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July 3, 2002

Meal Planning, Food and Diet

Question from Tucson, Arizona, USA:

My dad has diabetes, treated with diet, oral medications, and exercise, but he lives in Africa, and I am worried about what he eats over there. He lives in a third world country so he does not have access to basic American foods. I would like to know what foods he should eat and what I can send for him back home.


I would recommend that your father meet with a registered dietitian who specializes in diabetes meal planning. I am not quite sure what health care resources are available where he resides so he may want to check into that first. There are no forbidden foods in diabetes meal planning, although some foods with excessive amounts of carbohydrates may need to be limited in portions and frequency.


[Editor’s comment: If your dad’s doctor doesn’t have easy access to a dietitian, there are diabetes organizations throughout the world that might be able to provide a referral. See Global Diabetes Organizations.