People with diabetes enjoy optimum well-being when they make smart choices about what to eat. The wrong food and beverage choices can lead to blood sugar highs and other physical complications. Discover delicious and healthy meal options with diabetes.

Healthy Meal Options with Diabetes

Diabetes Education

Diabetes education is the way to start on the road to success. Talk to your doctor about working with a dietitian or diabetes nurse educator to learn more about healthy eating. Diabetes classes or groups might be available at your local hospital or community health center. Some diabetes centers actually offer cooking classes. Contact your insurance provider to see if these options are covered. Attend support groups which will offer solid tips from people who also live with diabetes. Another way to learn more is to use the Calorie King Nutrition guide book. It lists all foods and the breakdown of the nutrients. Understanding what nutrients that food contains can be empowering to you. It promotes food awareness to help people make decent choices, lose weight, and effectively manage diabetes.

Food Awareness in the Home

Poor food choices can lead to weight gain and obesity, which can increase the risk for type 2 diabetes, heart attack, stroke, and other health conditions. Once you learn more about which foods to eat and the ones to avoid, clean out your refrigerator and cabinets. Toss out packaged cookies, processed chips and cakes, frozen meals with breading, fatty dairy products, and white bread, rice and pasta. Replace them with fresh fruit and vegetables, low fat milk, cheese and yogurt, whole grains, lean cuts of meat, and heart-healthy fish including salmon and tuna. Satisfy hunger pangs with 3 cups of plain popcorn or a piece of fruit. Read food labels to determine the level of sugar, salt, and calories they contain. Be cautious of fat-free foods that could have higher amounts of sugar.

Proper Methods of Cooking

Learn how to properly cook your food. Frying adds more fat to your daily diet than you need. Consider broiling, boiling, baking, roasting, grilling or steaming instead. Roast a pan of cut up vegetables including red or purple potatoes with a spoon of olive oil for a wholesome meal when you add a protein. A crock pot is an easy way to make healthy meals. Fill the crock pot halfway with no-sodium chicken broth then add skinless chicken, carrots, and green beans for a tasty stew with no guilt. Add wild rice at the end for a complete meal. This is also a great way to avoid the temptation of take-out on busy work days. From beef stew to chicken rice soup, you can make it in a crock pot. Instead of adding salt for flavor, use healthy herbs such as garlic, basil, rosemary, and turmeric. Add vegetables such as onions, shallots and leeks to dishes for flavor and nutritional benefits.

Complex Carbohydrates

Get to know more about the right type of carbohydrates. Include high-fiber carbohydrates in your diet to feel full and stay energized. These include brown rice, rolled oats, whole-grain bread, millet, wild rice and leafy greens such as spinach. They can help keep your blood sugar levels even because they are digested slowly.

Healthy Meal Options and Portions

Exercise portion control by using portion plates. For example, your servings of meat and carbohydrates should take up about half the plate. The rest of your healthy meal options should be vegetables. Try to avoid trans fats and processed meats. Use olive oil or canola oil rather than vegetable oil to prepare foods. Be aware of hidden sugars, such as honey, fructose, lactose, malt syrup and high-fructose corn syrup. Stay away from empty calories, including regular soda, sport drinks, lemonade, fruit punch, fruit juice (even if natural or freshly squeezed) or sweetened teas. Choose flavored water that is calorie-free. Making wise decisions in portion sizes will help blood sugars and your general health. You may even feel more comfortable in your clothes.


Beyond a healthy diet, regular exercise helps you burn calories, minimize stress, and improve your health. It needs to fit into a diabetes plan no matter what you eat. Get moving for about thirty minutes each day. You can break down the exercise into shorter intervals if time or health is an issue. Take a walk, swim, play sports with your kids or join the local heath club.

Healthy meal options with diabetes can be tasty and fun. Be creative, know which foods to eat and spice them up with herbs rather than salt or sugar. Soon your friends will prefer your recipes and ask you to make them for the next big occasion!