Todays topic for Diabetes Blog Week is Food food food….what we eat, how we manage and the lists we make.
I’m in Italy after a winding drive through the mountain vistas and picturesque lakes of Switzerland. Italy is famous for the Love of Food. So what’s a low carb yogini do when she rocks into town? Head to the local trattoria and have a pasta? I wish!
Instead it’s off to the supermercato to check out the green veggies on offer and the staples that will last me through the weekend.
And I’m in luck…Italians love salad!
My shopping list?
Fennel, green beans, swiss chard (which has an exotic name here like bietola) chicory leaves, insalata mista and lots and lots of variates of zucchini, Bio eggs, limone…and Italian burro (butter)…oh and olive olio…lots of it!
The supermarket aisles are full of cheeses, cured meats, biscotti’s, pasta, tomato sauces and more. Everything looks incredible and it’s hard not to reflect on my pre diagnosis days where I could literally pig out on all these foods. The funny thing is I never did. Even when we rented a Villa in Tuscany one year and I literally cooked everything a la Italian.
I think my Yoga practice has a lot to do with it. With the stronger practices of pranayama the body absolutely knows what’s nourishing and what’s depleting. I’ve learned over the years to eat to my ayurvedic type. I’m pitta/vata which means foods need to be warm, but not too spicy, naturally full of good fats and not too rich.
It was actually easier to let go of all the carbs then I thought it would be. That’s because it all happened so gradually. Insulin wasn’t in my plan so at first I let go of bread and wheat products, then eventually grains and legumes and finally the higher carbohydrate vegetables and dairy.
Instead of feeling hungry all the time and tired I had even more energy. It was at odds with my lab results which showed the signs of someone who was suffering from the symptoms of severe chronic fatigue. My doctor and I agreed that it had to be my consistent yoga practice and my transition to the ketogenic diet that had made me asymptomatic.
But all that doesn’t mean it’s easy to replace my passion for pizza and that I don’t long for a sweet treat. And I know I could bite the bullet and just start bolusing for the extra carbs. But I’m also inspired by everything I’ve heard and read about having as little Insulin on board as possible. The less Insulin, the less likely a hypo. Sounds like a good recipe to me.
So how do I feed my sweet tooth?
Hemp Chia Coconut Butter Balls
Hemp seeds are packed with protein and phytonutrients and Omega 3’s and brilliant for healing the gut lining as are chia seeds. Unsweetened desiccated coconut provides healthy fats and protein as well as being super low carb and has a natural sweetness. And butter is the glue that sticks it all together. One bliss ball a day is enough for me, but sometimes I have one for breakfast when I don’t have time to make a bigger meal. I’ve added other ingredients to the recipe like a mixture of black and white sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds or even ground almonds. But sometimes all those varieties upset my digestion. After lots of trial and era I am happy with the basic recipe below.
Why not give it a try and tell me what you think. I’d love to know.
With great respect…. Rachel
Rachel’s Recipe for Bliss!
1 tablespoon unhulled hemp seeds
1 tablespoon chia or less if you are sensitive to the carbs in chia
2 tablespoons or a little more of desiccated sugar free coconut/or you can grind the two tablespoons
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon butter
Put all the dry ingredients into a shallow bowl, add the water first stir until the mixture is just a little damp and starts to stick together ( it shouldn’t be gloppy or wet) add the butter and mush everything together with your hands till thoroughly mixed, then form into a ball. You can wrap in baking paper and freeze for half an hour if you want it to be hard and crunchy, or refrigerate… or just eat as is.