Earlier this week I Googled “Diabetes friendly holiday recipes” and scanned over the recipes that came up on the American Diabetes Association website. Here’s a list of what popped up:

Carrot Ginger Soup with Parsley

Sriracha Clementine Baby Kale

Rutabaga and Carrot Hash

Mushroom and Walnut Meatloaf

Ummm. No thank you.

Am I the only one here that finds those choices less than desirable??

Tips from the American Association of Diabetes Educators didn’t yield much better results. The recipes sounded tastier with Pumpkin-Maple Pie and Gingerbread cookies but the ingredients, well they had me running for the hills. Here’s a snippet:

Heat-stable sugar substitute

Refrigerated or frozen egg product (why not a real egg?)

50-70% vegetable oil spread (ie margarine)

Let’s be honest, in the realm of dietitians and nutrition guru’s, I’m a misfit. My friends and family tend to  think I’m this uber health nut, however, put me in a room full of Integrative and Functional Dietitians, Health Coaches and Holistic Nutritionists and one would think my occasional use of boxed Au gratin potatoes is synonymous with straight up arsenic. I’m surprised my post on eating at McDonald’s didn’t have the nutrition gastapo pounding down my door.

But I’ve never been an all or nothing practitioner. I’ve been a where are you at now and let’s add some nutrition.

So when it comes to Diabetes Friendly Holiday Recipes, is there a way to make your already favorites fit?

For me Christmas time is a repeat of Thanksgiving. I belong to a turkey loving family. So feel free to recheck my Thanksgiving day hacks here.

To see what others are eating I took to my Facebook page and asked what my friends and family traditionally ate this holiday season.

Here’s how they answered:

Pierogies, “everything”, mom’s cookies, beef fondue, corned beef and cabbage, tenderloin roast with blue cheese smashers, rack of lamb, desserts, lazy pierogies, kielbasa. (Is your mouth watering? Mine is but my heart is also saying Whoa Nelly.)

As one of the diabetes education clients in the office said today

“If I look at this as a diet, it’s never going to stick. Plus I know I can’t change everything at once.”

So as you are planning your upcoming menu, instead of asking “Where’s the beef?”, ask

“Where’s the nutrition?”

Trust me, the beef will easily make it onto your plate if you are a meat eater, but it’s those veggies, fruits and fiber filled grains that get pushed into January 1st with the rest of your New Year’s resolutions.

So when in doubt of what to serve with those amazing, traditional dishes that will have you screaming out “food coma” (or I guess actually whispering it in a supine position) is my good ol’ stand-by mesclun mix baby spinach salad heavily topped with slivered almonds, sliced berries or be extra fancy with pomegranate seeds, avocado and slight drizzle of Brianna’s Real French Vinaigrette. It’s one of the few premade salad dressings that’s nationwide not consisting of added sugar. Plus when you bring it, people will think you’re fancy, healthy and YOU at least will feel obligated to put it on your own plate.

Trust me, your heart will thank you for it.

How do you plan to add Nutrition?? I loved to hear your thoughts and suggestions.

Before my own food coma begins, have a Healthy, Happy and Safe holiday season!!

Hugs, Kim