It’s American Diabetes Month and there is still a lot to be taught about how our health is impacted by the disease. For many, Diabetes is all too familiar. In honor of improving the quality of life for our clients (and their families), as well as those who read this blog nationwide- we here at Odom Health & Wellness are providing some free nutrition tips for the holidays. We hope you pass them along via your social media accounts and spread the health!
First, plan ahead if you are diabetic or will have diabetic guests over for the holidays. Pre-planning and buying food in advance not only eliminates a lot of holiday stress, it also helps to keep diabetic food guidelines on track. Remember that holiday meals and traditions don’t have to disrupt your diabetes control.
Second, keep portion control in mind and try to avoid going back for seconds on your favorite foods. If you’re tempted to overdo it, volunteer to help with dishes or take young ones out for a walk.
Third, consider the mealtime. If the meal will be served near your usual mealtime, try to eat the same amount of carbohydrate that you normally would for a meal. If you know your diabetic guests are going to be off schedule, try to offer some appetizers that are appropriate around their normal mealtime.
Fourth, desserts can be problematic. If you are going to be serving diabetic guests, try to not serve heavy carbohydrate foods in the main meal. If you’re the diabetic, avoid the high-carb foods during the meal if you plan on eating a portion of dessert.
We don’t really recommend drinking, but we’re realistic. It’s the holidays and liquor will be served. If you must indulge, drink clear liquor and keep it straight up. Adding juice adds sugar and a ton of calories, so- you are better off sipping straight up clear booze than a mixed drink. Also, if you (or your guests are diabetic) eat something before you have a drink. This will help prevent low blood glucose levels later on in the day/night. If you drink alcohol, remember to eat something beforehand to prevent low blood glucose levels later. One drink should be your maximum if you must indulge.
Finally, think about replacing the sugar in any recipes if you are cooking for others. You can easily afford to replace up to half of the sugar in a recipe with a sugar substitute. If you’re baking, you can replace sugar (most of the time) with equal amounts of applesauce or mashed prunes.
Regardless if you or a family member is diabetic, it doesn’t mean your holiday season has to be circumvented as a result. In fact, you can have a great holiday season if you remember the tips listed above and actually implement them!
For more information on Diabetes, please visit: http://www.diabetes.org/