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Chicken for Diabetes

Diabetes is a common disease that is on the increase worldwide. It is a common cause of death in the United States and has no known cure. There are two types of diabetes known as type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes. It is a condition where the body cannot manufacture its own insulin (type 1 diabetes) or cannot make use of the insulin (type 2 diabetes). Insulin is a hormone that is required by the body to convert glucose into energy.
With diabetics, the inability of the body to convert glucose to energy, results in elevated levels of sugar in the blood. Type 2 diabetes is by far the more common variety, affecting about 90% to 95% of all diabetics.

Many diabetics develop secondary illnesses like coronary heart disease and kidney disorders. Diet plays a very important role in managing blood sugar levels. A healthy well balanced diet along with regular exercise can help diabetics lead a healthy normal life and can even prevent its development. Studies have shown that a diabetic diet should contain a high proportion of fruits and green leafy vegetables along with lean white meats like chicken and fish.

Chicken is good for diabetic patients because of its low fat content. The high fat content in red meats causes elevated levels of cholesterol which can lead to blockages in the arteries resulting in coronary heart disease. Diabetics are at a higher risk of developing coronary heart disease and should replace red meat in their diets with lean white meats like chicken. This has a beneficial effect on both the heart and the kidneys, two organs that are at greater risk in diabetics.

Fried, Baked & Grilled Chicken For Diabetics

The method of preparing the chicken is also important. Fried chicken is not good for diabetics, especially the fast food variety. Eating a lot of fast food chicken resulted in a high calorie diet that can lead to an increase in weight which is not good for diabetics. Most oils have trans fats which can lead to increased levels of cholesterol resulting in blocked arteries. If you must fry your chicken then use olive oil or any other oil that does not contain trans fats.

On the other hand, baked chicken is good for people with diabetes. Since baking does not involve the use of oil, the resulting dish is low in fats and calories. In general a 1 lb. dish can provide you with 5 servings with each serving providing you with about 120 calories. Barbecue chicken and grilled chicken is also good for diabetics as grilling is a low fat cooking method that does not add too many calories to the diet. Oven fried chicken is also good for diabetes patients but care must be taken to use as little oil as possible.

Diet does play a significant role in controlling diabetes and is often used in conjunction with insulin or oral medication and exercise. The actual composition of a diabetic diet is best left to a dietician as it must take into account several factors. Some of these that need to be considered are age, sex, body weight, blood pressure, cholesterol levels, lifestyle and the type of diabetes. Your dietician will advise you regarding the most appropriate proportions to follow. Make sure you eat well balanced nutritious meals and have ample green leafy vegetables and fruits in your diet. Avoid fatty foods and red meat and select foods that are nutritious and have less calories. Instead of having three large meals in a day, have five meals consisting of smaller portions. Remember, there is no ideal diet plan that is suitable for every diabetic.

Chicken For Type 1 & 2 Diabetes

Chicken is good for type 1 diabetics. Since this disease mostly strikes in childhood it is also known as juvenile diabetes. Managing blood sugar levels in children can be quite challenging, especially in times of sickness. When a child is sick, hormonal activity increases and can result in increased blood sugar levels. Insulin and other medication should be taken as prescribed and blood sugar levels should be monitored regularly. Eating can sometimes be a problem and in such cases you should try to vary the diet a bit. Chicken soup is a better alternative to cooked or baked chicken as it is easier to swallow.

Chicken is good diet for type 2 diabetics too, especially those who have been used to a diet with a lot of meat. It is easier to substitute chicken for red meat compared to having no meat at all in the diet. The low fat content in chicken makes it easier for these diabetics to lose weight, a crucial factor in diabetes management.
Submitted on January 16, 2014