Most people with diabetes have to avoid fruits entirely, at least the starchy sort. But I think figs are okay. Figs made news in 2019, and I bet it wasn’t even a 2 second blip on the news when researchers published profoundly useful benefits! We now know that a fig-derived compound called “abscisic acid” may be helpful for metabolic syndrome, pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes mellitus.

Why is this important? It’s time to stop making yourself crazy and just enjoy your food again. My book, “Diabetes Without Drugs,” explains exactly how to do that. See any chain book store, Amazon or my own website. Also, I am happy to send you some delicious recipes via email.

Here are some tips for healthy eating:

1. Fig Fruit. Include fig fruits, or take a dietary supplement that contains this ingredient as part of its formula. Clinical studies support “abscisic acid” for blood sugar benefits, and it ranks up there with gymnema sylvestre, cinnamon and berberine.

2. Oils. Don’t use old oils, freshen them periodically because they go rancid quickly. Some healthy oils include almond oil, grape seed oil, tea seed and olive oil. Some oils are more harmful because they cause higher levels of inflammatory compounds. If you’re interested in my other article, find it on my website. It’s called “The Best and Worst Oils to Cook With.”

3. Flour. One of my favorite flours to cook with is almond flour, as in 100% blanched almonds. Almond flour has approximately 20 carbs per cup, versus over 70 carbs for wheat flour. It also contains “salicin” which is a cousin to aspirin so it has analgesic benefits. Almond flour is also gluten-free.

4. Alcohol. It attacks your pancreas, which is the organ that controls blood sugar. So I highly recommend you avoid alcohol. I’d suggest you pay the few extra dollars to buy alcohol-free extracts of vanilla and almond for your baking recipes.

5. Cheese. Cheese is like dope to some of us. Cheese contains a protein called “casein” and also “beta Casomorphine-7” which act on your brain’s opiate receptors. Milk has some, but it’s really concentrated in cheese and ice cream. That’s where the nefarious oxycodone, heroine and morphine drugs bind to. This presents a challenge for people who have diabetes and/or dairy allergies. For those of you who want to be casein free, skip the cheese entirely. But if you want to try an experiment, test yourself with a sheep or goat-derived cheese.

People with diabetes have the same nutritional needs as anyone else so eat a well-balanced diet. The right foods sustain and improve your health because they are natural and not man-made. Basically, the “right foods” have a shorter distance between Point A and Point B meaning there is a direct line from the Earth to your plate.

Suzy Cohen is a registered pharmacist and the author of ‘The 24-Hour Pharmacist’ and ‘Real Solutions.’ For more information, visit www.suzycohen.com. This information is not intended to prevent, treat, diagnose or cure your condition. Always check with your doctor before following any medical advice.