Diabetes and Carbohydrates

March 8, 2008 by  
Filed under DIABETES

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Diabetics Must Avoid Carbs

Perhaps you have heard that to properly regulate your blood glucose levels, you should avoid carbohydrates. Certain popular diets have days or weeks where carbs are off limits completely. Their ‘inventors’ expound upon the idea that carbs are the enemy. Because of popular misconception, people who begin these diets believe they must cut out all carbohydrates. Perhaps this misconception stems from individuals who do not completely read the books on the diets.

The professionals, I loosely call them professionals because I have not checked the credentials of all the authors, do not actually claim all carbs are bad. Their main goal is to help people eliminate refined, manufactured carbs out of the diet. Refined white bread, white sugar, and other items in the diet of general population today are the target enemies.

But I’m Eating Pure Protein And I Feel Great!

Great. I am glad to hear that. But, how do you think you will feel in a few more weeks or months when you need to allow carbs back into your diet? The body uses carbohydrates as fuel. Without them, the body uses stored fat, then resorts to using other cells in the body. Ketosis can occur and in fact, is a target of one popular protein based diet.

For a diabetic, ketosis is a bad thing. Overloading on protein is a bad thing. Stress on the internal organs, like the kidneys, can occur. Not only that, but gout is nearly unavoidable with a high fat, high protein diet. Gout is a buildup of uric acid crystals around the joints, particularly the knees and feet. It is a very uncomfortable condition aggravated by rich diets.

I Love Carbs! Pass The Potatoes!

Hold on a second, friend. I love carbs, too. But let’s talk about the carbohydrates for a minute before we salt the fries. I want to stress that refined carbohydrates are the targets to eliminate. White bread, refined pasta, and yes, those French fries from fast food restaurants. Most of the time those potatoes are soaked in a solution of sugar and water to give them their signature flavor. Not a very good additive to a diabetic diet.

Whole grains, vegetables that are not processed, and careful consideration are the keys to enjoying carbs as a part of your diet.

A Great New Resource

There is a great new resource for diabetics interested in their carbohydrate intake. A new cookbook by the authors Chef Jennifer Bucko and Lara Rondelli, RD, is available. The Healthy Carb Diabetes Cokkbook: Favorites Foods To Fit Into Your Meal Plan is a godsend for those who adore carbohydrates. The book is from the American Diabetes Association and can be purchased for 18.95 USD.

From The Press Release

“Whether it’s breakfast, lunch, dinner, or dessert time, The Healthy Carb Diabetes Cookbook is a kitchen necessity for anyone wanting to adopt a healthy-carb lifestyle.”

I have to agree, this book is full of tantalizing recipes. Here are a few:

Apple Pecan Stuffed French Toast
Blueberry Muffins
Pineapple Pistachio Pork Chops
Breaded Pork Medallions with Cranberry Onion Chutney

The authors also included facts about the ingredients, substitutions suggestions, and a nutritional sidebar for each recipe. While there are not many pictures outside of the black and white photos at the beginning of each section, the information provided inside is priceless. I enjoy pictures, but to me, pictures inside of a cookbook are not integral. Many may disagree, but I am a great fan of recipes books from my grandmother’s age that had no photos at all.

Sausage Lasagna

*Cooking Spray
*12 Strips whole wheat lasagna noodles
*1 lb turkey italian sausage
*1 large (2lb 13oz) jar pasta sauce
*1 ½ cups reduced fat, shredded mozzerella cheese, divided
*15 oz fat free ricotta cheese
*¼ cup grated Parmesean cheese
*1 egg, slightly beaten
*¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped

1. Pre heat the oven to 350 F. Spray a13x9x2 inch glass baking dish with cooking spray.

2. Cook noodles according to package directions, omitting salt.

3. Cut ends of turkey sausage and squeeze the sausage meat out of the casings. Discard casings.

4. In a large saucepan, cook turkey sausage over medium-high heat until brown. Drain fat, lower heat to medium and add pasta sauce. Cook for 5 minutes, set aside to cool.

5. In a medium bowl, mix together ½ cup mozzarella (reserve one cup mozzerella), ricotta cheese, Parmesean cheese, egg, and parsley.

6. Spread 1 cup pasta sauce and sausage on the bottom of the baking dish. Arrange noodles side by side on top of the sauce. Spread 1/3 of the cheese mixture on top of the noodles.

7. Repeat layering with pasta sauce, noodles, and cheese mixtures two more times.

8. Top with the remaining 3 noodles and 1 cup of sauce. Cover lasagna with foil and bake for 25 minutes. Uncover; top with remaining mozzarella cheese and bake an additional 25 minutes or until cheese is lightly golden brown.

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3 Responses to “Diabetes and Carbohydrates”
  1. This sounds awesome! I’m going to have to try this one, Keep up the good work.

  2. I read your article posted last August on Diabetes Health.
    I think a lot of folks out there don’t really understand what a carb is. Seriously. They think carb and equate it to a baked potato and a piece of bread. So if I lay off the bread and potatoes then I am eating healthy. Would love to have you guest blog and post an article for us in layman’s terms what carbohydrates are and how they re metabolized in the body.

  3. Richard Feinman says:

    My credentials are that I am a Professor of Biochemistry and I have been teaching metabolism to medical students for thirty years. What are your credentials ?

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