Diabetic Grilling Ideas
10 Grilling Tips for Diabetics
With the warmer weather, you can host your friends and family in the backyard again. You can fire up the grill, serve cold drinks, and invite your guests to eat outside. There’s nothing quite like a backyard barbecue to help you forget about the stress of everyday life. Friends, family, delicious food – what more could you ask for? Even better, with easy tips and tricks on how to manage your diabetes while barbecuing this summer, you won’t have to miss out on the fun! Follow these 10 BBQ tips for diabetics to get started:
Check your blood sugar
One of the most important things to do when you have diabetes is to keep an eye on your blood sugar levels. If your blood sugar levels are high, you are at risk of experiencing symptoms such as dizziness and nausea, which can put a damper on the festivities. If your blood sugar levels are low, you may experience symptoms such as shakiness and sweating – both of which are not ideal when you’re in the great outdoors.
Go for lean meats
If you want to keep your diabetes in check, you should go for lean meats like chicken breasts and turkey burgers over fatty cuts like steak and pork. While you can still enjoy eating some red meat if you are careful with portion sizes, chicken breasts and turkey burgers are lower in fat. Additionally, you can choose lean cuts of meat like flank steak and top sirloin. You can also try marinating the meat to add flavor while reducing the fat content. If you are diabetic, you should avoid fatty cuts of meat and instead choose leaner cuts to help control your blood sugar levels.
Add more veggies to your skewers
When you’re grilling, you can add a whole bunch of veggies to your skewer to make a delicious barbecue side dish. When you’re diabetic, you should avoid eating starchy vegetables like potatoes, corn, and peas. Instead, you should opt for more fibrous vegetables like asparagus, mushrooms, and zucchini. If you want to add some meat to your skewer, you can use thinly sliced chicken breast or turkey.
Choose low-glycemic sides
When you’re eating out, you can choose low-glycemic sides to keep your blood sugar levels under control. However, when you’re hosting a barbecue, you can avoid ordering sides with high sugar content and instead opt for low-glycemic sides. For example, while baked beans are high in sugar, green beans are much lower in sugar. Similarly, salad is a fantastic side dish, but avoid creamy dressings as they can increase your blood sugar levels.
Enjoy dessert but be mindful of the carbs
While you’re eating, you may want to enjoy dessert as well. While you can still enjoy your favorite dessert, you just have to be careful with portion sizes and the amount of sugar content. Desserts high in carbs and sugar (like baked goods) can cause your blood sugar to spike, but desserts that are lower in carbs can actually help normalize your blood sugar levels. One way to lower the amount of carbs in your dessert is to choose fruits for your dessert over baked goods.
Don’t forget the protein shake
If you plan on grilling throughout the summer, you’ll need to consume more protein to help build your muscles. While you’re grilling, you can enjoy protein shakes that are low in sugar. You can find protein powders that are low in sugar and contain only 100 calories per serving so that you can enjoy a healthy shake without adding to your blood sugar levels. You can also add fruits and veggies to your protein shake to help lower the amount of sugar.
Make sure you’re well-hydrated
While you’re grilling, you should make sure you’re well-hydrated. When you are dehydrated, your blood sugar levels increase, which can cause you to experience dizziness and lightheadedness. You can avoid this by sipping on water while you’re grilling. Keep in mind that water with lemon is better than water when it comes to rehydrating your body, so don’t forget to add a slice of lemon to your glass.
Be careful with BBQ sauce and condiments
When you’re grilling, you may want to slather your meat with barbecue sauce. Many barbecue sauces, however, have high sugar content. To avoid increasing your blood sugar levels, choose barbecue sauces that are low sugar or sugar-free. When you’re grilling, you can also drizzle your meat with mustard or vinegar instead of barbecue sauce. Similarly, when you’re eating your meat, you may want to dip your food in ketchup or mustard. If you choose ketchup, make sure the sauce you choose does not have a ton of sugar in it. Similarly, mustard typically has less sugar than ketchup.
When it comes to diabetes, every little bit of effort you can make to improve your diet is worth it. When you follow these 10 BBQ tips for diabetics, you can enjoy barbecues and picnics without worrying about your blood sugar or health. When you follow these tips and tricks, you can enjoy delicious food without the guilt!