As of 2015, more than 415 million people across the world had been diagnosed with Diabetes. As much as it is admittedly a lifestyle disorder, it also comes with its set of myths. Here are a few of them and we see how Ayurveda addresses them.
1. Diabetics Should Eat Frequently
“An important point in managing diabetes is when to eat and how often,” says Dr. Nisha Manikantan, Founder-Director, Sri Sri Ayurveda, and an Ayurvedic doctor for over two decades.
“Today irregular snacking is very common,” says Manikantan, “Yet in Ayurveda, we recommend Dwikal Bhojanam – meals at two times, at most, three times for anybody in the pre-diabetic stage.”
- Have something light (Recommended-butter milk or tender coconut water).
- Eating too often, the body secretes a lot more insulin, creating insulin resistance. “The body cannot utilize it. Irregularity in eating is another factor that causes Diabetes Mellitus to manifest in the body,” says Manikantan.
2. Are Fruits Good For Diabetics?
“What we have seen is, if we keep many restrictions on food, it adds to stress. So, you don’t have to avoid anything, but you keep it to very limited quantities,” Dr. Nisha says.
- Fruits which are really good for diabetes are berries and pomegranates.
- An apple a day is permissible.
- Even fruits like mangoes and bananas that have high glycemic index can be had in limited quantities.
- Karela Jamun (Bitter Gourd and Indian Blackberry) juice is advised too.
3.Should One Avoid Yogurt?
According to Dr. Umesh, at Sri Sri College of Ayurvedic Science and Research, Bengaluru
- Avoid excessive intake of yogurt, especially at night.
- Avoid eating meat, including fish.
- All the foods that increase the fat in the body like fried, excessive intake of oil, ghee etc. as well as freshly harvested crops, are responsible for aggravation of the Kapha Dosha in the body.
- Ayurveda recommends avoiding newly harvested crops.
- The older the grains, the better it is for the body.
Some Dietary Recommendations For Managing Diabetes Better
- Eat at least three times a day, along with one or two snacking evenly spaced out throughout the day.
- Try and have each meal at the same time every day.
- Avoid skipping your meals.
- Maintain the same amount of carbohydrate intake in each meal every day.
- Recommended – A diet that has normal good carbohydrates, proteins and lot of greens.
- A simple mixture of amla and turmeric powder (2:1) can do wonders.
- Opt for desserts that are fruit-based, date-based or fig-based.
- Add honey as a topping.
And last, but not least, meditation and breathing techniques such as the Sudarshan Kriya can greatly help alleviate stress, support better diabetes control, lower blood pressure and blood glucose levels, bring about greater self-awareness, improve relationships, enhance focus in other areas of your life, and reduce depression and anxiety.