I Have Diabetes…What Can I Eat?

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A few weeks ago I saw a posting here at DIABETES SUPPORT from a person with type 2 Diabetes. Her question was:

I have type 2 Diabetes. What foods can I eat?

And last week this comment:

“I have that feeling of being vulnerable and having to learn allover again.”

I can only imagine the anguish these people are going through. Like many of us they got the diagnosis and very little information to guide her in managing the disease. Many people answered her question with what they are doing and eating. I think it is great that the Diabetes community pitches in to assist others. Each person had a different answer to the question. Each person was of assistance to the questioner. My favorite expression when asked how to manage Diabetes is: Ask questions like crazy, and don’t let anyone intimidate you with their opinions.

This is my 2 cents worth: With Diabetes, you can eat anything…one way or another. Each of us has to figure out what works best for their VERY individual needs. NOT EVERY FOOD WORKS FOR EVERYONE. Everybody’s carbohydrate budget should be tailored to their individual needs.

Some foods you should think about eating only in limited quantities that work for you. I can do that with potatoes or with my Italian Lady fingers, but not with pasta. I prepare my potatoes with so much flavor that the small amount works for me. I have not (yet) been able to do that with pasta. A small amount on my plate just makes me sad. My choice with pasta is not to eat it. That is unless there is a really special occasion like my birthday or holiday. Even then, if it still means I have to give up something else to have the pasta, I still really limit the amount on my plate. I think twice or three times before preparing it. After 8 years I don’t much bother with it. I have chosen to think of pasta the same way I think of cigarettes. It really is not a good choice for me…I avoid it. It does not add enough to my quality of life t include it on my plate. But it took a while to get to thinking about pasta that way. I pined for pasta and crusty French bread for years.

I really enjoy baking. I have lots of really scrumptious recipes for cakes and tarts (one crust rather than two). I make them work for my carbohydrate budget by using a sugar replacement and toasted ground nuts to replace some of the flour in my old recipes. It works great for me, but not for those with nut allergies. Toasted and ground pumpkin or sunflower seeds can work as a replacement for the nuts For MY carbohydrate budget, a people sized portion of cake with 12-15 grams of carbohydrates works. But I know some folks only eat that many grams of carbohydrates for an entire day.

There are those of you that did a collective cringe at my suggestion of using a sugar replacement. That is ok. I did my homework and made my choices. It is your turn to do your homework and make your choices. Remember that science should outweigh hysteria. Just because you see a headline on social media does not make it true.

One of the other things that I make great use of is cauliflower. I mash it, rice it, fry it, make casseroles with it, and even cauliflower tots with it. Some people turn up their nose at using cauliflower. Some think it smells as bad as they think it tastes.

There are those that don’t mind the taste, even like the taste, but complain:
“It is not the same.”

They are 100% correct, it is not the same, it is different. Different does not mean bad. Chicken is different from turkey. Both are great forms of protein. Both can be prepared the same way but will taste differently. Not bad, just different.

My favorite excuse not to try cauliflower is my friend that says:
“Oh, it is ok, but it gives me ..wind.”
I don’t have a comeback for that one

There are some limitations you may want to make to your menus to help manage your Diabetes. The thing is, and it is a good thing, there are far more choices than limitations.

For me it is an adventure to figure out how to re-make the foods I love to work for the disease that I have.

I am enjoying the adventure. Each new dish is a new triumph for me, and in sharing them with you, I hope a way of seeing that eating with Diabetes does not have to be a form of torture.

This morning for breakfast I made baking powder biscuits. I kept seeing them at a hotel we stay at in Denver. Too many carbohydrates for me but the flavor and the texture made me want to figure out how to make a lower carbohydrate version. It worked in almost every way. They are light, flaky and crumble on the tongue; they taste right and smell great out of the oven. The only thing is they don’t rise as well as the original versions. The toasted ground nuts I used to replace the high carbohydrate flour is not affected by the baking powder. Rise, schmrise, they were a scrumptious triumph. Now it is onward and upward to the biscuits as a topping for my chicken pot pie. Pictures to follow… once it is perfect.

Enjoy, be happy, be Healthy, BE DECADENT.-w!