Wednesday, March 9, 2011

diabetes and vegetables

Questions:  I have a very big issue when it comes to having diabetes and that is I do not eat vegetables.  I have tried.  I want control my diabetes and be around to raise my young children.  What suggestions do you have to add vegetables to my diet?

Answer:  While it is not an absolute necessity to eat tons of vegetables if you have diabetes, I'm sure all health professionals (including myself) would highly encourage it.  Vegetables are low in calories and  provide us with many disease-fighting antioxidants and phytochemicals, as well as a good dose of fiber which is good for cholesterol and blood sugar levels.  Non-starchy vegetables can also act as a free filler at meals and snacks to help fill you up without adding many extra calories or carbs.

 Usually when I show people who claim to not like a vegetables a list of non-starchy veggies, they can usually pick out at least a few that they are willing to eat.  I like to keep bagged salad mixes and precut/prewashed veggies like carrots, celery, tomatoes, broccoli and cauliflower on hand to add quick salads to lunch and/or dinner.  Maybe consider adding extra veggies into things like pastas, stews, soups, or sandwiches to "hide" the flavor of the veggies with other ingredients. If it's been a while since you've tried certain veggies, consider retrying them as our tastes do change as we get older.

 If you are absolutely opposed to all veggies you can still get some of their nutritional value, antioxidants, and phytochemicals out of vegetable or fruit/vegetable juice combinations and possibly out of dietary supplements.

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