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Type 2 Diabetes Meal Planning

Two Meal Planning Methods and a Sample Meal Plan


Updated January 22, 2014

Written or reviewed by a board-certified physician. See About.com's Medical Review Board.

2. Plate Method

Most of my newly diagnosed Type 2 diabetic clients prefer to start out with the Plate Method of meal planning. It is a little less overwhelming, and doesn't require adding up carbohydrates. It does require that you learn what foods belong in what category. Using a standard dinner-sized plate, for breakfast, make half of the plate starch, and the other half fruit & lean protein. For lunch and dinner, make half the plate non-starchy vegetables, and the other half starchy foods and lean proteins. For lunch and dinner, then add a non-fat milk, low-fat milk, or another starch plus one serving of fruit.

Starchy Foods

  • bread
  • tortillas or pita bread
  • English muffin or bagel
  • hamburger or hotdog buns
  • rice or pasta
  • oatmeal or unsweetened dry cereal
  • crackers
  • baked or mashed white or sweet potato
  • winter squash
  • peas, corn or baked beans

Fruit - (For Lunch & Dinner - 1 piece or 1/2 cup)

  • apple
  • banana
  • grapes
  • oranges
  • peaches
  • pears
  • pineapples
  • strawberries, blueberries or raspberries
  • watermelon, cantaloupe or honeydew melon
  • unsweetened fruit juice

Non-Fat or Low-Fat Milk - (For Lunch & Dinner - 1 cup)

  • fat-free or 1% milk
  • fat-free plain or low-fat fruited yogurt
  • fat-free or low-fat soy milk

Non-Starchy Vegetables

  • asparagus
  • green beans
  • broccoli
  • Brussels sprouts
  • cabbage
  • carrots
  • cauliflower
  • celery
  • cucumber
  • eggplant, summer squash or zucchini
  • salad greens
  • mushrooms
  • peppers
  • tomatoes

Lean Protein Foods

  • chicken or turkey with the skin removed
  • lean beef such as round, sirloin, flank steak, tenderloin or ground round
  • lean pork such as ham, Canadian bacon, tenderloin, or center loin chops
  • fresh or frozen cod, flounder, haddock, halibut, trout, tuna, or tuna canned in water, or salmon
  • fat-free or low-fat cottage cheese
  • low-fat deli meats like turkey
  • low-fat cheeses
  • egg substitute or egg whites
  • low-fat sausage or hotdogs
  • low-fat peanut butter

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