Dining Out With Diabetes?

Having diabetes doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice taste or skip going out to eat. You can enjoy every bite with these tips!

Health Monitor Staff

When you have diabetes, the simple act of eating out can turn into a stressful event. What should I eat? Can I have a drink? What if the kitchen is running behind? With a few simple tricks you can enjoy the dining experience—and stick to your diabetes goals. Read on.

Time-delay your order.
Go ahead and order an appetizer, savor it slowly—and wait until you’re done to place your dinner entrée order. The wait gives your stomach time to send your brain the “I’m full” signal so you’re not as tempted to order—and finish—a big entrée.

Start your meal with this.
A dash of vinegar! As odd as this may sound, Arizona State University research shows that having vinegar before a meal—say, as part of a salad dressing or pickled vegetables—can reduce the spikes in insulin and blood sugar levels that often occur after eating.

Ask if the kitchen is on schedule.
A delay in service could lead to a drop in your blood sugar, and that could affect when you take your diabetes medication. If the chef is behind, ask if your appetizer could be served immediately.

Remember the two Ts.
Want to enjoy a glass of wine or beer (with your doctor’s approval, of course)? Consider the timing and the type. Even if your doctor said it was fine to have a glass of wine with dinner, it could still make your blood sugar go too low if you don’t have enough food in your stomach. So ask your server to bring your drink with your entrée so you’re not tempted to sip in advance. And the type? Think clear and white: Drier, lighter-colored drinks, such as dry white wine, champagne and vodka, have fewer carbs.

Shave 20% off your calorie
count with this starter.

It’s soup! According to a Penn State study, sipping your appetizer can cut the total amount of calories eaten at your meal by up to 20%! The only catch? Shun creamy soups for broth-based varieties that have about 150 calories a cup like chicken, lentil and minestrone.

October 2013