By Barbara Quinn, MS, RD, CDE
Nutrition Recommendations for Diabetes: What’s Out and What’s In
You’ve tossed the last of the Christmas cookies. You’ve renewed your gym membership. What’s your plan for a healthful diet this year?
Here’s what is “out” and “in” based on the latest scientific evidence from diabetes research:
OUT: “Simple sugars,” “complex” and ”fast-acting” carbohydrates. Diabetes experts are moving away from these poorly-defined terms.
IN: “Sugars,” “starch,” and “fiber” best describe the carbohydrates in food that affect blood sugar levels.
OUT: “Good foods, bad foods” - thinking.
IN: “Good diets, bad diets” -thinking. No one food makes or breaks your diet. A balance of nutrients from a variety of foods is the best way to control diabetes and maintain your health.
OUT: Carbohydrates are the devil.
IN: Understanding “total carbohydrates”---the total amount of sugar and starch your body can handle at one time without raising your blood sugar levels above normal---is the best way to control diabetes. Healthful diets include moderate amounts of carbohydrate foods, especially whole grains, fruits, vegetables, low-fat milk, yogurt or enriched soy and rice beverages.
OUT: Denial about diabetes.
IN: A little help from my friends. If you have not attended a recognized diabetes program or visited a registered dietitian or diabetes educator lately, this may be the year to do so.
Remember…if nothing changes, nothing changes. This column is dedicated to your best nutritional health!
Barbara Quinn is a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator in Carmel, California. Your questions and comments are encouraged.