Diabetes Cookbook For Dummies
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When you have diabetes, you need to monitor your health closely — including what you eat, how much you eat, and how much you should eat. Managing diabetes means knowing your ideal weight, body mass index (BMI), and kilocalorie intake; maintaining healthy eating habits; and recognizing food terms that indicate fat content.

Figure Your Ideal Weight, BMI, and Kilocalorie Intake

If you’re diabetic, you should understand that your body weight, body mass index (BMI), and kilocalorie intake affect the way you manage your diabetes. So take the following steps to calculate your ideal weight, BMI, and kilocalorie intake:

Weight: Follow these general rules for calculating your ideal weight. (The range of appropriate weights is the ideal weight plus or minus 10 percent.):

  • A man needs to weigh 106 pounds for 5 feet and 6 pounds more for every inch higher than 5 feet.
  • A woman needs to weigh 100 pounds for 5 feet and 5 pounds more for every inch higher than 5 feet.
Body mass index (BMI) determines a person’s body weight relative to height. This number is a good indicator of the amount of fat in your body. To obtain your BMI,
  1. Multiply your weight in pounds by 703.
  2. Divide this number by your height in inches.
  3. Divide again by your height in inches.

Body mass index: A BMI under 18 is slim, 20 to 25 is normal, 25 to 30 is overweight, and greater than 30 is obese.

Kilocalorie intake: To figure your daily kilocalorie needs to maintain your ideal weight,

  1. Multiply your ideal weight in pounds by 10.
  2. If you get no exercise, multiply the result of Step 1 by 10 percent or 0.1. If you exercise moderately, multiply the result of Step 1 by 20 percent or 0.2. If you get heavy exercise, multiply this number by 40 percent or 0.4.
  3. Add the result of Step 2 to the result of Step 1.

Food Terms that Indicate Fat Content

Managing diabetes means controlling the amount of fat that you eat. Food terms in recipes and menu items can help you identify high-fat and low-fat foods. Understanding these terms will help you determine which foods and recipes to avoid. These terms indicate a low fat content:
  • Baked
  • Broiled
  • Cooked in its own juice
  • Poached
These terms indicate a high fat content:
  • Buttered or in butter sauce
  • Creamed or in cream sauce
  • Deep fried
  • Fried
  • In cheese sauce
  • In plum sauce
  • Sautéed
  • Sweet and sour

Living with Diabetes: How to Improve Eating Habits

You can take simple steps to improve your eating habits for healthier living with diabetes. Follow these simple tips to make a difference in your health:
  • Keep a food diary.
  • Figure out why you eat the way that you do.
  • Avoid missing a meal; eat at regular times.
  • Sit down for meals.
  • Use water in place of caloric drinks.
  • Include vegetables in all meals.
  • Cook with half the fat you usually use.
  • Remove all visible fat.
  • Don’t add salt.
  • Flavor with condiments, herbs, and spices.
  • Cook by the B’s: Braise, broil, or boil.
  • Follow portion sizes. To determine the size of a portion, compare it to something you see regularly. For example: Three ounces of meat is the size of a deck of cards. A medium fruit is the size of a tennis ball. A medium potato is the size of a computer mouse. A medium bagel is the size of a hockey puck. An ounce of cheese is the size of a domino. A cup of fruit is the size of a baseball. A cup of broccoli is the size of a light bulb.

About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book authors:

Dr. Alan L. Rubin is one of the leading authorities on diabetes and the author of many books, including Diabetes For Dummies, Type 1 Diabetes For Dummies, and Prediabetes For Dummies.

Cait James, MS, has counseled clients in individualized nutrition and personal fitness plans in health clubs.

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