Reduce your risk of Diabetes with Seafood
by Ashleigh Feltham
Accredited Practising Dietitian and Accredited Nutritionist
Around one million Australians have diagnosed diabetes with another five hundred thousand undiagnosed. There are two types of diabetes; type 1 and type 2. Unlike type 1 diabetes which is out of a person’s control and is an autoimmune response that destroys the cells which create insulin called beta cells. Insulin triggers the blood sugar to be taken into your cells and without this hormone your blood sugar can continue to rise to unsafe levels which is why injections of insulin are required. Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes and is largely due to unhealthy lifestyle factors. Type 2 diabetes is diagnosed when your insulin sensitivity reduces and or the amount of insulin which can be secreted by your beta cells reduce.
Diet is one factor which can influence your risk of diabetes and research has shown that seafood can play a positive role in reducing your risk of diabetes by promoting a healthy weight and improved insulin sensitivity.
Lean Seafood Benefits
Research has shown that when lean seafood such as cod, flounder, and sole were frequently eaten over animal meats like beef, the amount of overall energy consumed was 4-9% lower which resulted in these participants who were initially overweight becoming a healthy weight.
When you eat your body produces inflammation, eating can be good and bad, as it both keeps us alive and ultimately is one factor which may also end your life. When seafood was included in a meal the amount of inflammation which is linked to insulin resistance was reduced. Even better news is the impact on your body continues to when you are fasting, so your insulin sensitivity is maintained at a healthier level between meals.
Fatty Seafood Benefits
When you include fatty fish like salmon, sardines, and trout, all of which are available at Safcol Seafood as part of a diet which is lower in overall energy then weight loss can be achieved. The omega 3 fat found in fatty fish have regulators which regulate how fat is used, these are called oxylipins and endocannabinoids. These two factors promote a healthy balance of fat in your body.
When fatty fish is included as a regular part of the diet the amount of the hormone which signals increased sensitivity to insulin called adiponectin increases. On top of this when the main protein was from meat instead of seafood this increased an inflammatory marker in your body called C-reactive protein.
Take home message
You do not have to give up red meat completely. Try swapping a few red meat meals with one of the delicious seafood varieties available from Safcol Seafood and let your body reap the benefits.