India has the dubious distinction of being the diabetes capital of the world with an estimated 50 million (five crores) people suffering from type 2 diabetes.
Why is this?
Diabetes is not a sweet deal
Insulin is a hormone produced in the pancreas. It regulates the metabolism of fats, carbohydrates, and protein by enabling the absorption of glucose (among other nutrients) from the blood.
Diabetes is the result of the inability of the pancreas to produce enough insulin or the bodyâ€™s improper response to the insulin produced. This results in high blood sugar levels.
Diabetes is classified as:
- Type 1: which is caused by the failure of the pancreas to produce sufficient insulin. This type is also known as juvenile diabetes and is a genetic condition.
- Type 2: also known as adult onset diabetes is caused by improper cell response to insulin. The reason is usually overweight and lack of exercise.
- Gestational diabetes is a form which occurs in pregnant women who have had no previous history of the disease.
Diabetes doubles the risk of early death. Prevention and control of diabetes involve healthy and suitable diets, weight control, physical exercise and avoiding unhealthy habits like smoking and drinking alcohol.
The diabetes diet
The aim of a diet plan suitable to avoid or control diabetes is to control blood sugar levels, manage weight and control risk factors like high blood pressure and high levels of fats in the blood.
- Eating excess calories results in a spike in blood sugar levels. It is advisable to avoid foods rich in simple carbohydrates like white rice, sweet, fatty foods like desserts and processed food with very little fibre content.
- A diabetes diet is based on eating three small meals at regular times of heart-healthy foods with healthy complex carbohydrates and fibre.
- Foods made of complex carbohydrates like ragi and jowar take time to digest. Glucose is thus released slowly into the bloodstream avoiding the danger of blood sugar spikes. They also give you the feeling of fullness; you tend to eat less.
- Fibre too moderates how our body digests and absorbs sugar. Some foods rich in fibre are whole grains, fruit, vegetables, nuts, legumes, and whole wheat flour.
Multi grain atta (flour)- what is it?
This type of flour/atta is made up of many different kinds of whole grains, handpicked for their nutrition value as well as the benefits they endow on health.
Multigrain atta is particularly beneficial to diabetics. Top nutritionists advice a good mix of whole grains like wheat, barley, soya beans, ragi, jowar, ramdana/rajgira (amaranth seeds), and Bengal gram. All these ingredients have a rich nutritional profile and are high in dietary fibre with complex carbohydrate content. This makes multigrain atta the sensible choice for controlling blood sugar spikes and managing weight.
Multiple benefits of multi-grain atta
Cereal grains like wheat, ragi, jowar, barley and the â€˜pseudo-cerealâ€™ amaranth are valuable sources of vitamin B12, fibre rich and low in calorie density. Experts advise the consumption of at least half of all grains as whole grains. All as whole grains would, of course, be the best choice.
Legumes like soya bean and Bengal gram are rich in protein but low in fat. Bengal gram, for instance, is a very good source of fibre and folic acid.
Multigrain atta works for the diabetes-affected because small portions
- make you feel fuller, so you eat less and can manage weight
- give you your daily dose of vitamins and minerals, so your nutrition is taken care of
- control the release of digested sugar (glucose) into our blood, so that blood sugar spikes are avoided
- encourage the consumption of lower doses of healthy fats
Excessive and extended use of chemical pesticides and fertilisers in agriculture and farming, have resulted in poisonous residues in the foods we eat. These poisons negate the benefits of a healthy diet. So, when the choice is health, go the whole way and eat organic.
How do you know if your meal is pesticide and chemical- free? The National Program for Organic Production (NPOP) and the National Organic Program (NOP) conduct rigorous testing and certification of organic produce.
Terragreens Organic offers you organic multigrain atta of the most superior quality: a mix of the best organic whole grains and protein-rich legumes. Our products carry the NOP and NPOP mark earned by our gratitude to the benevolence of Mother Nature and our unstinting commitment to the organic way of life.