The Department of Health guidelines for carbohydrate intake, for people with diabetes, is equivalent to eating 5 to 7 medium (80g) Easter eggs. Alternative equivalent values include digesting 18 to 24 bricks of Wheatabix, or finishing 2 to 3 litres of full sugar cola, to meet the recommended 225 to 300g of carbohydrate per day.
When viewed this way, the guidelines seem hard to believe but the government health body has maintained its stance on carbohydrates through the 21st century to date.
When carbohydrates are broken down by the body, they are first turned into glucose and then the body produces a proportional amount of insulin to try to keep blood sugar levels under control. Therefore a comparatively large intake of carbs will require a comparatively large production of insulin from the pancreas .
A large requirement of insulin is particularly problematic for people with type 2 diabetes (or prediabetes) as they have lower insulin sensitivity and need to produce an even greater amount of insulin therefore to compensate. The higher the carbohydrate intake, the more the body will struggle to keep up with production of insulin and, should the body not be able to produce enough insulin quickly enough, blood sugar levels will rise.
As well as adversely affecting blood sugar levels, high circulating insulin levels have also been linked with increases in body weight, higher blood pressure and an increased chance of heart attacks and strokes .
There have been calls, from the diabetic community, for the Department of Health to review its recommendations for a number of years and pressure for change is expected to increase as the number of diabetes diagnoses continues to rise.

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