Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Low Fat Diet

This week I received the following question from
I was recently diagnosed with Pre-Diabetes and I’m trying to follow a low fat diet.  I have a question I hope that you can answer.  Are sweet potatoes considered a vegetable and are they ok to eat in my diet?

All foods are acceptable in a diabetic diet. The key is just to keep it in moderation.

Sweet potatoes are considered a vegetable but they fall into the same category with all other white potatoes, green peas and corn. This is because they all contain a high amount of carbohydrates compared to other vegetables. Most vegetables contain only 5g of carbohydrates per serving where a potato is about 15g per serving.

It is OK to eat sweet potatoes. They even provide a nutrient called beta-carotene where other potatoes do not. This nutrient helps with preventing infections, colds, flu and night blindness. Vegetables are a great addition to any diet since the majority are low in calorie, carbohydrate have zero grams of fat and provide many nutrients. Since you are on a low-fat diet it is important to prevent adding too many condiments on top of vegetables because the amount of fat can quickly add up.

In conclusion, sweet potatoes are a great vegetable to eat in your diet and the only key is to monitor the intake since it is 15g of carbohydrates per 1/2 cup serving. 

Carbohydrates are important to monitor when during diabetes since they control your blood glucose and cause the spikes if you consume too much. 

To help monitor your carbohydrate and fat intake of foods, use the website foodpicker.org!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Holiday Eating

This week I received the following question from

I have diabetes and this time of year is the toughest for me.  It seems holiday treats/sweets are everywhere tempting me!  Is it ok to indulge a little?  If not, how can I build up enough will power to avoid holiday sweets?

      This time of year is tough for many. The temptation of cookies, desserts and large meals makes it hard to keep portion control in check.

      I feel that it is OK to indulge sometimes during the holiday season. Its about spending time with friends and family and celebrating the holidays. It’s just important to plan ahead for these type of events. If you know you’re going to indulge in desserts and sweets  then make sure to monitor your carbohydrate choices throughout the day to prevent any spikes in your blood glucose.

Distract Yourself…
  •      Before grabbing for a cookie or brownie try to take a 15 minute walk, read a good book or magazine or play a board game with your friends or family.
  •      At a holiday party and tempted? Find a friend or someone you want to get to know and strike up a conversation to help distract yourself from the food in the other room.
  •        If you’re tempted by the cookies and desserts you have in your home, wrap some up to share with co-workers, neighbors or mail them to friends or family for the holidays. This way they’re out of your reach and others were able to enjoy them too.

Still Tempted…
  •     Make sure you sit down and take time to eat your dessert of choice. This will allow you to savor the taste and notice the texture. It’s more likely to want more if you eat it on-the-go or while multi-tasking because you weren’t able to really focus on eating the dessert.
  •      Keep portion sizes in mind while having dessert. A serving of a brownie is a 2 inch square or 2 small cookies which equal 1 carbohydrate choice or 15 grams of carbohydrates.
  •       Really want that cookie sitting in the break room? Try sharing one with a co-worker or take half of one and if you still want more come back for the second half allowing you to still only be having 1 serving by the end of it.

Overall the holidays should be full of fun and joy. Just make sure to plan ahead and take your time eating your dessert.  

I found a few more tips on how to control holiday eating at the American Dietetic Association website. Click on the following links to get some more ideas!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

First Post


I'm a dietetic student and intern with The Ohio State University. I recently volunteered as a Nutrition Editor for http://FOODPICKER.org - a website designed to help people with diabetes. I'm looking forward to help answer questions you have regarding nutrition and diabetes. Check back for posts and links to credible nutrition articles.