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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Time Out From Diabetes

Thinking of Extended Family

Weight:            185

Morning FBS:  126

Tonight:             93

Daily Meal:

Breakfast was green drink
Lunch was a large taco salad
Evening meal was veggie meat balls with 1/2 cup spaghetti and scalloped potatoes.
Bedtime snack was an apple and handful of chips

Day two is looking pretty good.

I have had some requests and comments over the past couple of weeks that went into my spam box - mainly because someone added a link to their blog and my blog engine sees that as spam so it took me a while to find the spam folder and respond.  If you want to leave a comment on this blog, and you want to make sure everyone can see the comment, please do not add links to outside sites.  You can send those to my personal email address.

Just getting back into the community and watching the news had me thinking of our readers as an extended family and how much we should keep them in our minds and prayers.  So instead of adding anything about being diabetics and adding new topics, I thought today I would dedicate this post to individuals I know and those reading this blog.  I want to send up my prayers for them and also ask you as readers to do the same thing.

Malaysia

We have several readers from Malaysia and everyone must now know about the plane that went missing 11 days ago and how it might now be a hijacker event.  Either way, there are hundreds of people on that plane and are either suffering at the moment or have perished.  I hope none of our readers are on that plane or have family members on the plane.

Heavenly Father, please find it in your heart to be with those passengers and help them find a little comfort in their potentially terrible situation.  If they have perished, please find it in your heart to take them home.

Ukraine

We also have several people from Ukraine that read our blog.  It should not matter to us who is right or wrong in the current situation.  I am sure some people will feel more comfortable in the Russian family and others feel better aligning with the EU.  It would have been nice in my mind if the people would have had an open and honest opportunity to vote their hearts.

Heavenly Father, we ask that you be with the people in Ukraine and if this is truly their desire then let the region move back to peace.  I pray that our readers are not in harms way at the moment.

UK

From an earlier post you found out I had a friend in London who is suffering from an inoperable brain tumor.  He is doing well and I do not get to spend that much time on the phone with him and it has been a couple of years since I have had the chance to be with him.

Heavenly Father, please be with my friend in London and continue to reward him with a good life with you and his new found partner.  I also want to thank you for the years he has been given and how you have helped extend his life and his quality of life.

US 

This list is made up of friends, family, ADA members, and readers of this blog.

My wife suffers from deteriorating ligaments and muscles in her thumbs.  There are days she cannot use them.  Her only relief is to fuse them and lock them in place.  Not a good option for her at the moment.

I have just found out that a very close cousin of mine has cancer of the throat and the same cancer on his lungs.  He just started treatment today.

I have a long time friend who has been battling cancer and is always in a fight state as they cannot completely clear  the cancer as it finds locations in the body and hides for a while and then comes back.  His life is a constant on and off switch.

A military friend from 40 years ago is a Vietnam veteran and now has Parkinson disease from Agent Orange.  Killed in that crazy war and did not even know it.  He is in good spirits and I got a chance to see him this past Christmas vacation.

My partner at work was just told they are going to finally replace his knee and that is actually great news as he can hardly walk and is on heavy drugs.

Marty and her husband Gabby need our prayers as Gabby's health continues to be up and down.  Marty is the one who often adds a lot of comments and is a walking talking dictionary when it comes to diabetes and a very good supplier of comments on this blog.

Dora is an individual we have mentioned before and a person who Marty helps bring a little happiness into her life as Dora lives in the same home as Marty's mother.  Dora is slipping and now has cancer.  She has lst body parts because of this disease - so she has had a troubling life.

Dolores is a friend from the ADA and while she is not struggling at the moment or complaining, she has heart problems along with diabetes.  Something that happens to a lot of diabetics.

There are countless people on the ADA and they have other serious issues and battle health issues along with diabetes.
 
Heavenly Father, while we know you do not bring these diseases and troubles upon us, we do know and believe you can help us deal with the trouble daily.  The Bible tells us to bring our problems to you and lay them at your feet and you will help.  We ask now that being relief to our extended family members.  Especially those like Dora who are nearly that glorious moment when she will be coming home to a peaceful life with you for eternity.  We ask that you provide relief while she prepares for her journey to cross over into eternity.  For others that are battling and still have a solid foot on this side of that journey that play an important role in the reduction of their suffering and help them life as fruitful life as possible.

We also thank you for each day you give us and each meal we are provided.  We thank you for the roofs over our head and the opportunity to be an extended family with you in the center.

Bob,

Monday, March 17, 2014

Diet or Meal Planning? Part 9

Pulling It All Together

Based on a few comments from my last post on this subject - readers appeared to be a little confused and I apologize for that.

I want to clarify something - I did not mean just pick one of these diets and follow it or that losing weight is the goal.  As I said, I hate the word diet when most of these "diets" also talk about how much to eat, exercise, and other life style elements.

So what did I really mean?  I will cover that in a moment.

I want to take this moment to welcome our newest readers that have joined since we last welcomed readers.  We have picked up several readers in Germany, Poland, Indonesia, Holland, and the UK.  I cannot tell who you are; but, I can see the countries viewing the blog and based on the number of increased readers from these countries.  Welcome and please feel free to add commetns for all our readers to see or send me comments to bob.dant@gmail.com. 

Diet Food Groups

The concept of the different diets is to find those that help you with maintaining a healthy eating life style that might help your disease, say cancer, or high blood pressure, or diabetes.  As I mentioned, I selected the Mediterranean Diet for several reasons:

  1. My wife uses the basic foods in this diet plan and has for many years - I felt important we can share like foods as a couple
  2. I have posted before that there are some very strong research that a Vegan diet helps diabetics control blood sugars as animal products cause cells to reject glucose absorption
  3. I tried being a Vegan and found I still like my meat so how do I balance that craving
  4. The diet plan is more about the food groups allowed versus following a very strict diet or meal plan

Mediterranean Food Group - I have highlighted the foods I like

Vegetables

Artichokes, beets, brussel sprouts, carrots, celeriac, collard, dandelion greens, fennel, leeks, lettuce, mache, mustard greens, Okra, Peas, Potatoes, Purslane, rutabaga (turnip), shallots, sweet potatoes (yams), zucchini, swede, scallions (spring onions), radishes, pumpkin, peppers (red, green, yellow, orange), Onions (red, brown and white), nettles, mushrooms, lettuce, kale, eggplant (aubergine), cucumber, chicory, celery, cabbage, broccoli, Arugula (rocket).

Fruits

Avocado, tomatoes, apples, tangerines, apricots, strawberries, cherries, pomegranates, clementine mandarines, pears, dates, peaches, figs, olives, grapefruit, nectarines, grapes, melons and oranges

Grains - I try not to eat many of these except brown rice

Whole grain breads, barley, millet, oats, rice, polenta, bulgur, couscous, buckwheat, durum, wheatberries and faro.

Fish and Seafood

Yellowtail, abalone, clams, cockles, crab, lobster, flounder, eel, octopus, squid (calamari), oysters, mussels, mackerel, tilapia, salmon, sea bass, tuna, sardines, whelk and shrimp

Poultry and Eggs - not my favorite except eggs and I am allergic to them

Chicken, guinea fowl, duck, chicken eggs, duck eggs, quail eggs.

Cheese and Yogurt

Brie, feta (fetta), Corvo, chevre, ricotta, parmigiana-reggiano, manchego, pecorino, haloumi, Greek yogurt and flavored yogurt.

Nuts and Seeds

Almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, pine nuts, pistachio, sesame seeds (tahini) and walnuts

Legumes

Cannellini, chickpeas, fava (broadbeans), kidney, green beans, lentils and split peas.

Herbs and Spices

Anise, zatar spice mix, chillies, basil, garlic, fennel, bay leaf, clove, lavender, cumin, oregano, mint, marjoram, sage, pul biber (also known as halaby pepper, aleppo pepper and flake pepper), parsley, rosemary, savory, thyme, sumac and tarragon

Meats

Pork, beef, lamb, mutton and goat.

Sweets - remember in an earlier blog - I love sweets

Creme caramel, baklava, tiramisu, sorbet, biscotti, chocolate, chocolate mousse, Turkish delight, kunefe, gelato and fruit tarts.

Water and Wine

People of the Mediterranean generally drink around six glasses of water per day plus 1-2 glasses of red wine (one glass each with lunch and dinner).

So I selected the food groups I like and now I start to look for ways to fill out my meal plan.  This entire series was about foods we need to add and those we need to eliminate or reduce.  Notice this diet does not allow the adding of salt - some do.  So I can have other spices in the foods I eat.

The next step is to come up with some dishes you like and then combine them into meals that:

  1. Produce the right level of calories
  2. Introduces the right nutritional values
  3. Adds the right blend of vitamins to help your body
Remember the posts and series on "What Does My Body Want From Me?" was about knowing how your body reacts to several life events - including eating.  Some people call this as Eating By The Meter, in other words test before and after eating - see what the food is doing for you.

Balance in exercise and other activity.

My Day Today

I was 110 on the meter tonight.  I spent two hours in the gym with one hour on high treadmill work and burned 700+ calories along with lifting weights for 1 hour another 400+ calories.  So you must know what you burn in a day along with what you take in.

I want to lose a little weigh again so 1,100 calories being consumed and I want to be around 1500 calories means I should think about consuming 2,200 - 2,500 calories.

Today I consumed about 1,500 calories and I will explain in a minute; so after exercise tonight I was running 110 on the meter but my body was crying for some calories so I needed to eat something for my body.  So given the meter at 110 and needing calories, I could afford some carbohydrates along with a little fat to help sustain the body needs.

My meal plan for the day started with my Green Drink (about 40 calories and 10 carbohydrates).  My noon meal was a very good salad with lettuce, peppers, onions, berries, and an egg.  One of my favorite salads.

My evening meal was a serving of scalloped potatoes.  Again, low in calories but higher in carbohydrates because I was going to work out.

At the end of the day - I am not totally balanced on intake and outgoing calories along with other nutrients I need.  In the end - it is about knowing your body and following the proper portion of the foods from the diet plan you have selected.

I know many of you do an excellent job of cooking for yourself or your family - and having a basic plan does not eliminate hard work in planning what you eat, exercise, and other life style factors.  For others, having a diet plan does not reduce your need to work hard as well.

I hope this helps a little - as I continue my journey I will keep you posted how my meal planning is working out.

God, grant us the knowledge to know and take care of our body, mind, and soul.  As much as we think about feeding our body, we must also feed our soul as we do not live on bread alone.  We must also stimulate our minds and you have provided us a book to help stimulate our minds as well.  We thank you for providing the basics of life to allow us to live the life style we want and what our body wants.

Bob,

Diet or Meal Planning? Part 8

Life Throws a Lot Of Curve Balls


This past month I have been finishing up a project.  Many of you know I work in the technology industry and have been working for the past 18 months on a large project for a major health care company - well we finished it this past week.  The last month we have been rolling out 2-3 clinics a week as we got behind on time and budget and just had to get it done.  I had many 65-70 hour weeks.  Nice money but can be hectic.

In the meantime, we have still continued to add readers.  I am just grateful this continues to reach people.  And at least one person has now stepped forward and stated this blog was a great find for them and they have learned a lot.  I am grateful for that as that is still my desire.

I want to finish up this series and then evaluate where I will go with the Blog and more information.  I have found another amazing book that has some good ole' fashion methods of helping with diabetes and how to avoid medicines while staying in control of the beast within us all.

I have not been testing regularly and will get back to a journal starting Monday as I have to get my self back on track and ready for the golf season.

Diets

I will not try to steal anyone's thunder or take their material without giving them credit.  This post will be a lot from the following link as they cover the hundreds of diets out there and even rated them on how to find the right diet for you.  

US News completed an article on the top diets out there and I used this site to help me determine the diet plan I will be using - and I hate that word - I want to call it meal plan.

I have selected the Mediterranean Diet and it is not necessarily the right one for me but my wife has been following this meal plan her entire life, more greens than meat, no red meat, and lots of fruits.  She is very healthy and has great numbers when she goes to the doctors.

US News Rankings

"U.S. News evaluated and ranked the 32 diets below with input from a panel of health experts. To be top-rated, a diet had to be relatively easy to follow, nutritious, safe and effective for weight loss and against diabetes and heart disease. The government-endorsed Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) snagged the top spot."

If you have been following this series, I have taken a lot of material from the US Government public material.  They push the DASH diet and most of the material drives towards that diet in the end.  Sense high blood pressure is use a mate with diabetes and also a stand alone disease, it just makes sense we all should be worrying about our high blood pressure as well.  This is the more balanced diet for general purposes.

US News Top Ten - along with the link to the article and study - each of the diets below have a link.  Enjoy the reading.

DASH was developed to fight high blood pressure, not as an all-purpose diet. But it certainly looked like an all-star to our panel of experts, who gave it high marks for its nutritional completeness, safety, ability to prevent or control diabetes, and role in supporting heart health. Though obscure, it beat out a field full of better-known diets.

Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes, or TLC, is a very solid diet plan created by the National Institutes of Health. It has no major weaknesses, and it’s particularly good at promoting cardiovascular health. One expert described it as a “very healthful, complete, safe diet.” But it requires a “do-it-yourself” approach, in contrast to the hand-holding provided by some commercial diets.

This is the Mayo Clinic’s take on how to make healthy eating a lifelong habit. It earned especially high ratings from our experts for its nutrition and safety and as a tool against diabetes. Experts found it moderately effective for weight loss.

With its emphasis on fruits and vegetables, olive oil, fish, and other healthy fare, the Mediterranean diet is eminently sensible. And experts’ assessments of it were resoundingly positive, giving this diet an edge over many competitors.

Weight Watchers is a smart, effective diet. It surpassed other commercial diet plans in multiple areas, including short- and long-term weight loss and how easy it is to follow. It’s also nutritionally sound and safe, according to experts. Among its pluses: An emphasis on group support, lots of fruits and vegetables, and room for occasional indulgences.

The Flexitarian diet, which emphasizes fruits, veggies, whole grains, and plant-based protein, is a smart and healthy choice. It outperformed many of its competitors, with particularly high scores in nutritional completeness, easiness to follow, and long-term weight loss. One panelist noted that this diet is “a nice approach that could work for the whole family,” and another described it as a “very good” plan.

Volumetrics outperformed its competitors in many categories. It earned particularly high marks for being safe and nutritious, and experts said it could have a positive effect on heart health and diabetes. “This is an eating plan that everyone can benefit from,” one expert said.

Jenny Craig drew praise from experts for being easy to follow, nutritionally complete and safe, and for offering dieters emotional support. But these experts were lukewarm about its potential to bolster heart health or help diabetics. Experts also noted that Jenny Craig’s cost could be a roadblock for some.

The diet received high marks for short-term weight loss, safety, and soundness as a regimen for diabetes, and it was rated moderately effective for heart health. But many panelists felt that in a sea of diets, it’s not overly special, and one said it’s merely “capitalizing on the name” of the popular TV show.

The Ornish diet got a mixed reaction from experts. On one hand, it’s nutritionally sound, safe, and tremendously heart-healthy. On the other, it’s not easy for dieters to adhere to the severe fat restriction the diet demands.
The Asian diet is a reasonable choice for an eating pattern, landing around the middle of the pack of ranked diets. Experts handed out high marks in nutrition and safety, but doubted the plan’s ability to deliver short- or long-term weight loss.

Top Meal Plans for Diabetics

From the article, they also classified the diets according to your needs or conditions.  Since we are all diabetics or most likely diabetics, I thought knowing the top diet plans for our condition was important to outline.

"Diet is a crucial tool for managing diabetes, and weight loss can help people who are overweight prevent Type 2 diabetes. The experts who rated the 32 diets below evaluated each one on its ability to both prevent and manage diabetes. The Biggest Loser Diet and the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH), an eating plan endorsed by the government, came out on top."

As I have stated many times, we must all live our life in the easiest possible method or it gets difficult to manage.  My wife lives the Mediterranean diet before it was even a known diet plan.  So for me, her shopping and mine will match up better if I am on this plan.  So I have chosen based on my personal needs and best method - you must do the same.

The plan, which revolves around healthy eating and exercise, tied for the top position as a diet for managing or preventing diabetes. The approach is generally viewed as an ideal eating pattern for both.

Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension, or DASH, edged out several other diets as a diabetes weapon, in the judgment of our expert panelists. Its emphasis on whole grains, fruits, and veggies matches the sort of nutritional prescription that diabetics frequently hear their doctors recommend.

The Engine 2 diet earned 3.5 stars, tieing for third place in the diabetes category. The plan should help dieters drop pounds—and being overweight is one of the greatest risk factors for developing diabetes. Plus, it includes a fitness regimen, which is key for diabetes prevention and control.


The Flexitarian diet earned an above-average score in the diabetes category. Eliminating meat typically leads to consuming fewer calories, and losing weight—and keeping it off—is essential for preventing type 2 diabetes.

The diet’s eating guidelines and fitness advice are a compelling combination for preventing or controlling diabetes. Its focus is on coaching dieters to develop healthy, lasting habits around which foods they choose to eat and which to avoid.

The Ornish diet is a good option for preventing or controlling diabetes, experts concluded. It’s low in saturated fat and cholesterol, which matches the guidelines of the American Diabetes Association, and it has been found to lower A1C level in diabetics, a positive signal of better control over blood sugar.

As a diet for managing diabetes, veganism is a smart option, some experts said. It could also help prevent the condition, since it helps dieters drop pounds—and being overweight is one of the greatest risk factors for developing diabetes.

The Anti-Inflammatory diet earned a respectable 3.6 stars for diabetes control and prevention. It’s based on a Mediterranean-style diet, which can reverse metabolic syndrome, a group of risk factors that can lead to diabetes. However, some experts noted that diabetes patients should exercise additional caution, since daily protein is “on the high side.”

Experts gave this diet relatively high marks when it comes to preventing or controlling diabetes. Research suggests a healthy Mediterranean-style diet can reverse the metabolic syndrome, a group of risk factors that can lead to diabetes.

On the whole, experts think the vegetarian diet has real ability to help prevent or control diabetes. Followed right, the diet emphasizes many of the foods Americans should eat to maintain a healthy, disease-free lifestyle.

Meal Planning Software

I tried to find some good software that helps - but they all come with a price.  Since I found all of them on the internet and do not really want to push any based on that fact - I will let you do you own research in that area.

I do plan on selecting one of those products just to see how they work.  I do plan on building a software product for us diabetics.

For now I think it important for you to select a Meal Plan and a Lifestyle.  Most of these diets come packed to help you in both areas.  But pick one, study it, sit down with your support team and develop an Eating Lifestyle just like you have for exercise.

We have diabetes and managing Lifestyle elements  like eating, exercise, medications, supplements, and stress are critical.

God thank you for bringing in groups like US News who produced such a wonderful comparison of all the diet plans today.  Help us to understand our bodies and help us select the one plan that is right for us.  Please guide us in our new path and give us the strength and courage to stay with our new Meal Plan.

Bob,