Blood sugar – the main type of sugar you get from eating food – is essential to proper brain, heart, and digestive function. However, blood sugar levels must be kept within a healthy range – crossing a certain threshold can result in permanent damage to parts of the body such as the eyes, nerves, kidneys and blood vessels. Unfortunately, if you have type 2 diabetes, the hormone responsible for policing high blood sugar levels is severely impaired.
This is mainly attributed to the vitamins, minerals, plant compounds, and fiber in whole grains.
In a review of 16 studies, whole grains were associated with a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes, while refined grains like white rice was linked to an increased risk.
Researchers suggest that eating at least two servings of whole grains per day may reduce your risk of this condition.
Data from six studies in 286,125 people indicates that eating 2 servings of whole grains per day is associated with a 21 percent reduction in type 2 diabetes risk.
Type 2 diabetes – what to look for
Many people have type 2 diabetes without realising – this is because symptoms do not necessarily make you feel unwell.
Symptoms of type 2 diabetes include:
- Peeing more than usual, particularly at night
- Feeling thirsty all the time
- Feeling very tired
- Losing weight without trying to
- Itching around your penis or vagina, or repeatedly getting thrush
- Cuts or wounds taking longer to heal
- Blurred vision.
“See a GP if you have any of the symptoms of type 2 diabetes or you’re worried you may have a higher risk of getting type 2 diabetes,” advises the NHS.
It adds: “The earlier diabetes is diagnosed and treatment started, the better.”