"I have diabetes and work long hours. I usually eat lunch at my desk while working. I'm struggling with what I can have for lunch. Could you give me some tips on what to pack for lunch at work?"
I hear you, brother. The typical sack lunch (sandwich, chips, juice) is almost totally carbs. Beyond spiking your blood sugar, this will result in only temporary energy. Ten dollars says your head will be doing the "I'm Just Resting My Eyes Bob" by 2:00 pm.
A good lunch needs to have necessary nutrients to keep you going all day. The important fuel components to look for are fiber and protein.
Good fiber sources include fruits, veggies, nuts, or seeds.
Protein sources include dairy, grains such as quinoa, beans, eggs, meat, or nuts/ nut butters.
Three of my go-to quick lunches include wraps, soups, and salads:
- Wraps- See more about my favorite quick and easy wraps here.
- Soups- Canned soups can work well- just look for the lower sodium versions. When evaluating which soup to choose, look for one that contains lots of veggies, lean protein, and minimal carbs. These can be found by comparing the nutrition facts on the back label. My favorites are Veggie Chili, Black Bean, and Lentil Vegetable.
- Salads- I'm not talking "bird food," I'm talking a good, hearty salad! Start with a base of lettuce or spinach, add a protein like chicken or an egg, and then get crazy with the veggie toppers. The sky is the limit. Also try experimenting with beans or 1/2 c brown rice tossed in to your salad for extra staying power.
If you have been instructed to self-monitor blood glucose by your doctor, you will still want to do so before and after eating. If blood sugar is low, keep a yogurt, fruit cup, or string cheese on hand for an added single-carb serving "boost."
Warning: try to not make fun of "Head-Bobbing Bob." Remember...you were there once.
Peace, Love, and Veggies,