August /September 2001
Diabetes - The Medical Perspective
In 1997, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) recommended
dose aspirin therapy to prevent cardiovascular disease among
adults with diabetes. A recent study examined the aspirin
use among adults with diabetes in the U.S. and found that
only 20 percent took aspirin regularly during 1988-1994. According
to the authors, "Aspirin use may have increased in recent
years, and we hope to see substantial increases as a result
of current efforts to educate doctors and patients about the
benefits of aspirin therapy in diabetes."
According to ADA, doses of 81-325 mg/day of enteric-coated
aspirin are advised. The use of aspirin has not been studied
in individuals with diabetes who are less than 30 years of
age and aspirin should not be recommended for those less than
21 years of age because of the risk of Reye's syndrome.
"Aspirin has been shown to be effective and relatively
safe treatment for people with diabetes. Trials have demonstrated
that aspirin therapy can prevent the first heart attack, stroke
or other indication of cardiovascular disease." If you
are 30 years or older with diabetes and are not using aspirin
regularly, talk to your doctor about aspirin use. Diabetes
Care: 24:197-201, February 2001.
Diabetes and Food
With summer just around the corner, our days become
more & more packed with outside activities, sports, yardwork,
& vacation plans. It may seem like there is hardly time
to eat a meal, let alone eat a balanced meal!
So many times it is just easier and more timely to stop and
pick something up at a fast food restaurant. Does this mean
we are throwing our diet out the window? It doesnt have
to mean that!
Fast Food Restaurants
There are a few problems to overcome when eating at fast
few fruits, vegetables
One of the main problems with eating at fast food restaurants
is that they tend to be high-fat, high calorie foods. Some
restaurants carry more lower fat, lower calorie foods than
others. For instance Subways carry lower calorie sandwiches,
in general, than do Burger King. Even so, the selections will
vary even within a particular restaurant depending on where
you are. A Dairy Queen Brazier in the Chicago area might have
different selections than one in Vandalia.
When eating at a fast food restaurant, think about the total
amount of calories you should be eating for the day. Divide
that by three, thinking about your three meals. Although this
number of calories will be different for many of us, in general
we probably dont want to eat a sandwich that is more
than about 500 calories, especially if we want more than a
sandwich to eat!
Fast food restaurants have nutrient charts available, even
if they dont have this information posted. However,
it is hard to stand in line and decide on our selections.
Try looking ahead and deciding "best choices" at
several fast food restaurants before even getting there! Although
not all restaurants are listed, information about comparing
selections from many fast food restaurants can be found at
To add fruits and vegetables to your diet when eating at
fast food restaurants, you can: choose salads or fruit selections
at the restaurant; plan ahead and bring your own vegetable
or fruit selections; increase your fruit and vegetable servings
at another meal to "make up" for not having them
at your fast food restaurant meal.
Be careful to keep your calories balanced if tight blood
glucose management is important for you.
Exercise as a Part of Living
While enjoying the outdoors this summer, remember to participate
not just watch those fun activities.
If you really are more of a "watcher" than a "doer"
get up occasionally and walk- around the baseball field, the
soccer field, through the gold course, or just around the
block. Walking is a great weight-bearing activity that can
be healthful, easy, and fun!
Recipes to Try
Grilled or Broiled Orange Chicken
4 skinless boneless chicken breast halves (about 1.5 pounds)
1/2 cup frozen unsweetened orange juice concentrate, thawed
1/2 cup lemon juice
2 Tbls. grated orange peel
1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
- Place chicken in shallow dish. Mix remaining ingredients.
May add salt to taste. Pour over chicken. Turn chicken to
coat with marinade. Cover and refrigerate overnight, turning
chicken at least once.
- Grill or broil chicken until the juice of chicken is no
longer pink. Actual cooking time will vary depending on
heat of the grill, distance from broiler heat and thickness
||54 grams protein
|16 % calories from fat
||16 grams carbohydrate
|145 mg cholesterol
||6 grams total fat
Roasted Vegetable Salsa
(12 1/2 cup servings)
2 cups chopped tomato
2 tablespoon olive oil
1.5 cups chopped summer squash
1/4 tablespoon thyme
1.5 cups chopped zucchini squash
1/8 tablespoon salt
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
1/8 tablespoon black pepper
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/4 tablespoon dried dill weed non-stick spray coating
- Spray a 7x11" glass pan with non-stick coating.
Heat oven to
- Toss ingredients lightly in bowl. Pour into pan.
- To shorten roasting time, cover pan with wax paper &
microwave on high for 4-5 minutes. Roast for 25-30 minutes,
stirring occasionally. If not microwaving, roast for 55-60
- Serve warm or cold, as an appetizer with crackers, or
as a vegetable.
||1 gram protein
|39% calories from fat
||3 grams carbohydrate
|0 mg cholesterol
||1.0 grams total fat
Ginseng and Diabetes
Ginseng is a perennial herb that is marketed as an "adaptogen"
and also as an enhancer of sexual potency. As an adaptogen,
ginseng is said to increase the resistance of the body to
stress, or help it adapt. One way that ginseng has been tested
is concerning its effect on the way the body adapts to carbohydrate
intake. Some say it increases the sensitivity of the body
to insulin, others say it increases the amount of insulin
the body secretes, while others say it has no effect.
Several studies have shown that ginseng can make the natural
rise in blood glucose found after carbohydrate ingestion lower
- that is, the glucose peak is not as high. Some studies have
tested this in people who are not diabetic, other studies
were in people who have type 2 diabetes.
There are several different types of ginseng, the two most
common being Oriental ginseng and American ginseng. Most commonly
available in the United States is Oriental ginseng. In this
type of herb there are at least 13 different components that
may have some kind of biological effect. Standardizing ginseng
has not occurred. Some ginseng may have many active compounds,
others will have none. This makes it very difficult to adequately
test the effectiveness of ginseng in promoting wellness.
For now, ginseng use in diabetes is only experimental.
If you are using ginseng and you have diabetes, make sure
you talk with your health care provider. Ginseng may cause
your blood sugar to change unexpectantly. This could be very
dangerous to your health.
What You Need to Know about Diabetes A Short Guide.
Joslin Diabetes Center. This 2000 revision of a Joslin bestseller
is easy-to-read and understand, yet is also a comprehensive
resource for those with diabetes. 60 pages. Item#: JDC 210
Price: $11.50. Available through http://store.joslin.org/
Controle su Diabetes. Centros para el Control y
la Prevención de las Enfermedades, Centro Nacional
para la Prevención de las Enfermedades Crónicas
y la Promoción de la Salud, División de Traducción
para la Diabetes.
Diabetes Problem Solver. $19.95, ISBN 1-58040-009-4,
available through the American Diabetes Association: 1-800-232-6733,
through book stores nationwide, or order via Amazon.com for
only $17.95. Helps those with diabetes deal with the psychological
aspects of having diabetes and the health complications that
may also occur.
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