I am home now from a working holiday, in the Bahamas and Miami. Despite the weather being abit cooler then normal (they only get 2 weeks of winter - we were there in that period <lol>) - we had a great time.
I managed to meet up with some great diabetics along the way, that knew I was coming into their ports ... and here is one little story I'd like to pass along to you (more to flow from my finger tips over the weeks). This will hopefully warm your heart as much as it did for me - especially now that I'm the land of snow and cold winter temperatures in Canada (with wind chill it is currently a balmy -30C as I'm composing this - not the 20C we were having in Miami yesterday - brrrhhh).
When I got off in Nassau, I headed off for abit of a jaunt to get my sea legs back into shape (and burn off some of the foods I'd been eating on the cruise ship - oink, oink). I sauntered through the Straw Market on that chilly day. I had on a wool sweater - and looked like a local compared to the tourists in little flimsy gear. I was warm and cozy that was the main thing.
I happened to come across a stall that had some cute hand embroidered straw bags with of course ... Hello Kitty on them. Because I love to spoil my grand niece Mallory, I stopped by and picked up one, and had her name put on it. I started chatting to the owner of the booth as she was embroidering my neices names on to the basket, to discover that her Grandmother's name was Anna and things progressed from there to a few of us sitting around on chairs just chatting away like we'd known each other for years. This is the best part of when I travel, meeting up with people.
She was tellling me that in the Bahamas diabetes is a very big problem due to what she feels is the introduction of foods brought from other countries. Before canned, processed food came to their islands from other countries, she said that diabetes was something that you rarely heard of. As she was talking to me, I noticed how beautiful her skin was, how vibrant she looked, despite the hard work that she has to do every day (the Bahamian government rents out the stalls to them - hers had belonged to Anna and passed on down to her). It's not an easy life, but she is happy and manages.
When I told her I'd had Type 1 diabetes for 50 years, and how old I was, she told me how old she was. What shocked me is that she is 70 years old and to me, she looked much younger. I told her this, and that got her and her friends laughing away. They all told me that they feel that eating from the ground, foods that are not over processed (no foods that have been canned) are what they think is the secret to good health (and I told them maybe not having frigid cold temperatures like Canada probably helps). Food that is prepared fresh, not fast was the big point that I came out of our conversation about their healthy way of eating.
She gave me verbally the recipe for making her favourite cassava dish (or yuca as it is also known). Full of vegetables and slow cooked to perfection. When I find time to do some research and make up the dish myself, I'll post the recipe. It's not a dish for the low carb eaters out there, but even if sampled abit, am sure it won't spike your blood sugars as drastically as what a potato based stew would do for you.
I can add further to this proof, of the yuca wedge fries I had in a Peruvian restaurant in Miami about a week later, that were to die for. I guesstimated the amount of carbs, and no crazy spiking. It helped that I had a bowl of fish soup that was to die for to slow down the process of the carbs!!! Psst, if you're in the SOBE area ... check out Chalan on the Beach - good prices (dishes are large portion - so shareable) - fresh ingredients - drool worthy!!! Even Sock Monkey liked it there!
In the meantime, I've come across a yuca oven fry recipe that I'll be giving a try once I've got restablished back here at home. Maybe you'll want to check it out for youself and give it a go.
How many of you have incorporated this root vegetable into your meal plan and had great success with blood sugar control? I'd love to hear from you!!