Diabetes Diet #38: A Diabetes Library

Diabetes Recipes:

Baked Barley
Creamy Polenta
A Bowl of Noodles
White Bean Hummus Bruschetta

It is said that 95% of diabetes care is up to the patient. Every person who lives with diabetes has a personal slant on how they treat it. Sure, we all know the basics and general terms of care, but the interpretation is individual. In years past, the guidelines were straight forward and basic. Take a shot of insulin every day, follow the exchange diet plan, don’t eat sugar, test urine and see a doctor a few times a year. Securing a comfort zone of an understanding doctor or health team seemed to help ease bumps in the road and moments of doubt.

Things are quite different as we speed towards 2006. That comfort zone of yesteryear may be tough to find. However, education and technology have opened our minds and bodies to so many new possibilities and super ways to care for diabetes. Old fashioned reading and studying almost seem archaic in this age of satellites and cyberspace. Yet in this writer’s opinion, having a personal diabetes library of books for reference and friendship can be of invaluable worth to every person who lives with diabetes.

Here are a few suggestions from my diminutive, but cherished, collection of well-worn books that I particularly love to cozy up with on chilly Fall days. If you have recommendations of your own to add, be in touch.

USING INSULIN by John Walsh, Ruth Roberts, Timothy Bailey M.D., and Chandrasekhar Varma M.D. I call this one my insulin bible since it gives details, information, inspiration and of course, all you need to know about …using insulin.

JOSLIN DIABETES GOURMET COOKBOOK by Bonnie Sanders Polin Ph.D. and Frances Tower Giedt. This is the one that always comes to the rescue when I need inspiration for recipes and information about nutrition.

EVERYDAY GOURMET DIABETES COOKBOOK by Mary Donkersloot, R.D. This is a well thought out, a clearly written book filled not only with some terrific “keeper” recipes, but padded with tips and educational material.

REVERSING DIABETES by James Whitaker, M.D. Although this book was copy written in 1987 I always go back to it for good basic, useful, thorough information about the numerous aspects of living with diabetes.

PSYCHING OUT DIABETES by Richard Rubin, Ph.D. CDE, June Biermann, and Barbara Toohey. Here is the little comfort book I keep tucked in my bedside table for whenever I need a psychological or emotional boost. It never fails me.

THE GLUCOSE REVOLUTION by Drs. Jennie Brand-Miller, Thomas Wolver, Stephen Colaguiri, and Kaye Foster-Powell, R.D. Nutritionist. Sometimes it seems overwhelming to learn all there is to know about food and diet. Add the Glycemic Index to the mix and, well, this book covers all aspects of it and can easily be read in small doses.

A cozy corner, a cup of tea and a good book … The only thing that’s missing is something to nosh on. Let’s step over to Cyber Kitchen for a break and whip up something good to fill the belly, so you can return to your state of bliss.

Cyber Kitchen Comfort Recipes

Baked Barley (4 servings)
1 red onion, chopped
1 each: yellow and red pepper, cut into strips
1 T. olive oil
1 cup barley
3 cups low fat/low sodium chicken broth
4 T. grated parmesan, Romano or Asiago cheese (optional)

  1. Toss vegetables with oil and bake in a large baking dish in 400° oven for ½ an hour.
  2. Add barley and broth. Mix very well, cover and continue to bake for ½ an hour. Taste to determine if barley is soft. If not ready, continue to bake another 15-30 minutes, adding additional broth if necessary.
  3. Serve as is or sprinkle with cheese for a heartier dish.

Nutritional Value: 1 serving = 185 cal, 5 grams protein, 45 carbs grams, 7 fat grams, 6 grams fiber. Optional cheese: 1 T. = 20 cal, 1 gram protein, 1 carb gram, 1 fat gram

Creamy Polenta (4 servings)
2 cups low fat/low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
½ cup yellow cornmeal
½ cup grated parmesan (preferably freshly grated)
salt and pepper to taste

  1. In a saucepan, bring broth and polenta to boil. Stir briskly so that polenta does not stick to the pot.
  2. Lower heat and continue to cook and stir for 15 minutes, to reach a creamy consistency.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in cheese. Serve steaming hot.

Nutritional Value: ½ cup serving = 95 cal, 3 fat grams, 15 carb grams, 5 grams protein, 1.5 grams fiber

A Bowl of Noodles (4 servings)
½ lb. thin egg noodles or thin spaghetti
2 t. peanut oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ red chili pepper flakes (add more for spicy taste)
1 T. grated or minced fresh ginger
8 scallions, sliced
1 T. smooth peanut butter
1 T. low sodium tamari (soy sauce)
1 cup low fat/low sodium chicken broth

  1. Cook noodles in plenty of boiling water until cooked “al dente”, or with a slight bite. Don’t overcook it.
  2. In a large skillet, warm oil and add spices and vegetables. Saute for 1 minute. Stir in remaining ingredients.
  3. Stir in drained noodles and toss well. Serve hot.

Nutritional Value: 1 serving = 285 cal, 6 fat grams, 6 grams protein, 45 carb grams, 4 grams fiber

White Bean Hummus Bruschetta (makes 12 portions or 1 ½ cups)
This is my tweaked version from the Everyday Gourmet Diabetes Cookbook recipe. Try some slathered on whole wheat pita triangles or grilled country bread.

1 16oz can well-drained and rinsed cannellini beans
juice and grated zest from 1 large lemon
1 T. tahini
½ t. each: ground cumin and paprika
3 garlic cloves, minced
8 scallions, sliced
1 roasted red pepper, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
½ cup snipped chives and parsley, mixed together

  1. In blender or food processor, mix beans, lemon juice, zest garlic, tahini, and spices, until smooth.
  2. Transfer to a serving bowl and stir in the remaining ingredients. Keep refrigerated until ready to use.

Nutritional Value: 2 T. = 40 cal, 1 fat gram, 7 carb grams, 1 gram protein