Sweet Treats for Diabetics
With the festive season full on, it’s time for sweets and desserts. If you are a diabetic, no worries as long as you have your 3 Ds (Diet, Drug and Drill) in place and eat intelligently.
Today Diabetes Management is about managing ‘carbs’ or grams of carbohydrates per meal. For diabetics, 45-60 grams of carbohydrates per meal is recommended. Ensure that you know the carb content of the foods you eat. Both sugar and starch inflate your blood sugar. Hence you can eat one or the other type of carbohydrate if you maintain balance. Since most sweets are high in calories and low in nutritive value, they should be consumed in limited quantities.
Here are some smart tips to enjoy Diwali sweets:
- Swap carbs. If you would like to have a dessert or sweet after your meals, make an allowance in your meal’s carbs for your sweet. For e.g. from your carb allotment of 45-60 grams in one meal, you can have about 40 grams of nutritious carbs in your meal and a sweet of 20 grams.
- Keep the portion size of your sweet small and ensure it fits in with your carb counting plan.
- Eat low calorie, low carb sweets, if possible with fiber rich fruits and nuts.
- Moderation is the key. Limit your potions and choose intelligently. If you would like to save room for a dessert, cut back on carb rich food.
- You can use skim milk to prepare sweets at home and replace sugar with natural sweeteners like honey, agave, molasses and dates.
- Use low and non-calorie sweeteners wisely. Foods made with non-caloric sweeteners will still contain carbs. Account for that.
- You can have a sweet of about 25 grams as a snack instead of having it with a meal. Have it two hours after a meal.
- Snacks and small meals can include nuts like walnuts, almonds, cashew nuts but not peanuts. Avoid foods high in calories such as deep-fried foods.
- Drink a lot of water to keep yourself hydrated.
- Step up your physical activity and don’t forget your regular exercise routine.
- Take your prescribed medicines or insulin dose.
- Before visiting, eat a small meal of low carb foods and avoid sugary drinks or fried foods at gatherings.
- At parties, serve yourself small portions of food and drink alcohol within limits if your blood sugar level is under control. For women it is one drink a day and for men, two.
- Indian sweets like adirasam, appam, manoharam, sandesh, milk sweets with skimmed milk and molasses, payasam with molasses and umpteen other diabetic-friendly sweets can be made at home and enjoyed by all.
- You could make a yummy dessert with yoghurt and fruit without adding sugar.
- Dark chocolate is good as it has flavanols and may improve insulin response to blood sugar control.
Dates and Nuts Laddu
25 large pitted dates
¼ cup mixed nuts like almonds, pistachios, walnuts, cashew nuts
1 tbsp. desiccated coconut (optional)
- Microwave mixed nuts for 2 minutes and pulse coarsely in a blender.
- Microwave dates for 30 seconds or till soft and mince in the blender.
- Mix minced dates, crushed nuts and roll into small balls.
- Roll in desiccated coconut.