Q:

Can sugar free items on a diabetic menu negatively impact a person with diabetes?

A:

Quick Answer

Complex carbohydrates from starch and sugar-free items are processed into the body in such a way that the blood glucose level may fluctuate dangerously throughout the day, according to Mayo Clinic. Carbohydrates from fruits, whole grains, low-starch vegetables, legumes and low-fat dairy products are healthier choices.

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Full Answer

Because diabetes contributes to the risk of heart disease, a healthy diabetic diet goes beyond merely cutting out sugars or complex carbohydrates. Diabetics should consume less than 2,300 milligrams of sodium a day, suggests Mayo Clinic. It is suggested that individuals reduce their intake of cholesterol, saturated fats, such as those found in meat, and trans fats such as those found in processed foods.

Because the maintenance of healthy blood glucose levels throughout the day is necessary for diabetics to stay healthy, diabetics must eat small amounts of food throughout the day in a way that keeps their blood glucose level in a healthy range. Because of this, alcohol should only be consumed after consulting a physician. This is because if alcohol is consumed on an empty stomach, it can reduce blood glucose levels dangerously and even raise the amount of fat present in the blood, states the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

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