Attention all my diabetic friends! Enjoy this Festival of Light and Sweets. Despair not folks as the good news is that after all sweets are not taboo for you all! Did you hear or read right? Yes you did! It’s not the sugar free sweets I’m referring to but the actual sugar sweet! Rather sugar free sweets can be more dangerous and misleading than having an actual sugar sweet.
The trick lies in the choice of sweets and also tweaking your menu for the day you decide to have some sweet.
What actually matters for diabetics is the total amount of carbohydrates taken rather than the source to maintain their blood sugar levels. In any case you do consume almost 50%-55% of your total calories as carbs which come from the so called ‘diabetic food’ comprising cereals, pulses, fruits and vegetables and milk and milk products. Now, in order to appease your sweet tooth, all you need to do is to swap the sweet with an equivalent amount of carb containing food item you would have had either from a roti or a bowl of pulse or say from a serving or two of fruits or milk. You would need to have some idea of the amount of carbs in various foods to be able to do this swapping. A serving of cereal like a chapati or a bowl of dal or a glass of milk normally contain about 15-17 grams of carbohydrate, which is also considered as one unit of carb. Equivalent amount of carbs would also come from 3 tsps of sugar. Most of the Indian sweets which are prepared from either cereal, plus or milk would comprise almost 25-30 gms of carbs. This means to be able to have one sweet you would have to forego either 2 servings of fruits or 1.5 serve of pulse or 1.5 serving of bread or chapati.
You could also opt for some home made sweets made with lesser sugar or a smaller portion size. Another way would be to make wise choice of sweets like the ones without syrup or excess sugar, e.g. A rasgulla or a khoya barfi.
Here are some simple tips to help you indulge and also maintain your sugar levels.
– avoid very juicy or syrupy sweets or with excess sugar contents.
– opt for home made sweets if possible
– stick to the golden rule of ‘ moderation’
– choose to have the sweet in the day time, so that you would have the margin to make adjustments with your balance carbs.
– avoid sugar free substitutes as they can be misleading and harmful too.
– avoid high fat foods or those deep fried
– make it a point to squeeze in some 45-60 minutes of brisk activity like a walk or work out to balance the input.
– try to include good high fibre foods before having a sweet to minimise sugar absorption.
– last and not least avoid making it a routine way of indulging. You would enjoy more when you do it in special occasions!
So, what are you waiting for? Go ahead and celebrate this Diwali with your family and friends.
Happy Diwali to you all!