Healthy Hollywood: Fab Food Friday – Take Preventative Action Against Diabetes!

Paula Deen is seen the 'Live With Kelly' taping at the ABC Lincoln Center Studios on December 5, 2011 in New York City Paula Deen is seen the 'Live With Kelly' taping at the ABC Lincoln Center Studios on December 5, 2011 in New York City

Butter-loving celebrity chef Paula Deen set off a hailstorm of controversy after she announced her diabetes diagnosis. Deen’s Southern-style kitchen is famous for its fatty, decadent recipes – hardly the ingredients to a healthy lifestyle – especially if you are diabetic.

While Deen has yet to give details on how and if she’ll overhaul her show and cook up healthier meals/more diabetic-friendly meals, there is a positive to take from this food debacle. People are talking about diabetes and thinking about ways to change their eating habits to take preventative action.

Over 25 million Americans have type 2 diabetes and nearly 25 percent of the population are believed to have prediabetes – a condition of slightly elevated blood sugar levels that often develops into diabetes within 10 years. Yet, only 4 percent of those folks know. Scary numbers, indeed! So, it’s important for us all to get better educated!

First off, it’s good to remember, diabetes is not a culinary death sentence. Yes, it’s time to nix the fast foods and high sugar junk (but shouldn’t we all do that anyway)! “A healthy meal plan for people with diabetes is generally the same as a healthy diet for anyone – low in fat (especially saturated and trans fat), moderate in salt and sugar, with meals based on whole grain foods, vegetables and fruits,” reveals nutritionist Keri Glassman of New York City’s Nutritious Life.

Keri shares with Healthy Hollywood 10 tips to help diabetes-proof your life!

1. A vegetarian diet can help lower the risk of type 2 diabetes.
2. Include dried beans (like kidney or pinto beans) and lentils into your meals.
3. Cut back on high calorie snack foods and desserts like chips, cookies, cakes and full-fat ice cream.
4. Opt for non-fat dairy, such as skim milk, non-fat yogurt and non-fat cheese.
5. Choose liquid oils for cooking instead of solid fats that can be high in saturated and trans fat.
6. Add a little vinegar to daily menu, such as vinegar-based salad dressing. Vinegar helps slow the rate at which body absorbs sugar from food.
7. Cinnamon and other spices and herbs are a great alternative to using butter, salt, and processed meats to add flavor to food.
8. Opt for a high soluble fiber cereal, such as steel-cut oatmeal, which helps to make blood sugar happy because fiber is digested slowly.
9. Try and substitute hearty veggies, like eggplant, spinach, portabella mushrooms, and zucchini for the meat in your favorite meat-based recipes.
10. Eating too much of even healthful foods can lead to weight gain. Watch your portion sizes.

For more nutrition tips, check out www.nutritiouslife.com.

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