Diabetes Diet: 4 Things To Know

A healthy diet is essential to thrive and live well with type 2 diabetes. It’s important to understand what makes a nutritious diet and these cheat sheet tips will help you understand how to do make a balanced meal.

Carbs

When people with diabetes eat foods high in digestible (processed) carbs, their blood sugar levels can surge. High carb intake typically requires high doses of insulin or diabetes medication to control blood sugar. You’ll consume carbs through fruit, milk and yogurt, bread, cereal, rice, pasta, and starchy vegetables like potatoes, corn, and beans. Complex carbs, like those found in beans, nuts, vegetables, and whole grains, are better for you because they give you regular energy and substantial fiber. A doctor can help you figure out a carbohydrate counting plan that meets your specific type 2 diabetes needs.

Fiber

Fiber helps with digestion and blood sugar control. Fiber comes from plant foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, beans, and legumes. It not only helps fight high blood pressure and heart disease, but aids in weight loss because you feel fuller after you consume a healthy plate of fiber. Most of us don’t get enough, so focus on these foods for a more fiber-rich diet: fresh fruits and veggies, cooked dried beans, peas, whole-grain bread, cereals, and crackers, brown rice, and bran foods.

Fat

Limit unhealthy fat such as saturated fat and trans fats to avoid heart disease. The main sources of saturated fats are cheese, beef, milk, and baked items. Avoid trans fats, which are bad for your heart. For a nutritious diet follow these healthy fat friendly tips: choose lean cuts of meat. Don’t fry foods — bake, broil, grill, roast, or boil instead. Choose low-fat or fat-free dairy foods. Include them in your daily carbohydrate count. Pick vegetable oils instead of animal fat.

Salt

Too much salt can add to the risk of high blood pressure. To avoid high salt intake use fresh ingredients and food with no salt added. Herbs and spices improve the natural flavors in food. Make spice mixtures at home to use for meats, poultry, fish, vegetables, soups, and salads. Check the sodium on food labels.

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