The ultimate brain food is glucose. Maintaining a consistent supply of glucose to the brain is regulated by by food intake, insulin, glucagon, liver and other processes. Maintaining the consistent glucose supply is an automatic process for a person without diabetes.. This automatic process is disrupted in someone with diabetes who has to deal with a dysfunctional insulin and glucagon system. One major stumbling block for controlling blood glucose levels in someone with diabetes is how to adjust food intake , primarily carbohydrates , to match their limited or non- existent insulin supply.
The foundation for controlling glucose levels is supported by three pillars , recognition of foods that contain carbohydrate , controlling portion size and maintaining consistent day to day carbohydrate intake.
Many of us get lost with trying to remember serving size , grams per serving , scales , labels , measuring cups and etc. . It is just very difficult to move all of the information from the intellectual part of our brain to the actually doing it section in our brain. I am convinced that the daily practice of an action is necessary for attaining excellence in preforming any task.
Repetition , Repetition , Repetition, Repetition
In my diabetes practice I understood the general principles of diet management but relied on dietitians to hammer the details into the daily habits of my patients. This became a little more personal after I developed pre-diabetes and discovered that diabetes is much easier to talk about than it to deal with on a day to day basis.
I would like to give you a little home work assignment before we proceed.
Use breakfast as your test meal . Decide how many servings of carbohydrate your dietitian ask you eat for that meal . It is probable between 3 and 5 servings. Write down your favorite breakfast foods and the amount you usually eat . Go to our cabinet and read the food labels and focus on the carbohydrate content and try to determine the amount needed for each serving.
You may have noticed . Having diabetes interferes with you daily life. So what, get over it and just do the job.
Over the years I have relied on the Lilly diet sheets for help. Please go to their web site and review their "Food list for meal planning" and "My carbohydrate guide ". The" Meal planning options " below was copied from the lilly website. The hand , fist , and thumb idea may help simplify your food management. Think about it , your hands are usually with you .
Click on" Diabetes Resources " then click " downloadable materials" and download and read, daily meal planning guide My carbohydrate guide.
Tomorrow more discussion of the hand, fist and thumb idea and the Mediterranean diet.
have fun read food labels when you are bored. Dr. Calder