Food For Thought
Anna Albritton, MS, RD, LD shares her food philosophy and goals for Diabetes Strength Members
While food plays a key role in great diabetes management, it’s also a source of pleasure. Think about it this way—what do we do with our families around holidays? With friends on a Friday? To celebrate special events? Food is typically the centerpiece of most social events. Even for individuals without diabetes, the balance between food as fuel and food as pleasure can be a challenge. Add blood sugar management to the mix and the challenge becomes even more difficult.
I plan to use the nutrition platform of Diabetes Strength to share practical nutrition tips and fresh, quick, easy recipes on a regular basis. Before sharing tips and recipes, however, I’d like to share a bit about my food philosophy as a registered dietitian. This philosophy has evolved as a result of the many clients I have worked with yet the overall theme remains simple—everything in moderation. Foods that are full of nutrients like vitamins, minerals, complex carbohydrates, and lean protein should make up the majority of our diets. Think of it this way—instead of referring to foods as “healthy” and “unhealthy,” we could reframe our train of thought to think about foods having more nutrients versus fewer nutrients. Everything has a time and place—dark leafy greens daily, yet cookies much less frequently. If we begin to train our brains to look at food as fuel and consider how we feel after eating certain foods, it becomes “dummy proof” in a sense. No need to mull over nutrition labels or spend lots of time and money at the grocery store. By understanding that the fewer packaged foods we eat, the better, we already have a huge jump start on eating healthy.
Indulging in treats from time to time is also part of a healthy relationship with food, keeping the “everything in moderation” mindset. If we continually deprive ourselves of our favorite (maybe not-so-healthy) foods, we set ourselves up to overeat the moment we finally let ourselves indulge in those “favorites.” As a member of the Diabetes Strength team, my ultimate goal is to educate readers on nutrition as it relates to diabetes while encouraging a balanced diet and a healthy relationship with food. Eating to fuel for the next workout and replenish your body from your last workout is priority! Follow along for regular tips and recipes to incorporate into your healthy lifestyle.