Living with Diabetes and Celiac Disease
Living with multiple health problems can complicate things. As a diabetic balancing the levels of carbohydrates, (starches and sugars) with the level of insulin requires thought and discipline. You should always consult your doctor and dietician for specific advice.
People with type 1 diabetes are at greater risk of developing celiac disease. It follows that they will need to manage a diet which controls both conditions. The diets do sit perfectly well together, but it needs careful planning.
In principle the same rules apply to your diet, whatever the problem. As a diabetic you need to eat a well-balanced diet. The one area of difficulty is managing your carbohydrate intake with gluten-free versions. You can find gluten-free carbohydrates in potatoes, rice, wild rice, buckwheat, maize, millet, sago, tapioca, corn flour, soya, polenta, flax, sorghum, linseed, gram flour, cargeenan, urd, channa (chickpea flour), quinoa, arrowroot, codex wheat starch, corn pasta, pure rice noodles, gluten-free pastas are available, as are gluten-free versions of bread.
The principles of planning ahead and the need to be well informed and to take control are exactly the same for celiac disease and diabetes. Confidence grows out of knowing what you can and cannot eat. Instead of tackling the conditions as two sets of restrictions, combine the needs of both. Having both diabetes and celiac disease is unfortunate but it is important to be positive and take control.
Always take a supply of suitable gluten-free carbohydrates and insulin with you. Plan ahead and involve school, friends and other organizations of your needs.
Gina Gardiner author of "Live Well Eat Well With Celiac Disease" writes from first hand experience of being a celiac. For more information go to celiacliving.com
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