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Enjoying winter comfort foods if you have diabetes

Ah, those long, dark winter evenings! Those words can create visions of a cozy fire in the fireplace, a good book, and a big bowl of greasy potato chips with sour cream dip. During winter months, it’s natural to crave comfort foods that contain a lot of saturated fat or sugar. This type of winter eating can create major health concerns for many of us, but especially for diabetics.

If you have diabetes, you know that controlling your blood sugar demands making wise food choices, even when choosing comfort foods. Here are a few ideas:

  • Eat warm foods. They tend to be more satisfying in the winter. Try making your own soup (so you can control the ingredients) and drinking sugar-free hot tea instead of soda.
  • Opt for low-fat substitutes for dairy and meats.
  • When possible, use olive oil instead of butter. Olive oil does not have the health risks that come with saturated animal fats.
  • Use whole grains. Warm whole grain pasta dishes can be healthy, satisfying, and easy to cook. Just add veggies and a tomato sauce that is low in sodium and sugar.
  • Roasted root vegetables can star in a filling dish full of fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

But what about that annual athletic indulgence—the Super Bowl party? Smart planning and following these tips will help you have a healthy and enjoyable afternoon:

  • If you’re going out for a meal while you watch the game, eat a healthy snack before you leave home. That will make it easier to choose healthy options and smaller portions.
  • Skip the soda and alcohol. Drink water instead.
  • Make a healthy dish to share. This can be satisfying on two levels—you’ll have a great meal and the joy of sharing it with others.
  • Focus on the football, friends, or family instead of the food.

For more information about maintaining a healthy and satisfying diet if you have diabetes, please visit:

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