This is the first of 3 classes I will be getting on Nutritional Management. There are a lot of things many of us already know, but I did have a few Ah-Ha moments and it never hurts to review. Things are changing constantly and keeping up can be a full time job.
We have come a long way. In a 1917 medical text book published by Hill and Eckman, the prescribed treatment for reducing sugar was a 48 hour diet of whiskey and black coffee. The whiskey was not needed, but provided some calories to keep the patient "comfortable" while being starved. Wow!
I had a couple of phrases that stuck, and the first one is:
"A goal without a plans is just a wish"
This is so true, and why these classes really help. They give some practical steps we can take to help us reach our goals.
First, we were asked to set some small goals. Things we felt we could manage.
I chose to:
1) Monitor better
2)eat right (meaning amount and balance)
4)Set up a daily schedule to help me maintain a routine.
You can choose your own goals based on what you want to accomplish, but she wanted us to start thinking of these goals, so we could take from the classes things to help us meet these goals.
So…back to the nutrition part.
Our first point was that every food type has a job. We need carbs, proteins, and fats because they each do something for us. That is why we need balance. So eliminating one is not really the best way to approach this. We need to strike a balance. You should sit with a dietitian to establish your balance, but a general ratio is
Protein = 15-20% of total calories
Fat = 25-35% of total calories
Carbohydrates = 45-65% of total calories
When you know that each gram of:
Protein = 4 calories
Fat = 9 calories
Carbohydrate = 4 calories
Alcohol = 7 calories
Sugar Alcohols = 2 calories
Then you are armed with numbers to help you mange the calories based on the grams you intake. Your personal calorie intake would be established by a dietitian. If any of you are familiar with Toma's book, this is a lot of how he works his program.
Here are the general groups and a little bit about each one.
We eat far too much in our typical diets. We do need it, and should get our sources from lean, trimmed meats and plant sources such as beans. The advantage of eating plant sources is that it reduces your intake of cholesterol which we do not need to consume because our liver produces it already. The other caution of too much protein in our diets is that our kidneys are prone to damage, and too much protein can lead to kidney or renal diseases.
Saturated fats are the ones that are more solid at room temperature, such as animal fat, butters and cheese. These and trans fats (which are hydroginated oils) should be kept as low as possible. These also include Palm, Palm kernel and Coconut oils.
Polyunsaturated and Monounsaturated oils are your better choices and are generally liquid at room temperature. These include olive oil and canola oil.
Simple Carbohydrates include things like refined sugar, honey, ripe fruits and the lactose in dairy products. These tend to break down to glucose quickly and should be moderated.
Complex carbohydrates are also called starch and they include items such as whole grains, potatoes, breads, legumes and vegetables such as corn and peas. These usually have fiber in larger quantities that help slow down the glucose break down, and thus give a slower, more even rise in your BG levels.
A cute way she put the benefits of fiber was:
"Fiber is like coupons, you can get more." What she meant is that if you eat a food that is high in fiber that has higher carbohydrates, you can eat more of that food because the fiber helps reduce the amount of glucose conversion. She will get more into how to determine this "coupon value" in our label reading class.
There is soluble fiber that our body breaks down and insoluble which our body does not utilze. Soluble is what may help reduce your cholesterol levels. Insoluabel is what helps you stay regular and cleans your digestive system.
MEN: 19-50 years = 38 grams per day
50 & up = 30 grams per day
WOMEN: 19-50 years = 25 grams per day
50 & up = 21 grams per day
One caution, if you decide to add fiber to your diet, do it gradually. If you do it too quickly or suddenly, it can have the opposite effect and make you constipated as it is an absorber of fluids.
Because we are at a higher risk of high blood pressure, we are encouraged to monitor our sodium intake. That doesn't just mean what we add to our food at the table. Start reading the labels and see what the total sodium intake is. You will be amazed that your breakfast cereal will most likely have a higher sodium count per serving than a serving of potato chips. The recommended daily allowance for an adult is 1,500 mg or less. So watch those processed foods and deserts. I have to be honest, I skim that on my label readings, so now I have to look at it more closely.
We also received the new UPDATED exchange book "Choose Your Foods" from the ADA and a convenient one page brochure "The First Step in Diabetes Meal Planning" where you can write your meal planning goals and post it on the frige or someplace you will see it. You can get these from the ADA, just go to their webiste www.diabetes.org or call (800) 342-2383 to get your copy. I know this was my bible when I first was diagnosed.
Sorry these are so long, but they cover so much great stuff. Each class is 2 hours long and I am learning a lot. I'm glad so many of you have enjoyed them.
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