This season of holiday celebrations is an excellent chance to engage in time-honored traditions with loved ones and friends, but let’s be honest: it’s often also a time for overindulgence in unhealthy eating. With a wide range of sugary, fatty, and rich special treats to choose from at every turn, it’s hard to follow a nutritious diet, which can result in serious health problems for those with diabetes.
These diabetic diet recommendations, however, can help individuals stay safe during the holiday season without being deprived of special treats. Be sure to first talk with the doctor for his or her approval on any meal choices that digress from an approved meal plan.
- Determine your preferences. Consider choices during a holiday meal, and select your favorite two carbs to enjoy. For instance, decide if you would rather have stuffing or rolls, or choose between mashed potatoes and sweet potatoes, rather than indulging in all of the food choices.
- Provide your own. When attending a holiday event at someone’s residence, speak with the host concerning your dietary restrictions, and offer to bring a nutritious dish to share, such as a tray of vegetables or a sugar-free dessert.
- Have a healthy snack first. Eating a healthy snack before the holiday meal will help keep blood sugar levels consistent and aid in preventing the temptation to go overboard. Good snack options for people with diabetes include nuts, veggies and hummus, celery with peanut butter, string or cottage cheese, or an egg.
- Stay hydrated. Drinking a glass of water before sitting down to the meal will provide you with a feeling of fullness, lowering the chance that you’ll be tempted to overindulge.
- Stay physically active. Following a heavy meal, resist the urge to sink into the recliner and watch television or nap; instead, offer to help with cleaning up the kitchen, play an active game with the kids, or take a walk in the crisp fall air.
If in spite of these tactics you end up eating too much or making less-than-healthy choices, be kind and forgiving to yourself. Keep in mind that tomorrow is a new day to resume healthy habits again. Pay attention to your blood sugar to make sure levels stay in the appropriate range and to prevent the potential for a serious problem, such as diabetic ketoacidosis, which could cause a hospitalization and most definitely put a damper on the holiday fun.
Contact the aging care team at Harmony Home Health & Hospice, a provider of in home hospice care in Salt Lake City and the surrounding area, to discover more diabetic-friendly suggestions, for help with diabetes management, and much more! Our home care in Salt Lake City and the nearby area as well as Albuquerque, NM is available throughout the holiday season and beyond to help seniors live their best possible lives. Call us at 1-877-I-NEED-CARE to request a free in-home consultation today!