Many moms find themselves balancing on that tricky tightrope between providing their family healthy meals and managing their family’s hectic day-to-day schedule. With obesity, pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes on a dramatic rise, it is more important than ever to do both. This Mother’s Day, the American Diabetes Association offers easy-to-do tips so busy moms strike that balance.
“Choosing healthy foods, preparing healthy meals, and getting to or staying at a healthy weight are the most important actions you can take to lower your risk for pre-diabetes and type 2,” comments Hope Warshaw, RD, CDE, American Diabetes Association author.
“Since moms are usually the primary food purchaser and preparer in the family, she can be the gatekeeper to allow mainly healthy foods to enter. As my mother says, family members will eat what’s served if that’s all that’s served. Instilling healthy eating habits by serving as a role model can go a long way to preventing type 2 diabetes and its complications.”
According to the American Diabetes Association, eating right and maintaining a healthy weight are two essential ways to prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes. These steps also can help people avoid certain type 2 diabetes risk factors, including high blood pressure, abnormal blood lipids (low HDL and high triglycerides) and being overweight. For anyone with diabetes, living a healthy lifestyle can help prevent complications such as heart attack and stroke.
Below are some tips and tricks to control portions at home, from the Association’s newest book Diabetes Meal Planning Made Easy 4th Edition by Hope Warshaw, RD, CDE.
• Are you sometimes tempted to overfill your plate? Use smaller plates and bowls. Less food looks like more food on smaller plates.
• Avoid serving family style – putting bowls, pots or casserole pans on the table. It makes it too easy for everyone to overeat. At least make people get up and get some exercise on their way for seconds!
• If you are used to eating seconds, try this: split your smaller portion in half, so you can look forward to having seconds without overeating.
• Always keep your measuring equipment – spoons, cups and scale – in an easy-to-grab location. If you weigh and measure foods at home, you will have an easier time guesstimating portions when you eat out.
• If you are eating alone, don’t leave the extras out when you sit down to eat unless you want to eat them. Put them leftovers away before you sit down!
• When you buy meat or fish, buy what you need for the meal rather than too much. For example, if you are buying smoked turkey at the deli to make four sandwiches with 2 ounces of meat, then buy as close to a half pound (8 oz) as you can. Make each sandwich with equal amount of turkey. This way, you won’t be tempted to snack on the extras.
The American Diabetes Association is leading the fight to stop diabetes and its deadly consequences and fighting for those affected by diabetes. The Association funds research to prevent, cure and manage diabetes; delivers services to hundreds of communities; provides objective and credible information; and gives voice to those denied their rights because of diabetes. Founded in 1940, our mission is to prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes. For more information please call the American Diabetes Association at 1-800-DIABETES (1-800-342-2383) or visit www.diabetes.org. Information from both these sources is available in English and Spanish.