Spring Is In The Air
Spring is in the air and the new season brings welcome changes. Bright skies, spring flowers and the promise of warmer weather can be just the motivation you need to shake off the winter blues.
A good place to start is by spring cleaning your cupboards. Have a look at what you might have stocked up on over winter that you can clear to make way for healthier items. Get rid of chips, chocolate, frozen pastries, sweetened drinks and high sugar cereals. Introduce healthy basics such as canned beans, wholewheat pasta, nuts, seeds, canned tuna and salmon (in spring water not brine), eggs and frozen veggies.
Once you’ve overhauled your cupboards you might be wondering what to do with canned beans or canned fish. The newly released Easy Recipes For Diabetes has some great suggestions such as sweet potato, salmon and corn fritters or a tomato, basil and tuna pasta dish. Or you could try the bean and avocado omelette from the Women’s Weekly Diabetes Weight Loss book or a delicious beetroot and avocado salad with chickpeas and mustard dill chicken.
If weight loss, or maintaining your current weight, is top of mind after winter, you might find the healthy plate an invaluable aid in keeping track of how much you are eating. Plate sizes (and, as a consequence, portions) have grown considerably over the past few decades. Take the guesswork out of portion sizes by using the healthy plate. The plate is divided into three sections showing you the recommended serving sizes of veggies, protein and carbohydrates. It even comes with handy illustrations to guide you on which types of protein, vegetables and carbohydrates are healthier. It’s the perfect guide to creating healthy, balanced meals.
Now you’ve stocked your cupboards and you’re inspired by exciting new recipes, it’s a good time to turn to exercise. Most of us fall off the exercise wagon or just feel sluggish after winter, so use spring as a great motivator to start incorporating exercise into your day again. Build up slowly by committing to small achievable steps, such as 15 minutes a day for a week, half an hour a day for the next week, and by the end of the month you could easily find yourself exercising for an hour a day. More coming on exercise next month.
Now you are ready to go, there’s one last spring clean to do – overhauling your diabetes tools and equipment. Clean your meter as per the manufacturer’s instructions (or ask if your local pharmacy will do it for you), check tools that use batteries are working properly and that you have at least one back up battery, dispose of any expired insulin or medications, and safely dispose of your full sharps container (check your nearest location at safesharps.org.au).
Finally, if you’ve put your regular health appointments on the back burner due to concerns around COVID-19, now is a good time to get back on track. If you don’t feel comfortable heading to a clinic, many appointments can still be arranged through telehealth. Just call your GP to find out.
After a difficult 2020 for many, let’s hope the new season gives us a much needed spring to our step!