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Hispanic Diet May Lead to Diabetes

November 19, 2012
Plain English Version

The traditional Hispanic diet combined with a taste for fast foods means that almost twice the number of Hispanics will become diabetic compared to the white population.

Traditional diets from the Caribbean, Central and South America contain high amounts of simple carbohydrates. The sugars in these foods, like white rice and white bread, break down quickly in the body and cause spikes in glucose levels.

Add packaged foods and sugary soft drinks to that diet, and the result is high rates of diabetes.

Diabetes is not common in Central and South America. But when immigrants come to America, they increase the amount of white rice they eat. A scientist said that when you add fast food, soda and a less physical life-style “you are adding insult to injury.”

Getting enough fiber is important. A doctor said, “With juices you are not getting all the fiber from fruit. If you drink six ounces of orange juice, it is as if you are eating three oranges, but without all the benefit of fiber.”

The body takes longer to process fibers. Fruits natural sugars are absorbed more slowly and it easier on the pancreas to produce the essential insulin.

A dietician said you can have rice, but not three cups of rice and two cups of beans, yucca, malanga and platanitos and meat. The most important thing is to start eating vegetables.

The Miami Herald

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