Dr. V Mohan says, “If you follow a balanced and nutritious diet by reducing carbs, eating small quantities of healthy fats, plenty of green leafy vegetables and fruits and sufficient quantity of proteins from vegetable sources, along with keeping yourself physically fit and taking stress reducing measures, you will lead a long and healthy life.”
Dr. Mohan is an internationally acclaimed diabetologist. He is the Chairman and Chief of Diabetology at Dr. Mohan’s Diabetes Specialties Centre, which is a WHO Collaborating Centre for Noncommunicable Diseases Prevention and Control and an IDF Centre of Education. The Specialty Centre has over 4,70,000 registered patients.
Here are his views on the right diet to follow.
Excessive carbohydrates and not fats are the major culprit in causing chronic diseases such as obesity, hypertension, coronary disease and diabetes. Excess carbs result in high glucose levels after every meal even for those without diabetes. Eventually, the body will be unable to produce sufficient insulin leading to diabetes. Even when one is not diabetic it leads to insulin resistance, which is the cause of obesity, nonalcoholic fatty liver, hypertension and even diabetes.
Carbohydrates come mainly from the rice, chapattis, iddlis and dosas that we eat. Cutting this down will do us good. For instance, if we eat 4 iddlis for breakfast we can cut it down to 2. When we reduce carbs, we need to increase proteins, preferably from vegetable sources such as Bengal gram, green gram, black gram, rajma, soya, milk, eggs, fish and chicken. Proteins are necessary to keep our muscles healthy. At breakfast, we can eat 2 eggs either omelets or boiled eggs. This will keep us from getting hungry quickly, as proteins increase our satiety unlike carbohydrates which are easily digested and make us hungry again within 3–4 hours.
Eat plenty of vegetables, particularly green leafy vegetables, and if you are not diabetic lots of fresh fruits. This will give you all the vitamins, minerals, iron and other nutrients that your body needs. Vegetables provide fibre, which is good for smooth bowel movement, and sufficient vitamin B12, which has multiple health benefits.
Small quantities of fats are a necessary part of your diet to make it palatable and tasty. Mono-unsaturated fats such as nuts and seeds and healthy oils such as ground nut oil, gingerly oil and mustard oil can be taken in small quantities. You can also take small quantities of saturated fats such as ghee and butter. Trans fats that are found in refined and processed foods are to be avoided as far as possible.
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