Successful Meal Planning for Diabetes

Sylvia Escott-Stump, MA, RD, LDN

East Carolina University

Today, diabetes management is easier than ever by using nutritional principles that improve patient care and outcomes. Effective interventions, such as carbohydrate counting, have eliminated the necessity for outdated diabetes nutrition practices. The best medical advice to give a patient is: “Nutrition is an essential part of taking care of your diabetes.” Counseling has moved beyond telling patients to “diet and lose weight” without the proper resources. Healthy lifestyle changes rather than trends or fad diets help when they are presented positively. Today, the use of “no concentrated sweets” or an “ADA” diet with a strict calorie level should be rejected. The solution is referral to a Registered Dietitian-Nutritionist Refer who specializes in diabetes. The credential “Certified Diabetes Educator, or CDE” signifies that the provider has extra training and skills to help someone with diabetes manage their disease with greater independence. Nutrition assessment, goal setting, and frequent follow-up interventions are major keys to success.