Diabetic Diet Menu – Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner!

Diabetic Diet Menu

A diabetic diet menu can be a challenging thing to compose especially when trying to create some variety, maintain less than 2,000 calories and incorporate natural medicines like herbs and spices. But, there is good reason for diligently following a healthy diet every day. Changing eating habits has been shown to have dramatically positive effects on blood sugar levels. In addition, a diabetic diet menu also can help people lose weight which can also help regulate blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of complications from the disease later in life. Diabetes complications are a serious matter, and slowing their development or avoiding it altogether is very important. Diabetic neuropathy, diabetic coma, blindness and heart conditions are all related to poorly controlled diabetes, including cases where diet is not well managed.

The best diabetic diet incorporates a lot of whole grains like wheat breads, whole grain bagels and pitas and whole grain cereals and pasta. In addition, other foods like brown rice and quinoa are also recommended. The reason these foods are on just about every diabetic diet food list is simple, they are chockfull of fiber. Fiber helps people feel fuller which means they are less likely to overeat. Additionally, fiber also keeps the body from absorbing sugar as quickly, preventing unhealthy spikes in blood sugar levels. The best diabetic diet will also include lots of fresh vegetables (omitting those that are super starchy) and fresh fruits. Low fat dairy and lean meats, which provide numerous benefits. A solid diabetic diet menu will include a variety of these types of foods throughout the day.

Another important part of a diabetic diet menu is the inclusion of edibles that are considered low glycemic foods. These foods reference a tool called the glycemic index, which helps consumers choose foods that are less likely to cause unsafe fluctuations in their blood sugar. This can be particularly helpful in cases of foods that seem like they are healthy, but could actually be pitfall foods that are not good choices, such as fruit juice. While fresh fruit is healthy and most are considered low glycemic foods, concentrated juices, even those that are 100% juice, are still best avoided by people with diabetes. Another tool that diabetics use in meal planning is the diabetic exchange diet. This is particularly useful in the case of foods that do not have labels, where one item can be swapped for another in terms of carbohydrate content. A good diabetic diet menu might take advantage of these various tools that promote substitution and variety as well as informing the consumer about a food’s content.

Another component of menus tailored for people with diabetes might include herbs that can provide powerful benefits thanks to natural chemical compounds. One example of this is turmeric which is not only widely used in cooking, but also thought to help reduce sensitivity to insulin. There are numerous herbs for diabetes, and they can serve as excellent substitutions for unhealthy seasonings like salt and sugar while providing additional benefits thanks to their natural medicinal properties. Including them in a diabetic diet menu can help reduce the need for salt and sugar and perhaps provide a healthful body benefit to blood glucose levels too.

A prime example of this is cinnamon for diabetes, which has made major news recently as being potentially beneficial to people with the condition. In one study alone, people who took a daily four gram dose of cinnamon daily were able to reduce their blood sugar levels by as much as 24% over a period of four months. It is possible that these same benefits may be achieved when cinnamon is regularly incorporated into a diabetic diet menu. Cinnamon can be easily added into beverages and foods to obtain its natural benefits.

Using all of this information, we put together a sample diabetic diet for the three meals of the day to help take all of the information surrounding a diabetic diet menu and put it into action. Starting with the first meal of the day, breakfast, and working onwards through dinner, we will show you how easy it can be to eat healthy and keep blood sugar levels in check with this sample diabetic diet!

Breakfast: Start with one cup of 1% milk and a whole wheat bagel. Use either a tablespoon of sugar free jam or one and one half tablespoons of peanut butter as spread for the bagel. Do not feel obligated to skip the coffee – just the cream and sugar. Coffee contains compounds that might help regulate blood sugar and it can be sweetened with a bit of diabetes friendly cinnamon.

Lunch: A veggie burger on a whole wheat bun is the main feature of this healthy diabetic lunch, and it is easily paired with sweet potato chips and two fruit sides like one plum and a cup of grapes. A small cup sized side of prepared coleslaw can provide a savory finish to this sensible meal or, opt for more veggies on the burger instead.

Dinner: The biggest challenge for people preparing a diabetic diet menu is dinner, where pitfalls like bread and pasta are common. Dinner can be worry free with our diet plan, however. Pair shrimp seared in citrus sauce with a side of couscous, a warm spinach salad and a whole wheat roll. Give the sweet tooth a fix following with a fresh, plump peach.

References:
http://www.eatingwell.com/nutrition_health/weight_loss_diet_plans/diet_meal_plans/7_day_diabetes_meal_plan?pC=2000&pT=7day_diabetes&pD=2
https://dtc.ucsf.edu/living-with-diabetes/diet-and-nutrition/understanding-carbohydrates/counting-carbohydrates/carbohydrate-exchanges/

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