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How to Plan a Diabetes-Friendly Diet

When you have diabetes, your body doesn’ t break down food to use as energy the way it should. If not managed effectively, diabetes can cause health complications. Common health complications include: Firstly, it’s kidney disease, which can lead to kidney failure; Secondly, nerve and vessel disease, which can lead to limb amputation; Lastly, eye disease, which can lead to blindness. The good news is that weight loss and exercise have shown enormous potential for preventing, treating, and in some cases reversing diabetes especially type 2 diabetes. Maintaining a diabetes-friendly diet is more complex than just cutting carbs. Don’ t let that deter you, though. It’ s easy to follow a diabetes-friendly diet, especially if you get in the habit of meal planning.

Planning your meals ahead of time
  Planning your meals ahead of time may cost you more minutes in the short term, but you’ ll reap the rewards later. If you’ ve already decided what you’ re making each night and have your refrigerator stocked, you’ re that much closer to a healthy meal.
  Getting into a routine of meal planning can save your body from health complications. Because you’ ll be skipping that takeout and those impulse purchases at the grocery store, it can also save your wallet.

Downloadable food list

As you put together your meal plans for the week, use these do’ s and don’ ts to find the best foods for you that are both tasty and diabetes-friendly. Here’ s your chance to go crazy! Every fruit and vegetable offers its own set of nutrients and health benefits. Try to choose fruits and vegetables in a range of colors. Include them in every meal and snack.

Low GI and GL fruits:
Some fruits have a GI of under 55 and a GL under 10, including:

  • Apples
  • Avocados
  • Bananas
  • Berries
  • Cherries
  • Grapefruit
  • grapes
  • kiwi fruit
  • Nectarines
  • Orange
  • Peaches
  • Pears
  • Plums
  • strawberries

Some great nonstarchy vegetables include:

  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Brussels sprouts
  • green beans
  • Eggplant
  • Asparagus
  • Celery
  • salad greens, such as arugula, kale, or romaine lettuce
  • Carrots
  • zucchini

You’ ll need to count the carbs in your fruits and starchy vegetables just as you would for any other carbohydrate food group. This doesn’ t mean you need to avoid them. Just be sure the amount you’ re eating fits into your overall meal plan.

Shelley Wishnick, RD, CDN, CDE, a dietitian and diabetes clinical manager at the medical equipment company Medtronic recommends that people with diabetes stick to one serving of fruit per meal, since even natural sugars can cause blood sugar increases. Grab half a banana, a fruit the size of your fist, or a 1/2 cup of your favorite fruit, chopped up.

When shopping for fruits and vegetables, look for choices that are in season to save some bucks. Shopping for foods that are in season can also be a great way to try new fruits and vegetables.

In a word, diabetic should take much more concern in their diet, meanwhile, their eating plan “shouldn’ t be boring,” Powers says. “It should include the foods you love with a balance of carbohydrates.” No single fruit or vegetable provides all of the nutrients you need, so choose different types and colours in order to give your body the mix of nutrients it needs. Challenge yourself to try a different fruit or vegetable whenever possible.