Changing diet is one of the best ways for Latinos with diabetes to improve health.

More about the Mediterranean diet for people with diabetes

As we know, diabetes is more common in the Latino population than it is in the non-Latino white population in the United States. For Latinos with diabetes, diet is a major factor linked to diabetes and can lead to obesity, poor blood sugar control and increased risk for heart disease. This article looked at the benefits and health impacts of eating a Mediterranean diet among Latinos with diabetes.

People with diabetes may have better brain ability if they eat a Mediterranean diet. What is a Mediterranean diet? It includes a diet with lots of fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, fish and healthy fats. This diet is good because it is rich in nutrients that lower inflammation in the body and the brain. For these reasons, it is considered a healthy diet for people with and without diabetes. For people with diabetes, the whole grains and legumes in a typical Mediterranean diet may help keep blood sugar well controlled. This is important because having uncontrolled blood sugar can lead to major complications. In the long-term, eating a Mediterranean diet and keeping blood sugar in a target range can improve brain health and even memory.

For a long time, research has shown that following this type of diet is linked to better heart and brain health as well as a lower risk for diabetes in the general population. Researchers followed over 900 participants with type 2 diabetes in the Boston Puerto Rican Health Study for over 2 years, looking at their eating habits, diabetes markers, and memory and brain health tests. They found that people with diabetes who closely followed a Mediterranean diet had major improvements in brain function, word recognition, and memory skills compared to those who did not follow the diet. Overall, the benefits of following the Mediterranean diet for Latinos with diabetes include lower risk for heart disease, better blood sugar control, and improvements in brain health.

[Abstract Link] 

Photo credit Brook Lark at Unsplash.