Today, many programs offer weight loss and blood sugar control. So, choosing the right diet is not simple. Body weight is closely related to type 2 diabetes. If people have excess weight, they might have a harder time controlling blood sugar levels.
That’s why it’s important to lose those excess pounds if they want better glucose management.
Here are some of the best diet plans for type 2 diabetes. But, it’s recommended to consult our doctor to choose the one that best fits our needs.
The Most Popular Diabetes Diets
1. The DASH Diet
Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension, or DASH diet, is one of the most popular diabetes diets. The focus is on fruit, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy, nuts, legumes, and lean protein. Also, it requires reducing your salt intake.
You can find free plans to determine the right number of calories according to your age and activity level, and the right sources of calories for you.
2. The Mediterranean Diet
It includes plenty of fresh, seasonal food, heart-healthy olive oil, and a bit of wine. So, most people have no problem following this enjoyable diet. The Mediterranean diet can help control blood sugar levels, and reduce the risk of heart disease.
Still, it’s best to work with a dietitian since this diet includes plenty of carb-rich foods. Even though they are healthy carbohydrates, you should still consider them.
3. The Biggest Loser Diet
This 6-week diet plan focuses on healthy foods and exercise. It requires eating healthy and being physically active every day.
The claim is that eating regular meals, using a food journal, controlling the portion size, and practicing other simple techniques can help prevent or control diabetes and other health conditions.
You can find the Biggest Loser book on Amazon to find out meal plans and exercise tips.
4. Mark Bittman’s VB6 Diet
Vegan before 6 p.m., or VB6, is the secret behind this diabetes diet. It requires eating more plant-based foods, which means consuming more fiber and less trans fat and saturated fat.
Simply, the VB6 diet is a healthy way of eating while being careful about the source of meat, dairy, and fish you consume.
In other words, it teaches you how to make better choices, even though that could mean restricting yourself to some foods to indulge in healthier options.
5. Engine 2 Diet
This is the 3rd best diet for diabetes according to the U.S. News and World Report. It’s based on plant foods while avoiding animal products. So, the claim is that plants provide nutrients that help control diabetes, while animal products clog arteries and increase LDL cholesterol.
Also, it requires eliminating vegetable oils from your diet. However, The Engine 2 diet allows you to start eliminating animal products from your diet gradually so that you can get used to them more easily.
6. The Volumetrics Diet
This diet requires eating plenty of water-rich foods, like vegetables, fruits, soups, and broths. Also, it allows whole grains thanks to their high fiber content which helps maintain stable blood sugar levels. So, besides being very nutritious, the Volumetrics diet is also very filling.
7. The Flexitarian Diet
Flexitarian (from flexible and vegetarian) implies that you don’t have to cut out meat completely, but use healthier alternatives such as tofu, eggs, lentils, and similar protein-rich foods.
So, besides plant-based foods, you can also enjoy these non-meat protein foods following the 3-4-5 regimen.
It means having a 300-calorie breakfast, a 400-calorie lunch, and a 500-calorie dinner. Also, you can have 150-calorie snacks in between. However, your total caloric consumption should be around 1500 calories, depending on your weight, age, gender, and physical activity.
8. Ornish Diet
A lot of people who followed this diet lost around 11 pounds in a year. Many of them have also reduced their diabetes medication dosage or gone from insulin to oral medication.
However, the Ornish diet might be a bit too restrictive for those who are not used to consuming just plant-based foods. This diet teaches you how to choose the healthiest food option. For example, if you have to buy bread, you should go with sprouted grain bread as it’s healthier than wheat bread.
The Ornish diet also includes exercise, stress-management techniques, and emotional support.
9. American Diabetes Association Carbohydrate Counting
The main goal of carb counting is not weight loss, but blood sugar control. Even though this is not “a diet” but rather an approach, it’s a great way to manage your diabetes. Also, by avoiding high-carb foods which are also high in calories, you help lose some excess weight.
Although the average number of carbs per meal is 45-60 gr, you should consult a doctor to make an individualized meal plan according to your caloric needs, nutritional requirements, exercise routine, and medications.
10. The Mayo Clinic Diet
This diet teaches you how to have lasting healthy habits that will help prevent and control diabetes. Seeing the food pyramid, you can decide which foods to eliminate and which to incorporate into your diet.
Usually, it helps people lose 6-10 pounds in 2 weeks, and then 1-2 pounds every week until they reach the desired weight. However, the Mayo Clinic diet doesn’t require counting calories, so you can eat as many fruits and veggies as you like. One more thing, it doesn’t deprive you of any food group.
Once again, you should consult your doctor to determine the right type of diet based on your needs and preferences.