The holiday season is fast approaching, and for many people with diabetes, it can be a challenging time to maintain blood sugar control.
With all the delicious treats and traditional meals, it’s easy to feel left out or worried about what to eat. One common question that arises is whether diabetics can eat honey baked ham.
While ham is low in carbs and high in protein, there are still some things to consider when it comes to your health.
In this article, we’ll explore the nutritional value of honey baked ham and provide some tips for enjoying holiday meals without compromising your health.
Can Diabetics Eat Honey Baked Ham?
As a person with diabetes, you may be wondering if honey baked ham is a safe food to eat. The good news is that ham is low in carbs, which is the primary nutrient that affects blood sugar levels. This means that ham can be a great source of protein for diabetics.
However, it’s important to note that ham is a processed red meat that is often preserved by curing, smoking, hanging, and aging. These processes can add unhealthy constituents to the ham that are not beneficial to your health.
Both diabetics and non-diabetics should reduce their intake of processed fats like ham to avoid complications like hypertension, heart failure, stroke, and type 2 diabetes.
So, while honey baked ham can be a part of a healthy diet for diabetics, it’s important to consume it in moderation and choose high-quality, minimally processed options.
Understanding The Nutritional Value Of Honey Baked Ham
To better understand the nutritional value of honey baked ham, it’s important to take a closer look at its macronutrient content. One serving of honey baked ham, which is typically bone-in and spiral-cut, contains 5g of total carbs and 5g of net carbs. This low carb content makes it a great option for diabetics who need to manage their blood sugar levels.
In addition to being low in carbs, honey baked ham is also a good source of protein. One serving contains 16g of protein, which is essential for building and repairing tissues in the body. Protein also helps to keep you feeling full and satisfied, which can help prevent overeating and promote weight loss.
However, it’s important to note that honey baked ham is also relatively high in fat, with 4g of fat per serving. While some fats are healthy and necessary for the body, it’s important to limit your intake of saturated and trans fats, which can increase your risk of heart disease and other health problems.
The Importance Of Portion Control For Diabetics
Portion control is crucial for diabetics because it helps to regulate blood sugar levels and manage weight. Consuming too much food, even if it’s healthy, can still lead to weight gain and high blood sugar levels. This is why diabetics need to be mindful of their portion sizes.
One helpful tool for portion control is the plate method. This involves dividing your plate into sections: half for non-starchy vegetables, a quarter for carbohydrates, and a quarter for proteins. It’s important to note that some proteins, like honey baked ham, may also contain carbohydrates, so it’s important to choose your proteins wisely and monitor your portion sizes accordingly.
Another strategy for portion control is measuring portions with your hand. For example, a serving of protein should be about the size of your palm, while a serving of carbohydrates should be about the size of your fist. This can help you keep track of how much you’re eating without having to weigh or measure every meal.
In addition to these strategies, it’s important to talk to your doctor or a registered dietitian about how much you should be eating on a daily basis. They can provide personalized recommendations based on your individual needs and health goals.
Alternatives To Traditional Holiday Meals For Diabetics
The holiday season is often filled with traditional meals that can be high in carbs and sugar, making it difficult for diabetics to maintain their blood sugar levels. However, there are many alternative options that can be just as delicious and satisfying without compromising your health.
One great alternative to mashed potatoes is mashed cauliflower. Simply whip up a bowl of mashed cauliflower, celery root bulb, low-fat milk, chicken broth, and garlic for a tasty and low-carb side dish. Butternut squash or pumpkin can also be used as a replacement for sweet potatoes, offering all the taste of the season with fewer carbs and calories.
Roasting vegetables like Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, and onions in olive oil can also be a great way to add flavor to your holiday meal without adding unnecessary carbs. Sprinkle with goat cheese for an extra burst of flavor.
For appetizers, try mini phyllo cups filled with shrimp salad or other low-carb options like deviled eggs or vegetable skewers.
When it comes to dessert, there are many diabetic-friendly options available. Try making a warm cinnamon apples recipe or do a quick internet search for diabetic-friendly desserts. You might find your holiday favorite, but with high carbohydrate ingredients substituted by healthier options. Just remember, low-sugar desserts can still be high in carbs and cause a rise in blood sugar. Moderation is key.
By making small substitutions to traditional holiday meals and doing some research on diabetic-friendly recipes, you can still enjoy a delicious and satisfying holiday meal without compromising your health. Remember to track your nutrition using tools like My HealtheVet’s Track Health feature to help you stay on track over the holidays.
Tips For Enjoying Honey Baked Ham In Moderation
If you’re a diabetic who wants to enjoy honey baked ham without compromising your health, here are some tips to help you enjoy it in moderation:
1. Watch your portion sizes: It’s important to keep your portion sizes in check when consuming honey baked ham. A serving size of ham is typically 3-4 ounces, which is about the size of a deck of cards. Try to stick to this serving size to avoid overeating.
2. Pair it with low-carb sides: To balance out the high protein content of honey baked ham, try pairing it with low-carb sides like roasted vegetables or a salad with leafy greens. This will help you stay within your daily carb limit and keep your blood sugar levels in check.
3. Choose high-quality, minimally processed options: When selecting honey baked ham, look for high-quality options that are minimally processed and free from preservatives, additives, and artificial ingredients. This will ensure that you’re getting the most nutrients from the ham without any negative health effects.
4. Limit your intake: While honey baked ham can be a part of a healthy diet for diabetics, it’s important to consume it in moderation. Limit your intake to once or twice a week and balance it out with other protein sources like chicken, fish, or tofu.
By following these tips, you can enjoy honey baked ham as part of a healthy and balanced diet without compromising your health as a diabetic. Remember to always consult with your healthcare provider before making any significant changes to your diet or lifestyle.
The Role Of Exercise In Blood Sugar Control For Diabetics
For people with diabetes, exercise is an essential component of managing their condition. Physical activity makes the body more sensitive to insulin, which helps to manage blood sugar levels. Exercise can also help to control blood pressure, lower harmful LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, raise healthy HDL cholesterol, strengthen muscles and bones, reduce anxiety, and improve overall well-being.
Studies have shown that exercise can lower HbA1c values by 0.7 percentage point in people of different ethnic groups with diabetes who were taking different medications and following a variety of diets. This improvement occurred even though they didn’t lose any weight. All forms of exercise – aerobic, resistance, or doing both – were equally effective at lowering HbA1c values in people with diabetes.
Resistance training and aerobic exercise both helped to lower insulin resistance in previously sedentary older adults with abdominal obesity at risk for diabetes. Combining the two types of exercise proved more beneficial than doing either one alone.
People with diabetes who walked at least two hours a week were less likely to die of heart disease than their sedentary counterparts. Women with diabetes who spent at least four hours a week doing moderate exercise or vigorous exercise had a 40% lower risk of developing heart disease than those who didn’t exercise.
It’s important to note that the best time to exercise is one to three hours after eating when blood sugar levels are likely to be higher. If you use insulin, it’s important to test your blood sugar before exercising. It’s also crucial to check your blood sugar after any particularly grueling workout or activity.
In general, physical activity can lower your blood sugar up to 24 hours or more after your workout by making your body more sensitive to insulin. It’s essential to become familiar with how your blood sugar responds to exercise and check your blood sugar level more often before and after exercise. Understanding these patterns can help you prevent your blood sugar from going too high or too low.