In the recent years, pre-diabetes has increased and is expected to exceed that of type 2 diabetes by the year 2025. Pre-diabetes is when you have impaired
- fasting glucose (100 to 125 mg/dl)
- glucose tolerance (2-hour post-glucose load, 140 to 199 mg/dl).
One scary fact is those who are pre-diabetic do not show any symptoms. Therefore, most people are undiagnosed and remain untreated until pre-diabetes becomes diabetes. This, in turn, increases the risk of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular diseases and other problems associated with high levels of blood glucose.
Why is this important when talking about the Dietary Inflammatory Index (DII®)? Recently it has been shown that chronic inflammation is associated with increased risk of cancer, CVD, and DIABETES. So, it is well accepted that inflammation has an important role in the development of pre-diabetes. Since the DII® can predict the inflammatory potential of your diet, knowing your DII® score can help predict risk of pre-diabetes. This was shown in a study where researchers found that subjects with higher DII® scores were at an increased risk of pre-diabetes despite consuming similar number of calories.
With this information, we encourage consuming a more anti-inflammatory diet to help reduce this risk. Below are some tips to move you in the right direction.
- Add herbs, spices and aromatics to your diet. For each meal, include one to two of these to not only increase flavor, but to increase the anti-inflammatory power of your foods.
- Eat lots of vegetables. Make sure to include vegetables in every meal and snack. Choose a variety of types and colors to get the most benefit.
- Avoid processed foods and foods high in sugar. Add more whole foods in your diet. Not the grocery store, Whole Foods, but foods that are unprocessed and are eaten just as they are grown. Also, choose foods that do not have added sugar, and are low in natural sugars!
- Focus on your fiber intake. Soluble fiber can help lower your cholesterol level and improve blood glucose control if eaten in large amounts. A diet high in whole grains, beans, legumes, vegetables, and fruit will ensure that you are meeting your daily needs, plus you get the benefit of all the vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals that these powerhouses contain!
- Don’t drink your calories. Drink water, unsweetened tea, and other unsweetened beverages to help prevent excess calorie intake, which will help maintain a stable weight and prevent inflammation.