Seniors are at a greater risk of developing diabetes than younger people. Whether you are at a greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes is determined by how much sugar you have eaten in your lifetime. Because elderly people have had more opportunities to eat sugar, their chances of developing diabetes are ultimately greater. Type 1 diabetes is developed at a younger age while type 2 usually develops in middle-aged or elderly people. Once you are diagnosed with diabetes, the most important thing you can do is to keep your blood sugar levels low and minimize damage, which means watching what you eat and drink. This can be especially difficult around the holidays when you’re presented with yummy, sugary food. However, we’ve compiled a guide for handling Thanksgiving for diabetics!
What to Avoid
The most important foods to avoid at Thanksgiving for diabetics are sugary and starchy carbohydrates. These kinds of foods include bread, pasta, beans, potatoes, etc. Watch your blood sugar levels and limit your intake of these foods. Unfortunately, Thanksgiving is a holiday with a lot of starchy foods. Make sure to avoid stuffing, bread, high-carb desserts, and anything with trans fats. Your carbohydrate intake will depend on your activity level and medication. Although you want to avoid eating these foods, you should make sure that you are snacking on something every few hours to maintain your blood sugar levels.
What to Eat
Luckily for you, Thanksgiving for diabetics doesn’t have to be impossible. The best way to enjoy Thanksgiving is to eat all of your favorite foods but with substitutions. There are so many great recipes for diabetic Thanksgiving classics, and they’re fairly easy to make! Firstly, the turkey itself is a great source of lean protein for diabetics. It will keep your blood sugar at a moderate level but also keep you feeling full. You can still eat stuffing if it is made with whole-grain bread that’s high in fiber. You will also want to ensure that you are eating plenty of vegetables. Green vegetables are especially great for diabetics because they are chock-full of vitamins and minerals. A classic vegetable dish for Thanksgiving is green bean casserole! Eat up on your green beans and also enjoy any salad or other vegetables that are being served with the meal.
The most challenging food group to resist at Thanksgiving for diabetics might be dessert. But, you can still get your fix of sweets while also maintaining healthy blood sugar levels by eating certain desserts. These desserts could include assorted fruit and nuts, or maybe even a pumpkin spice cake! Low-carb dessert recipes are very easy to find, and you can find some great recipes to make or share with a loved one here. While it’s exciting that you can enjoy your favorite Thanksgiving foods, it’s important to remember that moderation is key. Your health should always come first. If you find yourself wanting to eat high-carb foods that could raise your blood sugar level, be sure to tell someone, distract yourself, or eat something else to curb your hunger!
How to Talk About Thanksgiving for Diabetics
Thanksgiving is primarily about spending time with people you are thankful for. These people care about you and want you to be healthy and happy. No matter who you are spending Thanksgiving with, you can enjoy the holiday while also participating in the most important aspect: eating! Do not be afraid to tell someone what you can’t eat ahead of time. If you know who is cooking the meal, be sure to inform them of diabetic recipes or ask if they can make alternative dishes for you. Or, bring your own dish! Being diabetic does not have to ruin your holiday!