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Diabetes: Tips and Information

Information to allow you to maximise your subscription.

With our Diabetes Meal Plans, you stack the odds in your favour. To take maximum advantage of our meal plans, take the time to read the information below.

Important Advice and Useful Tips for Diabetes

What you should do

  • To find out which caloric level is right for you, compute your estimated energy requirements (EER). To find out what your ideal body weight is, compute your body mass index ( BMI)
  • If you are overweight, you must know that weight loss, even modest, could improve your health. Our Diabetes Meal Plans are designed to help you achieve and maintain a healthy weight.
  • Adopt a regular schedule for your meals and snacks.
  • Drink enough fluids, i.e. 1 to 2 liters/quarts each day, including water, milk, soup, tea, coffee, juice, etc., distributed throughout the day.
  • Move! Physical activity lowers blood sugar, improves effectiveness of insulin produced by the body and helps reduce excess weight, if any.
    • If you are beginning, set realistic goals.
    • Choose an activity that you like and that fits your lifestyle.
    • Gradually increase the duration and frequency in order to get to 30-60 minutes of moderate activity, 3 to 5 days a week.
    • The duration can be spread over the day. For example, 10 minutes of bike to go to work, 10 minutes of gardening and 10 minutes playing with children.
  • Consult your Doctor if you have a medical condition. We also recommend that you consult a Registered Dietitian and tell her/him that you follow the SOSCuisine Meal Plans.

What you should watch out for

  • At the grocery store, choose products without trans fat. For example, make sure the list of ingredients do not show hydrogenated oil.
  • According to the Canadian Diabetes Association, routine antioxidants supplementation with vitamins E, C, and carotene is not recommended due to lack of evidence about their effectiveness and concerns about their long-term safety.
  • The Canadian Diabetes Association encourages people with diabetes to meet their nutritional needs through a balanced diet, which in most cases is sufficient to provide all vitamins and minerals. There are three exceptions:
    • A vitamin D supplement is recommended for people over 50 years of age
    • A folic acid supplement is highly recommended for women who could become pregnant, during pregnancy and during lactation
    • An iron supplement during the last two trimesters of pregnancy
    Therefore, it is strongly recommended to discuss with your doctor about supplements. It would also be prudent to check with your pharmacist if there is a risk of interaction between your medications and the supplement.
  • If you drink alcoholic beverages:
    • Do so with moderation: No more than one drink/day for women and two drinks/day for men.
    • Do drink them during meals.
    • Before drinking, make sure that your blood sugar is well controlled.
    • Talk to your doctor to determine if alcohol is safe for you, especially if you drink several times a week, and if you take oral diabetes medication.
  • Moderate your consumption of caffeine-containing beverages (coffee, tea, soft drinks, energy drinks, etc.)

What you should not do

  • Avoid sweet alcoholic drinks (dessert wines, “cocktails” and liquors) because they are high in sugar and can cause a rapid rise in blood sugar.
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FAQ: Diabetes

Why are there desserts with added sugar in the Diabetes meal plan?

Indeed, some fruits served for dessert are sometime sprinkled with sugar, but only in small amount to enhance their taste. Since our meal plans take into account the total amount and the distribution of sugar in the day, everything is still balanced. If you prefer to eat your fruits without any sugar, feel free to do so!

I have diabetes, hypertension and I want to lose weight. What meal plan should I choose?

We recommend that you consult your doctor and/or a registered dietitian, that will give you the best advice in this regard.

This being said, you can choose one of the Diabetes Meal Plans, offered in three caloric levels: 1,500, 1,700 and 2,100 calories per day. To lose weight, you must choose a caloric level that is lower than your energy needs. A deficit of 500 calories per day will typically allow you to lose one pound (half a kilogram) per week, which is safe. Calculate your energy needs. If, for example, your energy requirement is 2,000 calories, choose the 1,500-calorie Meal Plans to achieve weight loss. Most of our female subscribers choose the 1,500-calorie Meal Plans, and most male subscribers choose the 1,700-calorie Meal Plans.

With regard to hypertension, the good news is that our Diabetes Meal Plans contain less than 7% saturated fat, zero trans fat, very little sodium (1,725 mg/day on average), plenty of fruits and vegetables (9 servings/day on average), fully comply with Canada’s Food Guide recommendations, and can therefore contribute to reduce your blood pressure.

My Dietitian told me that I should take about 45g of carbs per meal for myself and about 60g for my husband. Looking at the Nutrition Facts table for your Meal Plans, I’m afraid that your menus contain too much carbs. Are your Meal Plans really appropriate for us?

Glad you asked! No worries: Your Dietitian is right and… so are we! Here’s the explanation for this apparent difference:

First, the values recommended by your Dietitian are for “net” carbs (without fibers) and refer to the main meal only. On the other hand, the Nutrition facts table for our Meal Plans show “total” carbohydrates, from which you must subtract the amount of fiber, because these do not contribute to your blood glucose. This table also presents the total carbs for the day, including your meals as well as your snacks.

Second, in order to make it easier for people to count carbs, dietitians here in Quebec focus on carbs from fruits, dairy products and grain products only. This is an approximation, as it does not include carbs from vegetables and meat and alternatives. On the other hand, our proprietary computer system calculates carbs accurately from all foods, without omitting any.

Finally, our Diabetes Meal Plans are designed to provide 50% of the energy from carbohydrates, as recommended by the Canadian Diabetes Association. By choosing our Diabetes Meal Plans with the right caloric level for you, you will be able to meet the latest dietary recommendations without having to count carbs. If your dietitian prescribes 60g of carbs, you may follow the plan at 1700kcal. If she prescribes 45g, you may follow the 1500kcal, but you will need to take one less serving of grains/day (for ex. leave out 1/2 slice of bread at lunch and 1/2 serving of rice at dinner, or leave out 1/2 cereal bowl at breakfast and 1/2 slice of bread at dinner, etc.). Be reassured, with SOSCuisine you’re in good hands!

I was surprised to see that you are proposing PASTA for dinner, because I heard that we should avoid them when we have diabetes. Could you please clarify the situation?

The glycemic index of al dente pasta is relatively low. This means that they do not induce a major increase in blood sugar and they are efficient to control hunger. Often served with a source of protein such as meat, eggs, or seafood, pasta dishes are adequate for a well-balanced meal.

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Info Nutrition: Diabetes

The most recent recommendations (references) for type 2 diabetes consist of 40 nutritional targets that must be attained day after day, in order to prevent the progression and complications of the disease. This allows for an effective control of blood glucose, blood lipids, blood pressure and body weight.

These 40 targets can be grouped as follows:

  • Adequate caloric intake, to achieve and maintain a healthy weight. We currently offer 3 caloric levels to best meet your needs: 1,500, 1,700 and 2,100 calories per day.
  • Optimal intake of vitamins and minerals, especially sodium
  • Optimal intake and distribution of carbs, fat and protein throughout the day
  • Optimal intake of good fats (monounsaturated, polyunsaturated) and the optimal omega-6 / omega-3 ratio
  • No trans fat, limited saturated fat, added sugar, and alcohol
  • Adequate number of servings of the 4 food groups of the Food Guide:
    • Vegetables and fruit, including 1 serving of dark green vegetables and 1 serving of orange vegetables every day
    • Grain products, including a majority of whole grain products
    • Low-fat milk and alternatives
    • Meat and alternatives, including fish
  • Adequate intake of foods that are specifically recommended (meat alternatives, etc.)

The following table shows that our type 2 diabetes Meal Plans have consistently met the nutritional recommendations since their launch, on July 29th, 2010.

SOSCuisine Nutrional Table
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IMPORTANT: The information provided on this website does not replace a medical consultation and is not intended for self diagnosis. We recommend that you seek the advice of your doctor or healthcare professional before undertaking a change to your diet or lifestyle. See Terms & Conditions.