You should be able to eat whatever you want if you have insulin-dependent diabetes. Even so, some food makes blood glucose more difficult to control. This is especially the case over Christmas, when we’re flooded with all manner of sweet and carb-heavy culinary pleasures.
We don’t want you to miss out on Christmas grub; try these 3 recipes that won’t send your blood glucose skyrocketing.
Oats are brilliant for diet control: they have a low glycemic index (GI) level, are fibrous – leaving you feeling fuller – and are heart-healthy. To make flapjacks, the oats can be combined with honey, which will substitute much of the granulated sugar, since it has a lower GI level than sugar. Finally, fruits, nuts, and spices allow for the taste of Christmas.
200g honey (or 400g if you want to try the flapjacks without any granulated sugar)
55g walnuts (chopped)
55g almonds (ground)
1 tsp mixed spice/pumpkin spice
½ tsp nutmeg
½ tsp cinnamon
- Preheat the oven to 350 F/180 C/Gas 4.
- Prepare a cake tin or baking tray by lining it with greased baking paper.
- In a saucepan, melt the butter, honey, and sugar over a medium heat. Stir to avoid burning.
- In a separate bowl, mix the remaining ingredients together.
- Thoroughly mix in the melted butter, honey, and sugar.
- Place the whole mixture into the cake tin and level it.
- Bake for around 20 minutes.
- Cut into squares or whatever shape you want!
Scandinavian Potato Salad with Fish
Since Hedia was founded in Denmark, this recipe has a Scandinavian twist. Potato salad is popular on many occasions in Scandinavia, and herring and salmon is a favourite Christmas food.
Try this potato salad with soused herring if you can get your hands on it – or smoked salmon if you’d prefer a simpler, less sugary option. Cold potato (rather than warm potato), has the benefit of a lower GI level, while fatty fish is beneficial for heart health and a great source of protein.
1 dl walnuts
About 10 radishes
2 red onions
1 head of arugula/rocket
1 tbsp french mustard
1 tbsp olive oil
600g smoked salmon or 200g tin soused herring
A few slices of bread
The following can be added if using the herring:
1dl creme fraiche
2 tbsp finely chopped dill
2 hard boiled eggs
- Cut the potatoes into quarters and cook in boiling water for about 20 minutes.
- Mix the vinegar, mustard, and oil in a bowl.
- Cut the radishes and onion into thin slices, chop the arugula, and crush the walnuts.
- When the potatoes are finished cooking, let them cool. Dice the cold potatoes.
- Mix in the potatoes, radishes, onions, arugula, and walnuts to the mixture in the bowl.
- If using salmon, let the mixture sit for a while and then serve together with the smoked salmon on a slice of bread – in Scandinavia we like it with crispbread (knækbrød).
- If using herring instead, place the herring in a bowl with sliced egg. Stir together.
- Add the herring and egg to the previous mixture, combined with the mayonnaise, creme fraiche, and dill.
- Serve with bread.
The classic Christmastime vegetable. Maybe you hated them as a child, but sprouts are highly nutritious – and delicious too, if cooked in the right way. Brussels sprouts are high in fibre, which is good for blood glucose, along with other benefits such as healthy fatty acids and vitamin K. Try this simple recipe to include the sprouts in your Christmas meal.
45g brussels sprouts
2 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper (amount depending on your preference)
- Preheat the oven to 400 F/200 C/Gas 6.
Prepare a baking tray by lining it with baking paper and coating it with oil.
- Cut the sprouts into quarters.
- Place brussels sprouts in the tray, making sure they also have some oil on them. Add salt and pepper as you see fit.
- Roast for about 20 minutes – until they get as crispy as you want them to.
Enjoy Christmas food like anyone else…
… and don’t let your blood glucose send you on a roller coaster ride – the true roller coaster ride is trying to find enough chairs for the Christmas meal and eventually perching on a rickety wooden stool!
To avoid a whole other kind of roller coaster ride during the holiday season – with all that mulled wine and New Year’s drinking – see our advice for diabetes and alcohol.
And if you want some more technical advice on how to avoid those after-meal spikes, have a look at Blood Sugar after Eating – How to Mange it Better.
Let Hedia to assist you in your Christmas cooking by using the food database. It helps control what you take in and suggests an insulin dosage accordingly. Download the app on Google Play or the App Store here.