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10 Tips on a Diet for Diabetics ...

By Melanie

Following a diet for diabetes is often the best way to prevent any complications from occurring with Type 2 diabetes. I have a few relatives that have had to change their dietary habits over the years. These changes they have made are much of the reason behind why they are still here and healthy. I've compiled a list of 10 tips for creating a diet that will help with controlling diabetes.

10 Establish a Routine

By making a meal schedule and following it, this should eliminate any confusion about what time you've eaten and what you've eaten. Creating a menu is a great way to keep track of exactly what was eaten and at what time.

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9 Choose Right Amounts of Healthy Food

Choose Right Amounts of Healthy FoodMeasuring out food in the proper amounts not only makes it easier to count calories and keep track of how much was consumed, but it is easier to follow the diet for diabetes. If the food that is to be eaten is written down, there is less likelihood of you eating something you're not supposed to. Try to stick to the right amounts.

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8 Control Overeating

Resisting that quick and tasty burrito in the freezer is difficult, especially when they taste so good. Overeating only leads to increased amounts of glucose that your body gets upset over. It's a terrible domino effect; excess food leads to excess glucose which makes the body overwork itself.

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7 Lose Weight

Losing weight decreases the amount of fat cells the body has. The less fat cells there are available, the less there is of the hormone that tells the cells to ignore the insulin. This hormone is often what causes diabetes in the first place. Exercising is a great way to lose weight. Even if it's only for thirty minutes a day.

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6 Use an Exchange List

Use an Exchange ListWithin a diet for diabetes, it is often suggested that an exchanged list be used to control the amounts of certain foods eaten. These exchange lists have the proper portions listed of each food group and these servings can be swapped with one another. For instance, when you need a carbohydrate serving, you can either eat 1/3 cup of pasta that is cooked or 1 small apple. Either of these will provide the proper amount of carbohydrates.

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5 Count Carbohydrates

Keeping track of the amount of carbohydrates eaten will ensure that the same amount is eaten each day. This is very important when medication is being taken for diabetes. If the number of carbohydrates varies too greatly, then the amount of medication will need to vary also. Dietitians are very good at teaching this carbohydrate counting technique and how to do it properly.

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4 Be Consistent

Having a consistent schedule and amount of food, all day and every day, will help in regulating your blood sugar level. Try to eat the same amount of food at the same time each day. This can be difficult when traveling, so be sure to take snacks that fit into the schedule.

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3 Add Lots of Variety

A variety of foods are needed in order to keep healthy. A person can't live off of rice and beans and expect this to be the best diet for diabetes. There needs to be an adequate amount from all food groups and not in excess.

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2 Choose Foods Rich in Fiber

High fiber foods include; nuts, fruits, vegetables, wheat bran, legumes, and whole wheat flour. Fiber is excellent for controlling blood sugar levels, as well as lowering the risk of heart disease. Try to eat between 25 to 30 grams of fiber per day.

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1 Limit Fats

Limit FatsThis is hopefully an obvious tip. The more fat that is consumed, the more it gets added to the poor overworked arteries in your body. Be nice to your body and help it out by not eating excessively fatty foods. Limit the amount of butter or margarine, use low-fat spreads and dairy products, and stick to the olive and canola oil for cooking.

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These ten tips should be very useful in following a diet for diabetes, either Type 1 or Type 2. Eating healthier and throwing in some exercise is good for anyone and everyone. I hope these tips help with the planning of your daily food schedule and make it much easier to follow. Remember, if you've already been diagnosed with diabetes, make sure to consult your doctor before making any big changes to your diet. Do you have a specific diet for diabetes? How has it worked for you?

Top Photo Credit: Caro Wallis

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