Today, we have a fun, guest post to share with you! As November is National Diabetes Month, we asked Chef David Boyd of Down to Earth Cuisine to share some helpful tips for eating with Diabetes, as well as a delicious recipe that you can make at home. Enjoy!
A big part of what I do as a personal chef at Down to Earth Cuisine is to create meals for those with specialized dietary needs. Recent studies show that over 9% of Americans live with diabetes. Knowing some delicious recipes, and more importantly, some diet fundamentals, can help make living with diabetes a little bit easier. Below, are five helpful tips for the diabetic diet, as well as a recipe for Mediterranean Chicken.
1. Studies have shown, that Cinnamon may improve blood sugar levels! That’s right, cinnamon, if eaten consistently every day, may aid in the regulation of your blood sugar. Try adding in a spoonful of cinnamon with your morning oats. Alternatively, you could mix it in with a half of glass of milk or water for the same benefits.
2. Get your grains! According to the American Diabetes Association, Whole grains and fiber rich foods can help to keep your digestive track regulated. This is important to keep your blood sugar levels in check. With whole grains, it takes longer for the starches to metabolize and convert in to sugars, which can help avoid sugar spikes.
3. Eat more fermented foods! In an article published by Diabetic Kitchen, it was found that Fermented foods are great for regularity and proper nutrition absorption. The probiotics in fermented foods along with the tons of vitamins, folate and polyphenols are one of the best ways to balance your overall digestive system. It is hypothesized that up to 90% of your immune system lives in your gut! Include fermented foods in your daily diet and you may be amazed at the changes in your overall health. Try kombucha, organic yogurt, lacto-fermented kraut or kimchi to experience other great places to start diving in to the cultured foods world.
4. Get a buddy! Just like in losing weight or developing other positive habits, a buddy system will help to hold you accountable. This goes a long way in the motivation department!
5. Keep track of your diets! Use a chart to track your eating habits and the results they give. This is great way to show you what works and doesn’t work for your body.
A great recipe that is both tasty and good for those sticking to a diabetes-friendly diet is my Mediterranean Chicken Dish:
Mediterranean Chicken – Serves 4
4 4oz portions of chicken breast
12-16 oz cherry tomato
4 oz fresh basil
2 tbsp capers
½ cup Castelvetrano Olives
2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup white wine or juice from 1 large lemon
1 tsp ea salt and pepper
2 cup cooked brown rice (or you could use fingerling potatoes)
Using a serrated knife cut all tomatoes and olives in half. Season chicken with half of salt and pepper. In a large sauté pan (10 inch), heat the oil over medium high heat until just starts to smoke. Add in chicken carefully then turn down the heat a bit. You should hear a sizzle but not a popping noise; this will let you know you’re at the right temperature. Cook for 5 minutes without turning or touching the chicken. Using tongs flip the chicken (you should have a nice sear by now) and add in your tomatoes, capers and olives. Cook for 2 more minutes then add your wine. Cook for another minute while preparing basil. Tear basil with hands to small pieces and add to pan. Add the rest of salt and pepper and serve over the rice.
* Eating raw or undercooked foods and unpasteurized juices and milk poses an increased risk of foodborne illness, especially for vulnerable people.