How diabetics can enjoy the festive season – what to follow

Living with diabetes and worried about maintaining stable blood sugar levels this Christmas? Do not worry! In the following article, we will give you important tips that diabetics should follow during festive occasions. Managing your blood sugar levels can be challenging, especially when the festive season tempts you with an array of delicious dishes and delicious desserts. It will be crucial to pay attention to your dietary choices and prioritize your health during this time. With Ganeshotsav just around the corner, here are seven simple tips to effectively manage your diabetes:
Also read: Expert tips for you and your family to eat right and manage diabetes

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Remember these dos and don’ts for diabetes diet during festivals:

1. Plan your meals in advance:

Celebrations often tempt people to neglect their health and dietary needs, but diabetics cannot afford such negligence. Although it may seem restrictive, it is important for diabetics to have a well-defined meal plan. The more they know about what and how much they consume, the better they can manage their blood sugar levels. If necessary, seek guidance from an expert to understand what to include or exclude from your diet.

2. Don’t skip meals:

The busyness of the holidays can eat into your time, causing you to overlook the importance of regular meals. Skipping meals can have a significant impact on blood sugar levels in diabetics. Therefore, no matter how busy your schedule is, prioritize meals and avoid skipping meals.

3. Hydration is essential:

Keep yourself hydrated by sipping water throughout the day and it is important to maintain a consistent water intake. Drinking water not only contributes to overall health, but has also been linked to reduced calorie intake and lower sugar, salt and cholesterol levels. It can also help curb your cravings for sugary drinks that pose a risk to your well-being. Avoid sugary drinks like soft drinks and canned juice, Fresh juice, as they can cause rapid increases in blood sugar. Instead, choose low or sugar-free alternatives such as water, unsweetened tea, coffee, herbal tea and lemon water (without sugar) to quench your thirst. Alcohol consumption can compromise blood sugar control, making it unsuitable for diabetics. Provide non-alcoholic options like soups and fresh buttermilk to meet everyone’s needs.
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4. Monitor your meals:

Be aware of your food choices and avoid indulging yourself, regardless of the occasion or celebration. Your health should always come first, even in happy moments.

5. Embrace healthy fats:

Include monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats such as almonds, walnuts, avocados and olive oil in your daily diet. These beneficial fats help maintain cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease. Diabetics may need to follow specific dietary guidelines, such as a high-fiber or low-fat diet.

6. Exercise consistently:

Exercise regularly for at least 30 minutes daily. Brisk walking is a good form of exercise. Prioritize physical activity, regardless of whether it is an ordinary day or a festive occasion. This is especially crucial for diabetics, as regular exercise increases insulin sensitivity, effectively regulates diabetes and plays a significant role in maintaining optimal blood sugar levels, while reduce the risk of heart disease and nerve damage.

7. Avoid sweets made from refined flour:

Whether it’s a festival or not, diabetics should steer clear of sweets made with sugar. It is also advisable to avoid artificial sweeteners. Instead, choose a natural sweetener like Stevia powder to prepare sweets, as it does not compromise on taste. Also, switch to whole grain flour and avoid refined ingredients like Maida (refined wheat flour) and sugar when preparing sweets. Wholemeal flour from grains such as jowar (sorghum) can be used for healthier options. Excessive consumption can lead to elevated blood sugar levels.

About the Author: Fauziya Ansari is a Dietitian at Apollo Spectra Mumbai.

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