Monday, November 09, 2009

Being Borderline Diabetic...

...is really the same as being diabetic. I have to watch the carbs, cook and eat carefully, and test my blood sugar. The only difference is that I only check my blood sugar 2 times a week, fasting (in the morning before breakfast). (I made a big mistake on Saturday - I pricked my finger while sewing, and thought, "why not use this little blood to do a blood test?" It was right after lunch.... totally freaked me out how high it was! But this morning it was normal. Whew!)

I've learned how to "tweak" so many recipes, added so many new recipes to my repertoire, and continue to try new things - while I know I'm eating healthier, it just get so frustrating. I just hate it that so many good foods are so bad for me.

What does a diabetic eat for breakfast? I would love to keep working on this list - it's rather limiting, and you can't eat eggs all the time. I don't care that much for oatmeal, but I'll eat it just to have variety. What I really need is recipes for work mornings - things I can grab and take with me.

1. eggs - fixed every way you can think of
a. egg/cheese quesadillas on whole grain tortillas
b. migas (eggs scrambled with tortilla chips and salsa)
c. scrambled
d. "fried" (with nonstick cooking spray)
e. egg "muffins"
f. Huevos Rancheros
g. Sausage-Egg Breakfast Quesadillas
h. Mexican Soufflé


2. oatmeal - with additions like pumpkin purée or peanut butter
3. whole grain waffles - spread with cream cheese (Kraft makes some good flavors)
4. whole grain pancakes - with sugar-free syrup (Carey's tastes the best to me)


I started a list of general changes and tweaks - and will keep adding to it as I go. But it's been a long process, and continues to change every day. I fall off the wagon and climb back on all the time - you really have to take it one meal, one snack at a time.

Changes and Tweaks:

1. morning coffee - I use Splenda and sugar-free Coffeemate
2. white flour is no longer found in my kitchen - I use whole wheat, even for thickening gravy
3. Splenda granular - I now buy it by the "5-lb." bag, and the canister of sugar that used to be refilled monthly now gets refilled once a year.
4. fresh vegetables - we used to stock up on canned vegetables, which are still fine, but we rarely use them any more. I cook more fresh vegetables than ever before.
5. fewer potatoes - potatoes are my favorite "vegetable," and I've relegated them to an afterthought on most menus - if we have them, I deliberately make half of what I used to make, and serve Don the much larger serving.
6. substitutes for potatoes - I used to have potatoes as a side dish with nearly every meal (unless we had pasta - but that's another change). My mind still wants a white or yellow starch - so I use brown rice, turnips, cauliflower, okra, cabbage, sweet potatoes (sparingly), squash, corn, and other non-potato vegetables.
7. Dreamfields pasta - since it has a lower glycemic value (fewer digestible carbs), that's all we eat. I no longer buy any other kind. I wish, though, that Dreamfields made orzo or couscous.
8. If any ready-made product, such as ice cream, pancake syrup, or whipped topping, comes in a sugar-free version, that's what I buy. The only exceptions so far have been sweet pickles and jelly. The sugar-free versions of those were just nasty.
9. brown rice - I no longer buy any kind of white rice, with the exception of Uncle Ben's Converted - which, in addition to having a lower glycemic value than regular white rice, is good for making Spanish Rice.
10. fresh baby carrots as a substitute for potato chips - I have to have something with my sandwiches for lunch, and these give me that crunch.
11. popcorn as an occasional substitute for potato chips

This post will change often, as I learn more things about eating as a borderline diabetic. I'm open to all suggestions and ideas.

8 comments:

SarahKate said...

What about grains like bulgar or quinoa for side dishes? I make these a lot and they are so satisfying! It must be hard to have to think so much about what you eat, but you've provided lots of useful tips here!

heather @ what's blooming this week said...

Hi Cyndi
Thanks for the info. I'm in the same place with my sugars, just haven't made the jump to tracking it daily. Really should since both parents and two siblings have Type 2 diabetes. I think I better call the doctor and get on this bandwagon.
Thanks for the wakeup call.

The Cookbook Junkie said...

When I had gestational diabetes I mostly ate eggs for breakfast too. Sometimes I would make french toast with Lite 35 bread and just a drizzle of agave nectar.

My other breakfast was a high fiber English muffin or Lite 35 bread with sugar-free jam and lite butter. I love Dickinson's sugar-free jams. They are the best that I found.

If I didn't want eggs or something sweet I would have a sandwich (ham, turkey, etc) on the Lite 35 bread. There are only 17 carbs in two slices of that bread (5 grams of fiber and 3 grams of protein).

Julie said...

whole grain/wheat tortilla w/ 1 Tbsp peanut butter and a banana
Protein in the morning is so hard for me. I get sticks of cheese (approx 1 oz) and try to have one of those. I am not one to get up and either want to eat or want to fix something to eat. Sometimes its a piece of toast (whole wheat/grain), a little cottage cheese (protein!) and a small amount of fruit. Oh and turkey sausage (the links) are good.

Pam said...

Very nice blog you have and Congrats on the foodie blogroll!

Enjoy!

Anonymous said...

Cyndi,
I've been a diabetic for over 10 yrs. I watch what I eat, but am not a fanatic about it. While it's important to avoid spikes in blood sugar, the real test is an A1C test which shows what has happened over the last 90 days. I'm able to keep that in bounds even though I occasionally eat too much pasta. Good luck to you. Toni

Rhandi said...

Good for you Cyndi- you are definitely on the right track. I am a Nutritionist and a personal trainer and when I was pregnant with my oldest (who is 3), I got gestational diabetes. It was really hard and I had to be very disciplined. Breakfast was by far the hardest meal of the day. I have eaten eggs every possible way and sometimes you can only eat eggs so much (and I even love them).

If you can move away from conventional breakfasts a little bit, I have some suggestions that saved me.
Rice Cakes- with either peanut butter or a little cheddar cheese and some turkey (these are also great snacks)
Quinoa, was a great suggestion above, which is also great for breakfast and has much more protein then other grains. To sweeten it you can add a sugar free sweetner of choice or Agave.
Good luck and feel free to email me if you have any questions (rhandi@gmail.com) or you can contact me through my blog (which isn't always figure or diabetes friendly).
When I was eating as a diabetic, I have NEVER felt better in my entire life, although it is not easy- the extra health benefits and energy make it all worth it. Thanks for the reminder!

Indu said...

my husband is diabetic and his doc says there is no such thing as 'borderline'. you are or you are not. my hubby also happens to be a big foodie, so it is a challenge to satisfy his taste buds and not worsen his sugar level.