When and What to Eat Advice for People with DiabetesTuesday, June 30, 2009
- Do not skip meals or snacks
- Carry some nutritious snacks with you (ex. protein bar, vegetables, fruit, light popcorn)
- If you are eating with other people, ask if you can eat at your usual time.
- Visit a restaurant during its off-peak hours so you will not wait long.
- If you want something special, ask if it will take longer to prepare.
- If you must wait, eat something at the time you would normally eat, such as a cracker or some fruit.
- If you must wait a long time, eat your usual bedtime snack before you eat dinner.
- small woman who exercises
- small or medium-sized woman who wants to lose weight
- medium-sized woman who does not exercise much
Choose this many servings from these food groups to consume 1,200 to 1,600 calories a day:
- 6 starches, 2 milks
- 3 vegetables, 4 to 6 ounces meat and meat substitutes
- 3 fruits, up to 3 fats
Consume about 1,600 to 2,000 calories a day if you are a
- large woman who wants to lose weight
- small man at a healthy weight
- medium-sized man who does not exercise much
- medium-sized or large man who wants to lose weight
Choose this many servings from these food groups to consume 1,600 to 2,000 calories a day:
- 8 starches, 2 milks
- 4 vegetables, 5 to 7 ounces meat and meat substitutes
- 3 fruits, up to 4 fats
The ADA recommends eating a snack before exercising if your blood glucose level measures less than 100 mg/dl and eating one every 30 minutes if it measures between 100 and 250 mg/dl and you`ll be exercising for more than an hour. You probably do not need a snack if you are exercising for less than an hour and your level measures between 100 and 250 mg/dl.
However, you might not need snacks when you exercise if you take insulin. Your diabetes care provider can advise you.
- 1/2 cup (4 ounces) of any fruit juice
- 1/2 cup of a regular (not diet) soft drink
- 1 cup (8 ounces) of milk
- 5 or 6 pieces of hard candy
- 1 tablespoon of sugar or honey
- 3 or 4 glucose tablets
- 1 serving of glucose gel (check the label - you will want the amount equal to 15 grams of carbohydrate)
After 15 minutes, check your blood glucose again. If it is still too low, eat or drink another serving. Repeat until your blood glucose level measures 70 or higher. If it will be an hour or more before your next meal, eat a snack.
For more information, see hypoglycemia.
Reviewed by Clara Schneider MS, RD, RN, CDE, LDN - 05/13