Sunday, 19 July 2009

Come, dine with me!

It’s all about food of course. We need food as much as anyone else, but need to be aware how that food is going to affect our blood glucose levels. One of the biggest misconceptions about diabetes is that we can only eat a limited range of foods, or specialist ‘diabetic’ foods with artificial sweeteners to replace the real stuff. Not so at all! All we need to do is follow a healthy, balanced diet, which is actually no different to what most people would be advised to follow. Cakes and chocolate are allowed, but in moderation either as a treat or taken with a meal – that goes for alcohol too. All we need to do is be aware of how food and drink affects our levels and plan accordingly. My diet hasn’t changed dramatically since diagnosis – I guess it was pretty healthy before – but I have learned a lot more about how the body works and how to keep myself fit and healthy. A hundred years ago diabetes was a death sentence – a hugely restricted diet, leading to emaciation, malnutrition and a pitiful end. With modern knowledge, equipment and medication, I am probably healthier than many of my peers, and aim to remain that way!

Come, dine with me – drink wine with me!
Everything will be fine, you’ll see,
For though I have the dreaded ‘D’
I still take sugar in my tea!

I’m not averse to cake or sauce,
And I’ll eat chocolate mousse (if forced!)
Moderation is the key, of course,
Though sometimes I could eat a horse!

No polyols please, for they make
My nether regions gurgle and quake,
Much better, for my stomach’s sake –
A healthy wholemeal pasta bake!

Diabetes can be a curse,
But there are many things much worse…
I’ll follow the guidelines of my nurse –
Delay the day I’ll need that hearse!


  1. You said:
    "A hundred years ago diabetes was a death sentence – a hugely restricted diet, leading to emaciation, malnutrition and a pitiful end."

    Yes, for Type 1 diabetics, but maybe not for the much larger group of people with Type 2 diabetes.

    Almost a hundred years ago, doctors like Richard Allen were telling diabetics to fast, and then to eat low-carb diets. Before 1921, they were starting to get amazing results with Type 2 diabetics.

    However, insulin came along in 1921, and medicine took a detour away from healthy diets, and toward dangerous and costly drugs.

    As a Type 2 diabetic, I prefer the pre-1921 healthful diet approach, instead of the BigPharma concoctions of today.

  2. Indeed Jim, I have read the history. My poems are written from the perspective of a (fairly) newly diagnosed Type 1, and my chances of succeeding on a diet, however healthy, would have been nil. I think each person with diabetes has to discover their own best approach to treatment and determine by using their meters what combinations give them the most freedom in living their lives long and healthy.