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Diabetes and enjoying a healthy holiday season

Published: Nov. 23, 2020 at 7:08 PM EST
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PRESQUE ISLE, Maine (WAGM) -

Weight gain isn’t the only health issue that comes with the holidays. In this week’s Medical Monday, Kathy McCarty has more on diabetes and how to safely navigate holiday meals.

November is Diabetes Awareness Month. Coming off Halloween and heading into Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s, Jennifer Smith, a diabetes educator, says it’s important to have a plan to keep on track.

“Better choices during the holidays can be as easy as filling up on foods that will not have as high of an impact on your sugars as some other foods, like filling up on proteins and non-starchy vegetables, or planning ahead and having your family or yourself make something that’s a little bit more healthier,” says Jennifer Smith, Diabetes Education for Northern Light A.R. Gould Hospital.

Smith says the key is trading a carbohydrate for a dessert or having smaller portions. Increasing physical activity this time of year can also help.

“If you’re anticipating cheating a little bit more during the holidays, being more physically active is going to help make those little cheats a little bit more manageable,” says Smith.

Anxiety can be a factor. Smith says small, rather than large, gatherings can prove beneficial. Alcohol can affect your blood sugar. Smith says it’s also important for diabetics to check with friends and family and determine if there are any health concerns before joining any gathering, since diabetics are considered to be at higher risk if they contract Covid-19. Kathy McCarty, NewsSource 8

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