Healthy food ideas to help with diabetes and allergies.

Weight loss, vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, food allergies, etc.

Healthy food ideas to help with diabetes and allergies.

Postby Flake » Fri Mar 06, 2009 9:35 am

I've been packing bento and cooking more often lately to start eating better, but it seems like i've hit a wall. My boyfriend and I are trying to lose weight, but he's also borderline diabetic. I have the luxury of being able to pack rice and noodles but we don't eat enough healthy food to actually be working towards weight loss or helping to compensate for the carbs. He doesn't really like many cooked vegetables, some he doesn't like raw, and it's kind of random on which goes which way. His reasons seem valid, (i have textural problems with food, so I won't knock a legitimate reason for disliking something) so I try not to force. He's anti-seafood, i'm mildly allergic to nuts, and i'm horrible allergic to MSG (which means i have to pay attention to where it appears in the ingredients to see if it would bother me, and I have to avoid seaweed), so lately we eat our staples and nothing else. My irish heritage cries over the fact that all we seem to eat are potatoes, carrots, celery, onions, or the occasional salad. Not bad, but when shoved in curry, it loses some health aspects. Unfortunately he's also involved enough in the cooking that I can't use dirty tactics like stuffing zucchini or broccoli in sweets.

I need help. I need to find a way to get healthy foods into our diet or try and find a way to change our diet. Maybe rather than our lazy staple of golden curry, find a way to use a recipe and make it healthier. It seems our only available source of protein are meats, which isn't the lightest diet. Any ideas on how to start changing our diet or acclimating to cooking and trying to eat better. I've been feeding us fairly fruit heavy diets to try and get vitamins but i don't think thats necessarily healthy either. I would appreciate any ideas or meal ideas to try and increase healthy food, and decrease our carb healthy diet, even a little. :D
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Re: Healthy food ideas to help with diabetes and allergies.

Postby time_on_fire » Fri Mar 06, 2009 11:56 am

Some other sources of protein:
eggs
lentils
beans
dairy

I have found that the nutrition tracker at http://www.sparkpeople.com is very helpful for tracking protein, carbs, and fats - you can tweak your daily targets and add other nutrients to the tracker, like calcium, folate, etc. They also have a daily report that will give suggestions on what foods are high in the tracked nutrients that you lacked that day.

Another site I like is http://www.whfoods.com- world's healthiest foods.

Also, y'all don't have to eat the same thing in your bentos, although that does make it easier to prepare.

I recently made some veggies patties out of leftover roasted root veggies, leftover rice, and some curry spices. Turned out great!
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Re: Healthy food ideas to help with diabetes and allergies.

Postby gfbentomom » Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:56 pm

I manage two health problems by diet, each with it's own restrictions. My advice is take what you can eat and figure out what you can do with that, rather than directing energy towards what you can't have. If need be make a list of the ingredients/foods that you can have. Say, OK what can I make with these? Start simple and over time you'll get more creative and find more things that work. Think of your bento containers simply as a vehicle for transporting your food. The contents don't have to resemble the traditional bento. My son and I took bentos with us for dinner last night that contained simply seasoned, sauteed chicken breasts, seasoned roasted potatoes(I have to watch my carbs so had a very small portion), steamed broccoli, califlower and carrots and some Dr. Prager's Spinach Littles. Kiddo had half an apple and some cheese slices for dessert. Take a look through the bento groups on flickr. Biggie has links on her site. You'll see quite a variety of approaches to bento/packed lunches. Clearly define your goals and priorities and write them down. Sometimes when we have multiple medically necessary restrictions we have to be a little more flexible on other points. For example, I prefer the uncured hot dogs but the ones I find have a few grams of sugar per serving so I live with the chemically laden ones that have 0g sugars per serving because I have to manage my blood glucose. I eat a very natural diet overall so the balance is still not bad if I make this choice.
Come visit me at Flickr for bentos that are always gluten-free for mom and kiddo, sometimes casein-free and now always lowcarb for mom.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/21012380@N08/
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Re: Healthy food ideas to help with diabetes and allergies.

Postby Rabbit » Fri Mar 06, 2009 11:02 pm

gfbentomom wrote: Sometimes when we have multiple medically necessary restrictions we have to be a little more flexible on other points.


So true! I was such a picky eater, really for no reason, before my celiac diagnosis. Once a whole category of food was eliminated from my diet for health reasons, I was forced outside of my old comfort zone and tried foods I had previously disliked but fit into the new diet. I don't know if it was maturity or hunger or boredom, but I eventually started liking those new foods. I think my diet is more varied now than it was pre-gluten-free. I still hate eggs though. Eggs are where I draw the line.

Flake, the point is, if your boyfriend is borderline diabetic and is serious about getting healthy, he's going to have to try some of those veggies he thinks he doesn't like. Healthiness is a lifestyle, it's not just omitting foods.

One blog I really like for healthy cooking is Kalyn's Kitchen: http://kalynskitchen.blogspot.com/. She does a lot of South Beach diet recipes and modifying "traditional" recipes to be lower in carbs and sugar. And lots of lean meats and vegetables.
Stephanie

life & travel blog: http://whereintheworld-stephanie.blogspot.com/

gluten-free blog: http://stephaniefood.blogspot.com/
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Re: Healthy food ideas to help with diabetes and allergies.

Postby gfbentomom » Sat Mar 07, 2009 6:34 am

Rabbit wrote: I still hate eggs though. Eggs are where I draw the line.


:lol: I love it! I've found a kindred spirit! I can't stand them either. My husband mixes a raw egg into hot rice with tuna and soy sauce and it smells so bad I leave the room! I may have to eliminate more foods from my diet though in order to keep my BG in line so I told someone recently that I might be sucking it up and training myself to eat eggs. Baby steps. I went in for allergy testing just to be sure that my strong aversion wasn't due to an allergy. They are such a good lowcarb food/meal and easy to prepare. I would love to be a vegetarian but have sucked it up and become a meat eater because my body needs it. You're right, we do find ourselves liking(suprisingly sometimes)things that we never thought we would like, if we just give them a chance.
Come visit me at Flickr for bentos that are always gluten-free for mom and kiddo, sometimes casein-free and now always lowcarb for mom.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/21012380@N08/
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Re: Healthy food ideas to help with diabetes and allergies.

Postby Flake » Sat Mar 07, 2009 9:21 am

Thanks everyone!
I love the websites and didn't think about doing several of those.
As I note I think I forgot to mention, our bentos are *always* leftovers from previous nights. I'm way too busy with school to be good about getting up and throwing new meals together (Dx i'm working on getting better about it. I will use my freezer...I will use my freezer) so its more a matter of learning to cook meals better rather than bento. Sadly I don have the time (class till 7:30 pm) to throw together a roast chicken or the like on weeknights. But i'm trying to get him better about starting meals for me or starting them before I leave.

Its a bunch of lifestyle changes, which are always hard. Thanks everyone for the help! :D
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