15 Responses

  1. Amalas
    Amalas July 22, 2008 at 6:32 am | | Reply

    I’ve been given a number of “diabetic” and “low-sugar” cookbooks and for the most part, I have promptly ignored them. They aren’t any better than “regular” cookbooks. In fact, many of the recipes turn out like crap. I much prefer any cookbook, diabetic or not, that has nutritional information listed for each recipe. Then I can decide what to make and what tweaks to make for my personal style.

  2. LindaB
    LindaB July 22, 2008 at 6:39 am | | Reply

    with diabetic cooking or with anything we eat it is all about looking beyond the label or the “hook” on the front of the packaging.
    just because it says it’s sugar free or made for diabetics, etc., does not make it the best alternative.
    A good example that I have pointed out to people is that the fact that there are less carbs in a whole standard size hershey bar than in most of these sugar free/diatetic,or whatever they like to call it candy bars of which a serving size is 3 small pieces.
    When you start looking at the labels of these foods and the brakdowns of nutrients and carbs and fats, etc. you would really be surprised at how UN-diabetic friendly alot of diabetic food and recipes are.
    by the way I am totally NOt suggesting you go out and eat hershey bars, although they are quite yummy, It is just an example.

  3. mollyjade
    mollyjade July 22, 2008 at 8:33 am | | Reply

    I’ve never understood the diabetic cookbooks either. They’re just “healthy” cookbooks, and because the focus isn’t on the food, the recipes generally aren’t that great. And I know diabetics can and do eat dessert and other carby things, but I really feel that a vegetable cookbook is the best diabetic cookbook. It’s not hard to find recipes for cake or pasta, but I can always use more ideas on how to cook broccoli. And (for the most part) vegetables are always diabetic friendly.

    I do have fond memories of my “Sugar-Free, That’s Me” cookbook from when I was first diagnosed in 1985. Sugar wasn’t allowed AT ALL at that time. But, we still didn’t really use that cookbook beyond the strawberry shortcake recipe.

  4. tmana
    tmana July 22, 2008 at 10:51 am | | Reply

    The issues I have with a lot of cookbooks, diabetic or not, is that they use a lot of refined foods, unhealthy fats, and are high in sodium. Or they use substitutes (non-nutritive sweeteners, potassium-chloride) that make the food unpalatable. However, they are often a good springboard for ideas to get us experimenting with healthier foods.

  5. Nancy
    Nancy July 22, 2008 at 11:35 am | | Reply

    I agree – most of those so-called “diabetic” recipes are just gimmicky. Desserts, of course, can be modified somewhat, using sugar-free pudding and gelatin mixes and such, but nobody’s come up with a carb-free pasta or potato yet. Most people would be served more just by making the effort to eat more veggies, lean meat and healthy fats than spending money on silly cookbooks.

    I can’t afford to eat as “low-carb” as I probably should (pasta and rice will probably always cost less than chicken and beef and make a meal much more filling), but I try to bulk up meals with veggies as much as I can.

  6. Eve
    Eve July 22, 2008 at 11:58 am | | Reply

    I learned to “cook diabetic” from my mother who was diabetic. She learned as much as she could from what was available at the time (think 45 years ago). I have always adjusted my recipes to be lower-fat and lower carb wherever possible. I also learned to add up the carbs, fat, etc. in a recipe by using a nutrition counter so that I don’t have to depend on books that have done that for me. I’ve been diabetic for 16 years and I don’t think I own a cookbook that says “diabetic” on it.

    I followed your link from the Diabetic Round Table. Your site looks interesting. I would be more than happy to add it to my blogroll at Adams Wife’s Weblog.

  7. Kelsey
    Kelsey July 22, 2008 at 5:50 pm | | Reply

    My all time favorite (and diabetic friendly) cookbook is “The Good Carb Cookbook: Secrets of Eating Low on the Glycemic Index.” It’s awsome.

    I’ve made several of the recipes and they were all wonderful. About four of the recipes have become go-to meals on our house. I especially like the Mexican Lasagne, Spinach Beef burritos, Curry Shrimp with Brown Rice, and Quick Chicken Chili.

    I agree, “Diabetic” cookbooks are kind of a joke. Focusing on low GI meals is a better way to go, I believe.

  8. D2
    D2 July 22, 2008 at 6:45 pm | | Reply

    I had the opportunity to marry into a family where the grandmother was a type 2 diabetic. At a large, over 50 family members, holiday dinner, I watched as the family gave “grandma” a special diabetic pumpkin pie. In my humble opinion it was terrible. This was a big deal! PS, it was my sense that it was not to her. My new family looked at me because I would not eat that stuff. Having counted exchanges for over fifteen years at the time, I just ate a well balanced diet. Used moderate amounts and enjoyed the holidays. Yes, I like pumpkin pie. I have been stuck-up for over forty-two years and currently have utilitzed an insulin infusion pump for over ten. Count the carbs, eat the fresh fruit and veggies, take a bolus, and check, check, … check my blood glucose for the hidden sugars. No everything we eat has a label. Result, good food is good food and use the best cookbook. PS it is easier to count the carbs.

    Thanks and have a geat day.


  9. Ann
    Ann July 23, 2008 at 12:46 am | | Reply

    Diabetic cooking should have lots of vegetables, fruits and whole grains for nutritious meals. Some superb planning should make for some delicious yet healthy meals. Good planning can offer for excellent meals that the whole family will enjoy. Diabetic cooking will be good for the diabetic member and great for all of the other family members too. Those people who follow the rules will probably lose some weight or sustain their healthy weight.

  10. meg
    meg July 23, 2008 at 7:15 am | | Reply

    I’ve always loved the Cooking Light cookbooks and magazines. Sometimes the ingredients are a little hard to find, but we love the recipes. All the recipes have nutritional information, and they tend to be be low in fat. High fat foods cause me more problems than high carb foods; I don’t really try too hard to avoid carbs, just make sure to count them carefully.

    When I was first diagnosed, the nutritionist I saw made the point that a high protein diet is very hard on your kidneys, and should be avoided, since diabetes can cause kidney damage. Amy, do you know what the current recommendation is for protein intake? It doesn’t seem to be mentioned much these days.

  11. Steve Parker, M.D.
    Steve Parker, M.D. July 25, 2008 at 10:37 pm | | Reply

    Amy, you mentioned the recent Israeli study that compared three diets: low-fat, low-carb, and Mediterranean. There were only about 10-15 people with type 2 diabetes in each group, so it’s hard to draw firm conclusions. Nevertheless, the Mediterraneans dropped their fasting glucoses on average by 33 mg/dl. The others saw no significant drop. The Mediterraneans were eating about 50% of their calories from carbohydrate. Around 32% of calories were derived from fat.

    The low-carb group reduced their carb calories only to 40% of total calories.

    Since premature coronary artery disease is common in people with diabetes, I often recommend “The Mediterranean Heart Diet” by Helen Fisher to my patients. It’s not a weight-loss book. About 3/4 of the book is recipes.

    As always, consult your personal dietitian or physician before making any changes in your diet.


  12. Syn Ferguson
    Syn Ferguson September 23, 2008 at 1:04 am | | Reply

    My shelf of diabetic cook books hasn’t really helped much in my quest for good recipes for one person. I live alone and you know who eats the left-overs! The “serves one” cookbooks also leave a lot to be desired; many recipes require a small amount of a food that compromises a large container or fudges by recommending repackaging and/or freezing because you can’t cook complex dishes in one-serving size. I wasted a lot of food until I finally began to compile my own, idiosyncratic cookbook that lists not only successful one-serving recipes I like, but reminds me of okay foods for the times I want something crunchy or creamy. I also keep a list of acceptable products packaged in one-serving containers as well as the expensive, awful “healthy” ones that tasted like cardboard. The cookbook lives in the car and helps on those days when I can’t think of anything to fix for dinner but ice cream and potato chips.

  13. Diabetes Mine - the all things diabetes blog » Blog Archive » What to Expect with Diabetes: 170 Answers from the ADA

    [...] ADA sends me lots of new books to review these days — mostly cookbooks, come to think of it. I’m not always that intrigued.  But the most recent title definitely [...]

  14. Stacey
    Stacey March 4, 2009 at 8:00 pm | | Reply

    I’ve found some really good tasting recipes at They have breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks. And they’re always adding new ones. They list carb amount,GI, calories, fat, fiber content, etc. Good site if you’re looking for new ideas and good info.

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