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Diabetic Mysteries

One morning I was standing in my kitchen; and Ernie, my plumber, told me that he was really scared of becoming diabetic. It was a particularly cold day. He had been working in standing water; so I offered him and his crew some coffee to warm up. It turns out he had been having diabetic symptoms and wasn’t sure of what to do.

I asked him why? He said his father is diabetic. Ernie is drinking large amounts of water, over a gallon a day, and having to get up several times in the night to urinate. These happen to be symptoms of being hyperglycemic, high blood sugar.

I advised him to go to his doctor and get a blood sugar test, an A1C. A faster way to get an immediate result is to go to the local drugstore and purchase a blood sugar meter. A cheap affordable meter ranges around $30-$40. Starter kits are usually include a lancet for breaking the skin on your finger, test strips to actually read your current blood sugar reading, and the actual meter that you put the strips into to get a reading. Look over the instructions and you're on your way to monitoring your blood sugar. Accurate testing requires that you haven't eaten or drank anything other than water for 2 hours. A normal blood sugar reading ranges from 100 to 140.

An A1 C test, ordered by your doctor or medical provider, is better. It gives you a reading of your blood sugar over three months time. What you’ve been eating more recently weighs more heavily on the results of the test. So when I know I am about to have an A1 C test done, I struggle knowing I need to eat better up to the day of the test. The rest of the time, we are really dependent on our meters to get real time feedback and a feel for what our bodies feel like at differing blood sugar readings. It really took me back to when I was first diagnosed. What meter should I get? A meter that takes constant readings? No, I'm not really a fan of these devices because I remembered working with a type 1 diabetic at Frito Lay. I was granted a transfer from Brimingham, AL., directly under the regional home office, to Tuscaloosa, AL., a bin location an hour and a half away with the understanding that I would watch after my college. There were times when his continuous blood sugar meter would come out while we were working. He had zero sensitivity to his insulin. His breath would begin to smell strongly of alcohol. This along with his erratic behavior would signal a problem to me. I would say, "Harry, please check your meter." I was usually accurate and he could fix it before any medical emergency could occur.

Nine years ago in Tuscaloosa, AL, I just recognized the symptoms of diabetic events in my co-worker. I really had no idea of what caused it. Three years ago freshly diagnosed, I really wished I had learned more about the nutritional effects of food back then. Now I understand that blood sugar control is a balance between three macro nutrients: protein, fat, and carbohydrates, with an emphasis on the carbohydrates. Protein found in meats and nuts takes longer to process and is less likely to cause a blood sugar spike. So to assist a newly diagnosed diabetic person with getting their blood sugar under control, here is a recipe for my meat lovers...


  • 1 eggs, lightly beaten

  • 1/4 cup fresh mushrooms, chopped

  • 1/4 cup Panko flakes

  • 1/4 cup chopped Vidalia onion

  • 1/8 cup ground flaxseed

  • 1/2 tsp. pepper

  • 1/2 tsp. salt

  • 16 oz. ground beef

  • 1/2 cup Heinz Tomato ketchup no sugar added


1.) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

2.) Mix the mushrooms, Panko flakes, onion, flax seed, pepper & salt in a large bowl.

3.) Mix in the ground beef and beaten egg.

4.) Shape into individual loaf servings.

5.) Put in a baking dish coated with cooking spray.

6.) Bake uncovered for 45 - 50 minutes.

7.) Top with the Heinz sauce and cook for another 10 - 15 minutes until a thermometer reads 165 degrees.

T This recipe will help lower an A1C, but is meatloaf good for you? Higher amounts of red meat consumption can lead to a higher risk of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and premature death. We can get the same nutrients out of fish, poultry, nuts, and vegetables but for my meat lovers... You can enjoy unprocessed red meat in lower amounts. There are no firm studies that show grass-fed or organic beef is any better for us. What is important is smaller limited quantities like a side dish. A 3-ounce serving gives you a large amount of your daily values: 35% of B12 and 45% of protein. It also has zinc used in producing testosterone and an anti-oxidant, selenium. It is full of iron for producing red blood cells. Still you do not need red meat everyday. It is a luxury; and only two to three servings should be eaten per week.

Source: "What is the beef with red meat?"

Harvard Health Publishing 02/01/2020

Hopefully, this will assist you in your journey to better health. We don't become diabetic overnight. It takes time to heal the bad lifestyle choices that we've made from a lack of knowledge. The good news is that we have time and can change our choices with one dietary change per week. Look at it as finding a new better food choice that you really like to eat. This makes lifestyle changes manageable and even more importantly, sustainable. If this recipe makes it into your new lifestyle choices, please comment, like, share, and come back next week for more recipes, ideas, and tips. Subscribe to the website, if you would like weekly email reminders to add more recipes to your recipe book.

Disclaimer: This is not medical advice, but a compilation of research from medical sites. Make sure to see your doctor and have up to date lab work.

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