According to the World Health Organisation, diabetes is one of the most common chronic diseases in the world. Diabetes affects 347 million people globally, which is expected to rise to 500 million by 2030.
There are two types of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes, which accounts for approximately 10% of all cases, is caused by the destruction of pancreatic insulin-producing cells. Type 2 diabetes, which accounts for the remaining 90%, is caused by insulin resistance, or an inability of the pancreas to produce enough insulin.
Diabetes is becoming more common for a variety of reasons. One example is the growing elderly population. As people live longer, they are more likely to develop chronic diseases. Another factor is the rise in obesity. Obesity is a major risk factor for Type 2 diabetes, and the proportion of obese adults has more than doubled in the last four decades.
How to avoid diabetes
Diabetes is a serious disease that can cause heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, blindness, and other complications. But the good news is that diabetes is preventable. Even those who have diabetes can significantly reduce their risk of developing it by making simple lifestyle changes:
1. Obesity is a significant risk factor for diabetes. Losing just 5-7% of your body fat can reduce your risk significantly.
2. Exercise improves the efficiency with which your body uses insulin. On most days of the week, aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity (such as brisk walking).
3. Diabetes can be prevented by eating a diet high in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and low in saturated and trans fats.
4. People who are overweight or have a family history of the disease must consult with a doctor about getting screened for diabetes so that preventive measures can be done.
Stevia and the Glycemic Index
Another way to minimise the risk of diabetes is to substitute regular sugar and artificial sweeteners with stevia when sweetening food and beverages. Stevia is a plant that produces steviol glycoside, a sweet-tasting compound that is responsible for the plant’s sweetness.
The stevia plant can also assist in lowering the glycemic index of foods. The glycemic index (GI) determines how quickly blood sugar levels rise after consuming a food. High GI foods cause blood sugar levels to rise quickly, while low GI foods can slow down the rise of blood sugar levels. Because it slows the absorption of sugar into the blood, the stevia plant can help lower the glycemic index of foods by up to 20%.
Hacks to cut sugar out of your diet
Numerous companies are now producing stevia-based products. Natvia, an Australian company founded in 2009, provides all-natural sweeteners in powdered and granular forms that can be substituted for sugar in any food or beverage recipe. They also sell cereals, cakes, bubble teas, toppings, cordial, maple syrup, hazelnut spread, jams, and toppings to help their customers worldwide transition to healthier snacks and treats.
Natvia has one of the most extensive no added sugar pantry ranges world wide Natvia products. Their range make it easy for the whole family to swap out their favourite treats with a tasty no added sugar option.
Natvia has also created a “Sugar Fix’ometer” to assist their customers comparing sugar content in their favourite treats. For far too long, sugar has been hidden behind many names, including dextrose, fructose, glucose, and others. The Fix’Dometer is a tool that compares the total amount of naturally occurring and added sugars in Natvia products to the average of its top sugary competitors.
The gauge compares how much sugar a person will consume per serving as part of their daily recommended sugar intake. The gauge is also featured on Natvia’s packaging and website to assist consumers in planning a low-sugar day.