Living With Diabetes

Diabetes- Healthy Diet to Keep it under Control

Diabetes can be easily kept under control if you look after your diet. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) through years of research has laid down its revised nutritional guidelines in 1986. Here is what it means to you.

Fill up with carbohydrates.

You diet must include up to 60% of carbohydrates. Each gram of carbohydrate gives 4 calories. Healthy carbohydrate foods are. peas, beans, lentils, fruits, whole grain breads, whole grain cereals and vegetables.

Limit proteins.
Your diet must include 12 - 20% of proteins. Each gram of protein gives 4 calories. Fish, chicken and low fat dairy products are good sources of health proteins.

Eat fibrous foods.

Natural fiber is highly beneficial for diabetics. You must eat 40 grams of fiber per day. Fibrous foods are. whole wheat products, barley, oats, legumes, vegetables and fruits.

Minimize cholesterol.
Organ meat and egg yolks are high in cholesterol. You should limit cholesterol intake to 300 mg a day. That's right - "milligrams". Drink skimmed milk and eat lean meat.

Use alternative sweeteners, no sugar.
Non-caloric sweeteners like aspartame and saccharin have been approved by the ADA. Sweeteners like fructose and sorbitol contain calories and may be used within limits but not as a substitute for non-caloric ones. Sugar is strictly out of bounds for you.

Foods you should avoid.
Fatty, oily food, dark meat, margarine, whole milk, eggs, extra salt, alcohol, sugar, fish oil, and all food products that contain one or more of these prohibited foods.

Alcohol is high in calories and is treated by our body as fat. Drink no more than 4 ounces a week. Light beer or dry wine should be the preferred choice and always have it with your food. Soft drinks should be totally cut out. A 12 ounce can of Coke contains as much as 7 teaspoons of sugar. Salt should be avoided because it raises blood pressure levels and also retains liquids in the body.

Eating habits.
Have three small meals a day rather than two large ones. Four smaller meals are even better if you are able to fit them in. With smaller meals less amount of insulin is needed to be produced by the body and it leads to more constant blood sugar levels. Diabetics need to be regular and moderate with their meals. Fasting is prohibited; it's not good for your system at all.

Let everyone in the family have healthy eating and exercising habits so that diabetics get the much needed emotional support. And there are tons of diabetic recipes available that you can make and relish and not lose out on enjoying food. Fix up an appointment with your dietician and see what it good for you.