Simple Look at Diabetic Diet Plan

Since my brother and I were first diagnosed with Type II diabetes more than twenty-five years we have struggled with one diet after the other. Finally, our only alternative was insulin given three times a day. Since we’ve been on insulin we have both become even more determined to lose some weight and get our diabetes under control. By losing just ten pounds, we  were able to make dramatic changes in our lives not to mention our A1C levels. Seeing just these small changes have had a tremendous impact on us and our whole family is looking forward to the reclamation of our lives. I’d like to go over a few things about the famous “diabetic diet” that you may not know. I may be able to shed a whole new light on it for you.

Taking Charge

type-2-diabetesIt doesn’t matter if you are the person who has just recently been diagnosed with diabetes or someone you love, chances are it’s been devastating to hear the news from your doctor, no matter how long you worried about it finally coming to pass. You were probably shocked even though you knew your poor eating habits would eventually catch up with you. But take heart, you have more control over what’s going on with your body than you might think. In fact, if you take charge of your life, your diet and your exercise routine, you have the potential to completely turn things around. It won’t be easy, but it will be SO worth it. Trust me.

If you have Type II diabetes you almost surely already know that this metabolic disorder is caused by being overweight. Your doctor has probably  been harping at you to lose ten or fifteen pounds for the last ten years and all that advice has been falling on deaf ears. Well, now is your chance to change that. You may have already tried more than a dozen diets and failed at all of them. But, think again. It’s not really about “dieting” per se. This is about making just a few small “adjustments” to your eating habits, things you do very simply and easily. Losing just 5 or 10% of your total body weight will put you far ahead in the long-term prognosis of your your health. Diabetes is a chronic illness but it can be managed .

The Facts And Myths

diabetes-dietThere are some definite misconceptions about diabetes and how it has to be managed.

  • Myth: You can never have eat any sugar ever again. Having sugar with a meal is okay as long as you exercise daily and take into consideration how much “sugar” you are eating. ALL food except only a few different vegetables break down into carbohydrates.

  • Myth: Diabetics should eat only a high protein diet.
    Fact: A diet that consists of too much protein can cause problems in and of itself. Diabetics should eat a well-rounded diet the same as everyone else. Learning how to manage the carbohydrate count is the tough part.

  • Myth: You will have to eat only a special diet for the rest of your life.
    Fact: This is partially true. Diabetics have extra concerns from other completely healthy people. The thing you need to concentrate the most on is keeping your A1C levels as close to normal. That is how you will avoid those dreaded diabetic complications as you age

Choosing Carbohydrates Wisely

Not all carbohydrates are created equally. Now, having said that, if you ask MY taste buds they will tell you that Lay’s Ruffle potato chips are the best carbohydrate treats that were ever invented. But, I digress. Sweets like cake and pie will impact your blood sugar the most and the fastest. These are the things you should address first in your diet. Next comes processed wheat products like white bread, rice and white (non-whole wheat) pasta. Complex carbohydrates like the kind found in whole wheat pasta, sweet potatoes, cauliflower and quinoa are processed slowly by your body. This means that only a slow and steady stream of sugar is released into your bloodstream at a more controlled rate. If your body is not having high blood sugar spikes, your pancreas will not be forced into releasing more insulin. You will lose weight more quickly. The difference between Type I diabetes and Type II diabetes is that ALL Type I diabetics produce NO insulin in their pancreas. Most Type II diabetics actually produce TONS of insulin and that, in part, is what makes them fat and more “insulin resistant”.

Managing Your Sweet Tooth

I am also a Type II diabetic as well as my brother but I would NEVER tell you that you can never eat sugar again. It is possible to continue to enjoy dessert — even every night. I always finish my dinner off with a small amount of Oreo ice cream. In fact, my dinner is not complete without it.

Here are some ideas on how to reward yourself with a successful dessert serving:

  • If you are going to have dessert, reduce the number of carbohydrates you have in  your main meal.

  • Adding things such as peanut butter, nuts, ricotta cheese or yogurt to your meal will slow your digestive process down significantly. Though I would not encourage you to rely on this method of thinking, remember that good fats can help carbohydrates digest more slowly.

  • If you’ve already made up your mind to eat something you know isn’t good for you, at least take the time to enjoy and savour it. If you eat it slowly, you will also slow down your insulin spikes.

Eating On A Regular Basis

diabetes-diet-planI can not possibly reinforce how important it is to eat on a regular basis. This is especially true if you are diabetic and are trying to lose some weight. If you are taking in a steady flow of energy (food) you will have more energy and you will, ultimately, burn more fat. This is what will fundamentally drive your blood sugar levels down and that’s what you should be aiming for.

This means never, ever, ever skip breakfast. If you do, you are automatically setting yourself up for a day of failure. From the moment you wake up, your body which has been denied a meal for at least 8 hours will be starving for carbohydrates by first light. Start your day off with a good choice of complex carbohydrates and be sure you pack four to five small mini meals to get you through the rest of the day. Think of them as “snacks” if that helps — just don’t go more than 3  to 4 hours without some sort of food.

Living With A Diabetic Diet

Take it from me, we both know how challenging living with diabetes can really be. With just a little bit of effort you can make it less of a hassle. Take control of your diet and take charge of your life. Do your best to make the changes that need to be made. Do the work. In the end your body, your kidneys, your eyes will all thank you for it. And you will be so much better off because you did.