So, I’d like to relay a short conversation I just had with one of my students.  We have been talking about basic nutrition in class the last couple of days, and as always I get off topic a little bit (go figure, right?).  Anyway, he comes in this morning and it goes like this:

Student: You had me perplexed yesterday with what you said.

Me: What did I say? (a little warily, I might add)

Student: You said that there is no such thing as a specialized diabetic diet.  That got me, but then I started to realize that you were completely right.  I’ve got all these diabetic cookbooks and such, and it’s really about just eating healthy.

Me: Go on….

Student: I guess, you see all this stuff and people tell  you these things, and you just get wrapped up.

And the fact of the matter is, that my student is right.  People have all sorts of illnesses and issues.  I’m fairly certain that all of you either are or know a diabetic person.  And they get advice and marketing about what and how they should eat from all different angles.  When the simple point is is just that they have to eat better!  There is no such thing as a diabetic friendly food.  There is no food that a diabetic cannot have.  They just have to be a little more careful than you and I, is all.  Where as you and I have the wiggle room to have a bad meal or day (or week), they do not.  Their bodies just cannot compensate as efficiently.  But the same basic rules apply.

Carbs – No more than 40-50% of the total diet and 3/4 of those should be complex carbs.  WHOLE grains, vegetables, etc.  Avoid the simple and processed sugars with the exceptions of fruit and milk.

Fat – 25-30% of the diet.  Yes, that much.  Eat good fat foods like nuts, seeds, coconut and olive oils.  Milk and eggs are good too.

Protein – 20-30% of the total intake.  Good complete proteins like meat, milk, eggs and cheese.  Added to good plant sources like nuts, seeds, and legumes (beans, peas, lentils, etc.).

See, it’s not that hard.  Eat balanced, eat well.  Since my student has become more in tuned with his body and diet, he has stated that so many of his numbers have improved and that his medications have been significantly reduced with the possibility of coming off of some of them in the near future.  How proud of a day is that?  Who DOESN’T want less meds, right?  I could not be happier for them and hope that this reaches some of you to pass on to  the people that you know, as well.  Be healthy and eat well.