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Posts Tagged ‘nutrition’

Here is a question I recently received from FOODPICKER.org

I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes last month.  I’m having difficulty understanding how many carbs and sugar I can have each day.  I’m finding that nearly everything contains carbs and sugar!  Can you help me with this?

Answer: It can be difficult understanding how carbs and sugar affect your body when you have type 2 diabetes, and how much of these you should eat.  I would suggest refering to my previous blog to learn how to find a diabetes educator in your area.  Meeting with an educator will help you develop a personalized plan to determine the ideal amount of carbohydrates for your body and the distribution of these throughout the day.

Until you have a chance to meet with an educator, I would suggest focusing on the composition of your meal rather than how many carbohydrates you eat.  Imagine your plate is divided into four equal sections.  Fill one section with vegetables, one with fruit, one with a protein source and one with a bread/rice/pasta.  Following this will help keep your blood sugars near the ideal range and will assure your body gets the nutrients it needs.

If having a snack between meals,  read the labels and choose items with  <30 g carbohydrate.  Choose items that have whole grains, fiber and <5g sugar.  Some suggestions include fruit, yogurt, sugar free ice cream or jello, whole wheat crackers and granola.

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Here is a question I recently received from FOODPICKER.org

I have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.  During the day at work I eat very little, but in the evenings and weekends, I can’t seem to stay out of the kitchen.  Do you have any suggestions to control my snacking in the evenings and weekends?

Answer: Most people keep unhealthy snack foods on their shelves, which can be harmful to individuals with diabetes. If you find yourself snacking, the first step is to replace those chips, crackers, candy, cookies etc.  Choosing foods with less sugar will also help you manage your blood sugars.  Below are some suggestions equal to 1 carbohydrate source or 15g carbohydrate:

  • 1 medium piece of fresh fruit
  • 1/2 cup ice cream
  • 1 cup light yogurt
  • 1 sugar-free ice cream bar
  • 3 cups light microwave popcorn
  • 45 goldfish crackers
  • 15 pretzels
  • 6 saltines
  • 3 ginger snaps
  • 6 vanilla wafers
  • 1/2 cup trail mix
  • 1 Nature Valley granola bar
  • 3/4 cup cereal with 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 piece of bread with 1 tbsp peanut butter

Snacks that would be considered ‘free’ with no carbohydrates include raw vegetables (except corn, peas, squash and potatoes), sugar free jello, sugar free popsicles, coffee, tea, flavored water, and diet sodas.

I would also suggest eating regular meals throughout the day. Not only will this keep your blood sugars stable without highs and lows, but it will also give you energy.  Once you get home, you will feel less inclined to snack all evening.

Try drinking a glass of warm tea or sugar free hot cocoa in the evenings. Warm beverages give our stomachs a sense of fullness and these products will not significantly raise your blood sugars.  Not to mention, green and black tea are full of antioxidants that protect our hearts and arteries from damage.

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Here is a question I recently received from FOODPICKER.org

What is the best sugar substitute to use for baking and daily use for diabetics?

Answer: There are two types of sweeteners – nutritive and artificial. Nutritive sweeteners contain calories and will raise your blood glucose.  Artificial sweeteners do NOT contain calories and will NOT raise your blood sugar.

Nutritive Sweeteners include sucrose (table sugar), fructose (sugar found in fruit and high fructose corn syrup) and sorbitol/mannitol (found in gum and candies).

Artificial sweeteners inclide acesulfame potassium, aspartame, saccharin, steva/rebina and sucralose.

When baking, I would suggest using Sucralose (Splenda).  Each packet provides the sweetness of 2 teaspoons of sugar.  It measures cup for cup like sugar so whatever your recipe calls for in sugar, just replace it with the same measurement of Splenda granulated.  It doesn’t get much easier than that!

Other artificial sweeteners such as aspartame (Equal and NutraSweet) and Saccharin (Sweet N’ Low, Sweet Twin, Sugar Twin) do not work well for cooking as they may have a bitter aftertaste.

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