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Fairfield Service Center, 1295 West Fairfield Drive, Pensacola, Florida 32501
Let’s Talk About Eating Well
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 1 in 3 US adults has prediabetes and 84% of them don’t know they have it. It could be you, a sibling, or an uncle who has prediabetes. Prediabetes often leads to type 2 diabetes and raises your risk for heart disease and stroke.
Eating a balance of healthy foods is one of the biggest factors in maintaining a healthy weight and having better health overall. Small swaps like switching out refined grains like white rice for whole grains like brown rice can make a big impact. Reducing portion sizes and adding in more fresh fruits and vegetables lets you enjoy your favorite foods while limiting unhealthy amounts of salt, sugar and fat.
Believe it or not, there are plenty of ways to eat healthier and still enjoy your favorites! Here are some helpful tips to try:
- Make a list of fruits and veggies you enjoy eating. Next time you’re at the grocery store, add some of those to your cart instead of snacks high in salt or sugar like chips or pastries.
- Choose less processed foods and ingredients. Try including more whole foods (fresh fruit, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, and legumes) instead of processed foods. For example, swap the sweet potato casserole with marshmallow topping for sweet potatoes roasted with fall spices like cinnamon and cloves.
- More protein, lower carbohydrates. Your body digests protein slower than carbohydrates, making you feel fuller for longer and having less impact on your blood sugar levels. Try loading up on turkey for more protein, and when you are going to eat carbohydrates, you can make low-carb swaps like mashed cauliflower instead of mashed potatoes or a walnut-based stuffing instead of a bread-based stuffing.
- Eat smaller portions. Instead of skipping your favorite foods, try eating smaller portions. You can prepare food in batches of individual portions or pack up leftover food soon after you’re done eating so you’re not tempted to go back for more. Using a smaller plate can also help you manage portion sizes. Look at CDC’s Diabetes Meal Planning for more tips on planning your portions.
- Start a healthy recipe challenge with your family members. Find recipes that are low in sugar, carbohydrates, fat, and/or processed ingredients and see who can make the tastiest one! You can learn new cooking techniques and get recipes from books, articles, and videos.
Incorporating these healthy options as small swaps throughout the year can help you create a healthy lifestyle without having to completely give up eating the things you love. The Prevent T2 lifestyle change program has lifestyle coaches from CDC’s National Diabetes Prevention Program lifestyle change program that can help you learn ways to eat healthier, be more active, and make that healthy lifestyle a reality.
This program takes place in Escambia county, in-person and virtually, and is proven to reduce participants’ risk of developing type 2 diabetes by more than 50%. Through the class, participants work with a trained Lifestyle Coach and a team of fellow participants who can encourage and challenge each other along the way. Learn more on our Diabetes Prevention Page.
- Holiday Recipes
- Main Courses
Mini Egg Muffins (490 KB; pdf)
Southwestern Quinoa and Egg Breakfast (233 KB; pdf)
Lunch and Dinner
Balsamic Chicken with Mushrooms (425 KB; pdf)
BBQ Pork Topped Sweet Potatoes (427 KB; pdf)
Bean Enchiladas (433 KB; pdf)
Braised Chicken Thighs with Mushrooms (431 KB; pdf)
Buffalo Chicken Meatballs (428 KB; pdf)
Harvest Roasted Vegetables Grain Bowl (291 KB;pdf)
Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup (421 KB; pdf)
Lemon Lime Grilled Chicken (425 KB;pdf)
Slow Cooker Kale Tomato & White Bean Soup (286 KB;pdf)
Spicy Lentil Tacos (292 KB;pdf)
Tuna Stir Fry (341 KB;pdf)