Do you crave a yummy bite to curb your hunger but having diabetes restricts you from getting creative in the kitchen? Having the right ingredients on hand can make all the difference between feeling energized or lethargic for the rest of the day! The first basic requirement to start preparing any meal is to have low carbs. The American Diabetes Association notes that carbohydrates are the body’s main source of energy, but it should be consumed in the right proportion. Carbs consumed in the form of cereals, fruits, sugar, and grains need to be controlled as they can contribute to increased fat percentage in our bodies.
The University of Pennsylvania Medical Center found that people with high diabetes lost more weight during the first six months on a carbohydrate-restricted diet than on a calorie- and fat-restricted diet. They also had an improvement in insulin sensitivity which is also another benefit of following a low-carb diet! Yes, it can be tricky sometimes to come up with new recipes, but there are some nutritious and simple low-carb treats to fill you up until your next meal!
Cottage Cheese Pancakes: (Serves 4)
1 1/3 cups full-fat (4%) cottage cheese
4 tablespoons of flour (all-purpose, or you can opt for whole-grain, coconut, and/or almond flour)
3 tablespoons melted butter (more butter for greasing the pan and serving)
¾ teaspoon of kosher salt or half as much table salt
Heat a skillet or griddle over medium-low heat while you prepare the batter. Add all ingredients in a blender and blend until there are no lumps. Butter the skillet and then pour in dollops of batter so that they spread into 3- or 4-inch circles. Cook until the underside is golden and the edges are starting to look dry, then flip and cook until the other side is golden (around 5 minutes altogether). Serve with butter and fruits on the side for a lovely breakfast!
Zucchini Spaghetti: (Serves 2)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound zucchini noodles (zoodles) or 1 pound spiralized zucchini,
Heat up the oil in a wide nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add in the zucchini and sauté, tossing gently with tongs as it cooks, until it is barely tender. Stop before you think it’s completely cooked before its sitting in a flood of water. Don’t add salt until you’re done cooking or the salt also will pull water from it. Salt and sauce as you like after its done cooking! Adding in sauce and cheese or a spoonful of pesto, or simply a little pat of melting butter makes for a lovely lunch that your family is sure to enjoy!
Chicken Casserole: (Serves 4)
100g chopped lean smoked back bacon,
4 small skinless chicken breasts
1 large chopped onion,
2 crushed garlic cloves, freshly ground black pepper
2 seeded and chopped green peppers
2 tbsp fresh marjoram or half tbsp dried
1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
150ml chicken stock
1 x 420g cans of drained and rinsed borlotti beans,
2 tbsp tomato purée
Heat a large non-stick saucepan, add the bacon and fry for 2–3 minutes until it begins to get crisp. Remove from the pan and add the chicken and brown on each side. Add in some onion, garlic, and peppers and continue to fry for 2–3 minutes. Return the bacon to the pan with all the remaining ingredients and stir well, bring to boil, cover and simmer gently for 40–45 minutes. You could also use mixed beans or chickpeas if you prefer and enjoy a delightful dinner with your loved ones!
According to Dr. Jennifer Fitzgibbon, a registered oncology dietitian at Stony Brook Hospital Cancer Center in New York, low-carb diets have been proven to offer various health benefits, including weight loss and reduced cholesterol, blood pressure, and blood sugar levels. These low-carb recipes are not just nutritious and easy to make, but also quells your hunger and gets you excited for your next meal or snack!