Living with diabetes

Just being mindful of what you eat makes a big difference


It’s the special occasions like weddings, parties, religious fasts and holidays that cause even your best-thought- out diet plans to go for a toss and your sugar levels to fluctuate. Here’s a back-up plan for times when you’ll need one the most.

Partying and dining out

It is very important to lead a happy life even if you have diabetes. This helps in managing your stress which is helpful in normalising sugar levels. No two people lead the same lifestyle. Your routine, meal schedules, snacks/food choices, exercise/activity level affect your sugar control. You should have a tailor-made diet plan based on your lifestyle
, preferences, activity level, associated medical conditions and treatment goals.

Ask yourself: How often do you eat out?

If your answer to the question is ‘very often’, then look for restaurants which offer diet/health food or low-fat choices. These days, restaurants do serve healthy vegetable juices along with healthy starters and meals. Some even provide the nutritive value [calories, proteins, fats and carbohydrates] of different dishes.

  • Calorie budgeting: If you plan to go out for dinner then budget your total caloric requirement. Eat a light lunch comprising of salads, fruit and yoghurt.
  • If you have to eat out at dinner plan your day’s other meals such as breakfast and lunch. Eat a low-fat breakfast like a bowl of cereal with toned milk or a sandwich. Include plenty of vegetables in the form of salads for lunch along with soup, chapatis, dal and vegetables.
  • Diabetes should not stop you from socialising or attending parties, weddings, picnics and other celebratory events. You need not completely give up all your favourite foods. The key is to make a variety of healthy food choices and limit portion.
  • Eat before you leave: Eat a healthy snack before leaving the house e.g. sprouts and fruits, buttermilk and bhel, a sandwich, oats, multi-grain biscuits or a roasted snack.
  • Plan your meal: Check out all the foods available at the party or browse through the menu card at the restaurant. Mentally decide what and how much you will eat. Select foods and portions that fit into your meal plan.
  • Cook a healthy dish at home and bring the healthy dish to the party to share. After you have filled your plate, move away from the buffet table. Don’t snack on appetisers while chatting.
  • Take your time to eat and relish the flavours. You tend to eat less if you eat slowly.
  • Drink lots of water instead of alcohol or carbonated drinks—it has zero calories and is healthy!
  • Remove the cream/butter and extra frills from desserts and the fatty parts and skin from meat dishes.
  • Participate actively in the party games and dancing. Circulate more among friends and family rather than among the buffet tables.


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