Craving something sweet? We all do it. Just because you are diabetic doesn't mean you never crave something a little sweet now and then. The problem with sweets is the fat intake. Sweets are usually simply loaded with fat and calories. You can blow your fat intake and a good portion of your calorie intake for the day with one goodie. And just because you are diabetic doesn't mean you can never have another sweet either.

Although I have this recipe section on my site with a lot of goodies on it, I've never been a sweets eater myself. It gets cooked/baked for others for the most part without me as much as licking my fingers. I'm the kind of person that can eat one chocolate, or one section of a chocolate bar.. lol My mother on the other hand is a chocoholic, thank goodness she isn't diabetic. But.. once in a blue moon I do want something sweet and if you are anything like me, the more I deny myself at that point the stronger the craving gets.

When I was first diagnosed, while learning about healthy eating and losing a substantial amount of weight (over 70 lbs) I was scared to waiver from my diet but the cravings got worse. I craved pizza and I craved fish & chips, those kinds of things. So off I went to talk to my doctor who then informed me that a once in a blue moon cheat isn't going to kill me and I learned to just adjust my day. If I wanted something gooey or sweet or simply a piece of pizza I'd adjust the rest of the day's food intake with low fat meals and snacks only and make sure the next day was the same. Guess what? He was right, it didn't kill me and since I lost that weight within a year (by '92), I haven't put any weight back on. You should see my before and after pics.. lol

Anyway, on this page you will find some alternatives for those sweets cravings you may have. These aren't the "be all, end all" of sweets but it can help you curb those cravings some. You may not even like any of these but give them a shot now and then if you like.

If you crave:
Apple Pie

Then you might try:
Cinnamon Apple Delight
115 calories, less than 1 g fat

Core a cooking apple (about 6 ounces), and peel one third of the way. Sprinkle the top with cinnamon, nutmeg, and 1 teaspoon of brown sugar. Cook in the microwave, covered, on medium-high (70% power) for 2 to 3 minutes, or until tender.

If you crave:
Chunky Gourmet Ice Cream
(like Ben & Jerry's or Hagan Daas)

at 240 to 370 calories, 14 to 26 grams fat for 1/2 cup

Then you may want to try:
Chocolate Dream Ice Cream
with only 120 to 130 calories, 3 to 4 grams fat

Add in ONLY one of the following
to a 1/2 cup of low-fat ice cream:

1 reduced-fat mini chocolate bar, cut up
70 mini chocolate chips
1/2 chocolate-covered peppermint patty, cut up
2 reduced-fat chocolate wafers, crumbled

If You Crave:
A Jelly-filled Donut
at 290 calories, & 16 grams fat

Try This Instead:
Jelly-jammed Ladyfinger
55 calories, less than 1 gram fat

Spread 2 teaspoons raspberry jam on a split ladyfinger.

If You Crave:
Strawberry Shortcake
at 420 calories, 21 grams fat for 3 1/4-inch by 3-inch piece

Try This Instead:
Angel Berry Shortcake
125 calories, 2 grams fat

Take a 1-ounce piece of angel food cake and cut into two thin slices. Place 2 sliced strawberries between the slices. Top with 1/4 cup light whipped topping and 1 sliced strawberry

If You Crave:
Breaded-and-Fried Onion Rings
at 290 calories, 19 grams fat for 10 large rings

Try This Instead:
A-Okay Onion Rings
110 calories, 5 grams fat for 10 rings

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. In a flat dish, combine the following to form a paste: 1 teaspoon plain bread crumbs, 1 teaspoon brown sugar, 1 teaspoon oil, 1/4 teaspoon chili powder

Dip 10 large sweet onion rings (each about 1/2-inch thick) into the mixture to coat edges. Arrange in a single layer in a shallow pan. Bake for about 12 minutes, turning once, until the edges are golden brown.

If You Crave:
Chocolate-coated ice-cream bar
at 290 calories, 20 grams fat per 5-ounce bar

Try This Instead:
Frozen banana on a stick
70 calories, less than 1 gram fat

Insert ice-cream stick into end of half a peeled banana. Roll in crumbs of one crushed reduced-fat chocolate wafer. Wrap and freeze.

If You Crave:
Chinese fried rice
at 605 calories, 12 grams fat per 2 cups

Try This Instead:
Rice with steamed veggies
300 calories, 3 grams fat

Combine 1 cup cooked white rice, 1 cup steamed vegetables (frozen stir-fry variety works well), and a splash of soy sauce and Asian sesame oil; toss.

If You Crave:
A Milk shake:
Prepared with gourmet ice cream (such as Häagen-Dazs)
at 420 calories, 26 grams fat

Try This Instead:
Fruit smoothie
165 calories, 1 gram fat

Blend 1 cup fat-free milk; half a banana, sliced; six strawberries; and four ice cubes.

If You Crave:
An Ice-cream sandwich
at 200 calories, 7 grams fat

Try This Instead:
Ice cream on chocolate wafers
75 calories, 2 grams fat

Spread two tablespoons low-fat ice cream between two reduced-fat chocolate wafers. Roll sides in 1 teaspoon chocolate sprinkles. Wrap and freeze.

If You Crave:
A Custard-Filled Éclair
at 260 calories, 16 grams fat

Try This Instead:
Vanilla Cream Bites
55 calories, less than 1 gram fat

Split a ladyfinger; spread 1 tablespoon low-fat vanilla pudding on each half.

How to make Skinny Shakes

About 1/2 cup of skim or 2% milk
1 banana, broken into pieces
a packet or two of Sugar Substitute

Then whip it all together in a blender until smooth and start dropping ice cubes into the mixture, one or two at a time. Keep adding the ice cubes until your shake is as thick as desired.

For variations, add fresh or frozen strawberries, chocolate syrup to taste (just a bit), crushed pineapple, or a fresh peach. The possibilities are endless. But always include the banana. It makes the shake smooth and creamy.

A Tasty Fruit Treat:

1 medium Apple cut in half
Low Fat Vanilla Yogurt

Cut a medium sized apple in half. Put the other half in a plastic bag in the fridge for another day. Cut out the core of the apple and toss it. Cut the remaining apple into small pieces and put it in a bowl. Add I tablespoon of low calorie vanilla yogurt. Sprinkle it with cinnamon (to taste). It's a healthy, quick snack. Try it on the kids too!

If you crave:
Sliced-steak hero sandwich
with 700 calories, 26 grams fat

Try this instead:
Roasted portobello-mushroom sandwich
with approx. 445 calories, 8 grams fat

Brush one medium-large portobello mushroom with balsamic vinegar. Roast in 425 degrees F. oven, top side down, about 10 minutes. Slice, then serve on a split hero roll.

If You Crave:
Chocolate Layer Cake with Chocolate Frosting
at 235 calories, 11 grams fat for 1/8 of a cake prepared from an 18-ounce cake mix

Try this instead:
Angel-Devil Cake
with only approx. 165 calories, 3 grams fat

Take a 1-ounce piece of angel food cake and cut into two thin slices. Spread 1/4 cup of low-fat chocolate pudding between the slices. Sprinkle with some cocoa powder and garnish it all with 2 tablespoons light whipped topping.

If You Crave:

Lemon Meringue Pie
at 305 calories, 10 grams fat for 1/6 of an 8-inch pie

Try this instead:
Light Lemony Squares
with only 95 calories, 4 grams fat

Spread 1 graham cracker square with 1 tablespoon lemon curd (you find this in the jelly aisle). sprinkle with confectioners sugar.

If You Crave:
Deli-style Potato Chips
with 105 calories, 7 grams fat for 12 chips

Try this instead:
Quick Microwavable Potato Chips
with only 15 calories, 0 gram fat

On a microwave cooking rack, arrange 12 very thin, unpeeled potato slices in a circle. Sprinkle them lightly with salt. Cook in the microwave on "High" for 5 & a 1/2 to 6 and a 1/2 minutes until they're brown. Rotate rack halfway through cooking time. Let stand for one minute. Keep an eye on these. Time depends on how powerful your microwave is.

If You Crave:
Four-cheese Pizza
with 330 calories, 11 grams fat for 1/6 of an 12-inch pie

Try this instead:
Pita Pizza
with 180 calories, 5 grams fat

Use half of a 6 1/2-inch pita and top it with a 1/4 cup of chopped tomato and a 1/4 cup of shredded, light mozzarella cheese. Top with chopped fresh basil or oregano leaves, and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of Parmesan cheese and a 1/4 teaspoon of olive oil. Bake to melt cheese.

If You Crave:
Buffalo wings
Seven buffalo-wing pieces, served with celery sticks and a 1/4 cup of blue-cheese dressing is approx. 860 calories, 70 grams fat

Try this instead:
Buffalo tenders
285 calories, 10 grams fat

Heat 1 teaspoon butter in small skillet; add 5 ounces chicken-breast tenders, cut into seven strips. Cook 5 minutes. Stir in 1 tablespoon cayenne-pepper sauce. Serve with celery sticks and 1/4 cup low-fat blue-cheese dressing.

If You Crave:
Fast-food French fries
with 450 calories, 22 grams fat per 5 ounces (large order of fries)

Try this instead:
Oven-baked fries
with approx. 145 calories, 5 grams fat

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Toss one unpeeled baking potato (about 5 ounces), cut into wedges, with 1 teaspoon of oil. Arrange in a single layer in a shallow pan. Bake for 25 minutes, turning once, until the potatoes are golden.

If You Crave:
Cherry cordials:
Chocolate-covered maraschino cherries with liquid centers

at about 165 calories, 6 grams fat per three pieces

Try this instead:
Chocolate-dipped strawberries
at about 75 calories, 5 grams fat

Swirl bottom halves of three whole medium strawberries in melted chocolate (use half a semisweet chocolate square).

Some of these alternative suggestions are courtesy of iVillage/Good Housekeeping.

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This page created December 3rd, 2002