Holiday Penitence for Diabetics

by Mark Benson on December 5, 2011

Holidays are here again!!!

Diabetics, with their daily travails in managing the condition, have a lot more problems once the holiday season comes around. Because their bodies are unable to produce proper amounts of insulin, many kinds of savory and sweet foods are definitely prohibited from their diets. During the season to be jolly, finding the right food for their condition that is also acceptable holiday fare for the rest of the family makes this a pretty picky problem.

The National Diabetes Awareness Month is celebrated every November. This is a pivotal time because part of the education provided for this month is preparing the diabetic for the long nights of celebration and merry-making yet keeping within your diabetes management regimen. Furthermore, tips are given out to those suffering from the condition to avoid being a holiday humbug.

In order to prevent any health issues and keep up with the holiday spirit, the following tips need to be done to spend Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Eve healthy and happy:

Cakes and Desserts. Preparing cakes, pies, cookies and other goodies can be modified in a way to suit the diabetic situation without sacrificing the sweetness common to many holiday foods. If it’s store bought, it would be best to keep away from them, as they would be loaded with diabetic no-nos such as butter, margarine, polysaccharides and shortenings. One kind of cake though can be okay for these insulin dependents and this is angel food cake.

Rolls and Bread. It must be understood that white bread scores high in the glycemic index. This index determines the amount of blood sugar any food produces and these kinds of bread raises blood sugar faster than any kind of food. It would be best to choose whole wheat bread or rolls during the meal. If there are no other options, it would be best to avoid it altogether.

Fried Chicken. Thinking about big chicken cooked in boiling oil makes many mouths water. The problem is cooking oil reeks of saturated fat, which is a bane to diabetics. It would be best to avoid this kind of fare but if it’s the only thing on the table, choose white meat and avoid the chicken skin.

Gravy. Turkey and other holiday meals won’t taste right without gravy. The main problem is, this sauce is laden with sodium, white flour, butter and oils. An average teaspoon of gravy is worth sixty (60) calories. It would be best to avoid this or have it as a small dipping sauce for your white meat turkey for flavor.

Stuffing. Not knowing the contents or the recipe can be a problem for diabetics, with some recipes clocking in at 400 calories a serving. This is because of the high butter or margarine content, high fat broth from the turkey and other ingredients such as shortening, cream or whole milk with white bread. It would not hurt to taste it so long as it would not become part of the meal setting.

Drinks. It would be best to have water instead of high sugary sweet drinks or alcoholic beverages. Aside from avoiding sugar, alcohol also messes up the diabetic’s system.

The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of the Community and should not be interpreted as medical advice. Please see your doctor before making any changes to your diabetes management plan.

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