What is the diabetic diet anyway? I often get asked this question. Historically, we have been taught that people with diabetes cannot eat certain foods, most commonly sweets or high carbohydrate foods. But actually, there is no such thing as a ‘diabetes diet’ anymore. I still hear people say, “I can’t have that piece of cake, I have diabetes.”
But guess what?
Gone are the days of missing out on birthday cake, or mashed potatoes at Thanksgiving or Halloween candy.
People with diabetes CAN enjoy delicious foods like everyone else. BUT, you need to know how to do it wisely. Eating healthy is important for everyone, whether you have diabetes or not. The key to nutrition when you have diabetes is to have balanced meals with the correct portion sizes. The best way to learn this technique is with the help of a registered dietitian, preferably one that is a Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE).
They will talk to you about your goals, whether it is to lose weight, control your blood sugar or learn how to shop and read food labels. Then an assessment is made with your medical history, your medications, activity level and cultural preferences. Together, you can both come up with an individualized meal plan that works just for you.
The diabetes dietitian can help you understand that all foods can fit, but you will learn exactly how to balance them so that your blood glucose stays in good control and that you feel good throughout the day.
If you are a member on our home delivery service at CCS Medical, our Certified Diabetes Educator’s can be a free resource and assist you with your nutrition and questions you may have about your diabetes.
This diabetes nutrition plate tool can also help you get started if you are new to diabetes and have not yet seen a dietitian.
If you need a registered dietitian or CDE, talk to your doctor for a referral or call the American Association of Diabetes Educators at 1-800-338-3633 or go to www.diabeteseducator.org. Most insurance companies will pay for a consult with a dietitian with a referral.
Tell us about the experiences you may have had with a registered dietitian.