In this essay I would like to look at, in particular the power of a vegan diet for diabetes. A vegan diet for, and tips for, a vegan diet for type 2 diabetes. I also want to look at some known causes of diabetes including some specific risks that meat can cause when prepared in certain ways. I will also once again answer the question of what a vegan diet is good for and what to think about in recipes for type 2 diabetes.
How “What The Health” opened many people’s eyes to Diabetes!
I was one of those many people who watched the documentary “what the health” and it had a staggering effect on me.
It really did open my eyes to what was going on, not only in my own body, but also in the world at large, and America in particular. It also answered in large part what a vegan diet is about, and what it is good for.
Probably most stunning was the interview with the head the American Diabetes Association. Here the head had evidence put to him that numerous studies have linked diabetes to the “true” cause, was the large amounts of animals and animal products in the typical Western (in this case American) diet.
Furthermore, it was asked why the association suggested including meat and animal products in their version of “healthy diet choices.” This was denied by the head, who promptly terminated the interview, but the evidence from the website was put forward which did indeed show the healthy choice option as stated.
Indeed, even today meat and fish are included on this association’s online diet plans!
Of course, I agree that a reduced amount of meat and dairy is better than a lot of meat, but people should be fully informed of the impact of their decision!
The program went on to show that big business in the form of meat and dairy producers at all levels, supported the American Diabetes Association. They are hardly going to support an organization that advocates cutting their products from our diet!
The What the health program stated that it relation to diabetes in America:-
- 1 in 10 healthcare dollars is spent on people with diabetes.
- The US government blame sugar and a lack of exercise as the cause of diabetes, where the root cause if fat blocking the sugar receptor cells.
- So it is not the sugar in the treats like cookies that make us fat, but the butter- animal fat.
- It is in the food companies interest to try to confuse the customers. They want us to stay off the true cause and continue eating the profitable, but delicious, and unhealthy meat and dairy option.
- The pharmaceutical industry wants to keep treating us for diabetes, keep making money from medications, rather than curing us! As a side note, pharmaceutical companies sell 80% of the antibiotics they make to farmers for farmed animals. That is along with about 450 other products they produce for animal farming. These are of course needed to keep animals alive and growing quickly, often unnaturally so, in cramped, unsanitary conditions. The profit is in getting these animals to a heavyweight quickly, to slaughter as babies!
- It also went on to say that dairy contains a chemical called casein. When, broken down this becomes casomorphins. Though by no means as strong, this acts in a similar way to morphine, with the initial “feel good factor”, and leaves us wanting us to come back for more. Whilst still doing us harm.
What the health March 2017 Directed by Kip Anderson, Distributed by A.U.M. Films and Media https:whatthehealthfilm.com/
I would also like to reference Alex Chen at weeklywisdomblog.com for his/her interpretation of the above documentary.
It should be noted that the industries involved have sponsored many “studies” to “debunk the myth of what the health.” Some of these put forward reasoned arguments about the percentages quoted in the documentary. However, I am yet to see one that undermines the findings of the program!
Fighting diabetes with plants.
I am sure many of you have come here to see how a vegan diet fit with diabetes, and in particular a vegan diet for type 2 diabetes.
I am a firm believer that prevention is always better than the cure. The items that follow are true for the treatment of diabetes as well as for the prevention of it.
It should be noted that often doctors assess an individual as prediabetic. Unfortunately many people continue with their same lifestyle and diet choices even after this diagnosis.
But why would a plant based diet help in the prevention and treatment of diabetes?
- A Vegan diet is rich in fiber, complex carbohydrates and is low in unsaturated fats, factors that contribute to better blood sugar control, thereby treating, or reducing, the risk of, diabetes.
- Plant-based diets can improve insulin sensitivity, reduce insulin resistance and enhance glycemic control, essential factors for both preventing and managing diabetes.
- Whole plant foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes and nuts provide essential nutrients including antioxidants and phytochemicals which play a crucial role in reducing inflammation and the oxidative stress, linked to diabetes.
- Of course cutting meat, meat products and dairy will reduce the oxidative stress.
- I apologize if this is very basic but oxidants are reactive molecules that are produced both outside and inside your body. The ones we are focusing on here are from this excessive proteins from other animals. These damage molecules in the body. Specifically here in the sugar receptor cells. However, of course these cause all sorts of diseases. In particular in and of the internal organs, including cancers emanating anywhere. Though most notably in the digestive tract and “processing centers” like spleen, liver and the kidneys, as our body does its best to rid us of these toxins.
Plant based Alternatives for Diabetes Management.
Vegan diets emphasize whole, minimally processed foods that are naturally low in saturated fats and cholesterol, making them suitable for individuals with diabetes.
Plant based protein sources such as legumes, tofu, tempeh and seitan offer the necessary amino acids without the saturated fat and cholesterol found in animal products. For more details on plant based protein, please see my article on this website.
However, it is sufficient to say here that one does not need steak or chicken to produce muscle, this is just what the advertising agencies have cleverly talked us into believing. On a plant based diet it is very easy to obtain sufficient protein for our needs, be that everyday needs, athletes or those of body builders. The only notable exception here is if one is going to live off salad and particularly salad leaves, which is not recommended!
Fats are, of course, essential for our healthy bodies. However, plant derived fats are much more healthy than those animal based with the toxins, cholesterol, antibiotics, growth hormones etc included. Plant-based alternatives which contain healthy fats, such as avocados, nuts and seeds also help improve cardiovascular health and manage blood sugar levels.
Vegan diets can be modified to cater to specific dietary needs relating to diabetes management. These include micro nutrient considerations and glycemic control.
Vegans should include a variety of plant based foods, these will include nutrients and micro-nutrients like vitamin B-12, iron, zinc and Omega 3 fatty acids. These can help address potential deficiencies in a vegan diet. As a general rule it is important to include food of all the different colors to ensure you get a good mix of these nutrients.
Many vegans, myself included, take a daily vitamin pill, as well as a probiotic. This is not strictly necessary if you plan your meals with care and stick with unprocessed foods. However, I like the odd processed food like “fake” chicken Kiev, fishcakes and Quorn. I also intermittently fast, so feel it is important to cover all bases with my vitamin pill. I have also talked about the value of probiotics and prebiotics elsewhere on this website. In summary, include a probiotic pill and ensure you eat food that encourages the health of these, often and most easily, the onion family.
There are many of these supplements available and they do not always need to be expensive, though I would respectfully suggest you look out for vegan versions if you have gone fully vegan. However, anyone is welcome on my website, whether vegan, intending to be vegan or in the process of just cutting meat and/or dairy now.
I have covered B-12 elsewhere on this website. However sufficient to say here that most farm animals which the usual western diet includes are now also short of B-12 therefore these animals are given vitamin supplement to encourage them to reach this level. One also finds that B 12 is often included in pant-based milks.
If you would like further information on fighting diabetes and pre-diabetes you may like to consider this offer of diabetes freedom. This is video training aimed at supplying you with more information including other options available to you. Please click here for more information.
I would stress here that if you choose to purchase an item from this link I will receive a small commission as an affiliate marketer, though the item(s) will cost you no more.
What if you or someone you care for cannot give up meat and dairy?
Of course not everyone cares enough about their health, animal welfare or the planet to give up on meat and dairy. Others just refuse to change their habits, what about these people?
- Well firstly, let me make it clear that by far the best option is to give up meat and dairy. However, there is some advice for those who will not, or cannot do this to avoid and mitigate diabetes. Though personally I believe everyone could give up meat and dairy if they really considered what they could achieve by this. Though I am not saying it will always be easy. Can I suggest you look at my article Vegan diet for beginners an explanation. You can find that by clicking here. Also, included in that article is a vegan cookbook and details of the vegan challenge!
- It appears that dairy is less damaging than meat.
- Processed meat is worse for us than unprocessed, so try to cut out this from your diet including bacon, sausages burgers etc.
- Red meat is a little worse for us than other meat. I would stress a little!
- Meat cooked in certain ways appears to be a little worse for our health. More studies are required here, but it appears that meat cooked at a high temperature is a little worse for us. So try to reduce or cut out meat that is barbecued, broiled, roasted or pan-fried. I know, you might ask what is left!
Professional healthcare advice.
I am neither a dietitian nor a doctor. Whilst the advice within this essay is sound, I would always advise a person to seek the advice from professionals before radically changing your diet, especially if you are on existing medication or are diabetic. Many people find that after some time on a vegan diet they can reduce much of their general medication, as is true of me.
Animal welfare and Environmental Impact.
Whilst your motivation for going on, or at least trying a vegan diet might be for personal health reasons, there are without doubt many external benefits to this approach.
By choosing a vegan approach we can make a statement about the unethical treatment of animals that we have somehow decided are farmed, most often ill-treated, living in cramped squalid conditions, then killed for our food as babies, or little more than babies. How we have come to decide what animals are pets and what animals are for food is beyond me.
In most, (though admittedly not all) of Western and many other societies, there would be an uprising if dogs or cats were confined to crates where they cannot, or can barely turn around, for their short lifespan then are killed and eaten. However, most of us pay for this to happen to pigs (for example) and other animals. Pigs are more intelligent than dogs and have many of the same emotions.
Animals all suffer pain and want to live, just as we do. And make no mistake if you have cut out meat but still partake of milk and dairy you are still paying for, and are responsible for, the murder of animals. Please see my article on “the true cost of milk” here for more details.
Animal agriculture is a significant contributor to environmental degradation, including deforestation, water pollution and greenhouse gas emissions.
Raising animals for meat and dairy requires enormous amounts of land, water and feed resources. More than 70% of the high protein food produced by farming is fed to animals that very inefficiently convert it to animal protein, with all the fat, cholesterol and toxins included.
By adopting a vegan diet we can help reduce our carbon footprint and contribute to the preservation of the planet for future generations. The damage that over-fising is doing to our seas does not only impact the fish and shellfish numbers but also the ability of the ocean based plants to remove CO2 from the air. An example of fish numbers is that many fished species have seen a reduction of their numbers by 95% since the 1980s!
It is no exaggeration that the best thing you can do to preserve the planet for your grandchildren and your grandchildren’s grandchildren, is to turn vegan. Of course if you cannot do this cutting down meat and dairy is the next-best thing. Some people feel it is too late to save the planet by such choices. I am a little more optimistic than that, though am honest enough to say that sadly, we cannot keep doing what we are doing and still leave a living planet for many generations ahead!
Unfortunately, I do not think anyone can write about diabetes and particularly type 2 diabetes without mentioning weight.
Somewhere between 80 and 90% of type 2 diabetes patients are overweight or obese! Mostly in the obese category!
It naturally follows that one of the best ways to avoid diabetes is to maintain a healthy weight. There are many ways to do this though perhaps one of the easiest is to use a diet to get those pounds off. A vegan diet is particularly good for this. Please see my article “what to eat on a vegan diet to lose weight.”
There are of course many supplements that you can use to help you on your diet. Either as a long term thing or as a kick start. One such item that seems to be producing really good results is “Liv Pure”. A link to find out more details of this can be found by clicking here. Please note that should you decide to purchase an item through this link I will receive a small commission as an affiliate marketer, though you will pay no more.
A vegan diet showcase tremendous potential in preventing and managing diabetes, enhancing animal welfare and safeguarding the planet.
By prioritizing plant based foods individuals can enjoy the multitude of health benefits such as improved glycemic control weight management and reduce risk of many chronic diseases. Simultaneously embracing a vegan lifestyle supports ethical treatment of animals and contributes to a healthier more sustainable planet. Power lies in our choices and adopting a vegan diet can make positive impact on our health, animal welfare and the environment. It is no exaggeration to say that the future of the planet lies in our hands.
Even if your main reason for changing to a vegan diet is for your personal health, in respect of your diabetes or otherwise, it will surely help in your motivation to think that you are helping to leave a healthy planet for our grandchildren and theirs!
I would encourage you to get in touch with me for further information on any aspect of veganism, or for comments on this website. For that matter please just get in touch and air your views.
Thank you for taking the time to read this post.