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Healthy Baon Tips for Diabetics

Once you have diabetes you’re stuck with it. But there’s no need to lose hope. It’s really not as bad or hard as it sounds. The key to taking good care of yourself and your diabetes is to learn three simple things (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases):

  • What to eat;
  • How much to eat; and
  • When to eat.

Healthy eating, exercise, and, if needed, diabetes medicines help a lot with keeping your blood sugar levels in check.
People always think that being diabetic means you’ll be deprived and die of hunger because doctors and dietitians would not allow you to eat a lot of types of food. You already feel deprived with all the restrictions, and to top it off, everyone is so busy that no one has time to stop for a minute, and grab a bite. Being busy nowadays is inevitable. Even kids in school have a hard time trying to fit a snack in their very hectic schedule. But that shouldn’t be an excuse to skip meals. No matter how busy you are, make sure to set aside time for you to eat.

Every meal is important throughout the day, miss one and surely your body would experience change. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are the main meals that people have been accustomed to. Snacks have always been neglected but they are of the same importance as the three main meals. For the past few years, campaigns, articles, and studies have been done relating the importance and benefits of frequent m als to the management of diabetes mellitus. An easy way to do that s to start practicing to eat sm frequent meals. That just mea you should eat every 3-4 hours.

Contrary to the diabetic population’s belief, you can actually still eat anything you want! It’s all about quality and portion control. One way to guide you in meal planning is by the use of the Food Pyramid: eat more from the groups at the bottom of the pyramid and less from the groups at the top. Always keep in mind to have a variety of foods in your meals.

It’s better to eat frequently than having just three bulky meals for a day. Keeping your food quality on track would help you benefit more in managing diabetes.

In making healthy food choices in meal planning, it does not have to be a burden. Here are some tips the National Diabetes Program also suggests on making healthy food choices:

  1. Eat smaller portions.
    Learn to know your portions, how big is a serving for each food group, as well as how many servings you should be eating in each meal. Examples of 1 serving for each food group are listed below:

    • Carbohydrates/Starches
      Go for whole grain breads and cereals. Instead of eating deep-fried food items, try to replace them with pretzels, fat-free popcorn, baked tortilla/potato chips, baked potatoes, or even low-fat muffins. Fiber in the diet means a happy tummy and a happy heart.
    • Vegetables
      Vegetables are not only cooked in fat and they do not have to be bland. You can eat them raw like carrot, singkamas, and celery sticks. Cut them in different shapes and sizes for your kids so they can enjoy eating their vegetables! Have the option of using fat-free dressings as dips. You can also steam or blanch vegetables in broth soups so they have an instant flavor in them. Mix in some chopped onions and garlic or add some herbs and spices, lemon or lime juice for a bit of zest in your vegetable dishes.
    • Fruits
      Fruits are nature’s treats. They are sweet and nutritious at the same time. Also, they may very well serve as dessert in your diet. Eat fresh whole fruits more often than juice. They are mo filling and have more fiber in them. If you do decide to get juice, go e sy on them; choose those that are fresh and unsweetened (100% juice).
    • Milk
      Yogurts don’t have to be plain all the time. Add your serving of fruit in the yogurt, pour in some of your dry cornflakes (starch serving) and sprinkle some low-calorie sweetener and you have a homemade parfait the kids and even mom and dad can enjoy!
    • Meat and meat substitutes
      Eat lean or low-fat fish, meat (trim off all excess fats), chicken, or turkey without the skin. Broil, bake, grill, stir-fry, roast or steam your meat add some herbs and spices, lemon juice or vinegar and even salsa to give it a kick. Try to limit intake of nuts and peanut butter, they do provide protein but they contain high amounts of fat as well. Cheese is acceptable; stick to white cheeses which are low in fat or fat-free cheeses (always check food labels).
    • Fats and sweets
      Fats and sweets are not as nutritious as the foods mentioned above. They have more calories and carbohydrates, respectively. There are some that also contain saturated and trans fats, as well as cholesterol, that may lead to heart disease. Limiting these foods will not only keep your blood sugar and blood fats within the desirable range, but also help you lose weight (if needed).
  2. Eat a variety of fruits vegetables.
    Add some color to your kid’s plate as w II as yours. A maximum of three fruit servings is allowed for diabetes patients. Fresh fruits and vegetables are actually more flavorful than canned ones.
  3. Eat less fat. Pick foods that are not high in fat specifically in saturated and trans fat such as the fatty cuts from meat, whole milk and dairy products made from whole milk, cakes and pastries, deep-fried foods, heavy-based salad dressings, lard, and stick margarines.
  4. Eat fewer foods that are high in sugar. Save high-sugar and high-fat desserts such as pies, cobblers, and pastries for special occasions. Be more aware and read the nutrition facts labels to get your sugar facts. Try sugar-free popsicles, frozen yogurts, diet sodas or fat-free ice cream to satisfy your sweet tooth. On occasion, share dessert with someone. If you’ve got to have a bite, maintain it within the allowed amounts. Remember that these food items, regardless of being low in sugar or fat, they still contain calories. It is best to consult with your doctor, diabetes educator and dietitian to fit these food items in your meal plan.
  5. Use less salt in cooking and at the table. Avoid processed meats and canned goods since they contain large amounts of salt in them. Diabetes comes with a lot of complications and one of them concerns the heart; we don’t want to aggravate more or add more stress to the body than it already is going through at present.
  6. NEVER skip meals. Stick to your meal plan as best as you can. Following your schedule of eating will greatly aid you in keeping your blood sugar levels intact, especially for those who are taking diabetes medicines.
  7. Limit the amount of alcohol you drink. Alcohol does have calories but no nutrients. For people who drink alcoholic beverage like beers, hard drinks, or wines and plan to include it as part of your meal, consult with your doctor, diabetes teacher and/ or dietitian about how much to take. It would still be best to stay away from those kinds of beverages as it gives more bad effects as compared to their claims on health benefits.
  8. Make changes slowly. There really is no quick fix to anything. It takes time and patience to achieve and maintain any long-term goals.

Healthy meal examples and more tips
Being on a diet should not be boring. Learn to mix and match food items to make things interesting, especially for kids who get easily bored of eating the same types of food every single day.

Be creative with your meals to help you enjoy your food as well as keep you on track with your diet. Lunches do not always mean rice; you could replace them with healthy pasta, sandwiches and salads like the following:

  • A slice of multigrain bread with chicken filling and a bowl of fresh vegetable and fruit salad drizzled with balsamic vinegar.
  • Pasta salads with a mix of tuna flakes with well-seasoned steamed vegetables and a fresh fruit juice.
  • For kids, prepare a home-made pizza with ground meat and chopped vegetables on top. Add a piece of apple to complete the meal.
  • Baked potato partnered with vegetable omelet and fruit shake could be good lunch for kids and help them appreciate and eat more vegetables, too.
  • Feeling hungry in between office hours? Try munching on granola bars or oatmeal cookies. Whole wheat crackers with variety of flavors wouldn’t hurt to replace your boring plain breads as well.

You can also make use of the following guides that would help you play around with your diet without exceeding the portions of your food items.

  • Always ensure that you have a carbohydrate in your diet. It would range from plain breads to high fiber, whole wheat, whole grain cereals, pastas and root crops.
  • Make sure that your plate is half-filled with vegetable and should always be more than your meat serving.
  • Meat or any protein sources like beans and legumes should always be a part of your main meals.
  • It would be best to include the fruit in your main meal rather than use it as a replacement for carbohydrates in your snacks.

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