Get those seed catalogs out. January is the time to start planning what to plant where in your garden. Diabetics are encouraged to eat vegetables and fruits. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) suggests including three to five servings of non starchy vegetables to your daily diet. In fact the DASH diet suggests half your plate should consist of non starchy vegetables.
Vegetable seeds can be bought in your local nursery or grocery store even or from a seed company directly. Many seed companies offer online tips and advice in addition to their online catalogs.
W. Atlee Burpee is one such company. The site offers a Growing Calendar in which you enter your zip code and it provides sowing times. Lancaster’s zip code is 17601 which is in Growing Zone 6, according to Burpee. Using broccoli as an example, the growing chart indicates February and March are the best times to sow inside. April is the best time for sowing directly and the end of April is the best time to transplant. The average last frost is mid April, which the chart also shows.
In addition to the growing chart, Burpee offers many tools and resources, including a Carbohydrate Chart. The chart is simple to use and divides vegetables in two columns: low carb count and high carb count. Six raw spears of asparagus or one cup of raw broccoli are each only three grams of carbs. In contrast one cup of lima beans is 40 grams of carbs. The carbohydrate chart can also help substitute one vegetable for another. Onions for example contain 14 grams of carbs in just one cup. In contrast, a half cup of cooked leeks is only four grams and one cup of scallions is seven grams.
Another seed company is Heirloom Seeds. They have gone strictly electronic according to their website. They will no longer mail catalogs but will instead accept all orders online. They too offer nutritional information, garden tips and other products. However the site for Burpee Seeds is much easier to navigate and is more appealing to the eye.
Common non-starchy vegetables - according to both the FDA and the American Dabetes Association (ADA) - include:
- Baby corn
- Bamboo shoots
- Beans (green, wax, Italian)
- Bean sprouts
- Brussels sprouts
- Cabbage (green, bok choy, Chinese)
- Coleslaw (packaged, no dressing)
- Greens (collard, kale, mustard, turnip)
- Hearts of palm
- Pea pods
- Salad greens (chicory, endive, escarole, lettuce, romaine, spinach, arugula, radicchio, watercress)
- Squash (cushaw, summer, crookneck, spaghetti, zucchini)
- Sugar snap peas
- Swiss chard
- Water chestnuts
- Yard-long beans
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) offers a nutritional guide for vegetables that includes caloric count as well as carbs. The guide sheet also includes the Percent Daily Values (%PDV) as they are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
This article is not intended to replace the medical advice of your physician. To determine your desired daily caloric intake, consult your physician.
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