further food

Find Your Food Journey

Healthy Eating Tips, Publications

Food itself can have an amazing journey. I have always loved food. Who doesn’t love food!? Cooking and creating recipes with my mom was always one of my favorite things to do when I was little.. and it still is to this day. Throughout all my travels around the world, I have loved experiencing each country through its food. It is the best way to fully indulge, submerge, and understand the cultures.

kitchen

Even being diagnosed, at 23, with the incurable unpreventable autoimmune disease, Type 1 Diabetes, has given me a whole new adventure and experimentation with food. I do have to say in my life before I was diagnosed, I could eat whatever I wanted. I was a health conscious and very active person, but I really never thought twice about how many grams of something there is or what kind of sweeteners are used or what I put into my body. So now in my life, after my diagnosis, I became way more focused about what I eat and how it reacts with my body. I now keep track of how many grams of sugar, carbs, and protein are in each piece of food. I study the backs of products for the Nutritional Facts labels. I research what kinds of alternatives can work to replace certain “bad” foods. I experiment with how my body performs during a workout after eating specific foods. It is quite a blessing to be able to have my eyes opened to my body’s sensitivities. Even though it took a disease to show me more in depth about food and what it can do for my body, I am glad it did.

I think every person has a food journey. I think that everyone should be able to look more closely into their food and how it affects their bodies, whether they have a disease or not. Every body is different, so finding what foods work specifically for YOU is one of the best lessons that you can learn in life. And now I have as much fun in the kitchen as I did before Type1 because I like the challenge of making my food healthy as much as I like to make my presentation beautiful!

Check out my latest publication on Further Food! It features my food journey to finding what works for my body and my condition, a list of the foods I love, and some of my fun recipes too! Read about my article on Further Food here!

I am also very honored to be chosen as Further Food’s official “Health Hero” to help others create new food masterpieces in the kitchen and inspire them to follow their own food journey.

health hero

my birthday cake

Living It Up On My First Birthday As A Type One Diabetic

Healthy Eating Tips

It’s my birthday today! YAYYY! It is my first birthday as a diabetic. It is absolutely amazing how many changes can happen within one year. I have been experiencing a lot of firsts with my diagnoses and this birthday is another first to put down on the list.

I talk a lot about how I eat a healthy strict paleo lifestyle. However, I also talk a lot about how there are always exceptions and special occasions where you don’t have to feel like you have to torture yourself to avoid that piece of chocolate or a holiday cookie.. or in my case, a piece of my birthday cake! I used to be afraid to eat any carbs and sugars in the fear of what it would do to my diabetic body. Later, I have realized that for some occasions and with moderation, I just have to just allow myself to enjoy that simple pleasure. Because Type One Diabetics can have sugar if they want to! I don’t do it a lot, but when I do, it’s for a good reason. And I always do what feels right for my body. If I know that I’m going to allow myself to indulge, then I take my precautions with my insulin, do my daily workouts, and then return to my normal healthy food habits. You don’t have to be scared of food. Give yourself that leeway to enjoy the simple things every now & then as a reward for all your great work and then return back to your healthy self. Day 7’s challenge is to let go of any fears that my prevent you from a simple food happiness (with moderation of course). And, on the other hand, if you aren’t following a healthy eating lifestyle, then limit yourself on your sweets and save them for rewards and/or special occasions.

starbucks drink

Starbucks’ Secret Sugary Scrooges

Healthy Eating Tips

Each year I wait for the exciting moment for the Starbucks festive holiday drinks to come out! They easily make my days so cheery and bright! HOWEVER, have you ever taken the time to look at the nutritional value of the beloved Peppermint Mocha!? A medium Peppermint Mocha consists of 410 Calories, 63g Carbs, and 54g Sugars! That blows my mind. It’s hard believe that a little red cup can be so filled with all these sneaky sugars. Looking at the nutritional facts, I realize that I don’t want/need all of that in my body. I don’t always want to have to shoot myself up with tons of insulin to be able to drink it. And on top of that, it even tastes too sugary for me. Discouraged, I turned to the Skinny Peppermint Mocha.. and to my surprise it is just as amazing! It has 1/4th the amount of sugars in it compared to the regular and it tastes just as good! It has 130 Calories, 17g Carbs, 13g Sugars. That’s what I’m talking about! Starbucks tips on how to lighten up that sugar intake:

  1. Ask to make a drink skinny
  2. Ask to see what sugar free flavors they have to make a drink just as fun
  3.  If they have no sugar free options, ask to get a regular drink, BUT have them put half the amount pumps/syrup in it and that will help cut those sugars in half.

So for Day 3 of the Type Happy Challenge, cozy up and find your favorite holiday drink and make it sugar free, or ask for half the amount syrup, or make it a skinny!

looking at watch

3 Things Diabetics Should Think About When “Falling Back” The Time

Diabetic Tips, Diabetic Tips For Working Out, Healthy Eating Tips

 

This month we set our clocks back one hour until Spring comes around. Even though it doesn’t feel like it, one hour can be a lot! One hour more of sleep, one hour difference of meal times, one hour less of sunlight! Now, for a lot of people, this may not seem like a big deal. But for Diabetics, it affects everything.

  1. Sleep

Sleep is a huge part of a diabetic’s life. This extra hour is a glorious thing. Not getting enough sleep can majorly affect a person’s hormones, metabolism, stress levels, and blood sugar levels drastically. After only a few days of little sleep, research has been showed that people have constant high blood sugar levels. Consequently, when they got back onto a longer sleeping schedule, their blood glucose levels went down immensely. Losing sleep also promotes higher levels of Cortisol (the stress hormone). Cortisol promotes insulin resistance and elevates higher blood sugars. So keeping that stress level down and sleep schedule up, can improve a person’s health immediately.

  1. Meals and Medication

Moving the clocks backward, can also affect your meals, eating habits, and when you take your medications. For diabetics, we try to live on a schedule that suits our meal times and when we need to take our short-acting and long-acting insulin. Spacing out your meals so that you aren’t eating late at night is something important to think about. Taking an insulin dosage for a late meal can make you more at risk for night-hypoglycemia, which can be a scary thing. So make sure with this time change that you are still sticking with a constant meal plan and that you don’t end up eating too late into the night. The time change also makes us change and adapt our long-lasting insulin dosage to the correct time of day that we want. Changing your insulin schedule by one hour will not make much of a serious difference, so changing your routine for the time change should no be a problem. However, just make sure that you are doing it at the same time each day.

3. Less Time to Exercise

Since the days are getting shorter with less daytime to do activities, there is less time to get out and exercise. Fitting in that workout everyday is a great habit to get into. Exercise does a lot of magical things for the diabetic body. Not only does it keep us fit, but it also helps bring down our blood sugars, stabilizes us, and helps with insulin sensitivity. So when the days are getting shorter, you might want to have your workout schedule to be in the morning when the sun is up before starting the rest of your day. If you are an evening gym-buff, joining a gym, cycling class, yoga class, or anything indoors will help motivate you get into the workout state of mind while its dark and looking like bedtime outside. I am a runner, so I changed up my routine to running in the morning because that is when it is light outside, it gets dark by the time I get home from work so running in the evenings is no longer an option for me. When I do workout in the evenings, I like to go to a spin or yoga class to get myself going.

Good luck with your fall adaptions!

dinosaur eating donut with insulin needle

To Trick -or- To Treat?

Daily T1D Inspiration, Diabetic Tips, Healthy Eating Tips

Happy Halloween! Today is the day where we get our adrenalin pumping from spooky haunted houses and indulge in some tastebud stimulating candies. Before diving into those Halloween store bought candies and trick-or-treating sugar boosted treats, I wanted to share my short philosophy. My Halloween dinosaur and I will demonstrate.

Here is how a diabetic sees sugary foods and candies.. We do an overwhelming amount of math in our head to calculate how much insulin our body needs at the moment plus how much insulin is needed for the foods we are about to eat. While most others have a working pancreas that automatically does this math for them; we have become our own thinking, calculating pancreas. Well, in my philosophy I look at each sugary food that I am about to eat and contemplate, “Is it worth taking that extra insulin injection to eat this sugary thing that will only satisfy me for a second?” In some cases, yes, but in other cases, no. Type 1 Diabetics do not have to stay away from sugar, we can eat whatever we want.. However, it means that we just have to act as our pancreas and inject the amount of insulin needed. I tend to always answer my own question by saying, “No, its not worth that extra amount of foreign insulin and I do not want to take an injection.” I don’t want to mess up my numbers by sending it on a never ending roller coaster of ups and downs.

So this Halloween, ask yourself “Is this candy worth it?” before you eat something that is not of the “healthy lifestyle.” This will definitely help improve your thinking to making healthier decisions and will give you the confidence and support in being okay with saying “No” to the sugar. Saying “I don’t want the sugar” is a lot better than saying “I can’t have the sugar.”

Stick to the tricking and save the treating for some alternative healthier treats! For some ideas, check out my Recipes page.