Research shows that for every three (3) Americans, one (1) has insulin resistance syndrome. Amongst making it impossible to lose weight, insulin resistance can lead to pre-diabetes, type 2 diabetes, and other chronic health conditions. The good news is, that with a good insulin resistance diet meal plan, you can improve your insulin sensitivity.
Before making any modifications to your diet, it’s important to understand what this is and how it affects your general health.
what is insulin resistance?
Insulin resistance is a health condition where the body doesn’t respond to insulin as it should. Insulin happens to be the hormone responsible for regulating sugar in the blood.
When your body breaks down food into glucose, that glucose enters the bloodstream. The pancreas releases insulin to help break down glucose.
With insulin resistance, the body can no longer take glucose from the blood that’s when it becomes problematic.
Once the pancreas can no longer produce enough inulin to keep down blood sugar levels, that’s when prediabetes or type 2 diabetes occurs.
What type of insulin resistance vegetarian diet plan should you come up with?
Insulin resistance occurs as a result of the constant spike in blood sugar. this is often a result of poor nutrition and diet.
To reverse this, you have to balance your blood sugar level and prevent it from rising and falling quickly.
one way to do this is by avoiding foods that cause blood sugar spikes and this includes foods that are rich in carbohydrates.
highly processed foods like soda, white bread, and white rice tend to supply your body with glucose, which tends to spike blood sugar.
This is why it’s important to maintain a low-carb diet when it comes to reversing insulin resistance.
some dieticians would recommend the Mediterranean diet, not only is it low in carbs it is also very rich in fiber and protein.
When you pair carbs alongside fiber and protein, the body tends to process glucose more slowly, thereby reducing the rate of the spike in blood sugar.
high fiber intake has been known to reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes according to research.
Generally, your insulin resistance vegetarian diet plan should be made up of the following food categories;
Veggies are high in both fiber and vitamins and are also low in calories. they are really helpful with weight loss and are best in improving insulin resistance.
while consuming vegetables, it’s best to go for fresh and unprocessed ones as canned veggies tend to contain lots of salt or sodium. It’s also important you cook your veggies with less butter or sauces as they might add lots of calories to them.
These contain lots of omega-3 fatty acids which are most abundant in fatty fish. omega 3 acid generally promotes brain and heart health and is essential in various body functions.
Among other benefits, fatty fish is rich in unsaturated fats which are known for improving blood sugar level control in people with diabetes. All types of fish are rich in different minerals, vitamins, and protein as well, but not all are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
Beans and Legumes
Studies found that people who consume beans and legumes have the lowest risk of developing type 2 diabetes, this is because they are both high and fiber and have low GI. They are great plant-based proteins that you should consider including in your diet plan.
Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are great sources of fiber, vitamins, minerals, and plant protein.
They help slow down the release of sugar into the bloodstream after meals, this is because they are rich in fiber and healthy fats. They are also vital in weight loss. Research shows that eating nuts daily was linked to a 28% lower risk of heart disease both fatal and nonfatal.
These are high in vitamins and minerals and low in saturated fats. A good source of lean protein is white- meat poultry and white meat fish.
Beef, lamb, and pork alongside other red meats are also high in protein and vitamins but are high in saturated fat, therefore they do not qualify for lean proteins.
Foods you should limit/avoid.
managing your insulin sensitivity, there are foods you should consider avoiding or limiting your intake. some of these foods include;
- Junk foods: this includes fast food and potato chips
- Fried foods: some good examples are French fries, fried meats, donuts
- Sugar-sweetened beverages: tea with sugar, soda, etc.
- Refined carbohydrates: pasta, white bread, white rice, biscuits, crackers
- Trans fat: vegetable oil and margarine
- Processed meats: canned meat, sausages
7-Day insulin resistance diet plan
it is important to always reach out to your doctor before trying out new diets. this is to ensure that you can safely make this modification to your diet. with that being said here’s a 7-day insulin resistance vegetarian diet plan to help you get started
Breakfast: Protein pancakes alongside some fresh berries
Lunch: Grilled chicken or black been wrapped with whole grain tortilla and a side salad with a simple vinaigrette.
Dinner: you can have Lentil pasta alongside some tomato sauce topping you can add a lean protein as well
Breakfast: A tablespoon of peanut butter with medium sliced apple and a Low-carb wrap
Lunch: Shrimp stir fry with mixed vegetables.
Dinner: Rotisserie chicken with mushrooms and broccoli along with roasted green beans.
Breakfast: Plain Greek yogurt, with parfait, keto granola, and some berries topping.
Lunch: Whole-wheat bun Turkey burger accompanied by a side salad with vinaigrette.
Dinner: bean chili with 1 cup crockpot turkey.
Breakfast: Scrambled or a hard-boiled egg with whole-wheat toast.
Lunch: Poached salmon with steamed mixed vegetables
Dinner: Sweet potato alongside Chicken breast or tofu with greens
Breakfast: 1 cup cottage cheese with 1 cup berries (and optional 1/3 cup keto granola).
Lunch: Sliced turkey or tuna salad with a mixed green salad.
Dinner: Lentil pasta alongside tomato sauce and two chicken meatballs or 2 ounces soy, and chickpea.
Breakfast: Oatmeal with some sliced apples topped with cinnamon
Lunch: Tuna salad on a low-carb wrap.
Dinner: Black bean tacos or Chicken with salsa topped with avocado
Breakfast: One or two soft-boiled eggs with one slice of sprouted grain toast alongside avocado.
Lunch: Lettuce wraps with beans or lean meat of your choosing, topped with hoisin sauce
Dinner: Brown rice with a side of broccoli can go with Grilled or roasted salmon.
How to Reverse Insulin Resistance
According to the NDIC (National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse), one of the most effective ways of reversing insulin resistance is eating healthy, engaging in physical activity, and weight loss.
Learning to manage your calorie intake is one way to ensure you get a hold of your insulin resistance which is why the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse suggests referring to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans for healthy eating advice.
According to the National Heart, blood, and lungs institute, meal plans with about 1,200 to 1,500 calories content help most women lose weight safely.
For men and women who are active, a meal plan of about1200 calorie insulin resistance diet – 1,800 calories is more effective.
A healthy 1200 calorie insulin resistance diet plan
As directed by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, a healthy 1200 calorie insulin resistance diet plan should include;
5 ounces of grains
2.75 cups of dairy foods
1.75 cups of veggies
4 teaspoons of oil 1.5 cups of fruits
121 extra calories from any healthy food you like
‘Based on the guidelines provided above, a healthy 1,500 Calorie meal plan would look like this;
Breakfast (332 calories)
1 cup of cooked oatmeal
1/2 ounce of sliced almonds
4 egg whites
1/2 cup of sliced strawberries
Lunch (333 calories)
6 whole grain crackers
1 ounce of reduced fat cheese
2 ounces of grilled chicken breast
2 cups of leafy greens
1 tablespoon of Italian dressing
Dinner (400 calories)
1 cup of steamed broccoli
3 ounces of grilled salmon
1 cup of cooked quinoa
1/2 teaspoon of veggie oil
A healthy 1,800 calories meal plan
As directed by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, a healthy 1,500 Calorie meal plan should include;
6 ounces of grains
1.5 cups of fruits
3 cups dairy foods
5 ounces of protein foods
2.5 cups of veggies
5 teaspoons of oils
161 extra calories from any healthy food you like
Based on the guidelines provided above, a healthy 1,800 Calorie meal plan would look like this;
Breakfast (318 calories)
1/2 cup of blueberries
4 egg whites
1 cup whole-grain cereal
1 cup of low-fat milk
Lunch (383 calories)
1 cup of sliced cucumbers
1 whole-wheat hamburger bun
3 ounce turkey burger patty
1 tablespoon of Italian salad dressing
1/2 cup of tomato wedges
Dinner (395 calories)
1.25 teaspoons of vegetable oil
3 ounces of grilled chicken breast
1.5 cups of cooked asparagus
1 cup of cooked brown rice