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Diabetes Diet Plans: Your Delicious Road To Good Health

Jan 19, 2008
One of the most widespread of all chronic diseases of the modern world, Diabetes is defined as the condition where the body is unable to produce the energy it requires, because of its inability to metabolize sugar. Although this disease is potentially life threatening, the graver consequences that are attributed to Diabetes, can easily be averted by taking a few remedial precautions like regular exercise, making sure you take your medication on time and also testing your glucose levels to make sure you're in control. Your diet, too, plays a crucial role in determining how effective your diabetes treatment is going to be, because when you eat, is as crucial in regulating your blood glucose as the kind of food you eat.

To ensure that your meals are perfectly suited to your medication and also meet your nutritional requirements, it is essential that you base them on the Diabetic Food Pyramid. Not to be confused with the Food Guide Pyramid which classifies your diet as per foods, the Diabetic Food Pyramid distinguishes between foods on the amounts of protein and carbohydrates they contain. Also, the focus here lies in maintaining the ideal intake of carbohydrates in every meal that you consume and hence, portion sizes as per the Diabetic Food Pyramid may also vary. Hence, even though your cup of juice may seem like nothing more than a refreshing thirst quencher, it may cause your glucose levels to fluctuate dramatically if you don't equate this increase in sugar by cutting down the carbohydrate content of your meal.

The basic component of all your meals is Carbohydrates. The Food Pyramid advises that you stay within the range of 6 to 11 servings a day, sticking as close to the lower end as possible is advisable. A typical serving of carbohydrates can be measured in terms of a slice of bread, half an English muffin, a third of a cup of rice and a similar amount of pasta. Potatoes are also included in this category instead of being clubbed along with the Vegetables group as the regular food pyramid advises. This is because the amount of starch, which this legume contains, is significantly higher than most vegetables.

The next category, namely vegetables make great additions to your meal, either cooked or consumed raw, as they are low in fat and hence calories and also rich in vitamins, minerals and fiber. One serving comprises of a cup of raw vegetables or half a cup of cooked varieties. Try to include at least 3 to 5 servings in your diet every day, or even munch on a few carrot sticks as a light snack. Keep away from the deep fried and greasy versions, and opt for the lighter and more waist-line friendly steamed and stir-fried alternatives.

Fruits are quite alike vegetables in terms of their nutritional content but are also laden with more carbohydrates. And this is what you need to pay attention to when pouring yourself that extra cup of juice or snacking on an extra banana. Limit your serving size to half a cup of canned fruit, one whole small fruit or two tablespoons of dried fruit and aim for 2 to 4 such servings a day. You can also benefit from the calcium and vitamins that milk and milk products have to offer, if you pay attention to concentrating on the low fat or fat free alternatives. You must also remember that cheese is not included in this section, but rather in the category of meat because of the high fat content it has. When it comes to the Meats category, stick to the leanest options you can find and do not exceed four to six ounces a day.

If your Diabetes has driven all those sweet fantasies away, then here's good news! You can include the occasional sweet, as research and studies have proved your intake of sugar alone, is not the determining factor behind your Diabetes. All you need to remember is to balance the remainder of your meal in keeping with the additional sugar you're consuming and limit your sweet indulgence to special occasions. You can even sneak past the calorie devil by using low calorie or reduced calorie sweeteners in your baking or stir then into your desserts.

As with any other meal plan, remember that the key to the success of your diabetic nutritional regime lies in incorporating as much variety as you can. Keep your dietician informed of your preferences and dislikes so that alternatives can be incorporated to allow you more room to experiment. Low-carb options aren't necessarily healthier, as they may contain high levels of sodium which may be adverse to your blood pressure while many of them are also high in saturated fats. With a little bit of care and plenty of determination, you'll soon find that your diabetic meals are miles away from the tedious and insipid options you've always dreaded with time, you'll soon learn that there's hardly a meal plan that is as healthy and delicious as your personalized diabetes menu!
About the Author
Julia Hanf author of the book How To Play the Diabetes Diet Game and Win Through a real life crisis Julia figured out how to live diabetes free. Visit http://www.yourdiabetescure.com and learn more about your solution for diabetes.
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