Join us Wednesday, November 14th for our annual World Diabetes Day awareness event! We’ll be in the MGH main lobby by Coffee Central 9am – 3pm. Stop by and learn more about diabetes, nutrition and play trivia games for prizes!
Celebrate Halloween with this festive appetizer recipe from the Pediatric Diabetes Clinic
Knife or Pizza Cutter
Large cookie sheet
1 can (8 oz) refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
20 frozen cooked turkey meatballs, thawed
Ketchup or mustard
Marinara sauce (1 oz or 2 tablespoons = 4 gm Carb)
Heat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Put piece of parchment paper on work surface (counter). Unroll dough onto parchment paper, press out perforations to make one sealed large rectangle. Cut into 4 small rectangles with knife or pizza cutter
Using knife or pizza cutter, cut each rectangle into 10 strips. You will have 40 strips of dough after all 4 small rectangles cut.
Wrap 2 strips of dough around each meatball to look like “bandages”.
Separate “bandages” near one end to show meatball “face”. Place wrapped meatballs on ungreased large cookie sheet.
Bake 13 to 17 minutes or until dough is light golden brown and meatballs are hot. With ketchup or mustard, draw “eyes” on mummy bites.
Serve warm with marinara sauce if desired.
Prep time: 15 min lTotal time: 30 minutes l Makes: 20 servings l Serving Size: 1 meatball l Carbs per serving: 7 grams
Recipe amended from Pillsbury.com/recipes
By Leah Berthold, RN, CDE
MassGeneral Hospital for Children Pediatric Endocrine Unit
Have you begun getting ready to send your child back to school? As the beginning of the school year comes closer, here are some important things to remember:
- Make sure you have a current Diabetes Medical Management plan (school orders) in place before the first day of school.
- Make an appointment with the school nurse to review the plan and bring all supplies needed to school before school starts. Meeting the nurse before school starts will help build a relationship and confidence for you, your child and the nurse. Refer to the box below for a list of supplies to keep at school.
- Be sure your child has a 504 plan in place. Review this plan every year.
- Give the school a hypoglycemia or “low” box with glucagon/glucose tablets/juice or whatever you prefer to treat low blood sugar
- Be sure all school personnel, including bus drivers and coaches, are educated about Type 1 Diabetes and know what to do for low blood sugar.
This easy salad recipe from the MGH Be Fit Program is a great use of the leftover grain from last night’s dinner. If you don’t have a cooked grain, substitute fresh or frozen corn kernels instead. If you can’t find fresh mango, look for frozen cubed mango in the freezer section of your grocery store. Dislike cilantro? Substitute another green herb, like parsley.
1 mango, chopped and peeled (or about 1½ to 1¾ cups)
½ cup thinly sliced green onions (scallions), the white and green parts
½ cup cooked grain (use leftover rice, quinoa, etc.) or corn kernels
¼ cup finely chopped cilantro
2 tbsp fresh tomato salsa (or diced tomato)
1-15 ounce can low- sodium black beans, rinsed and drained
juice of 1 lime
2 tbsp olive oil
½ tsp salt (or to taste)
¼ tsp black pepper
In a large bowl, combine all ingredients and toss gently to mix.
Yield: Serves 6
Nutrition Information per Serving (about 2/3 cup – nutrition information calculated with brown rice): Calories: 160 • Protein: 5g • Sodium: 250mg
Carbohydrate: 27g • Fiber:5g • Fat: 5g • Sat Fat:1g
Recipe adapted from Cooking Light. Originally posted on mghbefit.com
I’ve had Type 1 Diabetes for 49 years – next April will be my 50th diaversary. When I was diagnosed in the 60’s/70’s, there wasn’t as much information about diabetes out there as there is now. But still, having diabetes never held me back from anything I wanted to do. I still travel, and I stayed out late in my 20’s and 30’s like any other young person would. I strongly believe that diabetes is just a part of life. The key is to accept it and make it part of your routine.
There are professional hockey players who have diabetes. Gary Hall, Jr. has Type 1 Diabetes and he swam the 50-meter freestyle at the Olympics. They didn’t let diabetes stop them; they made it work. Put your sight on what you want to do and figure out how to do it (I just don’t know if they can send you into space yet). People are happy to work with you if you talk to them about your needs. When I was still in school, we went on ski trip to the Alps. At the time, they didn’t have refrigerators in the hotel rooms so I stored my insulin in the one in the kitchen. I got to know the kitchen staff pretty well and they were happy to accommodate me. Nobody has ever said “no” when asked to help.
The only time my health factored into any of my life choices was when I decided not to become a physician. Sleep is very important for me and I knew I wouldn’t be able to function with the little bit of sleep med students get. But again, it was my choice based on what I needed to take care of my own health. I know my body inside and out, so I know when something isn’t right and how to adapt. When I have late meetings, I’ve learned to check my blood sugar and drink some juice before it starts so I don’t go low.
My biggest piece of advice for parents or anyone who has been diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes is: take a deep breath and relax. If you were diagnosed as an adult, know there’s nothing abnormal about what you have. You can maintain your regular routine without much extra effort. The only time I need to pay more attention to my blood sugar is when I’m sick. I might have to take some extra time off from work to recover these days, but that could be because I’m getting older.
If you’re a parent, let your kids be kids. Let them have fun at parties and eat a small piece of cake like the other kids (maybe take of some of the frosting first). Don’t stress too much about what they eat. You don’t have to make big formal meals. Sometimes when I get home late I’ll have cereal and fruit for dinner. Just use common sense and think about what you need to do to cover it with insulin.
By Christina Badaracco, Dietetic Intern
What Is the Microbiome?
The human microbiome includes all the bacteria, both good and bad, that live in our organs. There are actually about 10 times as many bacterial cells in the body as human cells! Bacteria play many important roles in keeping us healthy, such as protecting us from invading bad bacteria and breaking down (or fermenting) the fiber in foods like vegetables that our own bodies can’t digest.
Our microbiome includes many different types of bacteria, and more diversity is typically a sign of good health. Many diseases, such as diabetes, can reduce the diversity in our gut and create environments that are better for bacteria that produce substances that cause inflammation or other harmful effects. In this figure you can see many of the things that cause the microbiome to become imbalanced (such as taking antibiotics or poor diet) and some of the health problems that might result. The microbiome is such an important factor in our health that the National Institutes of Health have launched two versions of the Human Microbiome Project, granting hundreds of millions of dollars into research about the connection between changes in the human microbiome and disease.
Is there a Link Between the Microbiome and Type 2 Diabetes?
Type 2 diabetes can be caused by genetics as well as diet and lifestyle. Eating a healthy diet (one with lots of fiber-filled fruits and veggies and low in sugar and saturated fat) and exercising regularly can help keep your microbiome healthy and might help reduce the risk of developing diabetes. The short-chain fatty acids that good gut bacteria produce when breaking down fiber can increase your body’s metabolism and how quickly glucose in the blood is used up, which can help manage blood sugar. A recent study showed that a diet rich in fiber could improve diabetes management because it produces the short-chain fatty acids the cells of our gut lining need to be healthy. Fiber also reduces inflammation and keeps you feeling full, which helps with managing portion sizes and keep blood sugar steady after meals. The types of bacteria in the gut also shifted to the species that love a high-fiber diet, promoting health long into the future.
How Can I Feed a Healthy Gut Microbiome?
- Eating a diet rich in fiber keeps your good bacteria happy. They break down molecules like cellulose found in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
- Limit high-sugar and high-fat meals. Bad bacteria thrive when we eat a high-sugar and high-animal fat diet. Try to limit foods like sodas, candy, large servings of fast foods, sugary baked goods, red and processed meats.
- Try to eat some foods with probiotics. Foods that are already broken down (or fermented) contain good bacteria that can colonize and thrive in our guts. As a bonus for people with diabetes, these bacteria have already broken down some of the glucose for you! Some examples of fermented foods include:
- Dairy: cheese or yogurt
- Bread: sourdough
- Grains: injera (found in Ethiopian cuisine), idli (found in Indian cuisine), atole (found in Mexican cuisine)
- Vegetables: sauerkraut, fermented pickles, curtido (found in Salvadoran cuisine) kimchi (found in Korean cuisine) and tempeh and miso (found in Japanese cuisine)
- Your healthcare provider many suggest taking a probiotic supplement to increase your good gut bacteria, particularly if you have recently taken antibiotics.