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Hope Warshaw’s “Diabetes Meal Planning Made Easy”

By Yrenly Yuan and Amelia Dmowska

Hope Warshaw is a certified diabetes educator and nutritionist. She has written about nutrition for the American Diabetes Association and is the President of the American Association of Diabetes Educators (AADE).

Any number of resources are available for meal plans – from apps to articles to educators. Ms. Warshaw adds another tool to the arsenal with her recent book titled, “Diabetes Meal Planning Made Easy: 5th Edition,” which guides readers through long-term nutritional goals and quick tricks to make meals healthier.

Ms. Warshaw emphasizes SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-Frame Specific) goals throughout the book. For example, if someone wants to incorporate more vegetables into their diet, Warshaw recommends taking a SMART approach: eat half a plate of vegetables with three lunches per week for the next month.

Warshaw’s guide also covers a wide range of meal planning scenarios, including restaurant menus and convenience meals on the go. Reference tables provide alternatives to popular restaurant meals, whether it’s a night for Chinese (shrimp with tomato sauce is healthier than sweet-and-sour) or Italian (choose minestrone soup over garlic bread).

She also offers advice for portion control: for example, divide a restaurant meal into two immediately when served and take home half for later. And for those tracking what they eat, the book shows how to do real-world portion size estimates: one tablespoon is approximately equivalent to the length of a thumb, while a 3 ounce portion of meat is about the same size as a palm. 

In a world where portion sizes are steadily increasing (according to Warshaw, a typical bagel is 3 inches larger in diameter than twenty years ago), work schedules are hectic, and dining out is becoming a norm, “Diabetes Meal Planning Made Easy” may be a useful tool for some people with diabetes seeking practical mealtime guidance.