Breaking bread together with friends and family is a plateful of fun! When eating together, you don’t only share food, but also lively conversations and unwind with loved ones. That’s why it’s common to find families and friends dining out frequently and painting the town red.
Diabetics and pre-diabetics have to be more cautious than regular folks when dining out. They cannot indulge in high GI meals and desserts due to resulting unhealthy spikes in blood glucose levels. Hence they need to enjoy social occasions with a bit of watchfulness. By following the tips given below, people suffering with diabetes can have a great time while dining out and avoid harmful consequences.
Choose the Right Restaurant
By choosing the right restaurant, half the battle is won! Diabetics should select restaurants that are diabetic-friendly and include low GI foods in their menu. Suggestions can be taken from friends that are diabetics, or food bloggers that have already sourced diabetic-friendly restaurants and cafes. Menus of such eateries should be browsed to see if low GI options are available.
Decide Your Meals Beforehand
If someone else picks the restaurant, it is best to check the menu of the chosen restaurant beforehand. This way, diabetics can plan their meals in advance and understand the total GI load. By having a plan in mind, it is easier to stick to healthier dishes. Improvisations can make anyone go off track.
Start With Soups
Soups are very healthy and make one feel full. If the meal is begun with soup, one tends to eat less main course and entrées. Select a soup that is nutritious, low GI and includes fresh veggies and meat. Soup heavy on butter, cream, preservatives, etc. should be skipped. Care should be taken with side orders that come with soup; steamed veggies and brown bread should be preferred.
Tea, Coffee and Other Beverages
Restaurants add sugar and cream generously to beverages. Black Tea and Coffee can come to your rescue. Sugar levels in other beverages should also be inquired before ordering them. Ask the waiter if they have low GI sugar like Diabliss which is diabetics friendly. Artificial sweeteners may appear healthy, but have harmful effects as seen in this article.
Main Course Suggestions
Choose fresh vegetable salads as they are dense in nutrients. Unhealthy salad dressings like sour cream, sauces, etc. should be skipped. Switch comfort food like fries and mashed potato for steamed vegetables. Balance low GI and high GI foods in one meal to maintain a healthy GI load. Avoid white bread and chips and choose brown bread. Remember that foods cooked by grilling, steaming and broiling are your best bets.
It is best to skip desserts as they are loaded with sugar and carbs. Maybe a fruit salad can be a better option, but avoid any additives such a maple syrup, powdered sugar, cream, etc.
Handling Peer Pressure
At times, a friend will motivate a diabetic to try a dish, or take ‘just a bite’ of something unhealthy. Diabetics should be mindful and politely decline such invitations. They should be honest and open about their condition so friends and family understand and sympathize with their restrictive diet.
It’s the Company That Matters
Diabetics may feel disheartened watching others indulge without restriction. They have to realise that spending time with friends and family is more important than the food being served. It is best to control their diet and increase their lifespan so such good times will always continue.