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29. Learn everything you needed to know about diabetes with Helen Edwards

29. Learn everything you needed to know about diabetes with Helen Edwards

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Helen Edwards has had type-1 diabetes since 1979, when she was 12 years old and is the founder of Diabetes Counselling Online (DCO), which she started in 2001 after seeking support for herself and finding very little out there.

Helen qualified with a degree in Social Work at the University of South Australia in 1988 and is an Accredited Mental Health Social Worker. She is also a qualified Diabetes Educator. She is a member of the Australian Diabetes Educators Association (ADEA), Australian Diabetes Society (ADS), Australasian Society for Psychological Research in Diabetes (ASPRID), Australian Diabetes in Pregnancy Society (ADIPS) and Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).

Helen is particularly passionate about pregnancy and diabetes and is also undertaking her PhD with University of Tasmania, looking at diabetes distress in pregnancy and early motherhood for women with type 1 diabetes.

Helen first explains the different types of diabetes including the differences between type-1 and type-2 diabetes. She also talks to us about what happens to the organs when you suffer from the different types of diabetes including juvenile diabetes. 

Helen talks about her conversations with chocolates. 

Nutrition and Meal Plans

What foods to avoid

  • Red meat
  • Pasta
  • High fibre
  • Chickpeas
  • Coffee
  • Chocolate
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Cabbage

What foods to actively seek out

  • Chicken
  • Fish
  • Small portions of Gluten Free Bread
  • Low fat yogurt
  • Fruits in limited amounts
  • Basmati rice in small amounts
  • Most of the veggies other than the ones above 

Helen’s fondest food memories

Chocolate Custard used to be Helen’s favourite foods growing up, but she couldn’t eat Chocolate Custard until she finished her veggies. Helen grand-mum who just turned 100 and she is the best baker. She has the best memories of her grandmas’ baking and cooking. 

Exercise Routine

Helen is a runner. And she mixes her runs in between gym sessions. 

Cooking tips

  • Think ahead for the week – Plan
  • Use online shopping
  • Use Frozen veggies
  • Make a big pot of soup and freeze the extras 

Quick dinner ideas

  • Stir fries are pretty quick if you have the veg chopped up.
  • A can of baked beans + eggs + chopped up veg.

Tips on reducing wastage

  • Shop with a list
  • Think about storage of the meal
  • Think about what to do with leftovers
  • Planning and pre-preparing  

Do you have a clean eating diet plan?

Yes. Helen is particular about what she eats.   

Know more about Helen 

Who would you love to have dinner with and where?

The Dalai Lama on a mountain in Tibet. 

Last meal on the planet?

Salmon with a beautiful mash, a pile of fresh vegetables from the garden. And a whole Lemon Tart. 


Where to find Helen


Author: Ronsley Vaz

Ronsley is the founder & chief day dreamer at AMPLIFY. He is an author, speaker & serial entrepreneur.

He has a Masters’ degree in Software Engineering and an MBA in Psychology and Leadership. He is known as the creator of We Are Podcast – the first Podcasting Conference in the Southern Hemisphere, and the host of The Bond Appetit Podcast and Should I Start a Podcast. He has an audience of over 3 million in 133 countries.

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