Over Christmas time, our usual daily routine typically goes out the window and food, drink and merriment reign supreme. For those with type 2 diabetes, such a care-free attitude may be detrimental to blood sugar levels. Dr Brewer, who recommends CuraLin, the all-natural supplement that helps balance glucose levels (www.curalife.com) offers her tips for type 2 diabetics during the festive period.
- Stay on top of monitoring your blood sugar levels
Check you have enough medication and blood glucose monitoring supplies to see you through the holiday period. If you are eating more, being less active and experiencing a change in routine, you may need to check your glucose levels more often than usual.
- Avoid Stressmas
Christmas can be a stressful time. Plan well in advance rather than leaving things to the last minute, as excess stress can cause glucose levels to rise as part of the ‘fight or flight’ stress response. Talk to your doctor or diabetes nurse in advance so you know what to do if your readings are raised over Christmas.
- Spread out the treats
Traditional Christmas foods such as Christmas cake, pudding, mince pies and chocolates can be enjoyed if you have diabetes, as long as you don’t eat too much in one go. Spread them out rather than overindulging at one sitting – graze rather than gorge. For example, wait a couple of hours after your Christmas main course before having dessert.
- Make clever Christmas swaps
Making swaps means you can still enjoy healthy versions of traditional favourites when you have diabetes. Instead of figgy pudding have a fresh fig compote for example. Instead of double cream use low-fat crème fraiche or unsweetened Greek yogurt.
- Enjoy a Christmas walk
If you have eaten a heavy meal, go for a walk afterwards to help burn off the extra energy so blood glucose levels do not rise excessively. Walking off Christmas lunch is a tradition the whole family can enjoy.
- Snack on nuts
Nuts are a popular Christmas snack that, on top of being nice, they are also good for you and help to lower cholesterol, improve blood pressure control and can have beneficial effects on glucose control. Dark chocolate coated Brazils or Macadamias are an ideal after dinner treat.
- Prep for parties
Going out to a party? You may eat later than normal, if a meal is provided, or you may need to eat earlier, before you leave, if only a few nibbles or snacks are on offer. If you are using insulin, check what food arrangements are in place so you know whether to expect a meal and if so, when.
- Go easy on the alcohol
Drinking alcohol can mean you are less aware of the symptoms of low blood sugar (hypoglycaemia). Alternate an alcoholic drink with a non-alcoholic beverage; instead of drinking wine on its own, add soda water to make a spritzer. When drinking spirits always add a low calorie or diet mixer rather than one containing sugar and remember that fruit juice can be high in sugar, too.
- Consider an all-natural supplement for glucose balancing support
As well as following the above steps for a balanced and healthy lifestyle during the holidays, you can also help maintain balanced blood sugar levels with a herbal supplement, CuraLin (£59.00, www.curalife.com). CuraLin is a specially tailored natural formula that promotes healthy and balanced blood sugar levels and insulin production in those suffering from Type 2 Diabetes. The nutritional supplement is made from a mixture of ten natural ingredients
– Dr Brewer explains: “The blend of 10 Ayurvedic herbs within CuraLin have a range of beneficial effects on glucose control and metabolism. As a result, users report that their glucose control quickly improves and, in some cases, normalises within 4 weeks. Users also report reduced cravings for sweet food, and experience improved energy, sleep and general quality of life.
- Try a twist on your traditional turkey
Turkey is traditional at Christmas, but why not opt for a twist on the classic with this recipe from CuraFood – Harissa spiced turkey and cauliflower mash recipe Turkey is a great lean protein option and the cauliflower mash offers a healthy alternative to traditional mash or roasties. If you’re looking for more healthy recipe inspiration check out CuraFood, a comprehensive bank of recipes specially tailored to a diabetic diet.