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Dr. D. Y. Patil Vidyapeeth, Pune
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Dr. D. Y. Patil College of Ayurved & Research Centre
Pimpri, Pune-411 018 (Maharashtra) India
Accredited (3rd Cycle) by NAAC with a CGPA of 3.64 on four point scale at ‘A++’ Grade

Ayurvedic Diet for Diabetes: Embracing a Holistic Approach to Health

Ayurvedic Diet for Diabetes: Embracing a Holistic Approach to Health

Harness Ayurvedic principles to manage diabetes effectively. Explore dosha balance, whole foods, herbs, & lifestyle modifications for holistic wellness.

DPU Ayurved
June, 23 2023
4096

Living with diabetes is difficult. However, by adopting modifications to your food and lifestyle, you can improve your general health and successfully manage diabetes. A balanced diet, appropriate nutrition, and a healthy lifestyle are prioritised in the traditional Indian medical system known as Ayurveda.

This article will examine the principles of Ayurveda and direct you towards implementing a diabetes specific Ayurvedic diet. You can live a happy and healthy lifestyle while successfully controlling your diabetes by adhering to these recommendations.

Understanding Ayurvedic Principles for Diabetes

Ayurvedic Concept of Doshas and their Role in Diabetes

According to Ayurveda, diabetes is caused by an imbalance in the doshas, particularly the Kapha dosha. Imbalances in the doshas disrupt the natural flow of energy and lead to various health conditions, including diabetes. By understanding the doshic imbalances associated with diabetes, Ayurveda provides valuable insights into dietary and lifestyle modifications to restore balance.

Ayurvedic Diet Recommendations for Diabetes

Emphasizing Whole, Unprocessed Foods

Ayurvedic diet strongly emphasizes the consumption of whole, natural foods that are rich in essential nutrients and free from chemical additives to control diabetes. By choosing such healthy options, you can fill your diet with essential vitamins, minerals and fiber and consume less sugary foods and unhealthy fats.

A variety of whole grains, fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds form the basis of an Ayurvedic diet for diabetes, which together provide a sound nutritional foundation to help you on your way to managing your diabetes.

Balancing the Doshas through Dietary Choices

Ayurveda recognizes that each individual has a unique constitution and imbalances in specific doshas. For diabetes management, Ayurvedic dietary recommendations aim to balance the Kapha dosha, which is associated with diabetes. This involves reducing heavy, oily, and sweet foods, and favoring lighter, drier, and more bitter tastes. Foods such as bitter gourd, fenugreek, and turmeric are often recommended for their balancing effects on the doshas and blood sugar regulation.

Incorporating Herbs and Spices for Blood Sugar Control

Ayurveda harnesses the power of herbs and spices to support blood sugar control. Scientific findings indicate that many herbs and spices possess anti-diabetic effects, improving both insulin sensitivity and glucose metabolism. Including cinnamon, fenugreek, ginger, and holy basil, which are Ayurvedic herbs and spices, in your diet can assist in managing blood sugar levels.

Managing Portion Sizes and Meal Timings

In addition to food choices, Ayurveda also emphasizes the importance of portion sizes and meal timings for diabetes management. According to Ayurveda, small and frequent meals are totally contraindicated. It’s always advisable to have only two meals per day. Frequent eating many a times leads to insulin resistance.

Healthy Foods for Diabetes in Ayurveda

Whole Grains and Legumes for Sustained Energy Release

Complex carbohydrates, fiber, and protein can be derived from whole grains and legumes, which are valuable.  They provide sustained energy release and help maintain stable blood sugar levels. Ayurveda advises old grains – at least 1 yr old. It helps in reducing the extra moisture content in the grains which can vitiate kapha dosha. Ayurveda wholeheartedly embraces the use of barley. Its considered as a superfood for diabetic people. Jowar and bajra are also helpful.

Good Fats and Lean Protein Sources

Green gram, lentils, pigeon peas, horse gram can be taken as a source of proteins. Green peas, black gram, legumes are not considered very healthy according to Ayurveda. Their use must be limited.

Ayurveda advise to totally avoid milk and dairy products. Ghee in adequate quantity can be taken. 

In non-vegetarian food, fish, seas food, chicken is contraindicated. Mutton can be taken but in a controlled manner.

Herbal Teas and Beverages for Diabetes Management

Ayurvedic herbal teas and beverages can be beneficial additions to the diet for diabetes management. The consumption of green tea, chamomile tea, and herbal blends composed of fenugreek or holy basil can contribute to the regulation of blood sugar levels, facilitate digestion, and support overall wellness.

Additional Lifestyle Tips for Managing Diabetes

Regular Exercise and Physical Activity

Managing diabetes requires making regular exercise and physical activity a part of your everyday routine. Ayurveda recommends engaging in activities that suit your body type and individual preferences. You can do activities like walking, yoga, swimming, or any exercise that benefits your heart, enhances insulin sensitivity, and supports a good body weight.

Stress Management Techniques 

Blood sugar levels can be greatly influenced by stress. Ayurveda highlights the significance of handling stress by utilizing different methods like meditation, practicing deep breaths, and participating in activities that enhance relaxation and mental health. Prioritizing self-care and finding ways to reduce stress can positively impact diabetes management.

Importance of Adequate Sleep and Rest

Getting sufficient sleep and rest is essential for overall health and diabetes management. Ayurveda recommends establishing a regular sleep schedule, practising good sleep hygiene, and creating a calm and soothing sleep environment. Set a target of getting 7-8 hours of quality sleep each night to support optimal hormone balance, metabolism, and overall well-being.

Conclusion

Adding Ayurvedic principles to your diet and lifestyle allows you to address diabetes in a holistic and personalized way. By emphasizing whole, unprocessed foods, balancing the doshas, incorporating herbs and spices, and following a mindful eating routine, you can support blood sugar control and overall health. Remember to seek personalized advice and recommendations from a trained Ayurvedic specialist. Managing diabetes can be approached holistically by taking care of not only your physical body but also your mind and spirit. Choosing to do this will result in improved health and a heightened level of satisfaction with your overall life.

 

Dr. D. Y. Patil College of Ayurveda and Research Centre, Pimpri, Pune is an ideal solution for Ayurvedic treatment for diabetes or any other health ailments. We present inclusive medical alternatives, personalized discussions, and therapeutic remedies rooted in Ayurvedic principles.

With highly qualified Ayurvedic experts, dedicated staff, and modern facilities, the center strives to provide complete treatment and continuous support to patients seeking successful management of diabetes using Ayurvedic principles.

Editor – Dr. Neelesh Patil

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