COVID-19 is more likely to cause major problems in people who have diabetes. When infected with any virus, people with diabetes are more prone to experience severe symptoms and complications than non-diabetics. If you have well-controlled diabetes, your chances of falling really unwell with COVID-19 are likely to be lower. Diabetics with poor glycaemic control are more prone to severe complications seen in COVID-19 and more prone to invasive fungal infections like mucormycosis (black fungus). If you are a diabetic, nutrition and physical activity are critical components of a balanced lifestyle. Following a nutritious diet plan and staying active will help keep your blood glucose level within the desired range, among other things.
To control your blood glucose level, you must balance what you eat and drink with physical exercise, and if necessary, diabetic medication. What you eat, how much you eat, and when you eat, are all critical factors in keeping your blood glucose level within the range recommended by your doctor.
A balanced diet and good nutrition, along with a healthy lifestyle, improves control of blood glucose and helps you to regain your immunity levels.
Post Covid-19, people tend to have a voracious appetite, so small frequent meals – 3 major meals and 3 snacks is preferable.
Nutrition Week: Foods To Consume For Diabetics Post COVID-19
You may be concerned that being a diabetic may force you to give up foods you enjoy. The good news is that you can still consume your favourite foods, albeit in smaller portions or less frequently. Some of the foods that you could consume in safe quantities are as follows:
Whole grains – red rice millets, broken wheat, oats, cornmeal, barley, grains, pulses, and legumes; helps stabilise your blood sugar levels.
Recommended Fruits & Vegetables — Broccoli, carrots, green peas, orange, apple, grapes. Fruits are rich in antioxidants that help in normalising blood sugar levels. It’s healthier to consume whole fruits compared to juices. Consumption of sugar substitutes should be preferred to sugar.
Protein Intake – Lean meet like egg whites, chicken, fish, paneer, soya-based products, pulses (dhal, neem grams)
Heart-healthy fats – Nuts, seeds, and oils, such as canola and olive oil, at ambient temperature, salmon, tuna, mackerel, and avocado. Use oils while cooking.
Low-fat meat — Chicken breast, eggs, fish, milk, yogurt, and cottage cheese.
Liquid Intake – Consume liberal quantities of water, as water washes off toxic substances from your body, keeping it healthy.
Consume foods with a low Glycaemic index, and more complex carbohydrates. Consume small meals at frequent intervals.
Nutrition Week 2021: Foods To Avoid For Diabetics Post COVID-19
Direct sugars, such as jams, mithais, and other sweets, are a no-no.
Red meat should be avoided in general, whether or not you have COVID-19, due to its high saturated fat content, which can promote inflammation.
Avoid processed and high-saturated-fat foods, such as refined and bakery items, as well as deep-fried dishes. Also, limit your intake of salt and sweets.
In terms of fruits, bananas, mangoes, and chikoo should be avoided. Raw veggies should not be consumed because they can cause additional diseases such as diarrhoea or bloating.
Soft drinks and sweetened beverages should be replaced with water.
In your coffee or tea, try using a sugar replacement.
Alcohol has the ability to change the gut microbiome in just 3-4 days and has a direct impact on recovery, as it raises inflammation levels.
When Should Diabetics Eat Their Meals?
Diabetics generally need to eat at roughly the same time every day. Others may be able to be more flexible with their eating times. You may need to roughly consume the same amount of carbohydrates at the same time each day, depending on your diabetes medications or insulin type. Your eating schedule can be more flexible if you use “mealtime” insulin. Your blood glucose level can drop too low if you use some diabetic drugs or insulin and miss or delay a meal.
Three major meals – breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner at regular times and snacks at 11.00 am, 5.00 pm, 10 PM.
Doctor-Suggested Diet For Diabetic Patients Post COVID-19
If you are a diabetic and recuperating from COVID-19, it is critical for you to eat on time. People frequently experience tiredness, which can be alleviated by eating a well-balanced diet. The formula should be to eat properly and on schedule.
Breakfast should consist of:
Oatmeal or sugar-free cereal with milk and eggs
Dosa with multigrain flour, sambar, and buttermilk
1 roti, green vegetables, and buttermilk
Nuts, seeds, and fruit are all good options
1 flatbread, 1 bowl of curd, 1 bowl of dal, 1 bowl of green veggies/chicken curry
1 cup curd, 1 cup dal, sprouts and pulao
Snacks for the evening:
Green tea with cookies, roasted chana, foxnuts (makhanas)
Dinner will be:
Soup, salad, one roti, one cup dal/dahi, and one cup of vegetables and chicken
You can drink a glass of milk before retiring to bed if you are hungry.
About Author: Dr. Aditya G Hegde is Consultant – Diabetes and Endocrinology at Manipal Hospitals, Old Airport Road, Manipal.
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