A common question that I hear is, “Now that I have diabetes, do I need to eat special food that is going to be expensive?”
Let’s set the record straight. With a diagnosis of diabetes, you can eat the same food as everyone else but you have to be aware of portion sizes and make healthy food choices. If everyone followed that guideline, we would not face the present obesity epidemic in the United States.
My definition of healthy food is consuming food as close to the way Mother Nature created it as possible.
The present economy has made everyone look for ways to decrease food costs whether you have diabetes or not. This month we are going to discuss a few suggestions for saving money while ensuring that you are providing your body with the nutritious food you need to maintain your health. Some of these ideas are from a book titled “Diabetes Meals on $7 a Day,” but I have added some of my own ideas from personal experience. Two guidelines we are going to explore are planning meals and shopping wisely. Then you will learn about a free class that you will want to attend!
Meal planning is key
Meal planning starts with making a rough list of meal ideas for a week since a daily stop at the grocery store can become very expensive. Look at the grocery store ads and plan your meals around what is on special sale that week. Purchase sale items in bulk then use the same ingredient in different ways. For example, you can prepare baked chicken one day then include it in a casserole and make soup a few days later. We are approaching the season for the local farmers markets so plan to incorporate freshly picked produce for superb nutrition at a bargain!
Shopping wisely is the same as being a smart consumer. Since product placement is very competitive, compare the prices of generic items on lower shelves with the name brand items at eye level and you will save money.
Think about purchasing whole foods that were dug from the ground or picked from a tree. By selecting food that is less processed (apples instead of applesauce), you will be providing more nutrition for less cost. Let your body do the processing! For additional savings, use coupons or shopper discount cards.
You have to pay for convenience, so grate your own cheese and shred your lettuce. Start meal planning and wise shopping to save money.
The third idea is free! Starting May 3, on six consecutive Tuesdays from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. there will be a diabetes class at the Sequim Senior Activity Center. The class is sponsored by a grant from Washington State University and is taught by Shirley Broughton, a registered dietician. Topics of the classes will include the physiology of diabetes, information about five critical tests for diabetes care, proper food choices to manage diabetes, understanding food labels and how to manage eating away from home.
For planning purposes, you must preregister; contact Broughton at 360-385-0843 or e-mail email@example.com.
Did I mention that the class is free?
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