People who suffer from Type 2 diabetes need to eat less, especially when they’re eating at fast food restaurants, a new study has found.
The research found people eating at supermarkets and other fast food outlets were more likely to have higher levels of blood sugar and insulin in their bloodstreams than those eating at restaurants.
The study also found people who ate at fast-food restaurants were more often than others to have insulin levels in their bloods that were between 3.5 and 7 times higher than those who ate elsewhere.
“If you’re not eating a healthy diet, your blood sugar level will rise because of excess insulin,” Associate Professor of Nutrition and Dietetics at The University of Queensland’s Dr Fiona Campbell said.
“In other words, it increases the chance of getting diabetes.”
Dr Campbell said it was important to avoid eating fast food in general and to limit the number of fast food meals a person had a day.
“For example, if you eat only one fast-break meal, you may have enough insulin in your blood to allow for your body to burn sugar for energy,” she said.
The findings suggest that if you have diabetes, you should try to eat a more balanced diet than a fast food eater.
“You want to have a meal that you’re eating a lot of food at once, rather than eating a few different foods that you don’t want to overindulge in,” she explained.
“So you might be eating a couple of chicken wings at lunchtime instead of one large meal.”
Dr Graham Fraser, a nutritionist with the Queensland Diabetes Foundation, said the research showed a key factor for determining whether a person was diabetic was their overall weight.
“People who are overweight or obese may have an increased risk of developing diabetes,” Dr Fraser said.
Dr Fraser said it is recommended people cut down on their intake of sugar-sweetened beverages, processed foods and unhealthy snacks.
“It is not uncommon for people with diabetes to also be overweight or over-eaten,” he said.