This is the season of celebrations – festivals and weddings - a situation most diabetics consider equal to being stuck between the devil and the deep sea. Afterall, it's difficult to eat healthy when others around you are gorging on festive food and drink. Dr. Sanjiv Bhambani, Consultant Endocrinologist and Diabetologist with Moolchand Medcity helps you plan and keep your diabetes in control during these months of merriment. He also sets right the facts on artificial sweeteners that are promoted for diabetics.
Plan your diet: Dr. Sanjiv helps to draw a diet chart to help you calculate your way to good health. “There is a huge restriction on the food items a diabetic person consumes, so they are advised to follow a fixed dietary plan:
- Each intake has to be in moderation as a part of the balanced diet
- Per day calorie intake should be between 1,500-1,800 calories with a proportion of 60:20:20 between carbohydrates, fats and proteins, respectively
- Artificial sweeteners can be used in cakes and sweets for diabetic people (in moderation)
- Keep a check on over-intake of dry fruits
- Diabetics should follow with 3 meals in a day with a good meal plan
- Have lots of fluid
- Have at least two seasonal fruits and three vegetables in a diet plan
- Limit intake of alcohol
- One tea spoon of methi seeds soaked overnight in 100 ml of water is very effective in controlling diabetes
- Intake of 6 almonds (soaked overnight) are also helpful in keeping a check on diabetes”
- Do not stop exercising
“Diabetic people are supposed to exercise regularly but due to winters they may tend to remain indoors as during this, temperature of the places like Delhi, Chandigarh, Jammu dip to near zero,” says Dr. Sanjiv.
Here are some alternatives to give up your laziness and avoid winter and post festive blues:
“Working out in a gym: Gyms offer many ways to keep moving indoors, from aerobics classes to weight machine circuits. Studies have shown that weight training in diabetics helps tone muscles and keeps bones strong and healthy.
Exercising at home: It's easy to be active even without leaving home like one can simply use stairs for exercising.
Housework: Routine household work can be a good exercise and you will end up with a neat and tidy house in a barter deal.”
The Doctor's Take on Artificial Sweeteners
Artificial sweeteners are targeted as the best friend for diabetics or those who are trying to prevent diabetes. But how much do these sweeteners really help? “One of the biggest myths that diabetic people are following is that artificial sweeteners are best supplements of sugar and do not harm,” says the diabetologist.
He explains how excess intake of artificial sweeteners affects your body: “The fact is that the excessive intake of artificial sweetener (more than 6 pills on a daily basis) can be more dangerous, as it can lead to frequent headaches, hypertension, menstrual problem, weight gain, allergies and cancer as well.”
What should you keep in mind if you want to use artificial sweeteners? Dr. Sanjiv sets the parameters on these sweeteners, “Artificial sweetener basically limits the calorie content of sugar. The permissible intake of these pills should be less than 6 pills and should never exceed 5 per day as it has side-effects and is contra-indicative in phynyl ketoneurea patients. However, moderation is the key to survive in a better way. Diabetes can be managed if the doctor and the patient work in conjunction.”
*Image courtesy: © Thinkstock photos/ Getty Images
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