Type 2 diabetes is a common condition in the UK, often caused by lack of exercise and poor diet. The condition causes a person’s blood sugar levels to become too high and can lead to complications such as heart disease and stroke. A healthy diet is one way to manage your blood sugar level. As part of this there are certain foods you should limit eating, such as white rice.
Some carbs are essential in everyone’s diet, as they provide energy and nutrients for a healthy lifestyle.
White rice is rich in carbohydrates, but having too much can raise blood sugar levels.
A study in the British Medical Journal found people who eat high levels of white rice may have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
If you have prediabetes you should take extra care about your rice intake.
Those who have already been diagnosed with diabetes can still enjoy rice, as long as it’s in moderation.
What rice should you eat?
The type of rice you eat is important though and you should always aim to eat rice with a moderate glycemic index (GI) score.
Health experts at Healthline recommend eating the following three types of rice:
- Brown rice
- Wild rice
On the site it explains: “Brown rice, wild rice, and long-grain white rice includes more fibre, nutrients and vitamins than short-grain white rice.
“Short-grain white rice has a high GI, which means it’s 70 or higher, so you should avoid it if possible. It contains little nutritional value when compared to other forms of rice and starches.
“Basmati, brown and wild rice have GI scores in the moderate range. They have a GI of 56 to 69. These are generally OK to eat in moderation. Cooking times can alter GI score, so be careful not to overcook your rice.”
Other foods you should limit
Another high-carb food you should consider limiting in your diet to control blood sugar levels is white bread.
Studies have demonstrated how eating bread, bagels another refined-flour foods has been shown to significantly increase blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes.
One study in particular, titled ‘Carbohydrate-induced memory impairment in adults with type 2 diabetes’ found a meal containing a high-carb bagel raised blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes but also decreased brain function.
But in another study (‘Effect of fiber bread on the management of diabetes mellitus’) replacing white bread with high-fibre bread was found to significantly reduce blood sugar levels in people with diabetes.