day goes by without a news piece covering the diabetes epidemic within the UK population or news coverage regarding new and exciting research looking at new interventions to either prevent or manage diabetes.
Yet what is diabetes, and can diet help prevent and manage the condition?
Diabetes is not a new medical phenomenon. The first reference to this condition can be traced back to an Egyptian papyrus dating back to c1550BC. Yet, if this condition has been present since early human civilisations, what has changed over the last few years that has led to it becoming an epidemic?
Statistics published in February 2014 by Diabetes UK  reveal that the number of people diagnosed with diabetes in the UK totals 3.2 million (6 percent of the population).
Minimising Sugar and Starches
Individuals suffering from diabetes (both type 1 and type 2) have elevated blood sugar levels due to metabolic insulin dysfunctions. Due to this, diabetics struggle to manage their insulin secretion and need pharmaceutical interventions (either orally or intravenously) to help manage their condition.
Consuming lower amounts of carbohydrates in the diet will help to manage the majority of insulin metabolic dysfunctions as:
- There will be less sugar in the blood
- Due to lower levels of blood sugar, insulin levels will be decreased
- Lower levels of insulin means that a lower dose of diabetic drugs will be needed to manage the body’s blood sugar homeostasis feedback loop.