Diabetics & Mindful Eating

People with diabetes are more vulnerable to get the Covid 19 virus over others. Mindful eating and having a simple, nourishing, home-cooked meal is important. Celebrity Chef Sanjeev Kapoor shares some quick tips and exclusive recipes with the readers of this blog, TheWriter’sFlight 

Diabetics need to plan meals that are rich in protein and complex carbs but low in fat. Include high fibre food like whole wheat, red rice, broken wheat, semolina, oats, ragi, pulses like chana dal and soya bean, leafy veg like methi, spinach and amaranth in your diet.
Eat seasonal and fresh food.
Replace refined foods in your diet with whole unprocessed foods.
I will strongly suggest three ingredients that every diabetic must include in his daily diet:

The first is Fenugreek seeds or methi dana. They have a high soluble fibre content and an alkaloid called trigonelline which helps keep blood sugar levels in check. Soak a handful of them in water overnight and eat on an empty stomach the next morning. You can also add these crunchy bitter seeds to dosa batters and chappati dough or use them in a salad.

Second is Roasted Gram / SattuSattu, a flour made with roasted gram flour has a very low glycemic index, as a result of which it helps greatly in moderating your blood sugar levels, making it a great ingredient for diabetics. You can make a traditional Bihari style drink with sattu, black salt, roasted cumin powder, lemon and mint. And use the sattu to make paranthas and rotis. If not sattu, roasted gram instead of fried snacks and farsaan is a great snacking idea for diabetics.

Third is Barley / Jau. It is high on fibre and low on glycemic index, barley is an ingredient which helps you to regulate your blood sugar levels. It has plenty of dietary fibre which keeps you feeling full for a longer period of time and provides energy to get through the day. It’s a nutritious, tasty and inexpensive ingredient with which you can make a variety of recipes ranging from soups to khichdis and even a great risotto.


Barley Risotto

2 cups barley, cooked, 1 small onion, 5-6 button mushrooms, 4-5 cauliflower florets, 6-8 green peas, 4-5 broccoli florets, 1 small carrot, 2 inch piece ginger, 2 garlic cloves, 1 green chilli, 6-8 asparagus stalks, 1 tsp olive oil, ¼ cup chopped yellow bell peppers, Crushed black peppercorns to taste, Salt to taste, 2-3 fresh parsley sprigs, 2-3 fresh rosemary sprigs,
4 almonds, ¼ inch leek Micro greens for garnishing


  1. To make the stock, heat sufficient water in a non-stick pan. Add trimmings from onion, mushroom stems, cauliflower stems, green pea shells and broccoli stems. Boil for 10-15 minutes.
  2. Slice mushroom caps. Finely chop onion, carrot, ginger, garlic and green chilli in a Westinghouse chopper.
  3. Trim asparagus and add the stalks to the stock. Keep the tops aside.
  4. Heat olive oil in another non-stick pan. Add chopped vegetables and sauté for 2-3 minutes.
  5. Add sliced mushrooms and bell peppers and grate in cauliflower florets. Add broccoli florets, green peas and barley and mix well.
  6. Add a few ladleful of stock, crushed peppercorns and salt, stir and simmer for 5-6 minutes or till the liquid dries up.
  7. Chop a portion of the asparagus stems and add to the pan. Chop parsley and rosemary and add. Grate in 2 almonds and add asparagus tops.
  8. Slice leek finely. Transfer the risotto into a serving plate.
  9. Grate remaining almonds on top. Garnish with sliced leeks and micro greens.
  10. Serve hot.

Methi Thalipeeth


390 g bhajnee flour, 150 g fenugreek leaves (methi), chopped, 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 medium-size onion, chopped, 1 teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoons olive oil + for greasing
2 tablespoons low-fat natural yogurt

  1. In a large bowl, mix the bhajnee flour with the fenugreek leaves, turmeric, onion, salt, olive oil and yogurt. Add water a little at a time and mix to form a soft dough.
  2. Divide the dough into eight equal portions. On a moist banana leaf or a thick polythene sheet, flatten each portion into a disc approximately 5 mm thick and 10–12 cm in diameter. Make a hole in the centre of each one.
  3. Heat a non-stick tawa and grease it lightly. Transfer a thalipeeth carefully on to the tawa, and cook on a low heat for 1 minute. Turn and cook on the other side for another minute, or until crisp and golden brown. Cook the remaining flatbreads in the same way.

    Chef’s tip: To make bhajnee flour, dry roast separately 110g whole-wheat grains, 115g rice, 250g sorghum grains (jawar), 225g millet grains (bajra), 35g black chickpeas (kala chana), 75g split black gram (urad dal), skinned and 25 g coriander seeds. Leave to cool, then mix and grind to a fine powder. This will yield 550 g flour. It can be stored for up to 1 month.

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