In honor of
World Diabetes Day and Diabetes Awareness Month, BCH hosted a “Cook with a Doc”
education session to spread the word about how eating healthier is a powerful
way to prevent or manage type 2 diabetes. The session included a Mediterranean
Diet cooking demonstration.
Dr. Elizabeth Cruse, BCH’s Medical Director of Quality Improvement and Population Health,
Dr. Kristina Anton-Schnell, of Spruce Street Internal Medicine, prepared a healthy and savory meal.
They illustrated how healthful cooking and baking can be fun, simple and
BCH Diabetes Education Program Quality Coordinator Kelly Moore-Lawyer,
MS, BSN, RN, RD, paired the cooking demo with key facts about diabetes
and the health benefits of the Mediterranean Diet.
Below are highlights from their session, as well as one of the recipes
they demonstrated how to cook.
Mediterranean Diet Helps Control Blood-Sugar Levels
According to our “Cook with a Doc” presenters, research shows
that a Mediterranean diet — which gets its name from the traditional
eating and cooking patterns of people in countries bordering the Mediterranean
Sea — can help stabilize blood sugar levels for people with type
The Mediterranean Diet is a meal plan the whole family can enjoy. It’s
rich in fruits, vegetables, high-fiber foods, lean proteins and plant-based
fats. Eating high-fiber foods, lean proteins and plant-based fats helps
slow digestion and regulates blood sugars; consequently, your body will
require less insulin to maintain blood sugar within healthy levels.
Elements of the Mediterranean Diet
The Mediterranean Diet emphasizes the following elements:
Foods to Eat
- Fresh produce (vegetables & fruits)
- Healthy fats (nuts, seeds, avocado and olive oil)
- Legumes (beans, peas, lentils)
- Whole grains (farro, quinoa, amaranth, bulgur, barley, buckwheat, brown
or wild rice)
- Lean dairy (yogurt, cheese)
Foods to Eat in Moderation
- Full fat dairy
- Red wine (1 glass/day for women, 2 glasses/day for men)
Foods to Rarely Eat
- Red and processed meats such as sausages, hot dogs, etc.
- Refined grains such as white bread, pasta made with refined wheat, etc.
- Trans fats found in margarine and various processed foods
- Refined oils such as soybean oil, cottonseed oil and canola oil
On the Menu: Multi-Seed Bread, Minestrone Soup and Harvest Kale Salad
On the menu for our “Cook with a Doc” was multi-seed bread,
minestrone soup and harvest kale salad. You’ll find the recipe for
the harvest kale salad below. For other recipes, download the
PowerPoint slides from BCH’s “Cook with a Doc” session.
Following a Mediterranean Diet (e.g., eating an abundance of plant-based
foods) and being active every day has been shown to prevent chronic illness,
including heart disease and type 2 diabetes. For more information, including
Oldways, a nonproﬁt dedicated to improving public health.