Sunday, November 1, 2009

Thirty-ONE Days of Diabetes

I decided not to be a cop-out and to complete the full month of diabetic meal pattern eating -- thirty-ONE days versus my proposed thirty days. So, my last day, Halloween...wasn't a complete bust for being what it was: Halloween. I ended the day with something like this...

1/4 cup steel cut oats, uncooked (2 carbs)
1 Tbsp brown sugar Splenda (1 carb)
coffee with 2 Tbsp sugar-free International Delight (0 carbs)
1 kiwi (1 carb)
     Total: 4 carbs

1 servings of Terra Chips (1 1/2 carbs)
2 Nutridel cookies (1 1/2 carbs)
1 mini Butterfinger (1 carb)
     Total: 4 carbs

Evening (between 6 and 11pm):

fajitas - chicken and shrimp and all the veggies (0 carbs) - I didn't eat any tortillas!
1/2 cup beans (1 carb)
1/2 cup rice (1 carb)
1 cup salad and salsa (0 carbs)

handful of tortilla chips with salsa and a bit of queso (1 carb)
2 beers (1 1/2 carbs)
3 fun-size Kit Kats (2 carbs)
     Total: 6 1/2 carbs

TOO MUCH! AHHH! Darn candy! So my last day and meal was my worst day and meal of all 31 days. If it is any consolation for my actions, my stomach punished me for my sugary gluttony!!!

All-in-all, diabetic dieting was not simply required some planning and self-control at times (which I often times lacked). As a dietitian, those managing their diabetes through oral medications such Metformin, Glipizide, Actos, and Glyburide are at high risk for elevated blood sugars. While many patients want to avoid insulin at all costs, insulin therapy actually creates a greater degree of control for the patient. A sliding-scale insulin regimen allows for fluctuating carbohydrate intake (and quite a bit of it, at that!), while the oral meds are not so forgiving. This was a very rewarding experience, and also very humbling. I do feel like I have a better understanding of the difficulties of diabetic meal patterning and the effort it takes to balance meals and control portion sizes. Any clinician working with a diabetic population should consider putting themselves up to this challenge in order to better relate to their patients and provide them with the insight, empathy, and care that diabetes self-management requires.

It's been a few days since I graced the blog world with some research and I booked marked this interesting study earlier in the week. And all too appropriately, it's related to diabetes. A meta-analysis showed that meat intake is linked to diabetes. Specifically, high intake of processed meat may increase the risk of developing type-2 diabetes by get this...40%! This study was conducted in the US and Norway and included 12 cohort studies [1].

In addition to processed meats, red meat was linked to an increased risk of type-2 diabetes. And along the same lines, high intake of both processed and red meats increases one's risk of colorectal cancer up to 20% [1]. 

Since the outpouring of research against the safety of processed meats, we have drastically reduced and nearly eliminated our intake. While luncheon meat is inexpensive (relatively) and handy, the health risks is poses are not worth the convenience to me. Opt for all-natural peanut butter or almond butter sandwiches, tuna, chicken, or egg salad. Light on the mayonnaise, always! team finally did it. GO ILLINI!!!!!!!!!!!!! While the season is obviously a wash, watching my team whomp yesterday gave me goosebumps of excitement! SO happy for them!

This morning in our living was a picture epitomizing fall (at least to me)....

Puppy laying on a warm bed in front of the fire...chewing on an old-fashioned oats container!

I used the last of the old-fashioned oats in making my new FAVORITE breakfast (ever?)...


Happy November 1st! Enjoy a beautiful Sunday. Lily and I are off to go crazy at the dog park! Ciao!

[1]. Daniells, Stephen. Meat Linked to Increased Diabetes Risk: Meta-Analysis. Food Navigator. October 28, 2009.


  1. Well hey, now you can feel for those with diabetes on Halloween. It MUST be really difficult! I would have failed last night too. I had a Burning River PAle ale, a Lemon martini with a sugar rim, a bowl of reece's pb cup ice cream, AND 2 pieces of dove chocolate. Yikes.

    I've heard about those red and processed meat studies. I'm always wondering what kind of red meat they use. I use 90/10, but I fell like the studies don't ever control for the TYPE of red meat. As for the processed meat, the only processed meat we eat is the bacon from Trader Joe's..and it's turkey bacon!

  2. Congrats on your 31 days!! I think it's awesome you did that and your patients are lucky to have a dedicated RD like you :). By the way, Lily is sooo adorable ;) - did she dress up for Halloween??

  3. Your puppy is too cute! I made my own pumpkin butter yesterday since I've never seen it in stores -- so yummy! Congrats on completing your month of diabetic meal plan eating!