If you have diabetes then you must know how important your food choices are for controlling your blood sugar levels. And not only for your condition, but eating healthy foods and snacks will also benefit your entire body and well-being.
The American Diabetes Association published the nutrition guidelines in 2013, explaining how all Americans should eat to maintain their optimal health.
Instead of a one-size-fits-all eating plan or diabetes diet, you should start taking a one-step-at-a-time approach to make changes. The first step would be to start with the easiest one that you know you’ll make successfully without any problems.
In this way making changes over time will become easier for you. Just remember the entire journey is not going to be simple so don’t be too hard on yourself.
Here are a few suggestions to start the healthy eating plan that will help you get and maintain an optimal weight:
- Don’t stop eating your favorite foods. In case some of them are less healthy, only reduce their intake and stop eating them completely;
- Eat more healthy sources of carbs like legumes, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and low-fat dairy foods. These are all rich in dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Don’t forget that for a person with diabetes, healthy sources of carbs should be the most important part of their eating plan;
- Cut back on sweets and added sugar. Reduce your intake of sugary drinks like fruit drinks, regular soda, and sports drinks, flavored hot and iced teas and coffees, candy, pastries, and desserts. However, you can still enjoy small portions from time to time;
- Reducer your fat intake. Use less mayo, salad dressing, cream cheese, sour cream, and cheese since their calories are mostly from their fat. Cheese and the other animal-based foods here contain saturated fat. As a matter of fact, the highest contributor to saturated fat in the average U.S. diet is cheese;
- Reduce your intake of sodium and salt. Eat fewer packaged and processed foods. What’s more, you might want to cook more and eat restaurants for meals less often. Also, don’t forget to use as little salt as you can in your cooking.