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Diabetes-friendly Recipes

Diet for People with Diabetes Mellitus

Diabetes-friendly Recipes (Suitable for Individuals with Diabetes)

Diabetes-friendly Recipes

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Diet for People with Diabetes Mellitus

Many researches have shown that diabetes mellitus is on the rise and is becoming more common among young people. Diet plays an important role in the control of the disease and prevention of complications whether medication is required or not.

 

Dietary management is an important step towards proper control of diabetes. Many people misunderstood dietary management of diabetes as tedious and painful dietary control. Although many individuals with diabetes know the basic principles of dietary management, they find it difficult to apply in their daily lives. In fact, diet for people with diabetes is a healthy diet. It does not have to be boring, it can be delicious, full of variety and suprising. As long as we are able to master the tricks, individuals can easily modify their diet to meet their lifestyle, work and social needs.

 

The diet for diabetics emphasizes the even distribution of carbohydrates in main dishes, soups, fruits, and snacks. Carbohydrate is a substance which affects our blood glucose level. Apart from granulated sugar, brown sugar, and honey used in seasoning, carbohydrates also include the starch found in grains, tubers / root vegetables, and dried beans, fructose in fruits, and lactose in milk. When carbohydrate-rich foods are distributed evenly in meals in appropriate portions, a desirable blood glucose level can be maintained.

Dietary Principles

Individuals with diabetes should comply with the following dietary principles:

  • Follow the recommendations and principles of the Healthy Eating Food Pyramid
  • Eat at regular meal times and evenly distribute the portions. Avoid overeating or eating too little. People who are used to eating 3 large meals can cut down the portions they eat for meals and add 1 to 2 healthy snacks in between.
  • Limit the intake of sugary foods. People who like sugary foods may use artificial sweeteners.
  • Reduce the use of cornstarch to thicken sauces and avoid eating rice with thickening sauces.
  • Choose low-fat foods and low-fat cooking methods.
  • Limit the use of processed and preserved foods.
  • Consume more fibre-rich foods, such as vegetables and whole grain foods. Although vegetables, like carrot, lotus root, and corn, contain carbohydrates, they are rich in dietary fibre and fluids and can be consumed in moderation.

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Menu Planning

The energy needs of individuals are affected by many factors, including weight, height, age, gender, activity level and physical health. Men in Hong Kong with good general health and infrequent vigorous physical activities need about 1,900 to 2,500 kilocalories per day whereas women generally need about 1,500 to 2,100 kilocalories. As a reference, the energy distribution for a woman who needs about 1,500 kilocalories a day can be distributed as 400-500 kilocalories for breakfast and 500-600 kilocalories each for lunch and dinner. According to the "Healthy Eating Food Pyramid", half of the energy in each meal should come from carbohydrates, i.e. about 60 grams, which can mainly come from rice. The remaining energy (about 250-300 kilocalories) should come from the main dishes, soups and desserts. The recipes found in the "Diabetes-friendly Recipes" section in this website come with nutrient analysis which can facilitate the planning of menu. People with physically laborious jobs require a higher energy intake and should eat more rice and vegetables to meet their extra needs.

To consume more varieties of dishes in a meal (such as three dishes, one soup and one dessert), the serving size of the dishes need to be adjusted to prevent over-eating. Among the three dishes, you may choose one kind of meat (such as pork, beef and chicken) and one kind of seafood (such as fish, scallop and shrimp) or dried beans and bean products (such as tofu, fresh bean curd sheets) to match with one kind of vegetables (such as Chinese flowering cabbage, spinach and broccoli). Using more vegetables can increase the dietary fibre content of the dishes. Choose ingredients of lower-carbohydrate content for soups. Moreover, avoid eating the meat ingredients in soups or use lots of meat in the dishes as this will lead to over-eating. To maintain normal blood glucose level, the serving size of desserts prepared with sugar should be small. If a larger serving is preferred, a sugar substitute should be used to replace the sugar in the dessert. Choose heat-resistant sugar substitutes or add in sugar substitutes after the food has been removed from the heat as some of them will lose their sweetness upon heating. Fresh fruits (such as apples, oranges and grapes) can also be served as desserts. Low-fat cooking methods, such as steaming, stewing, baking and quick stir-frying with little oil, can be used to reduce the fat and energy content of the dishes. Moreover, use natural seasonings, such as ginger, garlic, pepper, liberally not only increase the flavour of dishes, but also to reduce the sodium content.

To effectively control the blood sugar level, diabetics should seek advice from dietitians regarding their diet even if they think they know their energy needs. Dietitians will conduct nutritional assessment of an individual's eating habits and daily activities and give diet counselling which can effectively integrate the diet into the daily life.

Sample Menu (1)

Category Name

Soup

Tomato, Lemongrass and Shrimp Soup

Main Courses

Broccoli and Scallop Stir-Fry

Stir-fried Pork with Lemongrass

Stir-Fried Mushrooms and Vegetables

Dessert

Steamed Egg Custard

Sample Menu (2)

Category Name

Soup

Mixed Vegetables Soup

Main Courses

Baked Chicken with Mushrooms

Pea Sprout and Prawn Cakes

French Beans Stir-Fry

Dessert

Red Bean Pudding

Sample Menu (3)

Category Name

Soup

White Fungus and Chicken Soup

Main Courses

Pork and Vegetable Stew

Basil Salmon Hash Browns

Stir-Fried Garlic Eggplants

Dessert

Rice Dumpling with Red Bean Paste

Sample Menu (4)

Category Name

Soup

Mixed Vegetables and Tofu Soup

Main Courses

Minced Pork with Pine Nuts and Water Chestnuts

Pea Sprout and Prawn Cakes

Stir-Fried Mushrooms and Vegetables

Dessert

Pear

Sample Menu (5)

Category Name

Soup

Winter Melon and Vegetable Cubes Soup

Main Courses

Fish Fillets with Button Mushrooms and Corn

Baked Chicken with Lemongrass and Garlic

French Beans Stir-Fry

Dessert

Kiwifruit

Sample Menu (6)

Category Name

Soup

Mixed Vegetables Soup

Main Courses

Fish Fillets with Vegetables

Fruity Pork Cubes

Stir-Fried Garlic Eggplants

Dessert

Pumpkin Rice Cakes

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Carbohydrate Exchange Method

In most cases, the diet for people with diabete is planned by doctors and dietitians according to each individual's needs such as the medical conditions, weight, and activity levels. The distribution of carbohydrates for meals and snacks should not exceed the amounts as suggested in the meal plan. The "Carbohydrate Exchange Method" can be used to exchange food rich in carbohydrate according to the carbohydrate content in foods and individual preferences. For example, if there is mashed potato with beef for lunch, for each tablespoon of mashed potato eaten, one tablespoon of rice should be exchanged, which means one less tablespoon of rice should be eaten.

The carbohydrate content of soup ingredients should also be taken into consideration in the planning of carbohydrate content of meals. The "Carbohydrate Exchange Method" should be used if the soup contains carbohydrate-rich ingredients, such as potato, corn, and lotus root. High-carbohydrate Chinese soup ingredients such as dried dates, preserved dates, figs, and longans should be used sparingly or the carbohydrate content of the soup will increase.

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Preparation Tips

Individuals with diabetes should comply with the following principles when cooking:

  • Use low-fat cooking methods such as steaming, braising, baking, and quick stir-frying with little oil. When the foods require pan-frying or stir-frying, use a non-stick wok / pan to minimize the use of oil.
  • Appropriate amount of sugar may be used for seasoning. For cakes, desserts and beverages, the use of sugar will be more than that in the main dishes. Artificial sweeteners can be used to replace granulated sugar and brown sugar. However, it should be noted that most artificial sweeteners in the market will lose their sweet taste if heated directly. Therefore, they should be added to the dishes or desserts only after cooking has been completed, and heating has stopped.
  • For seasoning, most processed sauces, like seafood sauce, ketchup, and oyster sauce, contain considerable amounts of sugar and excessive use is not recommended. Natural seasonings, like ginger, spring onion, garlic, pepper, dried tangerine peel, cayenne, aniseed, vinegar, and five spice powder, can be used to bring out the flavours in food.

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Fruits

Some individuals with diabetes think that fruits should be avoided as fruits are sugary foods that can affect blood glucose levels. Although the fructose in fruits can affect the blood glucose levels, fruits are rich in vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants, and dietary fibres which can boost our immune system and promote health of the bowel and heart and should be included to maintain a balanced diet. In fact, by eating an appropriate amount of fruits or eating fruits as snacks using the "Carbohydrate Exchange Method", the blood glucose levels can be maintained at a desirable level. Skipping fruits entirely is not necessary.

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Soups

Photo Name Recipe / Video

Braised Vegetarian Shark's Fin Soup

Braised Vegetarian Shark's Fin Soup

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Mixed Vegetables and Tofu Soup

Mixed Vegetables and Tofu Soup

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Mixed Vegetable Chicken Soup

Mixed Vegetable Chicken Soup

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Tomato, Lemongrass and Shrimp Soup

Tomato, Lemongrass and Shrimp Soup

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

White Fungus and Chicken Soup

White Fungus and Chicken Soup

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Winter Melon Soup

Winter Melon Soup

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

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Vegetables

Photo Name Recipe / Video

Bean Curd Sticks with Chinese Black Mushrooms and Green Beans

Bean Curd Sticks with Chinese Black Mushrooms and Green Beans

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

French Beans Stir-Fry

French Beans Stir-Fry

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Eggplants with Minced Pork

Stir-Fried Garlic Eggplants

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Lettuce Wrap with Field Greens

Lettuce Wrap with Field Greens

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Stir-Fried Mushrooms and Vegetables

Stir-Fried Mushrooms and Vegetables

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Walnuts with Chinese Black Mushrooms

Walnuts with Chinese Black Mushrooms

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

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Meats

Photo Name Recipe / Video

Baked Chicken with Mushrooms

Baked Chicken with Mushrooms

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Baked Chicken with Lemongrass and Garlic

Baked Chicken with Lemongrass and Garlic

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Beef and Vegetable Stew

Beef and Vegetable Stew

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Chicken Curry with Eggplants

Chicken Curry with Eggplants

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Fruity Pork Cubes

Fruity Pork Cubes

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Minced Pork with Pine Nuts and Water Chestnuts

Minced Pork with Pine Nuts and Water Chestnuts

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Pork and Vegetable Stew

Pork and Vegetable Stew

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Stir-fried Pork with Lemongrass

Stir-Fried Pork with Lemongrass

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

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Seafoods

Photo Name Recipe / Video

Broccoli and Scallop Stir-Fry

Broccoli and Scallop Stir-Fry

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Fish Fillets with Button Mushrooms and Corn

Fish Fillets with Button Mushrooms and Corn

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Pan-fried Fish with Carrots and Zucchini

Pan-fried Fish with Carrots and Zucchini

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Pea Sprout and Shrimp Cakes

Pea Sprout and Shrimp Cakes

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Prawn and Onion in Tomato Sauce

Prawn and Onion in Tomato Sauce

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Stuffed Bell Peppers

Stuffed Bell Peppers

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

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Snacks

Photo Name Recipe / Video

Basil Salmon Hash Browns

Basil Salmon Hash Browns

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Red Bean Pudding with Chrysanthemum

Red Bean Pudding with Chrysanthemum

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Papaya and Pear Jelly

Papaya and Pear Jelly

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Poached Pear with Osmanthus

Poached Pear with Osmanthus

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Pumpkin Rice Cakes

Pumpkin Rice Cakes

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Glutinous Rice Pudding with Red Beans

Glutinous Rice Pudding with Red Beans

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Rice Dumpling with Red Bean Paste

Rice Dumpling with Red Bean Paste

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Steamed Egg Custard

Steamed Egg Custard

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Taro and Black Glutinous Rice Dessert Soup

Taro and Black Glutinous Rice Dessert Soup

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Taro and Red Bean Pudding

Taro and Red Bean Pudding

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

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Others

Photo Name Recipe / Video

Angel Hair with Basil Leaves in Tomato Sauce

Angel Hair with Basil Leaves in Tomato Sauce

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Pumpkin Cake

Pumpkin Cake

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

Pumpkin Pancake with Spring Onion and Dried Shrimp

Pumpkin Pancake with Spring Onion and Dried Shrimp

Recipe

Youtube channel

(Video in Thai or Indonesian)

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