March 22, 2023

Thanksgiving strategies for people with diabetes

From Newsmax

Feasting on Thanksgiving meals presents special problems for the over 30 million Americans with diabetes and their family members who may prepare the meals.

“People with diabetes often face extras hurdles during the holidays,” Jill Weisenberger, RDN, author of “Diabetes Weight Loss—Week by Week,” tells Newsmax. “Your regular schedules are thrown off kilter, your to-do list is enormous and family gatherings can be challenging. For those struggling with diabetes, the added burden of facing the groaning holiday buffet table filled with too many choices and an excess of calories, saturated fats, carbohydrates and sodium can be overwhelming.”

Weisenberger says that it’s important to make good choices when faced with the prospect of such overwhelming variety.

“Try to keep your selection of foods to those that really scream holiday to you,” she suggests. “For example, skip the cheese and crackers since they are not holiday specific. If cornbread and macaroni and cheese are available all year long, take a pass, too. But if pumpkin pie or cranberry sauce are your favorite Thanksgiving foods, make room for small amounts.”

Weisenberger cautions that portion control is crucial and those with diabetes may want to consult with their doctors or nutritionists to establish safe limits of their favorite foods.

According to the Joslin Diabetes Center, here are ways you can safely navigate the holiday feasting:

*Start the day off with a good breakfast so you won’t be tempted to overeat.

*Nibble on raw vegetables with low-fat dips rather than salted nuts or cheese and crackers.

*Choose white meat rather than dark turkey, without the skin.

*If you are going to drink a glass or two of wine, do it with dinner rather than starting earlier.

*Don’t take home leftovers!

*Take a walk after dinner.

If you are the one hosting the holiday feast that may include family or friends with diabetes, Weisenberger offers these timely trips:

*Focus on lots of vegetables. Add mushrooms, celery, onions and more to your stuffing.

*Mixed mashed potatoes with pureed cauliflower to lighten this side dish. Leave the skin on the potatoes to provide extra fiber.

*Use a gravy separator to remove most of the fat from pan drippings before making your gravy.

*Skip the traditional green bean casserole in favor of steamed green beans with garlic and toasted almonds.

*Make your own cranberry sauce with fresh cranberries. Canned cranberry sauce is high in sugar.

*Make an apple pie with just one crust or skip the crust completely in favor of a pumpkin custard.

© 2018 NewsmaxHealth. All rights reserved.

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