Diabetes Meal Plan: Low Calorie
A diabetes meal plan is a guide that tells you how much and what kinds of food you can choose to eat at meals and snack times. A good meal plan should fit in with your schedule and eating habits.
Some meal planning tools include:
- The plate method
- Carb counting
- Glycemic index.
Eating a diabetes-friendly diet can make the difference in your ability to keep your blood sugar levels under control. But it can be difficult to stick to a diet—unless you have a plan. Round out the meals as needed with lean protein, whole grains, fruits, dairy and/or vegetables, depending on your meal plan. However, it is very important to know about Glycemic index before planing for any meal plan.
The glycemic index, or GI, measures how a carbohydrate-containing food raises blood glucose. Foods are ranked based on how they compare to a reference food — either glucose or white bread.
In diabetes (specially type 2), our body has difficulty in handling blood glucose after meal, leading to high postprandial blood glucose. That is why, simple carbohydrates are not recommended for diabetes patients as it causes rapid rise of blood glucose. Whereas, complex carbohydrates cause slow rise of blood glucose, hence, it is recommended in diabetes patients. However, not all complex carbohydrates have low GI. For a healthy meal, diabetes patients should choose Low GI foods:
Low GI Foods (55 or less):
100% stone-ground whole wheat or pumpernickel bread
Oatmeal (rolled or steel-cut), oat bran, muesli
Pasta, converted rice, barley, bulgar
Sweet potato, corn, yam, lima/butter beans, peas, legumes and lentils
Most fruits, non-starchy vegetables and carrots
Medium GI (56-69):
Whole wheat, rye and pita bread
Brown, wild or basmati rice, couscous
High GI (70 or more):
White bread or bagel
Corn flakes, puffed rice, bran flakes, instant oatmeal
Short grain white rice, rice pasta, macaroni and cheese from mix
Russet potato, pumpkin
Pretzels, rice cakes, popcorn, saltine crackers
melons and pineapple
Although fruits are generally good for body, in diabetes we must be careful about high GI fruits and should consume less and small portion at a time.
What is a Healthy Diet?
A healthy diet is a way of eating that that reduces risk for complications such as heart disease and stroke.
Healthy eating includes eating a wide variety of foods including:
- whole grains
- non-fat dairy products
- lean meats
There is no one perfect food so including a variety of different foods and watching portion sizes is key to a healthy diet. Also, make sure your choices from each food group provide the highest quality nutrients you can find. In other words, pick foods rich in vitamins, minerals and fiber over those that are processed. Here is an example of 7-Day Low Calorie Diabetic Meal Plan:
- 1 Cup Skim Milk
- 1 Orange, medium
- 1 Cup Cheerios Cereal
- 1 Cup Cantaloupe Melon
Grilled Shrimp Skewers over White Bean Salad
- 1 Whole-Wheat Pita Bread, small
- 1 Cup Skim Milk
- 1 Fudgsicle, no sugar added
- 2 Tablespoons Prepared Hummus
- 3 Ounces Celery Sticks
- 1/2 Cup Cooked Brown Rice
North African Spiced Carrots
Tomato-Herb Marinated Flank Steak
- 1/2 Banana, small
Related Book Review:
“In Eat Away Diabetes, Kristine Napier offers a simple, straightforward program to help people eat smart, eat well, and, best of all, eat delicious meals that will significantly lower their risk of this disease. Napier offers those who already have type 2 diabetes the information they need to keep it under control. She delves into the most up-to-date medical findings and clears up much of the confusion that surrounds diabetes and how to treat it. Features included are: A month’s worth of menus at eight different calorie levels, A diabetes-fighters shopping list, 75 gourmet-tasting recipes that are easy to prepare, and An authoritative guide to the many diabetes-fighting supplements that are in the news”