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updated: 11/6/2013 6:29 AM

Daily Herald columnist pens book about food's role in diabetes

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  • "Diabetes Meal Planning and Nutrition for Dummies" by Toby Smithson and Alan L. Rubin

    "Diabetes Meal Planning and Nutrition for Dummies" by Toby Smithson and Alan L. Rubin

  • "Food Network Star"

    "Food Network Star"

  • "The Pioneer Woman Cooks: A Year of Holidays," by Ree Drummond

    "The Pioneer Woman Cooks: A Year of Holidays," by Ree Drummond


Beans, kale, dark chocolate and barley. If you want to make food choices that will control diabetes, these "power foods" should be on the menu.

That's just one of the things you can glean from "Diabetes Meal Planning and Nutrition for Dummies" (Wiley, $22.99), written by Eat Right, Live Well columnist Toby Smithson.

The book, co-written with Dr. Alan L. Rubin, has simple goals: teach people to appreciate the role of food in managing Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes and choose the best foods for blood glucose control and heart health, and teach them to adopt a healthy eating plan that includes planning meals to fight impulse eating.

Smithson certainly knows what she's talking about. A registered dietitian, Smithson has managed her own diabetes for more than 40 years and founded DiabetesEveryDay, a website that offers diet, exercise and lifestyle advice.

Like other books in the "for Dummies" line, this book is organized into approachable and easily digestible chapters. Icons help guide readers to important tips and things to remember. The book lays out ways to manage and lose weight, how vitamins, minerals and herbs affect the disease and how to create a healthy eating plan. The book also includes more than a dozen recipes to weave into that new eating plan.

The release of the book couldn't come at a better time. November marks Diabetes Awareness Month and with 8.3 percent of the U.S. population living with diabetes (and an estimated 6 million more undiagnosed) there's a chance you, or someone you know, could benefit from this book.

Casting call: You might have missed your chance to be Daily Herald 2013 Cook of the Year, but you can still be a Food Network Star. The show is looking for Season 10 cooks and will hold an open casting call Nov. 16 in Chicago.

According to a spokesman, the show is looking for "those with a captivating personality who believe they're at the top of the culinary game and want to inspire a Food Network audience through their passion for food and cooking."

If you're interested, head to and fill out the application and follow the detailed directions for casting. Then show up from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Westin Michigan Avenue, 909 N. Michigan Ave.

Good luck!

Holidays on the range: Speaking of Food Network stars, meet Pioneer Woman Ree Drummond when she stops in Naperville for a book signing next week.

Drummond will be talking about and signing copies of her new book, "The Pioneer Woman Cooks: A Year of Holidays," at 6 p.m. Nov. 13 at Anderson's Bookshop, 123 W. Jefferson Ave., Naperville.

Contact Food Editor Deborah Pankey at Be her friend at or follow her on Instagram, Pinterest or Twitter @PankeysPlate.

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