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Dietitian's Advice and Recipes

Though seeing your own dietitian is the surest way to get a diabetes diet that is 100% your own, advice from Stacey Hugues, RD, CNSD -- an About.com Diabetes contributing writer -- is a great place to start and get help with carrying out a better eating plan to manage your condition.
  1. Diabetic Meal Plans/Menus (14)
  2. Dietitian-Approved Recipes (18)

Healthy Food Choices for Type 2 Diabetes
Weight loss and a healthy eating plan are a major part of type 2 diabetes management. But when you're first diagnosed, you may be at a loss for where to start. It might be easier than you think, if you remember that it's not a diet, it's a lifestyle change. Making healthy substitutions for some of the non-healthy foods you are eating now, is a good first step.

How to Make a Diabetes Meal Plan
Diabetic meal plans are not "one size fits all." Every diabetic's dietary needs are different. They will vary based on your sex, age, activity level, height, weight and medications. Still, though personalized, there are some basic fundamentals of a diabetes meal plan -- these details can help you craft your own meals wisely.

Type 2 Diabetes Meal Planning
There are a few methods that can be used for diabetic meal planning. It is good to research more than one, but also important to remember that diabetic diet needs are going to vary by person. Here, two meal planning methods and a sample meal plan.

Type 2 Diabetes Portion Control
If you are new to watching portion sizes, you may be worried about misestimating the amount of food you need for your diabetic meal plan. Measuring food can help, but it can be time consuming and inconvenient. Approximating portion size by comparing your food to common objects can make the process of portion control easier.

Breakfast Ideas When You Have Diabetes
Breakfast is an important meal for diabetics. Routinely eating breakfast has been shown to lead to more regular eating and exercise patterns, better food choices, more consistent energy intakes, and better glucose control. But beware: breakfast has the potential of becoming a very calorie and carbohydrate-dense meal if you are not careful.

The Best Protein Choices When You Have Type 2 Diabetes
With type 2 diabetes, it is best to eat approximately 50% of your calories from carbohydrates, 20% from protein, and 30% from fat. To stay in that ballpark, choose protein options that are lower in fat. Make sure that you don't blow your balance by choosing to fry your lean meats. Opt for baking, grilling or sauteing lean meats in little to no oil. All of the meat options listed below are either…

Fruit and Vegetable Nutrition Facts
Type 2 diabetes management is all about eating a healthy diet. Fruits and vegetables are a great addition to a diabetes eating plan because they are low fat, low calorie, and packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Looking for nutrition facts for some of your favorite fruits and vegetables? Look no further, here's a list that will add variety and taste to your diabetes meal plan.

Enjoying Sweets When You Have Diabetes
You can enjoy sweets when you have type 2 diabetes -- you just have to be a bit more careful about your selections. Get strategies for taking the worry out of dessert decisions, and learn how to interpret diabetic marketing information about sweets.

Thanksgiving Eating With Diabetes
How to Plan a Diabetic-Friendly Thanksgiving Meal When You are the Host, How to Navigate a Thanksgiving Meal When you Have Diabetes, Thanksgiving Eating When You Have Type 2 Diabetes, How to Cook a diabetic-friendly Thanksgiving Menu

Agave Nectar
Agave nectar (or syrup) from the Agave plant is commonly used by diabetics and health foodies as an alternative sweetener -- but that doesn't mean you can consume it with abandon. What you need to know if you're a diabetic.

Aloe Gel and Type 2 Diabetes
You may think of aloe gel as the goo that comes from the aloe plant that you smother over a minor cut. But it is also the form of aloe marketed as a complementary treatment for type 2 diabetes.

Sugar Replacements for Diabetics
Type 2 diabetics need to limit the use of real sugar. Luckily, there are a number of zero and low-carbohydrate sugar replacements to choose from. Many sugar replacements have received negative press. Over time, though, no credible research has shown that using artificial sweeteners leads to illness; some people have reported mild stomach or head pain. The five FDA-approved non-nutritive sweetene…

Stevia
Stevia is a hot new option for diabetics seeking a sugar replacement. But why now when this native South American plant, (with a sweetening power 300x that of sugar), has been used for centuries as a natural sweetener? One factor is recent literature showing that Stevia may actually be beneficial to diabetics by aiding insulin function.

Low-Carb Diabetic Crepe Recipes
The basic ingredients for a crepe are actually very healthy and diabetic-friendly. Using whole-grain flower, skim milk and egg whites for the batter make them even healthier. If you like to cook or are planning a special diabetic-friendly brunch, try out some of these easy diabetic recipe ideas for healthy sweet and savory crepes:

Diabetic Grocery Shopping
Grocery shopping can feel totally overwhelming when you are a new diabetic. Even when armed with a great diabetic meal plan - it can still be exhausting to try to translate that into a grocery list, and then to navigate aisles and aisles of a food store. As a diabetic, it is important to keep your home stocked with wholesome, colorful, and fresh foods. When healthy choices are available at arm…

What to Drink When You Have Diabetes
A relatively recent study found a significant link between daily diet soda consumption and type 2 diabetes. But here’s the good news: The artificial sweeteners used in the U.S. production of diet soda and other sugar-free beverages have been approved by the FDA. They have not been found to cause health issues, and can provide flexibility for diabetic meal planning.

Splenda
Splenda is a sugar substitute option that has been found to have little effect on blood sugar. Splenda is made from the FDA-approved artificial sweetener, sucralose. While filling your pantry with specialty diabetic products made from safe alternative sweeteners - such as Splenda - is not necessary, considering the use of such products can give you more flexibility when it comes to diabetic mea…

Diabetic Snack Ideas
Some diabetics will have snacks built into their meal plans on the recommendation of their medical team, or based their personal food preferences. But even if snacks are not a part of your meal plan, there are still times that you'll need to make smart snacking decisions. I divide diabetic snacks into 3 categories: unscheduled between-meal snacks (that won't blow your meal plan), planned snacks…

Mix & Match Diabetic Omelet
An omelet is a great breakfast option for a diabetic. Most traditional breakfast options in our country tend to be high in carbohydrates, but an omelet is just the opposite. Using egg substitute as an omelet base actually makes a nice omelet texture, and makes the omelet low enough in fat and cholesterol that a diabetic could consider it for breakfast several times a week. While I prefer a ham…

Top 5 Diabetic Pasta Substitutes
I love all kinds of pasta, but in recent years I have had to modify my diet to account for a sensitivity to gluten. As a result, I have developed some great ideas that are also helpful for diabetics looking for a pasta substitute! I have compiled my top 5 for you. Some substitutes are healthier for diabetics because they are higher in protein and/or fiber than pasta is. (The higher protein and f…

Got Diabetes? Eggs are Your Friends
Eggs are a really useful food to a diabetic meal plan, yet many diabetics worry about eating eggs since they contain cholesterol. While it is not uncommon for a type 2 diabetic to have other conditions like high cholesterol, dietary cholesterol intake itself has not been linked to elevated blood cholesterol levels.

Going Vegetarian with Diabetes
While a well-planned vegetarian diet can be healthy, it is not necessary to give up meat entirely in order to become a healthier diabetic. Still, there is a definitive link between vegetable nutrition intake and reduced diabetes risk.

10 Go-To Diabetic Desserts

In addition to being relatively low-calorie and low-carb, the best diabetic desserts ought to meet 3 criteria:

  • quick and easy to prepare - to keep you from reaching for a quick less-healthy option.

  • made in small batches - keep the leftovers small to avoid the temptation to overindulge. 

  • varied - I recommend having 5 to10 go-to dessert options: something with chocolate, something with fruit, something cold, something hot...an option for each type of dessert you crave.  The variety should help to keep you from getting bored with your meal plan.

Here are ten suggestions for great diabetic desserts:

If You Have Diabetes, Fiber Can Help
The recommended minimum daily food fiber intake for a diabetic is 25-35 grams. There are many reasons why eating enough food fiber can help to control your diabetes.

Five Great Diabetic Stew Recipes
Slow cooker stew recipes are great for diabetic meal plans. Time that would have spent tending a stove-top dish can be reallocated to a healthy activity -- like taking a walk, or planning healthy meals for the next few days.

Diabetes and Sugar and other Type 2 Diabetes Diet Myths
It's a common type 2 diabetes diet myth that people with diabetes should avoid eating sugar. Sugar may have little nutritional value, do little to satisfy appetite, and be a source of empty calories, but when you exercise portion control, all foods are allowed on a diabetic diet.

Eating Out with Diabetes
Eating out with diabetes can be stressful. Restaurants are in the business of selling food, not helping you stick to your diet -- so when you're eating out you'll see, smell and hear about foods that you'd probably like to eat.

Keep Diabetic Diet Food Portions Under Control
All foods can fit in a diabetic diet plan, as long as you keep your food portions under control. Portion control can be challenging, so it is a good idea to come up with a few strategies to help you stick to proper portions. Here are some strategic ideas on how to keep you "on plan", as well as some links to detailed meal planning and portion control articles that you may also find helpful.

Efficacy of Cinnamon for Diabetes Treatment
Does cinnamon reduce glucose levels in patients with diabetes? Find out more here.

Ideas for a Healthy Halloween
Several healthy halloween celebration ideas that do not involve candy...

Diabetic Mashed Potatoes with Cauliflower Mash
A great low-carbohydrate substitute for mashed potatoes is cauliflower mash. This recipe combines mashed potatoes with cauliflower in the same...

Tips for Diabetics about Sandwich Nutrition
Don't let the idea of two slices of bread scare you away: diabetics, take note of these sandwich nutrition facts and ideas.

Unhealthy Food Choices for Diabetics
Watch out for these 3 potentially unhealthy foods - they may sound healthy at first, but then could quickly blow a meal plan.

Strategies to Fix Common Unhealthy Eating Habits
Avoid unhealthy eating habits by using these strategies to keep your diabetic diet in balance, avoid overeating, and to address the external variables that often affect dietary intake.

Homemade Granola Recipe
I developed this homemade granola recipe because I couldn't find a product to purchase that had all that I was looking for. I wanted more protein and less sugar than the typical granola you can buy. This recipe makes for a balanced snack, and also a great breakfast on the go on top of yogurt. The nutritional balance of this recipe is...

Glucerna Snack Bar
It is a good idea for diabetics to keep a snack bar on them for emergency meal replacements and snacks. One brand marketed towards diabetics is the Glucerna line of snack and meal bars.

Pros and Cons of Sugar Free Candy
If you're wondering whether sugar free candy is an option for you, here are a few points to ponder.

Staying Motivated On A Healthy Diet
Staying motivated on a healthy diet isn't easy, especially when you have to balance health concerns on top of all your other life concerns. Here are some tips to help you stick to it.

Cut Calories, Not Taste
Small changes always add up -- and the same holds true when you cut calories. Here are a few tips for shaving off a few calories while saving taste.

Honey Or Sugar: Which Is Better For Diabetics?
There are lots of opinions out there about the differences between honey and sugar. Read up on which is better if you have diabetes.

Glucerna Nutrition Shakes
Glucerna nutrition shakes are a line of diabetic meal replacement nutrition drinks made by Abbott (formerly known as Ross). Should you try them yourself? Read more here.

Heart-Healthy Pumpkin Dip
This heart healthy pumpkin dip is quick, tasty, and has fewer calories and fat than hummus.

Chromium Picolinate
What is chromium picolinate and how can you use it? Find out here.

Control Eating During the Holidays By Planning Ahead
We're entering the 4th quarter of the year, a time known for holiday get-togethers, and a time when it becomes especially tricky to control eating. Here are some tips to help you navigate the food rush.

Look AHEAD - Diabetes Study Look AHEAD
Look AHEAD - Diabetes Study Look AHEAD

Treatment and Diet Starter Tips for the New Diabetic
Getting a diabetes diagnosis can be very upsetting. The emotions you are feeling are perfectly normal, and allowing yourself to work through them will help you clear your mind for the next step: how to go about treatment. A good doctor, diabetic educator, and dietitian will help you develop an individualized treatment and meal plan. But...

Saturated Fats and Unsaturated Fats
Saturated fats are generally unhealthy, while some unsaturated fats may offer health benefits. Here are some tips for cutting back on saturated fats but adding more unsaturated fats to your meal plan.

Vitamin E Supplements - Will They Prevent Diabetes?
If you're wondering if you should take Vitamin E Supplements to prevent heart disease, cancer, or diabetes, read on.

Healthy Carrot Hummus Recipe
I always seem to tend up with a few leftover carrots in my vegetable drawer, and this quick carrot recipe ensures they don't go to waste. Plus, it taps into the health benefits of carrots.

An Ancient Approach To Diabetic Care With Ayurvedic Treatment
Find out what an ayurvedic approach to diabetes treatment would be.

The Best Diet Trick For Cutting Calories & Carbs
There is a great deal more to healthy eating than just one tip, however, there is one best diet trick I always come back to for cutting calories, carbs and increasing fiber in the diet.

Vegetables Recipe
Not just one great vegetables recipe, but seven! Plus, links to articles with good tips on how to eat more vegetables.

Eat Less - You Can Eat Better Quality Foods If You Eat Less
Eat Less - You Can Eat Better Quality Foods If You Eat Less

Eating Right With Color
When all of the diet advice feels too complicated, try a simpler approach: eating right with color. "Eat Right With Color" is the theme of the 2011 National Nutrition Month campaign, and with good reason.

Diet And Inflammation
There is new emerging evidence tying diet and inflammation to chronic disease. The Mediterranean diet is rich in nutrients that have been found to decrease inflammation.

Whole Grains - Just What Are They, Anyway?
The idea of whole grains can be confusing -- does whole grains mean more fiber? Are they necessarily healthier? According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, we should be eating three or more servings of whole-grain products every day. But what exactly is a whole grain?

Whole Grain Recipes - The Whole Grain Diet Miracle Whole Grain Recipes
Whole Grain Recipes - The Whole Grain Diet Miracle Whole Grain Recipes

Almond Milk - Benefits of Almond Milk
Almond Milk - Benefits of Almond Milk

Benefits of Spinach
While all vegetables contain a wide variety of phytonutrients, one of the benefits of spinach is that it's especially high phytonutrient content -- leading to anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, blood pressure lowering, and many other health effects.

Edamame Nutrition Facts
While there is conflicting information on the health benefits of soy, just a glance at the edamame nutrition facts shows you why it is such a healthy food.

Avocado Benefits
A closer look at avocado benefits may have you deciding to incorporate more avocados into your diet. Avocados are trans-fat, cholesterol and sodium-free...

Benefits of Sweet Potatoes
After you check out the benefits of sweet potatoes, you may decide to make them much more than just a holiday side dish! Sweet potatoes may help control blood sugar, eliminate heavy metals and free radicals, and reduce inflammation.

Greek Yogurt Nutrition
The benefits of low or non-fat Greek yogurt are easily identified by comparing a regular yogurt to a Greek yogurt nutrition label. Regular yogurt provides 5 grams of protein per 6-ounce serving, while Greek yogurt provides up to 20 grams, depending on the brand.

Quinoa Nutritional Facts
Check out these quinoa nutritional facts to see why I name it as one of the healthiest foods.

Blueberries Benefits
Eating blueberries benefits diabetics by helping to improve insulin sensitivity. In addition to being a low calorie & high fiber food, there are two compounds in blueberries that may have anti-diabetic properties: anthocyanin and pterostilbene.

Beans Nutrition
Beans Nutrition: One cup of cooked dry beans (like kidney beans) provides about 11 grams of fiber, or 45% of the daily recommended intake of fiber. One cup will also provide 225 calories, 15 grams of protein, 40 grams of carbohydrate, and less than 1 gram of fat.

Italian Quinoa Recipe
Quinoa takes on the flavors of basil and red pepper in this Italian-inspired quinoa recipe, which blends a traditional pesto with cooked quinoa and vegetables...

Blueberry Smoothie
Easy blueberry smoothie recipe that is great for diabetics or others wishing to balance their nutrient intake.

Avocado Mayonniase Spread Recipe
Use this avocado recipe in place of mayonnaise on your next sandwich to up the healthy fat and nutrient content.

Healthy Baked Sweet Potato Recipes for Any Time of Year
Baked sweet potato recipes are traditionally served around the holidays, but this lighter version pairs nicely with meals throughout the year.

Fresh Corn & Edamame Recipe
This delicious summer edamame recipe packs fiber and protein. The fresh corn and red pepper add a nice sweetness.

Avocado and Mango Salsa Recipe
Creamy and naturally sweet, this avocado and mango salsa recipe goes nicely on top of baked fish or spicy grilled chicken -- and is a great complement to a diabetic meal plan.

Baked Sweet Potato Hash
Use this baked sweet potato recipe in the place of whole baked sweet potatoes or fries. Shredding the potatoes allows them to bake more quickly and the end result is a delicious side dish with a really great texture.

Coffee Benefits - Coffee Diabetes & SHBG
In postmenopausal women, coffee benefits diabetes risk by increasing levels of something called SHBG.

Avocado Salad with Spinach, Mango & Lime
This avocado salad has enough protein, fiber, and healthy fat to fill you up, but won't leave you feeling bloated.

A Thoughtful Perspective On Diabetes Management
Diabetes management plans help you to manage your symptoms so that you can become strong enough to tackle the challenge of diabetes. You manage it -- it doesn't manage you.

Grilled Corn
Grilled corn makes a quick and easy summer side dish for diabetics.

A Zesty Summer Side-Dish of Grilled Zucchini
Grilled zucchini is a super quick and easy side-dish that can help to round-out a healthy diabetic meal.

Onion, Tomatoes and Grilled Squash
Grilled squash, onions and tomatoes combine for a light side-dish that is both sweet and savory - a perfect compliment to a diabetic meal plan.

Grilled Vegetables Help Round Out A Diabetic Meal Plan
Save yourself some time in the kitchen and bring out the flavor in your meal -- all while keeping the carb content low -- just by adding grilled vegetables.

Together Time at Family Dinner Can Decrease Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
The family meal -- especially family dinner -- helps to create an environment that promotes healthy weights in family members of all ages. Here are some tips on how to approach and encourage participation in family mealtime:

Eat This Not That - Diabetic Diet Healthy Substitute
Decreasing intake of unhealthy foods can help to prevent and manage type 2 diabetes. Here are some good suggestions on how to do a healthy substitute - Eat This, Not That!

Dining Out Could Increase Your Risk of Obesity & Diabetes
The CDC estimates that meals prepared outside the home may account for up to half of household food dollars spent and that dining out may be directly related to the obesity epidemic. Read a summary of this issue and strategies for eating healthier when dining out.

The 2010 Dietary Guidelines Could Decrease Your Risk Of Diabetes
The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans present several goals and strategies for decreasing risk of chronic disease, like diabetes.

Tea Health Benefits For Diabetics
There are many health benefits of tea for diabetics, such as supporting a healthy heart and vascular system. Several studies suggest that adding black and green tea to a healthy meal plan may assist with this.

Summer Soup with Berry Recipe
Serve this sweet berry soup for any meal: with nuts and granola for breakfast, with a grilled turkey sandwich for lunch, as an appetizer for dinner, or for a classy dessert.

The Safety and Effectiveness of Banaba for Diabetes Treatment
If taken orally, banaba has been shown to help lower blood sugar -- however, there is not yet enough research to make these findings clinically relevant...

How to Increase the Flavor of a Diabetic Meal with Fresh Herbs
One great way to bump up the flavor factor when you're following a healthy diabetic diet is to increase your use of fresh herbs.

The Safety and Effectiveness of Treating Diabetes with Bitter Melon
As with most supplements that can lower blood sugar, bitter melon use is cautioned in combination with other glucose-lowering drugs and therapies...

Use Sage to Spruce Up Diabetic Meals
The herb sage can add punches of flavor to diabetic meals. Consider some of these...

Add Flavor to Diabetic Dishes with the Herb Thyme
Thyme is an extremely aromatic herb that can add flavor to diabetic dishes. Try using thyme in the following ways...

Don't Knock Them Until You Try Them Black Bean Brownies
Black Bean Brownies are surprisingly good, and substituting beans for flour ups the protein and fiber content making them a good dessert option for diabetics.

Quinoa Crusted Baked Salmon Recipes
Quinoa used as a "breading" toasts up nicely in this baked salmon recipe. The grain provides a little more protein than traditional breading, making this a very diabetic-friendly meal option.

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