Who doesn’t love a hostess who knows how to put on a sumptuous table for Christmas? Who except diabetic guests, that is, because they’re pretty much invited to salivate at the rich, creamy dishes, puddings and pies without being able to sample any of it.
A thoughtful hostess will always make a few diabetic substitutes, but the planning gets complicated if you’re not familiar with dietary restrictions that diabetics have to follow. Sure enough, the Holidays are time when everybody gets to relax and cheat on their daily meal routines, but diabetics need to be constantly on guard to keep their sugar in control.
At King Lasik, we’re particularly concerned about diabetes-related eye conditions that can get exacerbated during the Holidays – and with good reason too. Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness in many Third World countries, and even in Canada. Diabetes patients are more likely to develop glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy, and cataracts have been known to occur in younger patients if they’re already suffering from the disease.
In this article, we will share some helpful pointers on how to set up a diabetes-friendly bar for Christmas. Like most people, diabetics can enjoy alcoholic drinks in moderation, but sugary drinks may cause their blood sugar to suddenly spike. On the other hand, if they drink on an empty stomach or with certain medications, their levels could swing too low.
Hostesses should make sure that their diabetic guests stay hydrated if they’re having an alcoholic drink. And also remember that a plummeting blood sugar level can look like a “buzz” to people who are not familiar with the condition.
Serve drinks responsibly, and it is always a fun idea to make diabetic non-alcoholic version of traditional Holiday drinks as a lightened beverage option. Garnish these drinks festively, serve them in beautiful glassware and you’ll be surprised to see how popular they are even with guests who don’t have to worry about their sugar intake!
1. Soy Nog For Diabetics
A traditional Christmas Egg Nog contains 340 calories and 11 gms of saturated fat per cup. Soy Nog, the diabetic-friendly version, is just 180 calories and has no saturated fat. Definitely a sensible trade-in. Look up a delicious and easy recipe here. Substitute the sugar with your choice of sweetener.
2. Mulled Apple Cider For Diabetics
Heat apple cider in a pot with mulling spices such as cinnamon sticks, whole cloves, allspice, and a pinch of nutmeg. Let the cider simmer for a few minutes and serve hot in mugs as an alternate to wine and other alcoholic drinks.
3. Mint Hot Chocolate For Diabetics
Use coconut milk or almond milk instead of regular milk to make this traditional Holiday drink. Mix cocoa powder, a few squares of dark chocolate, peppermint extract and sugar-free sweetener.
4. Flavored Seltzer Water For Diabetics
To animate ordinary seltzer water with a shot of Christmas spirit, flavor it with some fresh lime juice and garnish with fresh mint for a no-calorie, no-carb diabetic treat.
5. Sparkling Punch For Diabetics
Mix diet lemon-lime soda with sparkling grape juice in a punch bowl. Garnish with mint leaves and orange slices to make a festive, fizzy drink treat.
6. Mock Sangria For Diabetics
Instead of wine, use fruit juice and diet ginger ale to make a mock Sangria. Garnish with berries, orange and apple slices.
7. Diabetics Can Drink Beer
Keep a selection of light beers in your fridge. They contain 3-6 gms of carbohydrates in a 12-ounce serving, as compared 15 gms in regular beer. Avoid serving craft beer to diabetics, as most of them have twice the amount of alcohol and calories as regular beer.
8. Diabetic Nightcap
Finish off the day with a warm, soothing nightcap made of skimmed or 1% milk with sweetener and vanilla extract. Add a sprinkle of cinnamon or nutmeg on top.