The Benefits of Protein Supplements For Diabetes

The benefits of protein supplements for diabetes are well known in the medical world, although not universally agreed. What is universally agreed is that Type 2 diabetes is associated, to a large extent, with weight; the majority of those affected by the condition being overweight. However, this does not in any way suggest that only the obese or overweight are affected by diabetes.
There have been several studies that have suggested that diabetics can improve their conditions by increasing the amount of protein in their diets. One study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in October, 2003 reported that glycemic control was improved in subjects taking a diet high in protein for five weeks. Another article, published in Diabetes Care in 2002, found similar results. Even as recent as October, 2009, the results of studies were presented at the European Association for the Study of Diabetes Symposium by Dr. Astrup. The presentation indicated that weight loss by diabetics was more easily maintained by those taking a high protein diet.
Like any discussion on medical and supplement matters, not everybody agrees with this, but there is sufficient evidence available to confirm that the benefits of protein supplements for diabetes patients outweigh any disadvantages of a high protein diet. In addition the condition is more easily controlled by a protein rich diet.
Whether the protein should also be associated with carbohydrates or not is another matter. It would make sense if the high protein levels that result in a reduction in blood plasma glucose concentrations were associated with a lower carbohydrate intake. Carbs are converted to glucose by the body’s metabolism, and could act to aggravate the condition by creating a higher insulin demand.
In fact, the ‘Diabetes’ magazine reported in September, 2004 (vol 53, No 9) that a low carbohydrate with a high protein diet had a positive effect on glucose control in those with type 2 diabetes. The amount of glucose circulating in the blood of subjects undergoing the test was ‘dramatically reduced’, and this was hailed as a possible means of self-regulation of blood glucose levels by those with the condition.
All of these studies tend to indicate a high protein diet and protein supplements for diabetes patients is beneficial in controlling the levels of glucose in the blood or helping to maintain weight loss when dieting. Since both of these are known factors in Type 2 diabetes, then it makes sense for you to include more protein in your diet if you are diabetic. However, protein is available in many forms, and it is not always convenient to include more when cooking.
One of the simplest ways to achieve this is by using protein supplements with meals, particularly those supplements that contain high concentrations of protein in small volumes of supplement. That not only reduces the cost, but also the impact of the supplement on a normal diet. One might or might not combine that with a reduction in carbohydrates, but irrespective of that, it appears that protein supplements for diabetics have a beneficial effect on blood glucose levels.

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