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Eating Regularly and the Importance of Keeping a Food Diary for Diabetics

diary of eating

Can you remember what you ate for dinner last Friday? How about what you had for lunch 3 days ago? Have you maxed out your week’s sugar and sodium content? Keeping track of what you eat is one of the most important things to do when you are looking to properly manage your diabetes. The key to doing that is either having a journal or a food diary where you can easily see what you ate or plan ahead and set reminders to take medication or supplements (eg. Glucerna) as a backup plan.1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Benefits of Keeping a Good Diary

A diary gives you a reality check and holds you accountable for your eating habits. If you did have a meal plan, you get to know if you followed it or not. A food diary helps with:1, 2, 3

  • Catching emotional eating
  • Track exercise
  • Check medications
  • Record of food input’s effect on blood sugar
  • Reminder for next medical checkup
  • Keep a grocery list
  • List of food and their nutrient counter (eg. fish for vitamin E, oranges for vitamin C, or list of leafy green options for magnesium)
  • Help you note down your feelings and thoughts (eg. how you feel after each meal or after workouts)

Tips on Keeping a Food Diary

By following how the food choices you make affect your blood glucose levels, you can avoid future spikes by making adjustments. To keep a food daily make sure that:

  • It is in a format you are comfortable with.
  • When noting WHEN you eat:3
    • List your meal times and when you have had snacks. Are they consistent? Regular meals with healthy nutrients are better at stabilizing blood glucose.
  • When noting WHAT you eat:3
    • Use scales and measuring cups
    • Take pictures of food/ingredients
    • Set at least a 3 day meal plan
  • When recording Blood Glucose1
    • Write down goal, before food and medication, and post meal
  • Note down medications to pinpoint interactions with timing and reaction with food.
  • Record exercise style and timing. Set a minimum exercise session runtime (minimum 30 to 60 minutes per day).3
  • Have a dedicated section that compares nutritional content and Glycemic Index rating of carbohydrates and alternatives.4, 5

GI rating is a way of describing how much blood sugar the carbohydrates content in the food raises. From a rating of 1 to 100, the lower end being the food raises blood sugar slower.4 When you go low on the GI, you must go high on the protein to better satiate hunger. There will be some days when the food you eat may not be satisfying so you feel like having a snack. Instead of reaching for junk food, choose fresh fruits or diabetic specific nutritional supplements to keep blood glucose stable.5 For instance, the new advanced carbohydrates system^ of Glucerna has 4 times myo-inositol^, a carbohydrate that increases insulin sensitivity to help effectively manage blood glucose level.* Backed by over 30 years of scientific studies, Glucerna is No.1 Doctor Recommended Diabetes Nutritional Formula in the US# so a senior can start action from day 1 and see improvements within 3 months##. Visit Glucerna Myanmar today for additional questions, answers and to sign up for samples.4, 6

References:

  1. https://www.healthcentral.com/slideshow/7-reasons-why-you-should-keep-food-diary
  2. https://www.diabetesselfmanagement.com/nutrition-exercise/meal-planning/keeping-a-food-diary/
  3. https://www.eatingwell.com/article/290917/the-benefits-of-keeping-a-diabetes-food-journal/
  4. https://www.sunrice.com.sg/discover-rice/low-gi/?gclid=CjwKCAiAlfqOBhAeEiwAYi43FxR61lt_l_CQSbQCw9V9tS55Ah0lO2xYiJmrT94wD2VI-pcz9i3zixoCx24QAvD_BwE
  5. https://abbottnutrition.com.my/products/glucerna

^    Compared to previous formula of Glucerna

*     Chee et al., 2017; Sun et al., 2008

#    IQVIA, using the ProVoice Survey, fielded 14,853 physicians from January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.

## Glucerna has been shown to lower postprandial rises in blood glucose (Davila et al., 2019; Devitt et al., 2012; Luo et at., 2012; Mottalib et al., 2016)

Additional Reading:

  1. https://glucerna.ensuremyanmar.com/eng/