Diabetes mellitus commonly known as diabetes is one of the major lifestyle disorders that are gripping Indians. India has now become the largest diabetic pool in the world. A diabetic person can lead a normal life just like others if he practices few simple lifestyle and dietary changes.

Some important concepts:

Glycemic index: Glycemic index is the ability of any food substance to release glucose in the blood, in other words, it is the measure of how quickly any food releases sugar or glucose in the blood. Glycemic index value if less than 55 is safe for consumption. White bread has a glycemic index equal to glucose that is 100.

Glycemic load: Glycemic load is the amount of carbohydrate contained per 100g of a food substance.

Now how to use both of the above in food selection: While selecting any food you must just not see its glycemic index but also focus on its glycemic load. For Example:-  carrot and watermelon both have a high glycemic index but their glycemic load is very less i.e. the amount of carbohydrate contained in them is too less, so even if the carbohydrate in them raises blood sugar quickly the amount is too less to be dangerous for a diabetic person. To conclude they can safely have carrots and watermelon.

Hypoglycemia: When the blood sugar falls below normal it is termed as hypoglycemia. We all are mostly bothered about hyperglycemia or high blood sugar but diabetic persons are also prone to hypoglycemia especially those on insulin. It is very dangerous and can be identified by the symptoms like shivering, sweating, fainting etc. Therefore it is very important to divide the carbohydrates properly.

A tip: In case of hypoglycemia just leave whatever you are doing and relax. Sit down or if possible lie down and eat a toffee or chocolate.

Artificial sweeteners: These are the carbohydrate complexes which our body cannot digest. We do not have an enzyme to digest these sugars and thus they pass undigested from our body. As there is no digestion they do not contribute any calories to our diet. If taken as per the safe limit mentioned on the packs they are totally safe.