Living with diabetes or pre-diabetes

October 20, 2013

General, Motivation, Tips & Tools, Wellness

It’s not a diet its a lifestyle

When it comes to managing blood sugar, odds are you obsess over everything you can’t have

diabetes food pyramidWhile it’s certainly important to limit certain ingredients (like white, refined breads, pasta, and fried, fatty, or processed foods), it’s just as crucial to pay attention to what you should eat. Eating the right amount and type of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats, along with fiber, vitamins, and minerals, is essential for maintaining steady blood sugar levels and overall diabetes care.

So instead of focusing on a diet full of restrictions, let’s talk about a lifestyle full of opportunities!

Food for thought

  • Carrots and sweet potatoes: If you’re looking to prevent diabetes or need a fast fiber fix, say “What’s up Doc?” to carrots and sweet potatoes. In a groundbreaking new report, published in the journal Human Genetics, researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine have concluded that people with elevated blood levels of beta carotene (the nutrient that makes carrots and sweet potatoes orange!) are less likely to develop type 2 diabetes, cancer, and heart problems.
    How to eat them: These two little beauties are so versatile you could have them every day for a week and not eat them the same way twice! When they’re crisp and crunchy, carrots are great substitutions for fries and chips. When sweet potatoes are baked, braised, or grilled, they are a savory accompaniment to meats and poultry. For a fresh twist, sprinkle baked carrots or sweet potatoes with Spanish paprika and a dash of salt.
  • Beans: One of the absolute best sources of food fiber, beans will not only help make you feel fuller long after your meal is over, but they also actually slow digestion and keep blood sugar from spiking after you eat. Plus, they can even lower overall blood sugar levels.
    How to eat them: Simple to prepare, canned beans are a good option. You can toss them into almost every salad, soup, and slow-cooker recipe you make!
  • Fat-free milk and yogurt. These dairy foods not only provide the calcium and vitamin D your body needs, but also help curb cravings and between-meal snacks.
    How to eat them: Fat-free milk is a great late-night snack, and it makes a great substitute for high-sugar drinks. You can also add it to tea (another great source of antioxidants). Cold yogurt mixed with a handful of fresh berries or chopped oranges (both loaded with vitamins and antioxidants) is a great dessert or delicious breakfast.
  • Fish: Not only is fish a good source of protein, it’s also a terrific substitute for higher-fat meats. Opt for fatty fish; they’re the best source of omega-3 fatty acids (salmon, mackerel, and tuna) and help keep arteries clear. These fish are especially good for diabetics, who often have high triglycerides and low levels of HDL, the “good” cholesterol. Omega-3 fatty acids can improve both numbers. Aim to eat fish at least twice a week. Don’t choose fried fish, though! Researchers investigating the effects of how fish is cooked concluded that frying it increases the heart attack risk to diners by almost 50%.
  • Shakeology® is certified low-glycemic and is the Healthiest Meal of the Day®. Replace one meal a day with Vanilla, Chocolate, Greenberry, Chocolate Vegan, or Tropical Strawberry (vegan) to help increase your energy, reduce cravings, lose weight, and feel great.

Pass it on

Health is usually a team sport. If you have a family, odds are their health habits are similar to yours. By making healthier choices, you can create and pass on positive habits. And that goes for more than just food! Other lifestyle factors, like staying active, getting adequate sleep, and minimizing stress play an equally important role in managing blood sugar and preventing diabetes complications.

To be sure you and your family are being proactive and positive about your health and nutrition, try sitting down one night a week to plan out next week’s meals and activities. This step can help you educate your kids, plan and enjoy more frequent family meals and together time, and even save you money—budgeting ahead of time goes a long way.

Take Action

kspyt2-170x100In addition to focusing on a new style of eating, also consider being more active. Fitness trainer Kathy Smith has the only diet and fitness program developed in conjunction with doctors and certified diabetes educators, Project:YOU! Type 2 is the first all-in-one lifestyle solution for those with diabetes or pre-diabetes.   Click here to learn more about Kathy Smith – Project You Type 2

Want another helping of healthy eating ideas for diabetics?

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