meal planning

By watson4042 Latest Reply 2011-12-05 10:47:33 -0600
Started 2011-11-12 13:22:59 -0600

i'm new to this and am sooooo unsure about meal plans. does anyone know a simple way to do this? im totally confused about food exchanges.

33 replies

Nick1962 2011-12-05 09:13:22 -0600 Report

I do exactly what nzingha does – overcook on the weekends. Cut veggies and store in water for a “salad bar” and lunch during the week (change water frequently), cut up ham and chicken for protein, etc. I’ll also grill up and freeze chicken portions, hamburgers, etc. I don’t do starches or sweets (not on my diet) so my weekly meals are usually salads. Those seal-a-meal or food saver gadgets are handy, but I rarely have protein in the freezer long enough to warrant mine. And, like nzingha, I exercise in the evening, so I can just pull out a protein and some frozen vegetables and get a good meal quick. Chicken seems most versatile, as you can do chicken salad one night and a fast chicken soup the next if it’s a cold day. Keeping a routine through the week also keeps your numbers stable, and as has been mentioned, it is hit and miss for a while until you find the foods that work for you. The whole process was kind of fun for me, kind of like an Iron Chef challenge – here I have this whole new palette of foods I have to choose from, now how do I use them in new ways to keep it interesting.

Young1s 2011-12-05 09:26:55 -0600 Report

I am all about the do ahead prep of foods. It makes cooking easier for me. Does the vegies in water thing really work? How long do they last with water changes? I usually add a little lemon juice to mine in a baggy, especially if it's overnight, then rinse them before using. It keeps them from browning at the cut.

Nick1962 2011-12-05 09:56:13 -0600 Report

Learned this in my restaurant days. Depends on the veggie. I have a Tupperware pitcher full of cut celery that I just drain and refill at night when I portion out my meal for lunch the next day, but you could change water maybe 2x week if you don’t use it daily like me. Never had any go bad and I usually go through a head of celery per week. Works for carrots (if you can have them) also. Broccoli and cauliflower will get “stanky” if you don’t change water daily, and I usually only get a week out of those. Cukes I peel, cut in half and seed with a spoon then cut up and just keep as is – they last a good week also (it’s the seedy part that goes bad fast). I do the lemon juice thing with my morning apple.

nzingha 2011-11-13 21:09:20 -0600 Report

here's how i do it so it has become easy for me…
i go to the market and get my fruits and vegs… i get my supply of fish and whatever. potatoes, etc. i portion out my fish, i cook most of the starchy stuff and put them in the freezer and it makes life easy when i get home.. basically all i cook is the fish in the evenings and the veg like cabbage or pak chow…and often i will cook enough so i can carry some for lunch next day. i also cut up my fruits and freeze them.. so i take that for lunch too. also do a salad which i can draw on anytime. and if i'm in the mood will do a a banana cake or a bread pudding.. cut it up in small portion and add to my lunch and dinner..
for breakfast i eat most morning the oates cooked with almonds.. fruit and coffee…

nzingha 2011-11-13 21:13:40 -0600 Report

…but then i like being in the kitchen.. on weekends … I just do it on weekends so my time in the week is used more creatively as i have a hiighly demanding job… I can relax on FB and DC when i get home to unwind… I always walk in the evenings before I get home and I swim 3 mornings out of the week… I go to a mineral bath on a Saturday morning as a rule to make sure I keep away those aches and pains that I hear people in my age group start to moan and groan! i'm not joining them…the swimming is very relaxing I find…

Patty0057 2011-11-13 20:36:03 -0600 Report

I am relatively new to this too. I read everything I could get my hands on. Be sure it is ADA approved. I keep my carbs around 30-50 Gms per meal and snacks to around 20. I am type 2 & not on meds yet. Hope they helps. I spend a great deal of time at the grocery store reading labels but I feel good about learning more all the time. Don't give up. We're all in this together.

Young1s 2011-11-12 20:19:39 -0600 Report

This is a problem that all new diabetics face, myself included. This is a tricky subject because, as Mary said, we all react differently to different foods. I avoid the exchange method as it is too confusing for me. I do, however, count how many carbs are in what I eat, try to limit the amount of sugar in those and eat as much fresh foods as possible. Mickey is correct in saying that you should try to get as much protein in each meal as possible, including breakfast. The protein will help slow down the spikes in your BS that can come from bad carbs.

Unfortunately, there isn't a set guideline that us diabetics can follow. It really is all trail and error. But we all do need to do the following:
*Keep a log of what it is you are eating and when.
*Check your blood sugar as often as needed so you can know how your body is reacting to those foods and other situations.
*Make/keep any appointments with your doctors,nutritionists, etc.
*Never be afraid to ask questions, especially here. You don't want to be in the dark about any of this.
*Research as much as you can about diabetes. The more you know, the more confident you will become in managing your life.

I'm sure I have left something out but I think these are key in the fight. Be patient with yourself, strong of will to overcome and if you have a slip up, just know that it happens but it's not the end of the world. Welcome to the family.

Mickey/CCHT 2011-11-13 08:48:05 -0600 Report

Well said. Good advice

Young1s 2011-11-13 10:55:15 -0600 Report

Thanks I just remembered something I had forgotten, exercise. I wonder why that slipped my mind, wink wink. Ugh. LOL

watson4042 2011-11-13 18:07:43 -0600 Report

thanks for reminding me about exercise, which i hate. why can't reading be an exercise? lol. so i'd better start walking. are there any exercise tapes geared toward the diabetic? if so can you recommend one?

Patty0057 2011-11-13 20:29:44 -0600 Report

Leslie Sansone has DVD's called walk away the pounds. They are wonderful and offer various lengths. I also like Wii fit. Bottom line- move! Move more than you don't.

Young1s 2011-11-13 18:20:57 -0600 Report

It is. It's called speed reading. LOL Still searching for some good ones, myself. There are some on this site in the Videos section but they are just snippets. I do have an old Low Impact Aerobics tape (yes still have VHS tapes) that I pull out every now and again, but it's getting old so I need to find something in DVD form. Walking does wonders for my levels though.

Mickey/CCHT 2011-11-12 19:31:46 -0600 Report

Still working on this myself! I first cut out all sugary drinks, white flour and white foods like potatoes and rice. Eat complex carbohydrates and fresh veggies. I like the fresh fruits, but have to be careful of what will spike your bs. Make sure you get good proteins in as well, like eggs, tuna fish, chicken, etc.
It will take a little work, but it will be ok. We are all here for you and i hope you find what you need here.
God Bless, Mickey

watson4042 2011-11-13 18:18:31 -0600 Report

thanks for the encouragment i need it right now. i keep thinking of sourdough bread and butter, spagetti, pizza (which saber32 posted a great receipe for!) and cheese toast and candy and i could go on and on!

MEGriff1950 2011-11-12 17:54:36 -0600 Report

Watson the simple way is to meet with a diabetic dietician who can draw up a meal plan for you. I got my meal plan while attending a diabetics education class. Your primary care physician can recommend and refer you to these.
You can also use your search enging and type in "meal plan for type 2 diabetes" or "meal plan for type 1 diabetes" remember these will only be guidelines as we diabetics do not all react the same to foods or medications.
If you already have a meal plan please give a better picture of what you mean by exchanges.

watson4042 2011-11-13 18:15:13 -0600 Report

i take my 1st class on the 16th & it's a basic class & the dietician later on. i can't help but think a menu plan (like from the hospital menus) would be nice and easy, that way you just pick what you like…guess i'm just lookiing for the easy way out.

MEGriff1950 2011-11-13 18:33:47 -0600 Report

Watson my menu plan is a simple one and easy once I got used to measuring. I eat 45 carbs per meal, 3 t0 6 oz of meat a day and almost all the veggies I can stand. Fruit count toward your carb count except tomatoes and they count as veggies.
Great on attending the class. Once I understood about my disease the easier it became to control it.

watson4042 2011-11-13 19:10:57 -0600 Report

since i'm so new (as of 11/03/11) i'm probably jumping the gun a bit but i want to be able to control through diet and pills rather than insulin if i can. will probably feel better after my class.

Caroltoo 2011-11-13 20:02:26 -0600 Report

Watson: diet and exercise can do wonders for some of us. My doc said my 396 BG was so high there was "no way" I could do it with diet and exercise. Of course, that was a challenge to me and I accepted it. Within six weeks, before seeing my diabetic education whom I admit I put off several time, I was in a high normal range.

In retrospect, I should have stopped there. Instead I let the diabetic educator talk me into using an oral medication so that I could "eat a wider variety of the foods I loved." Well, that was a beguiling argument for me, cause I love to eat well. Net result, several years on a medication now implicated in the development of bladder cancer.

Only you know what you are willing to do to get where you want to go and I'm sure you will make a good choice.

Caroltoo 2011-11-14 14:37:55 -0600 Report

There was a recent study which linked Actos to the development of bladder cancer. I haven't read it, only know it's hit the alarmist press nationwide. Was enough to make me feel even better that I had stopped taking it some time ago.

When you talk with you doctor, also check on the side effects of medications. You can also google for side effects. Of course, all they can tell you is what they know. When I started taking Actos, it was considered to be one of newer and safe medications. Personally, it's why I avoid medications whenever possible, but there times they are really the better option. Your doc can help you sort that one out, but do ask questions until you feel comfortable with the information.

watson4042 2011-11-14 18:37:55 -0600 Report

is actos oral meds or insulin? a question off topic please…how do you give the different cups of coffee, etc to someone?

Caroltoo 2011-11-15 10:06:29 -0600 Report

Actos is an oral med that increases the cells sensitivity to insulin and thereby allows more glucose to enter the cell where it is converted to energy. It was very effective for me. I took it full strength for a couple years and half dose for several more as I regained my control.

Coffee and other gifts: you click on the person's profile picture. That takes you to their page. At the top of their feed you will see a line where you can make a comment, then on the bottom half of the box you can select one gift. I've not been able to get it to take two. The name of the gift becomes the byline under which the gift is posted. When you are finished with the comment and gift selection, you press the "reply/send" button. It posts on their page, sends them a notifying email, and also be seen on your activity feed.