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5 Thanksgiving Tips for the Diabetic

Navigating the Thanksgiving table has always been a challenge for people with diabetes. Many will find it more challenging this year because of the pandemic. They’re more stressed – and fighting the urge to stress-eat! They haven’t been exercising as much because the gym is closed or too crowded for comfort. Maybe they’ve put on a few pounds and are feeling anxious about facing a day that’s pretty much all about food.

If this sounds like you, don’t let all the stress get the better of you. With some careful planning, you can still gather loved ones from within your safe “COVID bubble” and enjoy that bountiful spread of your favorite foods. Here are some tips for enjoying the Thanksgiving meal without causing your blood sugar levels to go wild.

  1. Watch your portions. Eat some of what you like. Skip what you don’t care for, and don’t eat a lot of anything.
  2. Lay on the protein and veggies. Choose filling lean meats and vegetables over carbohydrates. But watch out for high-carb veggies like butternut squash, peas, and corn. Instead, opt for spaghetti squash, Brussels sprouts, and leafy greens like spinach and chard.
  3. Drink alcohol in moderation. Alcohol can lower your inhibitions and cause you to eat more “just this once.” To control overeating and carbs, you might skip the alcohol altogether. Make sure to avoid sugary soft drinks as well.
  4. Eat slowly. Put your fork down between bites and take frequent sips of water.
  5. Plan for dessert. Rather than deprive yourself of yummy sweets, plan to make room for them. Pies contain many carbohydrates, but you can freely eat some if you’ve skipped the potatoes, bread, stuffing, and wine.

Dr. Kenneth R. Wilhelm and all of us at Clifton Foot & Ankle Center wish you a happy and safe Thanksgiving. We’re here for everyone in Fairfax County who’s looking for excellence in diabetic foot care. Call our Centreville office at (703) 996-3000 or contact us online for an appointment.

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