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People with diabetes urged to opt for healthier curries during National Curry Week

Posted on the 11th October 2017

People with diabetes are being called on to learn how to cook healthier curries to help manage their condition and live healthier lives.

With National Curry Week presently underway (9 to 16 October), Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust’s DESMOND service which supports people with Type 2 Diabetes is advising people with diabetes that they can still enjoy a good curry while still eating healthy, and that attending a DESMOND sessions would provide participants with the knowledge and skills to manage and improve life with Type 2 Diabetes.

Heather Platt, Diabetes Structured Education Coordinator at Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust, said:

“Everybody loves a good curry and why shouldn’t they? People, however, need to realise that curries are not always as healthy as they should be. Just by making a few simple changes, people can make a healthier curry that is both tasty and delicious. This is particularly important for people with diabetes or at risk of developing the condition. Attending DESMOND sessions can help people understand what diabetes is, make healthier food choices, become more active and learn how to live well with diabetes. Our service also advises on how to cook homemade curries using less fats and oils, and adding more vegetables and pulses for a cheaper option such as chickpeas and lentils. If you buy readymade curry from the supermarket use the food label and traffic light information to make healthier choices.”

The DESMOND service has developed 10 top tips to make curries that are high in flavour and low in calories:

  • Limit the amount of oil to 1 teaspoon per person (choose olive oil, rapeseed oil and sunflower oil which are higher in unsaturated fats)
  • Use low fat crème fraiche, low fat yoghurt and fromage frais
  • Go veggie and add pulses such as chickpeas and lentils, which are a good source of protein
  • Add lots of different vegetables which add colour and make up your ‘five a day’
  • Watch the salt
  • Tomato based curries are a great switch and need very little oil
  • Use fish to add omega 3
  • Reduce meat and use leaner cuts
  • Instead of fried rice or pilau, swop to boiled rice
  • Add more herbs and spices and reduce the extra salt
  • Curry is a national favourite with over 9,000 restaurants in the UK serving curries and millions of Britons who enjoy the dish. More information about making curry and Asian food healthier can be found on the Diabetes UK website.

Lancashire Care is the local provider of a national programme called DESMOND that supports people living with Type 2 diabetes. DESMOND, which is an acronym for Diabetes Education and Self-Management for On-going and Newly Diagnosed. Attending a DESMOND session will help someone to understand how food, activity and medication affect their diabetes control, what the long term risks of living with Type 2 diabetes are and how an individual might reduce these risks.

To find out more, contact the DESMOND office on 01772 777620 or email desmond@lancashirecare.nhs.uk. Alternatively, speak to your GP, practice nurse or health care professional. For general advice on any form of diabetes, call the Diabetes UK Helpline on 0345 123 2399 or visit www.diabetes.org.uk.