Cooking for a diabetic is a daunting task as it varies from person to person, depending upon the height, weight and other caloric requirements. However, knowledge of blood sugar control will help you cook for a diabetic with ease. A healthy diabetic meal includes foods from different categories.
Cooking for a diabetic
- Check the food preferences of the patient before deciding on the meals. Apart from standard dishes, make a list of dishes that the patient might be willing to try.
- It is essential to calculate overall calorie intake. Excess food can add extra glucose which is counterproductive.
- Employ methods of cooking which reduce the fat content. Stir-fry, bake, roast or broil the food. Avoid deep frying.
- Trim away excess fat from any meat product. To cook for a diabetic, select lean proteins, such as skinless chicken and turkey, and curb fat intake.
- Fish, tofu and legumes are also good options as they are good sources of proteins.
- The fat in the meal should be less than 30% of the total meal. Excess fat is risky as diabetics are twice as likely to have heart diseases.
- If the diabetic person is overweight, discuss their weight reduction plan with a nutritionist. In this case, the fat content should not be more than 20%.
- Use whole grains. Foods, such as whole grain pasta, brown breads and brown rice have higher fibre content which is very nutritious.
- Always use low-fat dairy products, such as low fat cheeses, plain yoghurt, and skimmed milk when you cook for a diabetic.
- Alcoholic drinks have concentrated calories that can cause hypoglycaemia and weight gain. Therefore, be careful with recipes with wines.
- Use sugar sparingly if you cannot avoid it altogether. Sugar has empty calories and will cause the blood sugar levels to soar. Save sugary treats for special occasions.
- Make fruits a part of the meal or serve as dessert. Fruits high in sugar can be eaten in moderation.
- Make the meals interesting by choosing a wide variety of foods. Blood sugar levels must be checked after trying out new food combinations.
You have a lot of options to choose from when you cook for a diabetic. The two crucial factors you need to bear in mind are weight control and blood sugar levels. Adopting healthier cooking habits will make it easy to cook for a diabetic.
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