How to Manage Diabetes During This Festive Season


Contributed by: Anjali Sharma 


Delicious sweets and dishes are essential to festivities! 

Most of India’s celebratory dishes are also deep-fried and extra salted, or they are cooked with sugar or other sweeteners like jaggery and honey. These delicious dishes all share one thing in common: a high carbohydrate and saturated fat content.

Overindulging in these treats throughout the festival season might make most individuals gain weight. However, diabetics risk high blood sugar levels and related problems.

On the other side, diabetics are more likely to have low blood sugar levels when fasting on holidays like Navratri. Studies that examined Indians during festival times found that diabetics’ blood sugar regulation deteriorated, particularly around Diwali and pre-Diwali festivals like Navratri and Durga Puja.

Does this imply that managing diabetes and attending festivals are incompatible? No, not always. It is still feasible to take part in celebrations while managing your blood sugar levels with little planning and dedication. Keep reading to learn more about the measures you must take to manage your diabetes throughout the holiday season.

How to manage diabetes during the festive season?

Choose dishes and sweets with natural sweeteners

To celebrate the occasion fully with family and friends, one would undoubtedly prefer to consume as much sugar as possible. However, people with conditions like diabetes should avoid the treats due to their high sugar content. 

Therefore, it is recommended to use natural sugar substitutes instead, such as jaggery, dates, or figs. 

These substitutions are not only nutritious but will also assist with sugar cravings. Iron-rich jaggery aids in liver cleaning by removing harmful impurities from the body. Additionally, dates and figs are very nutritious and give the body great energy.

Portion size should be small 

During the festive season, most pantries are stocked with treats like candy, dried fruits, snacks, and other potentially unhealthy items. As a result, it might be challenging to keep track of what and how much you’re eating. Before you realise it, you’ve overindulged. 

People should aim to eat smaller portions and stay away from binge eating. This will assist those with diabetes in maintaining healthy blood sugar levels. To prevent any health-related concerns, intake of small portion sizes should be done on a regular basis. Choosing the proper time to eat is a good idea. Drinking at odd hours, such as late at night, is to be avoided because it might harm one’s health.

Monitoring your macronutrient (protein, fat, and carbohydrate) intake over the holiday season can also be a fantastic method to maintain stable blood sugar levels. 

You may still enjoy sweets and fried foods while staying under the daily recommended carb and fat intake limits by keeping track of your intake of carbohydrates.

Pick healthy drinks 

When it comes to maintaining blood sugar management, beverages like juice and soda are equally as dangerous as sweets. These drinks include a lot of added sugar, which can instantly raise your blood sugar levels.

Choose healthier substitutes instead, such as coconut water, low-fat lassi, or smoothies prepared from fruits with a low glycaemic index (GI), such as berries, apples, and oranges.

If drinking alcohol is a staple of the celebration, try to restrict yourself to one drink or stay away from it entirely. Alcohol can have an odd influence on your blood sugar levels, causing it to either rise or fall and cause difficulties.

Finally, remember to stay hydrated by drinking lots of water, which can assist to stabilise your blood sugar levels.

Stay active 

Making time for fitness in your schedule might be challenging with all the holiday enthusiasm. There is no getting around the fact that regular physical activity and exercise are essential for maintaining healthy blood sugar levels.

Therefore, aim to schedule at least 30 minutes of brisk activity each day. If you are unable to visit the gym, you can exercise at home (walking, running, or cycling).

Take medicines on time if any

When it comes to ensuring that your blood sugar levels remain stable throughout the festival season, our medications are your best companions. You can prevent issues with high and low blood sugar by taking your medications as directed and on time.

Talk to your doctor about your holiday activities so they can change the dosage of your medicine as necessary. If you are on insulin, change the dosage according to how many carbs you eat at each meal after consulting the doctor.

Keep a check on your blood sugar levels 

Your blood sugar levels might change over the festival season due to a variety of circumstances. Your ability to manage your blood sugar can be impacted by factors such as diet, exercise, sleep, stress, etc. Keep checking your glucose (sugar) levels often, many times a day if necessary, to prevent blood sugar spikes or decreases.

To make tracking easier, record all of your glucose levels in a journal. If you detect significant variations in your blood sugar levels, take remedial action or get in touch with your doctor.

Timely health check-ups

It is advised to undergo prompt and frequent health examinations, particularly blood sugar levels to detect diabetes. Only if the illness is detected in time may a prompt medical intervention be started. One must also keep in mind that timely and frequent health check-ups enable one to not only monitor one’s health but also to respond promptly.

Final thoughts 

In conclusion, it is appropriate to note that while food plays a significant role in celebrations, especially during holidays, it is necessary to keep health concerns in mind. This warning is especially important for diabetics since being healthy involves celebrating every day of the year, not just on certain holidays.

This Durga Puja, one should make an effort to defeat the demon of diabetes by choosing healthy foods, combating ill-health, and ultimately succeeding.

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