Simple and Delicious Diabetic Snack Ideas and Tips

When you’re living with diabetes, the foods you eat are extremely important to your health and wellness. This doesn’t just include mealtimes—snacks are also important to keep your blood sugar well-maintained. For these reasons, it’s a good idea to have a list of some easy and tasty diabetic snack ideas to turn to when you’re hungry throughout the day. Having a list of good diabetic snacks can help you avoid temptations and overindulging in cravings that are going to be detrimental to your health.

Snacking is important not only for managing glucose, but in actuality, being smart and choosing good diabetic snacks is also a great way to help you either lose or maintain your weight as well. Essentially, snacking when you have diabetes is all about being strategic.

How to Choose Good Diabetic Snacks

Diabetic snack ideas include vegetables and other nutrient-rich foods

Diabetic snack ideas include vegetables and other nutrient-rich foods

Snacking is part of most people’s lifestyles, and that includes people with both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. Often the word snack has negative connotations, but if you choose the snacks you eat wisely, snacking can be great for your health.

So how do you choose good diabetic snacks?

  • You have to find snacks that are good in terms of both quality and quantity. Yes, you want to opt for healthy snacks with lots of nutritional value, but you also want to make sure you’re controlling your portion sizes when you snack. Snacking, even when it’s a healthy food, is not going to be beneficial if you’re eating too much of whatever food you’re choosing.
  • Learn about snacks, and how they impact your body before making choices. For example, having a snack that’s high in carbs, as opposed to being high in protein, is going to have a different impact on your body and your blood sugar levels.
  • Always plan ahead. Don’t just rely on your cravings to guide you to a snack, because the impact can be disastrous. Instead, keep a list handy of diabetic snack ideas that you can always turn to when you get hungry or need a mid-day pick me up.
  • Choose snacks that have a good balance of both carbs and protein, along with fiber. When you choose foods that are high in all three, you’re going to feel fuller for longer, which can help you avoid gaining weight.
  • Even though snacking is a good way to avoid becoming too hungry or overeating, it’s also easy to overeat when you’re snacking, so you have to find the right balance. Eating snacks all day is never a good tactic. If you worry about your ability to stop yourself from grazing throughout the day, plan out your snack times each day, just as you do with your meals. For example, allow yourself one nutritious snack mid-morning, and another mid-afternoon, but cap your snacking at that.
  • Before snacking, consider your motives for eating at that moment. If you’re actually hungry, go ahead and grab a snack—if you’re simply eating out of boredom or habit, you may want to skip the snack.
  • When you’re looking for diabetic snack ideas, you should choose items that have 150 calories or less. Capping your calories at 150 for a snack will help you avoid eating too much and gaining weight. If you’re eating snacks that have more calories than that, it’s like adding extra meals to your day, versus small snacks.
  • Never eat snacks straight from a package—put them in a bowl or on a plate. When you’re eating out of the package you’re more likely to overeat and overindulge.
  • If you’re looking for diabetic treats, allow yourself a few bites of something you find indulgent, but don’t eat an entire serving of a treat. For example, if you have a sweet tooth, choose a bite-sized chocolate bar as your treat, rather than an entire candy bar.
  • Don’t snack while you’re doing other things. Many people tend to snack while watching TV, working on the computer or reading, and mindless snacking can be a big problem, particularly if you’re diabetic. Part of strategic snacking relies on paying careful attention to what you’re eating, and how much of it you’re consuming—if you’re distracted you’re more likely to overeat.

Diabetic Snack Ideas

Good diabetic snacks include light popcorn and small servings of nuts

Good diabetic snacks include light popcorn and small servings of nuts

There are lots of healthy diabetic snack ideas you can choose from, but here are a few really simple and nutritious options:

  • Nearly any type of nut are one of the best diabetic snack ideas. Nuts can be eaten on the go, and they’re packed with healthy fats. They’ll also help you feel fuller for longer. If you’re worried about your ability to be wise when it comes to portion control, buy a large bag of unsalted nuts, and divide it into smaller Zip-lock bags that you can easy grab on-the-go. A good snack serving size of nuts is about one ounce—it’s important to stick to this amount because while they are healthy, most nuts are also high in calories.
  • Raw vegetables are also one of the top diabetic snack ideas. They help fill you up with fiber, and they can also help you fill in nutritional deficiencies you may have. If you don’t like the idea of munching on plain raw vegetables, add some hummus or a low-calorie salad dressing. You can also add some herbs and spices to nonfat Greek yogurt, as a great dipping option.
  • If you have a sweet tooth, use fruit to fulfill your need for healthy diabetic treats. Aside from eating plain fruit, you can also whip up a fruit smoothie, which makes a good diabetic snack. Use bananas, strawberries and non-fat yogurt. Instead of blending it with milk or juice, lower the calories by using water.
  • Another option for people searching for diabetic treats are frozen bananas.
  • Do you have more of a salty tooth? Go for a few cups of light popcorn.

If you have diabetes, you can certainly snack, but you have to snack smartly. Create a list of diabetic snack ideas that you can take with you, to help you make smart decisions that will fill your need for food, without adding too many calories to your diabetic diet.

Breakthrough Discovery on Brown Fat helps Man Reverses Diabetes

I was recently contacted by a man who claims he was able to reverse his diabetes using a little-known breakthrough discovery concerning brown fat.  I first doubted this until I found out why I hadn’t heard of it before: turns out the pharmaceutical companies are trying to suppress this research.  Why would they do this?  Well, imagine that you could take this same information on brown fat and learn how to reverse your diabetes without wasting your hard-earned money on excessive health insurance, prescription pills, insulin monitors and expensive doctor visits—exactly: this stands to lose them a lot of money.

Brown Fat CBS

Discovery Featured on CBS News

As I started looking into this man and his claims of diabetes reversal, what I found was absolutely astonishing.  Normally, I’m inundated with thousands of scams, false claims and gimmicks, but this breakthrough research on brown fat, well this was coming straight from the American Doctor’s Association (ADA).  It is backed by some of the leading men and women at the Joslin Diabetes Center such as C. Ronald Kahn, M.D., Yu-Hua Tseng, Ph.D. and Aaron Cypess, M.D., Ph.D.  If you don’t know these names, feel free to Google them—they are the real deal.

What is Brown Fat?

First, some of my findings on their findings.  It seems that there are different colored fats in the body, something not too many people know about.  We all know about the most common fat color: white.  White fat is what stores more fat in our bodies, thus making us fat.  It’s what we try to cut out of our diet when we want to lose weight.  It’s what is on the edge of steaks that we try not to eat!

Brown Fat

Brown Fat Cell

But now, new research has shown that there is also a type of fat called Brown Adipose Tissue (BAT), or brown fat for short. Brown fat is mainly present in newborns because it is known to produce excess body heat.  This is essential for a newborn’s delicate system and thus, human survival.

As we age, brown fat is supposed to go away on its own—in other words, it involutes to the point where adults don’t have brown fat anymore…or so we thought.  Turns out, that was wrong.  In the past several years, we have been finding that brown fat exists in some adults, mainly concentrating in a few areas of the body (e.g. heart, vital organs, etc.).  The fat is brown due to the mitochondria that produce energy in our cells.  This produces the heat I spoke of earlier.

Now, as we have recently discovered, brown fat also consumes a ton of glucose in the process.  When it is stimulated by hormones or cold temperature, it burns up fat and allowing us to get rid of excess calories in the process.  This creates the “glucose sink” that is so critical for diabetes patients to keep track of.  The brown fat sucks up tons of glucose from the blood, thus creating an uptake that regulates blood sugar level.

How Did this Man Use Brown Fat to Reverse Diabetes?

So, what does this research have to do with reversing diabetes?  Well, the man who contacted me showed me the natural treatment method for diabetes that he had been following which uses diet to activate and increase the total amount of brown fat in the body.  This process allowed him to utilize the brown fat as an anti-diabetic tissue to help counteract his weight gain, burn fat and most of all, regulate his blood glucose levels.

Diabetes Miracle Cure

Natural Treatment Method on Diabetes

Using the scientific knowledge gained from this breakthrough discovery in brown fat, the gentleman was able to successfully reverse his diabetes by controlling his diet in a specific manner (heretofore undiscovered) to create excess, active brown fat.  Everything that I’ve read to date on these findings scientifically backs up the research and claims.  It’s an exciting and hopeful day for all diabetics out there and I’d just like to thank this man (who asked to remain nameless) for bringing this to my attention!

How to Create and Follow an Effective Gestational Diabetes Diet Plan

The Basics of Gestational Diabetes

Gestational diabetes impacts nearly 20 percent of pregnant women

Gestational diabetes impacts nearly 20 percent of pregnant women

Gestational diabetes is a condition affecting only pregnant women. A woman who has never been previously diagnosed as diabetic, but who has high glucose levels during pregnancy is considered to have the disease. One of the best ways to treat it is through a gestational diabetes diet plan, specifically designed for pregnant women who are experiencing insulin issues.

It’s not an uncommon condition—in fact, nearly 20% of pregnant women are believed to have gestational diabetes.

While the exact cause isn’t known, it’s believed it is related to how hormones released during pregnancy impact insulin. Insulin resistance can develop as a result of certain hormones.

Typically it begins to occur later in the pregnancy, but luckily for mothers with the condition, it’s not necessarily linked to birth defects—although the same can’t be said for mothers who had diabetes before becoming pregnant.

With that being said, if gestational diabetes isn’t properly treated during pregnancy, it can lead to problems for both the mother and baby, which is why it’s important to follow a careful gestational diabetes diet plan.

Gestational diabetes that isn’t well controlled can lead to babies who are born overweight, which increases the risk of Type 2 diabetes and obesity into adulthood.

Creating a Gestational Diabetes Diet Plan

The best treatment for gestational diabetes is to follow a diet plan for gestational diabetes, get a moderate amount of pregnancy-friendly exercise, and maintain a healthy weight.

The primary way to ensure both you and your unborn baby remain healthy despite having gestational diabetes is to follow an appropriate diabetes exchange diet.

Remember the following when planning your gestational diabetes diet plan:

  • Carbohydrates will make up a very important part of your diet, but you have to choose carbs carefully because some carbs cause spikes in insulin levels. Opt for complex carbohydrates that take a long time for the body to digest, like fruits, vegetables and whole grains. It’s important to find the right balance of carbs so that you remain energized, but you’re not eating a large amount that could potentially cause your blood sugar levels to rise too much.
  • Fruit will probably have to be limited, unless your doctor otherwise instructs you. People have the idea that fruit is healthy so they can eat as much as they want, but if you have gestational diabetes, you have to factor in the amount of sugar found in fruit.
  • A gestational diabetes diet plan should center on eating three meals and two smaller snacks a day. This will help level out your blood sugar levels, but you should avoid eating too much at any one time, because that can cause insulin spikes. Instead aim to eat smaller but  more frequent meals throughout the day.

The Diabetic Exchange Diet

If you’re diagnosed with gestational diabetes, you may need to gain an understanding of the diabetic exchange diet.

So what is it?

Essentially it’s a compilation of food lists, created by the American Diabetes Association and the American Diabetic Association. The detailed lists can be found by visiting a number of nutritional and diabetic websites.

The exchange lists are divided into six different groupings, and they’re great for use to plan a gestational diabetes diet menu.

The groups include:

  1. Starch/Bread List: The items in this portion of the list contain about 15 grams of carbohydrates each, along with three grams of protein. The serving sizes on this list all equal about 80 calories, which is important for a gestational diabetes diet plan, since you have to focus on gaining a healthy amount of pregnancy weight.
  2. Meat List: This list, as the name implies, covers meats. Each serving size represented on the list means you’re going to be getting around seven grams of protein, and the meat list is divided into four subsections, based on how lean the meats are.
  3. Vegetable List: Contained on the vegetable list are serving sizes that provide about five grams of carbs, two of protein and 25 calories. They also contain a substantial amount of fiber, which is important to the management of gestational diabetes.
  4. Fruit List: As mentioned, you may have to be careful and limit your fruit intake if you’re following a gestational diabetes diet plan. The exchange fruit list has items with about 15 grams of carbs.
  5. Milk List: Milk gets its own list on the diabetic exchange diet, because it does have carbohydrates. Each serving size of milk on the list has about 12 grams of carbs, and the fat and calories vary based on the type of milk being consumed.
  6. Fat List: It’s not what it sounds like—many of the fats on this list are considered healthy, in moderation.

Sample Gestational Diabetes Diet Menu

Following a gestational diabetes diet plan is important for you and your baby

Following a gestational diabetes diet plan is important for you and your baby

There are lots of healthy food options you can eat when you’re following a gestational diabetes diet plan, but here are a few ideas:

Breakfast

  • Plain oatmeal with a bit of cinnamon and almonds: Make sure it’s plan or has very little sugar, because there are some oatmeals that have lots of extras that can mean more sugar. Cinnamon is great for controlling blood sugar, and almonds are a healthy protein that will help you feel fuller for longer.
  • Yogurt with berries and nuts
  • Peaches with cottage cheese

Lunch

  • Turkey and cheese on a whole wheat wrap
  • Salad with oil, vinegar and lemon juice dressing. Add a protein such as tuna or salmon.
  • Veggies with hummus and a few slices of turkey or chicken

Dinner

  • Roasted salmon with green beans and brown rice
  • A small serving of flank steak with sweet potatoes
  • Chicken breast and quinoa

Snacks

  • Dried fruits
  • Nuts
  • Avocado slices
  • Whole wheat bagel with low fat cream cheese

These are just a few of the many food options you have when you’re creating a gestational diabetes diet plan. Just because you have gestational diabetes doesn’t mean you can’t eat foods that taste good, and it certainly doesn’t mean your baby isn’t going to be healthy.

The key to gestational diabetes is being proactive and taking action immediately to ensure you’re following a healthy diet plan for gestational diabetes, so your baby has the best possible outcome, and you can become healthy after you give birth.

Secrets of the Best Diabetes Home Remedies

Diabetes, which comes in two forms, Type 1 and Type 2, is a very serious disease that affects millions of people around the globe, and in particular in the U.S.

Herbs and supplements are great as diabetes home remedies

Herbs and supplements are great as diabetes home remedies

Common wisdom tells us that the only way to manage diabetes is through the use of insulin or other prescription drugs, but as more light is being shed on herbal and home remedies, as well as homeopathic remedies for diabetes, more and more people are turning to these natural options to not only manage, but in some cases treat the disease.

While there is significant evidence pointing to the efficacy of diabetes home remedies, unless you’re a natural healthcare provider, it can be difficult to know where to turn. It’s a complicated subject, but there is some basic information that can help you learn more about how to beat diabetes naturally.

The Risks of Using Insulin to Treat Diabetes

Insulin and other medications used to lower blood sugar in patients with diabetes are starting to become seen as potentially dangerous, whereas just a few years ago they were thought to be the only treatment for diabetes.

In 2008, research conducted by the government to study cardiovascular conditions showed people on the most rigorous insulin prescription treatments had a much higher likelihood of dying from cardiovascular-related diseases. In fact, the results were so startling the study had to be ended.

More and more medical professionals are advising their patients to seek out natural treatments to their diabetes, as a result of the research being done on insulin and prescription drugs. With that being said, it’s important that people with diabetes not stop taking these prescribed medicines immediately—instead, the best course of action is to work with a medical professional to wean yourself off of them, as you begin exploring natural options.

How to Beat Diabetes Naturally

Diabetes is a complex disease, therefore natural treatments tend to be complex and multi-faceted as well. Diabetes home remedies rely on a combination of factors, including

  • A low glycemic diet
  • Regular exercise—weight loss in general is important, because it helps you lower your overall blood sugar levels
  • Dietary supplementation—particularly for nutrients and supplements linked to diabetes and blood sugar
  • Learning to eat smaller, but more frequent meals all day, as opposed to a few big meals

Diabetes Home Remedies

While the best thing you can do for your diabetes is to manage it with exercise and a healthy diet, there are also some naturally occurring substances believed to have an impact on people suffering from diabetes.

  • Fig leaves: Fig leaves aren’t just known as a potential diabetes home remedy—they’re known for having a number of positive impacts on health and wellness. In terms of diabetes, when taking fig leaf extract several times a day, patients have seen positive results and have shown a lower need for insulin.
  • Black seed: This is another cure all, considered a great home remedy for diabetes. Black seed has been in use to treat all kinds of conditions for more than 2000 years, and it can be taken in oil form, making it easy to add to nearly anything. You can also create a powder using the seeds, if you prefer.
  • Fenugreek: This herb is one of the most sought after homeopathic remedies for diabetes. Fenugreek can be taken in supplement form throughout the day, along with food.

    Cinnamon may help manage insulin levels

    Cinnamon may help manage insulin levels

  • Cinnamon: This is probably one of the most popular ways used to beat diabetes naturally. Cinnamon has been shown to have an enormous impact on blood sugar levels. You don’t need a special form of cinnamon, and it can be added to teas and other drinks, or right to your food as a home remedy for diabetes.
  • Bitter melon: This is one of the less well known diabetes home remedies on the list, but it also is a good option. Bitter melon has similar characteristics to what’s found in insulin, so it can mimic its effects.

Drinking Vinegar to Beat Diabetes Naturally

In addition to herbal diabetes home remedies, there are some other substances that have been shown to have a significant impact on blood sugar levels. One of the most common is apple cider vinegar.

Although researchers don’t know exactly what it is about apple cider vinegar that works as one of the potential diabetes home remedies, it does have a particular type of acid as the main ingredient, which can help slow digestion of carbohydrates—playing a big role in insulin and blood sugar levels. Apple cider vinegar has proven to be especially helpful to people with insulin resistances as a result of Type 2 diabetes.

Not only can apple cider vinegar good beneficial for blood glucose and insulin levels in people who already have diabetes, but it may also be an ideal preventative substance if you’re worried about your risk of developing diabetes later.

Dietary Supplements that Work as a Home Remedy for Diabetes

Along with herbs and homeopathic remedies for diabetes, there are also nutrients and minerals found in the foods we eat, which may be helpful to beat diabetes naturally.

While it is true these substances are found in food, you may have a deficiency or you may not simply not be able to get enough of a particular mineral to have it work as a home remedy for diabetes, which is why the need for supplementation comes in.

A few of these minerals include:

  • Magnesium: A number of studies have shown that people with a magnesium deficiency are likely to have a more challenging time controlling their blood sugar levels, particularly if they have Type 2 diabetes. Not only does a magnesium deficiency play a direct role in diabetes, but if you don’t have enough of the mineral it may also increase your likelihood of developing diabetes complications.
  • Vanadium: The results of taking a supplement with vanadium may not be drastic, but research has shown it has the ability to provide small improvements to insulin sensitivity.
  • Fiber: Fiber is important to aid in digestion and keep you healthy so that you can manage or beat your diabetes naturally. Fiber also helps with weight loss, so it’s a good idea to choose foods rich in fiber, such as broccoli and leafy green vegetables.

Conclusion

There is no magic cure-all when it comes to diabetes home remedies, but there are certainly foods, herbs and supplements that can help provide management and treatment for diabetes, if combined with an overall healthy diet and exercise.

Tips for Creating a Diabetic Grocery List

If you have Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, your life requires some careful planning in order to ensure your blood sugar levels and overall health and wellness are well-maintained. One of the most important areas of your life to manage is your diet, which relies on determining a healthy diabetic grocery list. What you eat has a tremendous impact on your life if you don’t have diabetes, and when you do have the disease, it becomes exponentially more important.

How to Create a Diabetic Grocery List

There are several tips that can help you create the ideal diabetic grocery list:

A diabetic grocery list should have a healthy mix of lean proteins, produce and complex carbohydrates

A diabetic grocery list should have a healthy mix of lean proteins, produce and complex carbohydrates

  1. When we say diabetic grocery list, we really mean you do create a list each time you go shopping. Creating a list is important because it helps you research the foods and recipes you’ll be eating, and more easily stick to a healthy eating plan. It’s also a good way to avoid shopping based on hunger or impulse. When you create a diabetic grocery list, think about dinner, but also breakfast, lunch and snacks so that you’re able to manage comprehensive meal planning.
  2. Learn how to read labels. Labels are the best way to determine whether or not something is suited to your diabetes. Look beyond simply the fat and calories, and consider other components such as saturated fats and carbohydrates.
  3. Be careful of potentially misleading labels on food. For example, many fat free foods, particularly packaged snack items, and even things like salad dressing may have a lot of sugar or carbohydrates. Just because they’re labeled as healthy doesn’t mean they’re appropriate for a healthy diabetic diet.
  4. When you’re creating your diabetic grocery list, and once you’re in the store, choose the bulk of your foods from the outer perimeter of the store. This is where the fresh foods are kept, and in general they’re just more likely to be healthy for your diet, as compared to packaged foods found in the inner aisles and the frozen foods section of the store. When you’re making your list, think about the section each item is found in, and this will help you gauge whether or not it’s a good choice.
  5. Add olive oil and lemon juice to your list. Olive oil and lemon juice are great, because they’re healthy for diabetics and can be used in so many ways. You can use them as salad dressings, marinades, sauces or really anything that you want to flavor up, without adding lots of salt or choosing unhealthy items.
  6. Seafood is an excellent choice to add to a diabetic grocery list. Seafood is going to tend to be low in fat, sugar and carbohydrates, and also offer high levels of Omega-3 fatty acids, which are great for cardiovascular health and reducing inflammation throughout the body.
  7. When you create a diabetic grocery list, think about portion control. Portion size is very important to maintaining your health, weight and diabetes, so if you worry about your ability to keep tabs on your portions, only buy enough to make meals that will provide one portion for you, and one for the members of your family who will also be eating. This way, you’re not provided with the opportunity to overeat simply because there’s an abundance of food or leftovers.

Choosing Cereal and Bread for Diabetics

Carbohydrates, and how to select them, are a big concern for most diabetics. The reason? Carbohydrates impact blood sugar levels more than other types of foods, like protein.

With that being said, a healthy diabetic diet doesn’t mean you have to eliminate them completely, it just means that when you create a diabetic grocery list, you choose your carbs carefully.

What diabetics should avoid are highly processed and refined carbohydrates, like sugary sodas and juice, white breads, pasta and rice, and breakfast cereals loaded with sugar.

Instead, it’s important to choose carb sources that release into the blood stream slowly. This means they are complex carbs, which are often also high in fiber. They take longer for the body to digest, which helps diabetics avoid blood sugar spikes.

The other benefit of unprocessed carbs is the fact that they’ll energize you, and help you eat less because you’ll feel fuller for longer.

So what are good complex carb options when you’re creating your diabetic grocery list?

  • Brown rice and white rice
  • Bread for diabetics should include whole-wheat, or even better whole-grain breads
  • When choosing cereal for diabetics, go with choices that are low in sugar and high in fiber
  • Whole wheat pasta is a good source of healthy carbs for diabetics

Fast Food for Diabetics

Even if you make a diabetic grocery list each and every week, the need for fast food may still arise.

So the question becomes, is there fast food for diabetics?

The answer is yes, but you have to be extremely careful about what you choose, just like you do at the grocery store.

  • Never choose fast food without first viewing the nutritional information. Most restaurants will have this on-hand or printed on menus. If not, do your research on the fast food restaurants located close to your home or work where you’re likely to eat. Look at the menu ahead of time to avoid making a snap decision.
  • Avoid muffins and other baked goods. Muffins are very tricky—they seem healthy, and may even be labeled with something like low fat, but they’re very high in sugar and carbohydrates and they can cause big blood sugar spikes in both diabetic people and non-diabetic individuals.
  • Exercise portion control. Never supersize your fast food meals, and just choose a sandwich or main entrée, versus getting a combo meal.

Conclusion

Diabetics face challenges when it comes to creating a good diabetic grocery list, and also finding appropriate fast food for diabetics.

Your health and management of your diabetes relies on planning ahead, doing your research and learning what’s in the foods you’re eating. When you approach diabetes strategically, you’re more likely to have success in maintaining your health and your weight and preventing future complications.