Tips for healthy eating for diabetics - opinion

Tips for healthy eating for diabetics – opinion

November marks Diabetes Awareness Month, and an opportunity for us to discuss how we can support (those) who suffer from diabetes.

Diabetes and prediabetes are spread throughout Canada, affecting more than 11 million Canadians. No matter what type of diabetes you have, the condition can be troublesome. But there is one thing in common that can help make the condition more manageable – healthy eating.

It is known that maintaining a balanced diet helps in better controlling the levels of sugar and glucose in the blood.

It can be hard to know where to begin when it comes to a balanced diet, but I’m here to help. Here are some of my top tips for managing diabetes with nutrition.

Prepare your meals ahead of time to better manage diabetes. Meal preparation can seem challenging, especially if you are new to the practice. Planning your meals can help give you some control over managing your diabetes and is a great trick to help you spend less time in the kitchen and in the grocery store each week.

By planning and preparing your meals in advance, you may be less inclined to eat foods that are not good for your diet. Planning your meals in advance doesn’t have to be complicated. One benefit of meal planning is that it helps you stick to a schedule by preparing all of your meals in advance.

For people with diabetes, consistency and following a routine is important because setting specific times to eat can help control blood sugar levels and help manage insulin.

Carbohydrate counting. Carbohydrate counting is about focusing on the content of any carbohydrates consumed and setting daily goals. Since carbohydrates can raise blood sugar levels, it is important to keep in mind how many carbohydrates are eaten at each meal.

For example, eating too many carbohydrates may lead to hyperglycemia, while not eating enough carbohydrates may lead to hypoglycemia. The good news is that there are tons of carbohydrates to help you maintain that balance.

If you like baking, try substituting a traditional pastry crust for phyllo dough when making pancakes or waffles if you need to cut back on carbs. Look for foods that are less processed. Some research has shown that highly processed or ultra-processed foods have been associated with an increased risk of diabetes. When it comes to choosing an afternoon dessert, try choosing orange slices instead of orange soda.

Find your own path. Feeding may not always be a smooth ride and it can come with some bumps in the road. But you can always get to your destination, especially with the help of a registered dietitian.

Just like a GPS, registered dietitians can help you map your trip and give you two routes to take you from point A to point B. And always remember that on those days when you might need a detour, your registered dietitian is always there to support you.

Whether you were recently diagnosed with diabetes or have lived with the condition your whole life, it can be difficult to find the right balance when it comes to nutrition.

As a registered dietitian, I provide a range of services, such as one-on-one or in-store consultations, store tours, and recipe ideas. To find out more, book a 15-minute exploratory call with me at

Here’s a delicious salad recipe that can get you started:

Pear and Walnut Salad


• 1 shallot, minced

• 1/4 cup Splendido white spice with Modena balsamic vinegar

• 2 tablespoons of Omega Oil PC Blue Menu

• 1/2 teaspoon honey

• 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

• 1/8 teaspoon salt

• 1 sachet of organic arugula for children

• 1 bosque pear, thinly sliced

• 1/4 cup toasted and coarsely chopped walnuts

• 1/4 cup PC Blue Menu soft goat cheese, crumbled


1. In a small bowl, whisk together shallots, balsamic spices, oil, honey, pepper, and salt.

2. Place the romaine, pear, and walnut half in a large bowl. Sprinkle with sauce. Toss to coat. Top with the remaining goat cheese and walnuts.

Joy Zhuang is a registered dietitian with Peter’s Your Independent Grocer in Kelowna.

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