Everyone worries about whether or not they are eating the right things. Whether you have specific weight-loss goals or are just looking to be healthier, a good, healthy diet can impact every aspect of your life. Diet is an especially big concern for those of us who have type 2 diabetes and need to make sure we are managing it correctly. Maintaining a healthy diabetes diet is critical to effectively manage your blood sugar levels and keep your body healthy. With all of the advice out there about what you should and shouldn’t eat, it can seem overwhelming. Here are some helpful guidelines to make sure your diabetes diet is including the right foods, and avoiding the wrong ones.
One good thing to remember that applies to all diets is this: everything in moderation. While you may think because certain foods are on the approved list for your diabetes diet, that does not mean you should overeat. Any overconsumption can have negative impacts on your overall health, not to mention your weight. So while you have plenty of protein options to choose from if you have type 2 diabetes, remember to eat sensible portions.
Fish and Seafood
Now that we have mentioned it, let’s explore the protein options you have. If you love fish, then you are in luck! Fish and seafood are excellent sources of protein that are a good choice. If you are not a fan of seafood, then not to worry! Chicken and eggs are other great sources of the protein you need. However, you do need to consider how the preparation involved in your meat and fish when choosing these options. It is best to avoid anything that is fried or especially fatty.
If you are a vegetarian, there are also options for you. Plant-based foods can be an easy way for you to include protein in your diet. Consider eating beans or tofu to maximize your protein intake if you aren’t eating meat, or even if you are and just want to mix up your meals a bit. If you are looking for a diet-friendly and protein-rich snack, nuts are a great choice.
Avoid Starch, Embrace Fiber
Want more fruit and veggie options? In terms of vegetables, it is important for you to avoid the starchy options. This means staying away from things like potatoes and corn. However, you have plenty of alternatives like cauliflower, broccoli, and greens. In case you haven’t heard, cauliflower is rapidly becoming a popular alternative to using potatoes in certain dishes anyway! If you are in the mood for some good fruits, always go with the fresh option. Anything canned can come in potentially sugary syrups that will be bad for your blood sugar levels. One of the best options is to eat berries because they are delicious and naturally sweet. Mix these with your protein filled nuts for a delicious and diet-friendly snack.
Now, the biggest question people usually wonder about, what types of grains can you eat if you have type 2 diabetes? The answer is a resounding, whole grains! While processed foods are extremely common, they often contain white flour, which can be incredibly unhealthy for you. Swap out your white bread for a healthier whole grain option. Another good grain option for you is the increasingly popular quinoa.
Avoid Sodas and Alcohol
A hidden source of potential problems for people with type 2 diabetes is in the drinks you might absentmindedly consume every day. Sodas and certain alcohol options are loaded with sugars that can throw your diet into a tailspin. Even that morning cup of coffee can be packed with sugar and creamer that you should avoid. This doesn’t mean you need to skip coffee, just skip the extra sugar and cream. Not a fan of that option? Try unsweetened tea instead.
Keep Your Doctor in the Loop about Your Diabetes Diet
When you are considering any changes in your diet, it is best to talk to your doctor to make sure you are making the best choices possible. While it may be easy to focus on the things you can’t eat, remember that you have plenty of delicious and diabetes diet approved foods that can leave you feeling healthier and keep your blood sugar levels in check. Explore new ways to use the foods that are best for you and you might just end up finding your new favorite recipe that just happens to be type 2 diabetes-friendly!