Children With Diabetes Can Eat Candy
Halloween is just around the corner, and every year at this time I think of the unfortunate situation the parents of young children find themselves in as they face a giant candy celebration. It’s pretty much a nutritional nightmare. If you’re like me, you work hard to keep your children’s candy consumption to a minimum. You avoid having candy at home so the temptation isn’t there, but then comes Halloween and suddenly a plastic pumpkin filled with enough candy for the entire year gets dumped onto the kitchen table. What’s a parent to do? The candy situation is even more complicated for parents of children with diabetes. Not only are they faced with all of the candy, they have to figure out how to bolus for it. Factor in the candy they saw their child eat. Factor in the candy they think their child ate when no one was looking. Factor in how much their child walked (or ran) while trick-or-treating. Factor in the candy their child is about to eat. What parents face is a bolus nightmare hand-in-hand with the nutritional one. I had the opportunity to talk to about this with an expert, Dr. William Tamborlane, Professor and Chief of Pediatric Endocrinology at Yale School of Medicine. When I asked Dr. Tamborlane how he thinks parents of children with diabetes should handle Halloween, his answer was definitely not “no candy.” “Things have changed a lot since I started caring for children with type 1 diabetes more than 35 years ago,” Dr. Tamborlane said. “Then our kids weren’t allowed to eat sweets. The idea was that simple sugars pushed the blood sugar levels up too quickly for the old fashioned insulins to cover it. Kids were only supposed to eat starches because it took longer for these carbohydrates to be digested and absorbed. Much later we found out th Continue reading >>
Are Small Amounts Of Sweets Ok?
Doctors used to think sugars were terrible for diabetes. Then the American Diabetes Association (ADA) changed their minds. They said it’s the carbs that matter, and sugars were just another carb. Now some scientists are saying sugar is poison. Who’s right? In 2006, Amy Campbell laid out the official ADA position here, in a piece subtitled “fitting sugar into your meal plans.” “We now know,” she wrote, “that for the most part, it’s the total amount of carbohydrate, not the type of carbohydrate that you eat, that affects blood glucose levels. This means that the same amount of carbohydrate from any carbohydrate-containing food affects blood glucose levels in pretty much the same way.” ADA’s own Web site says something similar: “The total amount of carbohydrate you eat affects blood glucose levels more than the type. Now experts agree that you can substitute small amounts of sugar for other carbohydrate-containing foods into your meal plan and still keep your blood glucose levels on track.” They give the example of taking a slice of bread off your turkey sandwich to make room for some cookies. ADA does caution that “drinking sugary drinks is linked to Type 2 diabetes, and the ADA recommends that people limit their intake of sugar-sweetened beverages to help prevent diabetes.” Is sugar really just another carb? Some experts say no way. Quinn Phillips wrote here in 2011 about how researchers like Dr. Robert Lustig, an obesity expert at the University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine, are saying sugars, especially fructose, have toxic effects in the kidneys and liver. Lustig believes our high sugar intake is responsible for the recent increases we have seen in the prevalence of the metabolic syndrome (the coexistence of insulin resi Continue reading >>
10 Delicious, Diabetic Desserts
Black Forest Mousse Cake Recipe Anna Pustynnikova/Shutterstock Here's a heavenly warm chocolate cake that is very light, surprisingly low in fat, and much easier to make than you might think. Anna Pustynnikova/Shutterstock If you love cheesecake -- and who doesn't? -- you will certainly enjoy this wholesome bar cookie. Creamy Baked Custards Recipe Africa Studio/Shutterstock These creamy baked custards, delicately flavored with vanilla and accompanied by a fresh cherry compote, are easy to put together. Angel Food Cake Recipe Brent Hofacker/Shutterstock Virtually fat-free, this light sponge cake is a crowd-pleaser. Mocha Ricotta Tiramisu Recipe YuliiaHolovchenko/Shutterstock This delectable version of the popular Italian dessert includes traditional sponge cakes soaked in coffee and liqueur. Five-Star Cookies Recipe Teresa Kasprzycka/Shutterstock These nutty, moist cookies are satisfying without being too sweet. Baked Almond-Stuffed Peaches Recipe Liv friis larsen/Shutterstock Turn fresh peaches into a fabulous warm dessert by stuffing them with dried apricots, toasted almonds, and crushed amaretti cookie crumbs. Maple-Walnut Roasted Apples Recipe NoirChocolate/Shutterstock Walnuts and maple syrup make this baked apple recipe a deliciously satisfying and healthier dessert. Oatmeal-Peanut Butter Trail Bars Recipe Vitylia/Shutterstock These homemade trail bars are packed with protein and make a great energy-boosting snack. Strawberry-Banana Delight Recipe Katarzyna Hurova/Shutterstock Turn a classic pairing of flavors into whipped gelatin. Continue reading >>
Diabetes And Dessert
Eating desserts with diabetes A popular misconception about diabetes is that it is caused by eating too many sugary foods. While sweets can and do affect your blood sugar, they do not cause you to develop diabetes. However, when you have diabetes, you must carefully monitor your carbohydrate intake. This is because carbohydrates are responsible for raising your blood sugar levels. While you can enjoy sugary foods when you have diabetes, it is important to do so in moderation and with some understanding of how it could impact your blood sugar. This includes sugars found in desserts. 10 Diabetes Diet Myths » When you have diabetes, your body is either not able to use insulin correctly or not able to make any or enough insulin. Some people with diabetes experience both of these issues. Problems with insulin can cause sugar to build up in your blood since insulin is responsible for helping sugar move from the blood and into the body’s cells. Foods that contain carbohydrates raise blood sugar. Carbohydrates need to be regulated when you have diabetes to help you manage your blood sugar. On nutrition labels, the term “carbohydrates” includes sugars, complex carbohydrates, and fiber. In desserts, a number of sweet-tasting ingredients can be added to enhance sweetness. While some foods, such as fruits, naturally contain sugars, most desserts have some type of sugar added to them. Many dessert labels will not list “sugar” as a key ingredient. Instead, they will list the ingredient as one or more of the following: dextrose fructose high-fructose corn syrup lactose malt syrup sucrose white granulated sugar honey agave nectar glucose maltodextrin These sugar sources are carbohydrates and will raise your blood sugar. They can be found in cookies, cakes, pies, puddings, ca Continue reading >>
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Sweets in a Diabetic Diet A healthy diabetic diet is all about balance. As long as moderation is taken into account, a small amount of sugar is accounted for in the total amount of carbohydrates in your diet. As a general rule, diabetics should try to cut down on foods and drinks that have large amounts of sugar because they can make blood sugar control and weight control more difficult. First up is our Browned Butter and Chocolate Chip Cookies. Butter moves from nutty and brown to bitter and burned quickly, so be sure to take the pan off the heat once it turns amber-brown. To keep cookies from spreading, make sure the cookie sheet is completely cool before starting the next batch. View Recipe: Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies Continue reading >>
Low Sugar Sweets
Tweet A number of seasonal holidays have close associations with sugary sweets but thankfully there are ways to reduce exposure to sugar without diminishing the fun factor. We present a list of options which are relatively low in sugar and should help to make diabetes control easier to achieve over a festive evening. Sugar free sweets Sugar free sweets are available and are an option for people with diabetes. It’s worth checking which sweetener is used within the sweets as sugar alcohols (such as sorbitol, maltitol, erythritol and xylitol) can have laxative effects if taken in too high quantities. The other note is that sugar alcohols may raise blood glucose levels, albeit less severely than sugar. The effect on sugar levels can vary from one sugar alcohol to another. Sorbitol, erythritol and mannitol should have a relatively benign effect on blood glucose levels but it’s best to check blood glucose levels an hour or so after having the sweets to check their effect. Lower sugar substitutes Aside from sugar free sweets, you can also use some creativity to make treats that aren’t too intensely sweet. Baking low sugar cakes Cakes are popular whatever the occasion and needn’t be ruled by those of us needing to watch our carbohydrate intake. Sweeteners can be used instead of sugar and almond meal can also be used instead of flour to help lower the carbohydrate impact in foods such as cakes. Popcorn Movie favourite popcorn is another snack that is closely associated with fun and good times. Unsweetened popcorn is about 50% carbohydrate by weight so a 30g serving, which makes for a decent portion, will have 15g of carbs. Butter popcorn makes for a more wholesome and less addictive experience than salted or sweetened varieties. Toffee apples Toffee apples are often very Continue reading >>
You Wanted To Know: Diabetic-friendly Foods
Diabetics often get sick and tired of all those lists of what not to eat. No cookies, no white bread, no sodas – no wonder the diabetic diet can get a little monotonous. That’s why one of our Facebook fans, Lori, asked us what diabetics can do to spruce up their diets, while still staying healthy. Fruits: It can be awfully hard to turn away all the sugary treats, but some sweet fruits can help fill the gap. To control your blood sugar spikes, worry most about carbohydrate counts – as long as you control those you can still satisfy a sweet tooth. According to the Mayo Clinic, here are some sweet fruit options that each have about 15 grams of carbs: 1 1/4 cup whole strawberries 1 1/4 cup cubed watermelon 1/2 medium banana 1/2 cup cubed mango Other great options are apples, cranberries and raspberries, which have been shown to lower bad cholesterol. Blueberries may help stabilize blood sugar and even help prevent diabetes. Plus, all these fruits contain cholesterol-lowering fiber to help keep you full. Vegetables: Vegetables should be the cornerstone of all diets, not just diabetic ones. Vegetable highlights include asparagus, which may help keep blood sugar down and increase insulin, cruciferous veggies like broccoli, cabbage and Brussels sprouts, which may help fight heart disease, and leafy greens like spinach and kale which may lower diabetes risk. Dairy: Don’t deprive yourself of dairy. Low-fat or Greek yogurts are delicious ways to get your daily calcium and vitamin B-12. Studies have shown that people who eat yogurt daily are less likely to get diabetes, and it can help promote healthy digestion. Just watch out for added sugars and check out our Greek yogurt cheat sheet to find the best yogurt for you. Reduced-fat cheeses, 1% milk, and cottage cheese are oth Continue reading >>
How People With Diabetes Can Still Eat Desserts
When one is diagnosed with diabetes, the first thought that many have is they must say goodbye to desserts and other sweet treats forever. However, just because you have been diagnosed with diabetes doesn’t mean you can’t treat yourself once in awhile. It is true that you must severely limit your sweet treats and, in most cases, it’s best to reserve sweets and other desserts for special occasions so you don’t miss out. However, with a little planning you can still have your favorite dessert every now and then while still managing your disease. The Truth About Sugar One of the biggest myths about diabetes is that it is caused by eating too much sugar. However, sugar has absolutely nothing to do with developing type 1 diabetes and the issue is even more complicated for those that develop type 2 diabetes. One of the biggest risk factors for type 2 diabetes is being overweight, but a diet that is high in calories that contribute to excessive weight gain can come from a variety of foods. However, research has shown that drinking sugary drinks is linked to type 2 diabetes, and the American Diabetes Association recommends that people limit their intake of these sweet beverages. Any type of carbohydrate can raise blood sugar levels. However, these carbohydrates can come from multiple sources and the total amount of carbohydrates you eat affects blood sugar levels much more than simply the type. So what does this mean for you? Most experts today agree that diabetics can substitute small amounts of sure for other sources of carbohydrates while still keeping your blood sugar levels in check. This doesn’t mean that you can eat sugar all the time or whenever you want. You must carefully plan when you are going to have that sweet treat and be sure you eliminate other source Continue reading >>
Myth: Sugar Causes Diabetes
We all know the stereotype – if you’ve got diabetes, you must have eaten too much sugar. But, with this sweet ingredient found in so much of our food – and, recently, so many of our newspapers – what’s the truth about sugar? And how does it affect diabetes? What is sugar? Sugar is found naturally in fruit, vegetables and dairy foods. It’s also added to food and drink by food manufacturers, or by ourselves at home. The debate about sugar and health is mainly around the ‘added sugars’. This includes: table sugar that we add to our hot drinks or breakfast cereal caster sugar, used in baking sugars hidden in sauces, ready meals, cakes and drinks. Does sugar cause diabetes? There are two main types of diabetes – Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. In Type 1 diabetes, the insulin producing cells in your pancreas are destroyed by your immune system. No amount of sugar in your diet – or anything in your lifestyle – has caused or can cause you to get Type 1 diabetes. With Type 2 diabetes, though we know sugar doesn’t directly causes Type 2 diabetes, you are more likely to get it if you are overweight. You gain weight when you take in more calories than your body needs, and sugary foods and drinks contain a lot of calories. And it's important to add that fatty foods and drinks are playing a part in our nation's expanding waistline. So you can see if too much sugar is making you put on weight, then you are increasing your risk of getting Type 2 diabetes. But Type 2 diabetes is complex, and sugar is unlikely to be the only reason the condition develops. If I have diabetes, can I eat sugar? Having diabetes doesn’t mean you have to cut sugar out of your diet completely. We all enjoy eating sugary foods occasionally, and there’s no problem including them as a treat Continue reading >>
Type 2 Diabetes: Can You Eat Sweets?
If you have type 2 diabetes, you can still enjoy holiday treats. Careful carbohydrate counting, a sugar substitute or two, and changes in portion sizes can keep your sweet tooth happy. It's the start of the holiday season, which means lots of candies, cookies, cakes, and other goodies wherever you go. And many people with type 2 diabetes assume that their diagnosis means they must starve their sweet tooth and say no to these seasonal treats. But is that really the case? Happily, say experts, the answer is no — a careful approach to designing your diabetes diet means you don’t have to kiss sweets goodbye. But to be able to enjoy that pumpkin pie or piece of cake without guilt while keeping your blood sugar levels in check, you need to know: What you are eating How much you are eating (portion size) Carbohydrate, sugar, and calorie contents of everything you consume After that, do the math. Your decision to go with a natural sugar or a sugar substitute will depend on your overall carbohydrate and calorie counts as well as your personal taste preference. Carbohydrates are important because they affect your blood sugar control, and many people with diabetes are watching calories in order to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight. Natural Sugars Natural sugars are those that come from plant or animal sources. For example, sugar comes from sugar cane, beet sugar comes from beet roots, and honey is made by honeybees. Other types of natural sugars include: Maple syrup or sugar Agave Turbinado sugar All these sugars contain carbohydrate and calories — and they all can affect your blood sugar levels. Another sweetener, high-fructose corn syrup, is classified by some as a "natural" sugar because it is made from corn, but it is highly processed to give it a longer shelf lif Continue reading >>
13 Best And Worst Foods For People With Diabetes
If you have diabetes, watching what you eat is one of the most important things you can do to stay healthy. "The basic goal of nutrition for people with diabetes is to avoid blood sugar spikes," said Dr. Gerald Bernstein, director of the diabetes management program at Friedman Diabetes Institute, Beth Israel Medical Center in New York. Candy and soda can be dangerous for diabetics because the body absorbs these simple sugars almost instantly. But all types of carbs need to be watched, and foods high in fat—particularly unhealthy fats—are problematic as well because people with diabetes are at very high risk of heart disease, said Sandy Andrews, RD, director of education for the William Sansum Diabetes Center in Santa Barbara, Calif. Worst: White rice The more white rice you eat, the greater your risk of type 2 diabetes, according to a 2012 review. In a study of more than 350,000 people, those who ate the most white rice were at greatest risk for type 2 diabetes, and the risk increased 11 percent for each additional daily serving of rice. "Basically anything highly processed, fried, and made with white flour should be avoided," Andrews said. White rice and pasta can cause blood sugar spikes similar to that of sugar. Have this instead: Brown rice or wild rice. These whole grains don't cause the same blood sugar spikes thanks to fiber, which helps slow the rush of glucose into the bloodstream, Andrews said. What's more, a Harvard School of Public Health study found that two or more weekly servings of brown rice was linked to a lower diabetes risk. Worst: Blended coffees Blended coffees that are laced with syrup, sugar, whipped cream, and other toppings can have as many calories and fat grams as a milkshake, making them a poor choice for those with diabetes. A 16-ounce Continue reading >>
4 Sweet Science-backed Reasons That Diabetics Can Eat Fruit Worry-free
Extremely low-carb diets aren’t as healthy for you because they skimp on fruit and claim that fruit contains natural sugars that just turn to sugar in the body. It’s true that all carbohydrates from food eventually end up as blood glucose—including the carbs in fruit. That said, fruit has a much lower impact on blood sugar levels than other truly harmful foods like candy bars and soda. That’s because, like vegetables, fruit is mostly water. What isn’t water is fiber, and that fiber slows the progression of fruit sugars into the bloodstream, causing a slow, steady rise in blood sugar rather than a huge spike. Here’s more: Fruit isn’t just not bad for your diabetes. It’s good for it, and for your waistline too. 1. Fruit fights inflammation. Peaches, plums, and nectarines contain special nutrients called phenolic compounds that have anti-inflammatory properties. (These nutrient-rich foods also fight off inflammation.) These compounds travel through the bloodstream and then to your fat cells, where they affect different genes and proteins for the better, finds research done at Texas A&M University. 2. Fruit prevents diabetes. Flavonoids are nutrients found in plant foods, and especially in many types of fruit. Research shows that these compounds can lower the risk for developing type 2 diabetes, probably because these nutrients improve insulin sensitivity. Harvard’s long-running Nurses’ Health Study found that women who consumed more anthocyanins (the pigment that makes blueberries blue and strawberries red) were much less likely to develop type 2 diabetes than women who consumer fewer of these health-promoting compounds. Science says these are the 15 best foods for diabetics. 3. Fruit slims you down. New research suggests fruits may actually be more imp Continue reading >>
Can People With Diabetes Eat Dessert?
Many people think a diagnosis of diabetes means that desserts are off limits. But did you know that if you are careful with your meal planning, you can enjoy a small serving of your favorite dessert from time to time and still keep your diabetes under control? Our understanding of diet and blood sugar has changed Fortunately, doctors now know a lot more about the connection between diet and blood sugar. Previously it was thought that people with diabetes needed to remove sweets from their diet and replace them with complex carbohydrates (whole grains, legumes, rice, pasta, and starchy vegetables). But recent studies have shown that it’s the total daily carbohydrate count that affects blood sugar levels more so than the type of carbohydrate eaten. That’s why eating a consistent amount of carbohydrates at each meal is recommended to keep blood sugar levels under control. Why it’s OK to have dessert sometimes With this in mind, you can substitute an occasional dessert for another carbohydrate-containing food in your meal without causing problems with your diabetes management. For example, if you’d like to have a brownie with your lunch, you need to substitute the brownie for another carbohydrate-containing food. If you are having a chicken burrito, consider not adding rice to the burrito or having a low-carbohydrate tortilla and eating the brownie for the same total carbohydrate count. Don’t overdo it! Most sweets have a large amount of carbohydrate per serving, so they should be eaten in moderation and not at every meal. You need to continue focusing your daily meal plan on more nutritious foods, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, low-fat dairy, fish, and lean meats. And it’s still important to work with your registered dietitian or diabetes ca Continue reading >>
Can I Eat Sugar If I Have Diabetes?
The best way to include some sugar in your diet if to "budget" for it in your daily carbohydrate allowance. If you are on an 1800 calorie diabetic diet, you probably consume around 14 carbohydrate exchanges throughout the day. If you'd like to have a dessert one day with real sugar (not an artificial sweetener), decide what meal you'd like to have it with (i.e. lunch or dinner), and the type of dessert you'd like to have. Then, take a look at the diabetic exchange list (the American Diabetes Association has a great booklet) to see what the serving size is. For example, 1/2 cup of frozen yogurt, 1 Tbsp of honey, or 3 hard candies are all equal to 1 carb exchange. 2 small chocolate chip cookies are equal to 1 carb plus 2 fat exchanges. By calculating the sugar into your diet plan for the day ahead of time, you can make sure to get your treat. Diabetics can still consume minimal amounts of sugar if they are monitoring their total carbohydrate intake. However, some sugars are better than others. Empty calorie foods such as cookies, cakes, and ice cream should be limited as much as possible. Sugar that comes from fruit, milk, and yogurt would be a better choice for a Diabetic. It is important to remember that sugar is a carbohydrate and all type of carbohydrates will increase blood sugar levels. Choose carbohydrates that will provide the body with the most nutrition possible. Yes you can eat sugar but you have to limit the amount per serving. Learn the diabetic exchange lists. Know that 15 grams of carbs equal one serving. You need to limit the amount of carbs per day and if on insulin per meal. Generally you want to keep sweets to a minimum. Believe it or not, YES. But you have to plan ahead. If you really want cake, look at the total number of grams of carbohydrate. Then c Continue reading >>
A Diabetic At The Thanksgiving Table
Many people feel stuffed and uncomfortable after gorging themselves on turkey, stuffing, and desserts on Thanksgiving. But for diabetics, the situation can be downright dangerous, as eating high-sugar foods can send blood sugar into a chaotic rollercoaster. The problem lies in simple carbohydrates and sugars -- common ingredients in holiday meals -- that boost blood sugar immediately and can throw glucose levels out of whack. However, other options such as whole grains can provide carbohydrates that impact the blood sugar more slowly. With a little foresight, meals can be tweaked to integrate diabetic-friendly options, say diet experts. "People with diabetes need to give thought to what they will eat so that they can keep their blood sugars in a normal range," says Connie Diekman, current president of the American Dietetic Association, noting that most non-diabetics are not accustomed to this level of precise planning. "People with diabetes can enjoy most of the foods so typical to the holiday season if they know how to balance the right portion of food into their meal plans. Such planning might be difficult for a new diabetic, but with a little experience it really isn't that tricky." Adjusting the Menu for All Guests For example, Diekman says, eating basic foods such as turkey, potatoes, vegetables, and salad is easier when options don't appear to be loaded with hidden ingredients. Serving plenty of whole grains, fruits and vegetables is a healthy option for all guests. Other diet experts agree that healthy options can be incorporated into holiday meals for all. "It is important to keep health in mind when planning the menu for the good of all party guests, not just those with diabetes," says Dr. George Blackburn, a professor of nutrition medicine at Harvard Medical S Continue reading >>