November is National Diabetes Awareness Month

Worried about diabetes? November is National Diabetes Awareness Month. You can prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes through a healthy lifestyle.

Before people develop type 2 diabetes, they almost always have “prediabetes” —blood glucose levels that are higher than normal but not yet high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes. There are 57 million people in the United States who have prediabetes. Recent research has shown that some long-term damage to the body, especially the heart and circulatory system, may already be occurring during prediabetes.

Who is at Greater Risk for Type 2 Diabetes?
• People with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) and/or impaired fasting glucose (IFG)
• People over age 45
• People with a family history of diabetes
• People who are overweight
• People who do not exercise regularly
• People with low HDL cholesterol or high triglycerides, high blood pressure
• Certain racial and ethnic groups (e.g., Non-Hispanic Blacks, Hispanic/Latino Americans, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, and American Indians and Alaska Natives)
• Women who had gestational diabetes, or who have had a baby weighing 9 pounds or more at birth

Change your diet, increase your level of physical activity, maintain a healthy weight…with these positive steps, you can stay healthier longer and reduce your risk of diabetes.

If you have questions or would like more information about this topic, or any other nutrition or wellness topic, please don’t hesitate to contact me – as your wellness coach, I’m here to help you achieve your optimally healthy lifestyle!

Here are some great, easy-to-make recipes that along with exercise can help you ward-off diabetes and manage your blood sugar, without compromising flavor or convenience.

Beef Chow Mein
Serving Size: 2 cups Servings: 3

1 lb. round steak, 1-2″ thick, tenderized
2 cups bean sprouts
2 cups bok choy, sliced
1 cup carrots, julienne cut
1 cup chow mein noodles
1 tbsp. reduced sodium soy sauce
2 tbsp. hoisin sauce
1 tsp. canola oil
½ cup onions, thinly sliced
1 cup mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 cup celery, thinly sliced

1. In a nonstick skillet, heat 1/2 of the canola oil and add the onions, cooking them until they are translucent.
2. Add the beef and soy sauce, and cook it until it is lightly browned. Remove the chicken from the skillet and set it aside.
3. Heat the remaining oil and add all the remaining vegetables.
4. Cook the mixture over high heat, add the hoisin sauce and cook for 5-8 minutes, or until the vegetables are crisp tender.
5. Top with chow mein noodles before serving.

Multi-Bean Vegetarian Chili
Serving Size: 1 cup Servings: 8

½ cup green bell pepper, chopped
2 cups black beans, cooked
¼ cup chiles, green or jalapeno, diced (optional)
1 cup corn kernels
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 cup lentils, sorted and rinsed, uncooked
1 tsp. NutriFit Calypso Salt Free Spice Blend
1 cup onion, chopped
1 cup red beans, cooked
5 medium tomatoes, chopped

1. Heat a large pot sprayed with olive oil cooking spray over medium heat, add the onions, bell peppers and garlic and cook until the onion is translucent, but not brown. Add remaining ingredients, bring to a boil, then reduce heat, and simmer for not less than 30 minutes and up to 2 hours, covered. Longer cooking time yields more flavorful results. After 30 minutes, check for seasoning and add more Calypso or cayenne pepper to taste. Great the next day and freezes well.

Lentil Stew with Rapini & Turkey Sausage
Serving Size: 1 ½ cup Servings: 3

½ lb. lentils, picked over and rinsed
1 (16oz.) c diced tomatoes, with juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ large onion, diced
1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 lb. turkey breakfast sausage
1 bunch rapini
¼ cup parmesan cheese, grated
1 tbsp. NutriFit Mediterranean Salt Free Spice Blend

1. Place the drained lentils and the herbs in a stock pot. Pour in the tomatoes and add water to cover with 3” extra water. Turn the heat to medium low and allow the lentils to simmer, covered, for 30-40 minutes.
2. While the lentils are simmering, sauté the garlic and onion in the olive oil until translucent. Add the garlic and onions to the lentils.
3. Brown the sliced sausage in a heavy frying pan. Add to the lentils.
4. Add the chopped rapini to the lentils. Cook an additional 5-7 minutes until the rapini has wilted.
5. Top with the grated parmesan cheese before serving.

Roasted Pear with Chocolate Berry Coulis
Serving Size: ½ pear Servings: 2

1 large pear
½ cup white wine
½ cup raspberries, fresh or frozen
1 tbsp. mini chocolate chips
½ cup blackberries

NOTE: This recipe uses either raspberries or blackberries.

1. Heat oven to 400F. Cut pear in half; remove core with a melon baller or metal measuring teaspoon. Arrange pear halves, cut side down, in a shallow baking dish. Pour wine over pears.
2. Bake 15-20 minutes, or until pears are tender when pierced with the tip of a sharp knife.
3. Meanwhile, puree raspberries in food processor; strain and discard seeds. Transfer roasted pears to serving plates, cut side up; sprinkle chocolate chips over the pears (the heat of the pears will melt the chips).
4. Combine pureed raspberries and liquid remaining in baking dish in a small saucepan. Cook over high heat until sauce is slightly thickened. Spoon sauce over and around pears.