Whole Grains

They’re packed with fiber, but finding them isn’t as easy as it may seem. Some foods only contain a small amount, even though it says “contains whole grain” on the package. Read the ingredients label and look for the following sources to be listed first:

 
  • Bulgur (cracked wheat)
  • Whole wheat flour
  • Whole oats/oatmeal
  • Whole-grain corn or cornmeal
  • Popcorn
  • Brown rice
  • Whole rye
  • Whole-grain barley
  • Whole farro
  • Wild rice
  • Buckwheat
  • Buckwheat flour
  • Quinoa

Beans

Kidney beans, pinto beans, black beans, and garbanzo beans are all great for blood glucose control. “They’re high in fiber and take a long time to digest.”

Beans offer a lot of options. They make a tasty side dish, or you can add them to salads, soups, casseroles, and chili. They’re also a great stand-in for meat because they’re high in protein but low in fat.

Dried beans are a better choice than canned. They contain less sodium. Soak them overnight and they’ll be ready to cook in the morning. If you go for the ones in a can, rinse them first. That’ll keep the salt down.

Making Healthy Decisions

Choosing Non-Starchy Vegetables

Choose fresh, frozen and canned vegetables and vegetable juices without added sodium, fat or sugar.

 

  • If using canned or frozen vegetables, look for ones that say no salt added on the label.
  • As a general rule, frozen or canned vegetables in sauces are higher in both fat and sodium.
  • If using canned vegetables with sodium, drain the vegetables and rinse with water to decrease how much sodium is left on the vegetables.

 

For good health, try to eat at least 3-5 servings of vegetables a day. This is a minimum and more is better! A serving of vegetables is:

  • ½ cup of cooked vegetables 
  • 1 cup of raw vegetables

NON STARCHY VEGETABLES

 

  • Amaranth or Chinese spinach
  • Artichoke
  • Artichoke hearts
  • Asparagus        
  • Baby corn
  • Bamboo shoots
  • Beans (green, wax, Italian)
  • Bean sprouts
  • Beets
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage (green, bok choy, Chinese)
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower
  • Celery
  • Chayote
  • Coleslaw (packaged, no dressing)
  • Cucumber
  • Daikon
  • Eggplant
  • Greens (collard, kale, mustard, turnip)
  • Hearts of palm
  • Jicama
  • Kohlrabi
  • Leeks
  • Mushrooms
  • Okra
  • Onions
  • Pea pods
  • Peppers
  • Radishes
  • Rutabaga
  • Salad greens (chicory, endive, escarole, lettuce, romaine, spinach, arugula, radicchio, watercress)
  • Sprouts
  • Squash (cushaw, summer, crookneck, spaghetti, zucchini)
  • Sugar snap peas
  • Swiss chard
  • Tomato
  • Turnips
  • Water chestnuts
  • Yard-long beans
  • French Beans The nutrients present in French beans stimulate the production of insulin in the body. Therefore, it is good for diabetics.

  • Bottle Gourd A glass of bottle gourd juice in the morning can help you manage your diabetes much better than taking insulin supplements.

  • Cauliflower Like most other vegetables, cauliflower is not sweet. It also gives your body a lot of roughage.

  • Bitter Gourd Bitter gourd is a like a wonder vegetable for diabetics. A glass of bitter gourd juice in the morning can regulate your blood sugar levels.

  • Lady's Finger Or Okra The gooey liquid that comes out when you cut okra helps regulate blood sugar. So, soak sliced okra in a glass of water and drink it early in the morning.

  • Fenugreek Leaves The greens from the fenugreek plant are very useful in controlling diabetes. These mildly bitter greens help lower glucose level in the blood.

What Are the Best Grains for Type 2 Diabetes?

Contrary to popular belief, not all carbs are off-limits if you’re managing diabetes. In fact, the ADA recommends vitamin-rich whole grains in a healthy diabetes diet. These foods contain fiber, which is beneficial for digestive health. Fiber can also promote feelings of fullness, preventing you from reaching for unhealthy snacks, and it can help slow the rise of blood sugar. Plus, whole grains contain healthy vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals that are healthy for anyone, regardless of whether they have diabetes or not.

On the other hand, grains in the form of popular foods such as white bread, as well as sugary, processed, or packaged grains, should be avoided or limited to avoid unwanted blood sugar spikes. Also, refined white flour doesn’t contain the same vitamins, minerals, fiber, and health benefits as whole grains.

Just keep in mind that any type of grain contains carbs, so counting carbs and practicing portion control are keys to keep your blood sugar level steady.

Best options (in moderation):

  • Wild or brown rice
  • Quinoa
  • Whole-grain breads, such as 100 percent whole-wheat bread
  • Whole-grain cereal, such as steel-cut oats

What Foods High in Protein Are Good for Type 2 Diabetes?

The American Diabetes Association (ADA) recommends lean proteins low in saturated fat for people with diabetes. If you’re following a vegan or vegetarian diet, getting enough and the right balance of protein may be more challenging, but you can rely on foods like beans, nuts, and tofu to get your fix. Just be sure to keep portion size in mind when snacking on nuts, as they are also high in fat and calories.

Meanwhile, processed or packaged foods should be avoided or limited in your diabetes diet because, in addition to added sugars and processed carbohydrates, these foods are often high in sodium and therefore may increase your blood pressure and, in turn, the risk of heart disease or stroke — two common complications of diabetes. It’s important to keep your blood pressure in check when managing diabetes.

In addition to getting enough fiber, incorporating protein-rich foods in your diet can help keep you satiated and promote weight loss, thereby reducing insulin resistance, the hallmark of diabetes.

Best options:

  • Fatty fish, like sockeye salmon
  • Canned tuna in water
  • Skinless turkey

A FIBER RICH PLATE OF FOOD

The Best and Worst Type 2 Diabetes Choices 

As you pick the best foods for type 2 diabetes, here’s a helpful guideline to keep in mind: Fill half your plate with nonstarchy vegetables. Round out the meal with other healthy choices — whole grains, nuts and seeds, lean protein, fat-free or low-fat dairy, and small portions of fresh fruits and healthy fats.

Sugar and processed carbohydrates should be limited. That includes soda, candy, and other packaged or processed snacks, such as corn chips, potato chips, and the like. And while artificial sweeteners like those found in diet sodas won’t necessarily spike your blood sugar in the same way as sugar, they could still have an effect on your blood sugar and even alter your body’s insulin response, though more research is needed to confirm this.

How Many Carbs Can You Eat If You Have Diabetes?

According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), you can calculate the amount of carbs you need by first figuring out what percentage of your diet should be made up of carbohydrates. (The NIDDK notes that experts generally recommend this number be somewhere between 45 and 65 percent of your total calories, but people with diabetes are almost always recommended to stay lower than this range.) Multiply that percentage by your calorie target. For example, if you’re aiming to get 50 percent of your calories from carbs and you eat 2,000 calories a day, you’re aiming for about 1,000 calories of carbs. Because the NIDDK says 1 gram (g) of carbohydrates provides 4 calories, you can divide the calories of carbs number by 4 to get your daily target for grams of carbs, which comes out to 250 g in this example. For a more personalized daily carbohydrate goal, it’s best to work with a certified diabetes educator or a registered dietitian to determine a goal that is best for you.

GOOD VERSES BAD

While nothing is off-limits in a diabetes diet, some food choices are better than others if you're
 trying to lower your blood sugar.

When you're planning or preparing your healthy breakfast, keep these points in mind:

  • Watch your portion sizes.
  • Keep the diabetes dietary goals in mind, and consider using “the plate method”: Fill half your plate with nonstarchy vegetables, one quarter with protein, and the remaining quarter with a grain or starch. And then you might add a serving of fruit and dairy to your meal.
  • Choose healthy fats such as olive or canola oils, avocado, and nuts.
  • Choose lean meats, such as Canadian bacon, turkey bacon, turkey sausage, or eggs.
  • Eat low-fat dairy foods, such as nonfat or 1 percent milk, low-fat or fat-free yogurt (choose plain, unflavored yogurt and add one serving of fruit for sweetness, or choose yogurt sweetened with sugar substitutes), and low-fat cheeses.
  • Avoid fat- and sugar-laden coffee drinks. Drink regular coffee and use 2 percent milk and a sugar substitute.

For a breakfast you can eat on the run, grab a hearty handful of whole, raw almonds and a small serving of low glycemic-index fruit, such as berries, a peach, an apple, or an orange. The fiber and healthy monounsaturated fats in the nuts will help you feel full, and the fruit adds additional fiber and a touch of sweetness to your morning without causing a blood-sugar spike. Below you will find a couple other recipes for a fast but healthy breakfast. Breakfast is a very important part of the day for anyone , but especially those suffering from diabetes

  • Scrambled Eggs and Toast
    The old standby breakfast of scrambled eggs and toast can be a healthy way to start the day if you cook them right. Scramble the egg in a nonstick pan with cooking spray. Enjoy this with a slice of whole-wheat toast topped with a light butter substitute, low-fat cream cheese, or sugar-free jam.

  • Breakfast Burrito
    This filling and easy meal can be eaten on the go when wrapped in foil. Using a nonstick skillet and cooking spray, scramble an egg with onions and green peppers or spinach. Place in a warmed whole-wheat tortilla, sprinkle with nonfat cheddar cheese, add some salsa, and you have a healthy breakfast to keep you going until lunch.

  • Bagel Thins With Nut Butter
    Bagels are notoriously large, so consider enjoying bagel thins instead — otherwise you may overload on carbohydrates. Top the bagel thins or flats with peanut or almond butter for a dose of healthy fat and protein that's a satisfying, lower-carb energy boost.

STEEL- CUT OATMEAL IS BEST

Whole-Grain Cereal

Hot or cold, the right cereal makes a great breakfast. Enjoy a bowl of high-fiber, low-sugar cereal with skim milk, or heat up plain oatmeal. “When it comes to whole grain cereal, you can't beat a bowl of steel-cut oats, “They're packed with fiber, vitamins, and minerals and make a great base for a healthy and diabetes-friendly breakfast." Just remember that a little goes along way: A half cup equals one serving and about 15 grams of carbs. And watch what you add to it. Limit the butter and sugar — instead, top with fresh fruit, skim milk, or a sugar substitute to sweeten your meal.

HIGH FIBER MUFFIN

Muffin Parfait

Halve a whole grain or other high-fiber muffin (aim for one with 30 grams of carbohydrates and at least 3 grams of fiber), cover with berries, and top with a dollop of low- or nonfat yogurt for a fast and easy breakfast.

2 Diabetic Smoothie recipes.

1. Breakfast Shake

For a meal in a minute, blend one cup of fat-free milk or plain nonfat yogurt with one-half cup of fruit, such as strawberries, bananas, or blueberries. Add one teaspoon of wheat germ, a teaspoon of nuts, and ice and blend for a tasty, filling, and healthy breakfast. Time saver: Measure everything out the night before.

 

gredients
  1. 1 1/2 cup frozen strawberries partially defrosted (to the point that you can just slice with a knife)
  2. 1 cup crushed ice.
  3. 1/2 cup non-fat plain yogurt or Greek Yogurt.
  4. 1 teaspoon lemon juice.
  5.  Splenda or other sweetener of choice.