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Archive for July, 2008

Good Carbs, Bad Carbs – Simple Carbs

Friday, July 18th, 2008

Just because something is simple, is that reason enough to use it? In my last post, I discussed Complex Carbs and we found that not all complex carbs are desirable for a diabetic. Now it’s time to take a look at Simple Carbs.

Simple Carbs are basically simple sugars. These sugars are easy to break down in your body and turn to sugar in your blood quickly. The simple answer to this is don’t eat them. That’s not always easy. After all it’s summer and my favorite fruits are ripe, sweet and delicious. Peaches, Nectarines, Cherries…

All are delicious and all have simple sugars that break down quickly. Not that I don’t enjoy my share of complex carbs in the summer but broccoli and other veggies just don’t give me the same joy of summer. So what do we do when we are tempted by summer fruits. After all our whole lives everyone has told us to eat our fruits and veggies. Aren’t all of these “healthy” foods good for us?

I wish! Clearly we are back to moderation and intake management. Since fruits contain simple sugars that convert to blood sugar quickly, how can I reduce the impact. This is not as difficult as it seems. Go ahead and PLAN to have a sweet juicy peach, just eat some protein and fat first and eat that peach right after. Remember by eating foods that take longer to convert to sugar along with foods that convert quickly you MAY be able to reduce the impact of simple sugars on your body.

How will you know? Test your blood! Always remember to test your blood and you’ll know if you can enjoy these delicious summer fruits.

Good Carb, Bad Carb

Monday, July 14th, 2008

The key difference between a good or bad carbohydrate is the speed in which it converts to sugar in your blood!

Good carbs convert slowly. They make your body work harder to be digested and they have a measured sugar conversion that does not cause a sugar or insulin spike. These are often considered complex carbs. Some examples of complex carbs are Oats, Wheat, Whole Grains, Beans, Potato, Rice among others.

Complex carbs do not always convert slowly. They ARE NOT always good carbs. The following are a list of complex carbs I MUST NOT eat: Flour (any kind, don’t be fooled because it’s from a complex carb), Whole Wheat Pasta, Potato (Mashed and Baked are the worst), Rice (even brown).

Think about it, when you hydrate or soften a food it breaks down in your body faster. I’ve tested my sugar with all of these items and when your meter says 300 you know you are doing damage. There are many great choices that you can make today. Complex carbs are better than simple carbs if you are eating them in their most natural state. That would be unprocessed! Processing the food usually makes it easier to digest and so they turn to sugar in your blood much more quickly.

Bottom line – TEST YOUR BLOOD SUGAR!

Food Diary – Weight Loss on Steroids?

Thursday, July 10th, 2008

For years I’ve been watching my weight. It has a big impact on my diabetes. When I’m on a formal program that requires a food diary I do it for a week or two and quit. I’ll follow a meal plan but never keep a diary.

This week a study of 1700 people for 6 months showed that keeping a food diary leads to better weight loss. In fact the participants that kept a diary lost twice as much weight as those that did not. I’ve watched my mother in law keep diaries of everything in her life for years. I always thought she was just being compulsive and it was a little nutty. Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe it’s time for me to consider using a food diary? Maybe it’s not nuts after all?

Since I’m in the process of forming a support group for people with sugar issues, keeping a record of our food is probably one of the best things we can do? What do you think? Since I live on the computer today, it should not be that hard to keep and store this information. Please email me if you have a suggestion about which programs work best as a food diary.  Please share them with us.

We All Need Support

Monday, July 7th, 2008

For several weeks now I’ve been thinking about how we deal with diabetes, diet and our health in general. A number of people have come up to me and have been discussing their situations. It’s interesting to listen how people handle their health and diet. So many of you have such great ideas about what to do. Many of you have been successful with approaches that seem like we all could be using them.

Because of this I’m considering starting a support group for people with sugar issues. While that group certainly includes Diabetics, people that are hypoglycemic or want to improve their diet while focusing on low glycemic foods are also candidates for this group.

One of our customers came to the Newhall Farmers Market to talk about his issues recently. He tells me that he is pre diabetic. As a self proclaimed Carboholic, he came looking for some ideas about how to move past this problem.

A few weeks ago a woman came up and was telling my wife and I about her struggle with weight and sugar. She had some great ideas for keeping track of the foods that she is eating and is managing her weight loss in a way that will make her food choices more of a lifestyle.

If you are interested in participating in a group or have an issue you’d like to receive some input on please send an email to me. My email address is jeff@granolagourmet.com