To help educate us about Type 1 Diabetes and observe American Diabetes Month, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Mary Ellen Phipps from Milk and Honey Nutrition shared with us some of her favorite diabetic-friendly meals and snacks, her inspiration to becoming an RDN, and advice for those living with diabetes.
What do you think is the most common misconception regarding diabetes nutrition?
“The most common misconception regarding diabetes nutrition is that people assume that it is their own fault if they have diabetes. In reality, there are a host of factors that contribute to developing any type of diabetes, whether it’s Type 1, Type 2, gestational, or any other form of diabetes.”
What is something that everyone with Type 1 Diabetes should know?
“You’re not alone! We’re like this community that no one wanted to be a part of, but once you’re in it, you are so thankful for everyone around you who understands and relates to what life is like with this disease.”
What is your favorite nutrition “hack?”
“My favorite nutrition hack has to do with baked goods. One thing that I always tell people with diabetes is to consider swapping out traditional wheat flour for a nut-based flour. Not only does this lower the glycemic index of the food, but it also makes the baked good more nutrient-dense and provides a better flavor profile.”
What product on Tastermonial stands out to you as a game changer?
“My favorite product on Tastermonial is Moon Cheese! It’s like dehydrated cheese, and I tell my kids it’s what the astronauts eat. It’s a great low-to-no carb crunchy snack that you can eat any time. It’s also great for if you have small kids! As an adult, if my blood sugar is high but I’m still hungry, it’s a great crunchy snack to have.”
What inspired you to become an RD?
“I wanted to be a Dietitian because I understood that, by growing up with diabetes first-hand, food impacted the way we think, feel, and move. A lot of times, people with diabetes are given this fate of lackluster food and that nothing is ever going to taste good again. I wanted to show people that that is not true!”
What is your favorite diabetic-friendly meal?
“Anything with fat, fiber, and protein! Those are the three key nutrients that I try to hammer into people to have at every meal. This could be something as simple as avocado toast or a pasta dish with a really rich-and-creamy sauce and some vegetables thrown in.”
Who has been the most influential person in your passion for nutrition?
“The most influential person in my passion for nutrition is my grandmother. The whole reason I wanted to get into this idea of making food that is good for people with diabetes and taste just as delicious was because of her. She taught me how to make a cheesecake that was still good for my blood sugar when I was 12 years old. It showed me that you don’t have to fit into this nice, neat box of ‘diabetes-friendly foods.’”