Diet for diabetics

This is kinda a GQ and kinda IMHO. Anyhoo, my MIL is a diabetic (late on-set). She’s currently in the hospital after aginoplasty. Maybe now she’ll start to take her health seriously.

What are some basic diet guidelines she should be following. No processed sugar, reduce carbos, low fat, etc.??? thanks

The main thing is to know how many carbs she’s eating. Limiting them first doesn’t help. Find out how many she’s eating and how many her medication & exercise level can handle, then fill out the rest of the meal plan from there.

A balanced meal plan of reasonable portions, with the meals at pretty much the same time every day. No more than one plateful of food at a sitting. Yes, Thanksgiving and Christmas suck. For dinner, half the plate should be vegetables, 1/4 meat and 1/4 carbs. And no, vegetables are not carbs and carbs are not vegetables. Keep the potatoes and carrots out of the salad.

Otherwise, any meal plan (don’t call it a diet) that seems reasonably healthy without stressing one food type or eliminating others should work, so long as she’s willing to stick to it.

Sugar is not evil. Sugar does not cause diabetes. It sure as heck doesn’t help avoid it, but it doesn’t cause it. Once you’re diabetic, sugar will not kill you. You’ll have to skip an entire meal’s worth of carbs to have a couple cans of soda, so if you’d rather have that than a bun on your hamburger, that’s you’re call, just don’t come complaining to me when you’re hungry an hour later…

Drinking and smoking are pretty much right out, too.

I’ve had amazing success with Atkins, for about 19 months now. Previously, my blood sugar was usually above 200, even with medication and insulin and exercise. Since starting Atkins, my blood sugar is absolutely normal. Plus, my cholesterol, triglycerides and blood pressure are lowered. And I’m taking less medication and no insulin.

But I’m not saying this works for everyone. Your MIL, and her doctor, have to find what works for her. And she shouldn’t rely on diet alone - exercise is very important too.

Great reply!!! :cool:

<though limited drinking can be ok, such as a single glass of wine with dinner, work it into the meal plan>
Another thing that has to be stressed - learn portion sizing!!! People don’t realize when the ADA is talking about a portion, they are frequently refering to a specific portionment such as a quarter cup, or half cup, or a portion of meat as the size of a deck of cards…Make sure she uses measuring devices when getting her meals to get the portion sizes correct…it takes a while of doing it to get where you can just eyeball things=)

Honestly, when I have the time and inclination I love making my plates of food ‘pretty’ =) Just the other day my protein was actually a hard boiled egg and gelatin, and I made a veggie mold with slices of hard boiled egg, steamed broccoli, cauliflower and the base of the mold was an artichoke base. Very decorative, and the perfect minimeal =) and with the addition of a base of spinach with a rasperry vinaigrette,great on a seriously hot and humid day=)

You didn’t mention whether this person is overweight or not. It’s critical to get the weight off. It’s also critical to walk or bike and keep the circulation healthy. As diabetes advances, a person can lose circulation to extremities, which can lead to amputation.

Ethilrist’s advice is pretty much canon with that prescribed by my dietician when I was diagnosed with Type II diabetes. However, she was quite adamant that I eliminate refined sugars from my diet. That meant sodas, and lots of processed foods, especially ketchup. She also advised that I not eat potatoes, rice, or pasta except in very small quantities.

But my doctor told me this tale to put that in perspective. He had read a published study where they monitored the blood sugar and glycolated hemoglobin of two randomly partitioned groups of diabetic nursing home patients over the course of a month. They gave the first group a control diet of a square meal, with balanced breads, meats, fruits and vegetables, etc… the whole FDA party line. To the second group, they replaced two of those meals a day with the equivalent calorie value quantity of ice cream.

After a month, the blood sugar and hemoglobin results of the

The lesson? It doesn’t matter what kind of sugars or starches a diabetic eats. It’s calories.

I also asked him about the Atkins diet and he looked dubious, then said “For you, it’s OK.” I pressed him on it and he said “for a diabetic struggling to keep his blood sugar in control, I can’t knock it. But the Atkins diet doesn’t distinguish between good fats and bad fats, so I can’t endorse it either.”

When I’m on Atkins, my blood sugar numbers are great. But the first few months, I ate far too many eggs, and my cholesterol numbers went from great to awful. When I’m not on Atkins, my blood sugar is too high… but then, I eat candy and dessert far too frequently.

Umm… something happened… s’posed to say:

“After a month, the blood sugar and hemoglobin results of the two groups were the same.