Foods To Eat If You Are A Diabetic

January 5, 2007

23543096601.jpgAs an endocrinologist handling patients with diabetes during these holidays is a challenge.  Keeping them on the right path in terms of eating what is right can be a daunting task.  A simple diet regimen should keep them at bay and prevent them from overworking their pancreas lest they will require insulin as a treatment once their pancreas fails.

This recommendation also holds true to siblings and kids of patients with diabetes and those paitients deemed at risk.  The source of this simple regimen came from the book published by the Cleveland Clinic Foundation – Diabetes: Eating Right.

It is important that once you are diagnosed to be diabetic or prediabetic is to always keep blood sugar as close to normal as possible.  And to do this , it’s important to follow the right meal plan… it should be a well planned and a well-balanced diet.

You will need to keep close track of the carbohydrates you eat since they have the most immediate effect on your blood sugar. Carbohydrates are in these food groups:

  • Fruit
  • Milk and yogurt
  • Bread, cereal, rice, pasta
  • Starchy vegetables

You should eat plenty of fiber since it plays a role in the digestive process, reduces heart disease risk, and can improve blood sugars. Choose from:

  • Fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Cooked dried beans and peas
  • Whole grain breads, cereals, and crackers
  • Brown rice
  • Bran products

It’s important to eat foods that are low in fat. Good choices are:

  • Lean meats. Bake, broil, grill, roast, or boil – never fry
  • Low-fat dairy. That includes cheese milk, yogurt
  • Low-fat vegetable cooking spray
  • Low-fat margarines and salad dressings

Avoid high-sodium foods, which can cause high blood pressure:

  • Salt
  • Boxed mixes of potatoes, rice, pasta
  • Canned meats
  • Canned soups and vegetables
  • Processed and packaged foods (lunch meat, sausage, bacon ham)
  • Salty snack foods

 Simple… Concise.. And Practical…

Remember, it’s what you put inside your mouth that counts!

Eating Right Can Make A Big Difference!

Read My Other Related Posts:


59 Responses to “Foods To Eat If You Are A Diabetic”

  1. elia apostol Says:

    i would like to know what sweet or savoury foods or recipes are there for diabetes sufferers

  2. elia apostol Says:

    want diabetic recipes

  3. Doc Gerry Says:

    Here’s a link to the American Diabetes Association Diabetic Recipes…enjoy!

    • christopher orem Says:

      how can you stay on a diet for cholesterol and diabetes on a low buget. a lot of stuff you can eat. i can’t afford to buy. i can’t make fresh food all the time. as exspensive as food is today you just can’t do it. i can buy 3 loaves of white bread for the price of one loaf of whole wheat. i have to become a rich man to afford it

  4. I would like to know if you can eat Planters Cashew halves and pieces lightly salted?

  5. Doc Gerry Says:

    All nuts are not created equal… Yes you can eat cashew… but other nuts offer better health benefits. I will write about NUTs soon and qualify the claims of nuts in terms of their benefits of increasing good cholesterol.

  6. […] Lose WeightTips on How To Get A Flat Tummy Without Tummy Tuck!Foods To Avoid If You Have ArthritisFoods To Eat If You Are A DiabeticFoods To Avoid If You Have HeartburnAbout….The Doctor Is […]

  7. Liz Says:

    I am type 2 diabetic; I am on insuline.
    How many carbs per meal Should I eat?
    What about snack many carbs during snack time?
    I guess I am asking how many carbs should I have in a 24 day?

    Thank you so much!

  8. Doc Gerry Says:

    check my new post on low carb for my diabetics. your physician should calculate it for you then have a dietician plna out the meal for you.

    • rasel Says:

      good day doc gerry,

      i was 33 y/o diagnosed with diabetes with a lab result of 288mg/dl. i was wondering if i maintain my sugar level to normal thru exercise and diet in case i acquired a wound, would it heal fast or it will also take to long to heal

  9. macky Says:

    Hi Doc Gerry!

    I appreciate your writings a lot. I’ve just accidentally saw your site today since i’m browsing for some articles that would help me balance my diet.

    I just had a consultation last week and according to the result, I have exceeded the normal Blood sugar rate. Also, my cholesterol is at borlerline and my uric acid is high. My blood pressure is also ranging above the normal pressure.

    i’m only 21 years old. are there any foods that you would highly recommend to me? I can hardly have time to consult to my doctor because my work does not permits me so.

    Another thing, what would you recommend for me to drink, warm or cold water?

    Thanks for the time reading my response. appreciate you a lot! ^_^

  10. Doc Gerry Says:

    Macky…you are starting to develop the metabolic syndrome. Am glad you caught the problem early. PLEASE see someboday before you develop the full blown diabetes or cholesterol or BP problem. I have my own dietician in my office that I suprevise to give instructions on specific diets based on the pts food preference. I am not sure where you are located but do seek help from an endocrinologist okay?

    Remeber what will you do with all your earnings if you spend it all to treat your illness later on. Health is wealth man! Be smart…see a specialist to help you!

  11. macky Says:

    Hi Doc Gerry! Thanks for that! just wanted to ask what metabolic syndrome is? Sure, I’ll have an endocrinologist see me as soon as I can.. Just a bit question about oatmeals.. Lately, I was thinking to have oatmeals as part of my daily diet, but as what I have read from an article online (, the articles says that oatmeals are high in purine which increases the level of uric acid in the body. I was thinking oatmeal would somehow help me lower my cholesterol and that is nutritious. Due to this article, I have a doubt whether I should have oatmeals or not. I’m located in Parañaque but i’m working in Ortigas Center.

    Another thing, before I consulted a doctor before, I felt like my whole body is shaking (namimitig) and my breathing lacks during that time. Based on the diagnosis of the doctor, my chest x-ray was good and i am suffering from anxiety. my question is, how would my anxiety affect my breathing and how would it affect my blood sugars/uric acid/cholesterol.

    Thanks a lot doc! I appreciate you a lot! I just had my lunch time to check on your site! I promise to have an endocrinologist checked me. Thanks again! ^_^

  12. Doc Gerry Says:

    Metabolic syndrome is when you have high sugar, high cholesterol and high blood pressure. If you have all three and uncontrolled then you have a higher risk to develop heart disease.

    Yah, oatmeal can indeed cause your uric acid to increase BUT if we eat other foods that have pruines in them and we excrete them normally as long as our kidneys can excrete them well. The other benefits of oatmeal are more than the side effects they can give…one reason I am on oatmeal for my daily breakfast.

    I guess the pressure of your work is giving you a state called Hyperventilation syndrome where you dev checst tightness, tremors, shaking, upset stomach like ulcer and some shortness of breath! Calm down…enjoy your work!!!! Make sure you look forwrd to going to work each day becuase if your feel like dragging ypour feet to work…hmmm you better think if you are in the right place and right job!

  13. macky Says:

    Hi Doc Gerry!

    Thanks for all your advices! Appreciate you so much! hmmm… about the stress.. I think I’m just a bit worried about my personal life, meaning non-work related. I’m living alone for the first time and it really bothers me. I’m enjoying my work, it’s just that the work is quite light that it is very maneagable that I could have so much idle time and think of anything. But thank you so much for your advices! I’m starting to feel better now! A change in lifestyle would be hard but i know i can! Thanks a lot Doc Gerry! Maybe it’s the work-life balance that made me feel like this. I stopped my badminton and gym works and started to love computer games. I need to have some activities again! Thanks again Doc Gerry!

    Another thing, what does Allopurinol does? my doctor tells me to have it once a day for 3 months. are there any side effects of this medicine? and can i have this medicine even if i skip breakfast? Thanks!

  14. Doc Gerry Says:

    it’s for lowering your uric acid. I would recommend doing away with foods high in purine…check my post on foods to avoid if you have high uric acid. Repeat your level after 3 months- if inspite of doing away with those foods, your uric acid continues to be high, thsn do take allopurinol. Take it with meals and drink plenty of water!!!!

    Good luck Macky… Thanks for visiting my website.

  15. macky Says:

    thanks a lot doc gerry! appreciate your comments a lot!

    just got another question here, are there any relation with this metabolic syndrome with my eating habits? whenever i eat meals, sometimes, i had quite problem in breathing and i had chest pain. And i need to do is to burp.. i need to do is dumapa para makadighay” then afterwards it relieves my breathing to normal again. i previously had dyspepsia. would this breathing problems happened because i still had dyspepsia or is it related to metabolic syndrome? i was able to have medicine for my dyspepsia before for 5 days but it’s not effectively working then.

    thanks doc gerry!

  16. joel santos Says:

    are all the types of fish should be avoided to eat when you have a gout?

  17. Doc Gerry Says:

    Just came from Orlando for a convention. Sorry for the delay in my reply.

    To Macky… you definitely have dyspesis and the burping is due to too much acidity. The breathing maybe related to hyperacidity and hyperaciduty happens with stress and hyperventilation syndrome. Better have it worked up with an endoscopy and seek help from a gastroeneterologist

    To Joel… try to check my post on foods to eat if you have high uric acid. Hope the articel can help

  18. macky Says:

    hi doc gerry. just a follow-up question. is one of the side effect of allopurinol is dyspepsis? lately, i’ve been burping unusually.. don’t even have any ideas.. also, may throat was dry.. i’ve always drink water from time to time but my throat is always dry.. also, my burping seems to be more unusual than before.. is this really an effect when you take allopurinol? thanks. i’ve been consulting our company doctor but i’m quite uncertain wth her answers. maybe i don’t get convincing answers. i’ll try to plan to have 2 opinion from other specialists. sorry for that. i’m just feeling a bit uncertain to her opinions. she used to answer my questions/queries quickly that she doesn’t even take a look at me well.. thanks..

  19. Doc Gerry Says:

    HI Macky… nope. it is not one of the side effects known to me. Normally any drug may cause dydpepsia but if it occurs in less than 1% of cases, it is considered insignificant and really not causal. Your dyspesia is related again to your stress. You have signs and symptoms that directly link you to having stress and then dev hyperventilation syndrome wherein shortness of breath, dyspepsia are major manifestations.

    Macky…relax…enjoy your work…have a massage. Guaranteed, your symtpms will slowly go away…..

  20. macky Says:

    thanks a lot doc gerry.. i’ll follow your advice.. i hope we can meet sometime soon.. i wonder where you are located.. i know you’re really a good doctor.. just from your advices.. i can manage and i know that the results are effective.. thank you so much doc gerry.. i appreciate you a lot.. i’ll always update you on my health.. thanks a lot doc gerry! ^_^

  21. Okwudei E.Solomon Says:

    Hi doc gerry i am from Nigeria i stay in lagos Nigeria i discover thst i have a diabetes 4th of last month and level is 150 my doctor have bein treting me is not going well my body is shaking i can see very well what do i do what type of food should i eat to keep me ilife please i need your advers thanks from Solomon in Nigeria thanks ones more.

    • Doc Gerry Says:

      Hi Okwudei… most likley you are respodning too well with your meds and the drug is causing you to have low sugars. Please do home glucose monitoring to see if the level of your blood sugar has been going so low that your doctor may need to adjust or change.

  22. wilmer Says:

    Hi doc, a couple days ago I receive my blood results, to my surprised my doctor told me that I have diabetics, that my sugar was 130, but he said that I don’t have to take pills or insulin just follow a diet and he said I am a diabetic for life, so I don’t understand if my sugar is high and I can lower it or I will be diabetic for life, and what kind of diabetic do I have

  23. Sonata Says:

    Hi Doc Gerry,

    I’m type I diabetic and I was thinking of getting an insulin pump. Thus I wanted to ask you if the insulin pump will be more flexible- will I be able to skip a meal and will I be able to have a more constant blood sugar (with less highs and lows)…..Thank you very much.

  24. You wouldn’t believe it but I have lost all day digging for some info about this. Thanks for this, it was a interesting read and has helped me out to no end. Cheers,Homepage

  25. Gloria Caldwell Says:

    Hi Doc Gerry,

    Ive been looking for some answers to my situation .I’m a bit complicated .i’m hypertention ,i’ve got 135 sugar,and now about 4months ago i’ve got some type of rheumatism ,now i am lost on my diet .i dont know whats good for me anymore .i’ve cut down red meat .i never have salt.or seafood .no pasta .i’m scared of eating .and it’s making my life a missery .the Doctor donly says no salt or sugar etc .but they dont tell you the proper things to eat .i’m 63 this month and always look after myself well .my weight has always been between 67 to 69 kilos .but now since i’m only eating lentils chichpeas ,morning breakfast always porridge oats with low fat milk and 2 sacarins.brown bread with no salt or sugar .i’ve come down to 63kls .but i’m i eating the right things? Doc Gerry if only you could get me on the right track, i’m desperate . hoping to hear from you .and thanking you . yours Gloria

    • Doc Gerry Says:

      Hi Gloria… if you feel desperate with your diet then you’re not doing it right. Be sure to talk to your doctor so yhou can discuss it with him t=how to properly approach your lifestyle change. I have my own dietitian who does this for me making sure that whatever nutrient specifications and macronutrient distribution I aske= her to compute for my pt should be based on what the pt likes to eat…as a result I believe the diet plan can therefore be followed.

  26. JOAN Says:

    I am wondering about eggs and the diabetic. I head one person say..eggs are so good for you then another said..never eat egg sub. I do not know what to do..can you reply and help me. . thanks.

    • Doc Gerry Says:

      HHi Joan…yup studies are still a big question. I guess thats my purpose of writing health tips in my website to hopefullly clear some of the issues. Just like anything..anything healthy that is taken in excess can turn bad

  27. Sunil teota Says:

    Hi doc Gerry
    Can you pleas help me know wjat fruits I can eat.I am a type 2.
    I am also gathering that green tea has an affect on lowering the sugar levels.Will you recommend that?

    • Doc Gerry Says:

      tea and coffee are free foods for a diabetic …in fact we have studies to show that they can help lower blood sugar and yes I do recommend them. Any fruits will do but in moderation and try choosing those with low glycemic index like apple and per instead of mango or pineapple

  28. Sunil teotia Says:

    I gather that resistance trining is good for diabetics especially.However exercise has the risk of hypoglycemia.
    What should be my sugar level
    1.before swimming
    2.after swimming
    3.before a 45min gym workout
    4.after a 45min gym workout
    5.before 30 min on treadmill
    6.after 30min on the treadmill.
    thankyou so much.

    • Doc Gerry Says:

      Sunil… You have to discuss his with your local endocrinologist. I have no idea how sensitive you are to exercise and how responsive you are to you rmeds.

  29. My problem is probably pretty unique. I have been a diabetic now for about 7 years. I can control my eating pretty good during the day, but at bedtime I lose control. If I don’t eat before bedtime, I can’t sleep, so I always have to get up and eat, and then it starts an uncontrollable binge of eating and then because of that reason I always have high resting sugar, sometimes its high anyway, even if I don’t eat, but that’s beside the point. I am taking 2000 mg. of metformin per day and 20 mg of glyburide per day, plus insulin 60 units at a time as required. I feel helpless, should I seek help about my eating disorder. Gina

  30. Please send me reply via e-mail

  31. I am waiting fro a reply to my dilemma, how can I access Dr. Jerry. Am I doing something wrong, I’m not very computer savvy. Gina

  32. I am waiting a reply to my dilemma, how can I access Dr. Jerry. Am I doing something wrong, I’m not very computer savvy. Gina

  33. stephanie Says:

    my mum is a diabetic .. but she just cant seen to control it at all … she craves chocolate, after dinner always … is there any ting she can take or is there .. something she can have to eat instead of chocolate that will take her cravings away .. but it has to be healthy in some way or form. please if any one can help me with this I would really appercate it . Her DIABETES are really out of control i wan to help her so badly .. it would kill me if she went blind , lost a toe or went into a wheel chair..because I didnt help her. thank you , Stephanie

  34. Beautiful Says:

    I was recently diagnosed as a diabetic and am trying to find what foods that are good for me to eat and what foods are not good for me to eat, especially since I’m pregnant and trying not to eat everything that I get my hands on. I’m trying to keep my sugar levels under 95 before meals and under 120 after meals, but don’t know what in the world to eat. The whole concept of counting calories and carbs escapes me…I just need to know what foods are good and what foods are bad. Thanx.

  35. Paul Says:

    Hi doc, am paul, 53 years old and recently diagnosed of diabetes. It was an accident to found out that I am diabetic. am coughing for almost a week and I decided to have my laboratory before going to a doctor for consultation. I have my Chest XRay, Urinalysis, CBC, and FBS and found out later that my FBS is beyond normal. my doctor prescribed me the following medicines: FOR COUGH – LEVOX 750mg/5 days, 1 tab a day, for my allergy (cause of my cough) aerius5mg/6days, 3x a day and a nasal spray Fluticasone furoate-avamys nasal spray. FOR DIABETES – Galvusmet(r)50mg/850mg/100tabs,once a day, Humamet 850mg/200tabs, 2x a day. my lab test result for FBS-127.73mg/dl; HbAlc- 6.20%’ 2H P-Prandial Blood Sugar- 153.82mg/dl. Lab test was taken last 12/22/10. Am I taking the right med dose? If yest, is there any generic med that is much cheaper than the prescribed med? Right now I dont have a work to augment my med expenses. Doc, is there an association for diabetic patient here in Cebu? Thank you very much doc…. By the way Doc, i am taking eltroxin 50mg for my thyroid maintenance. I undergo a Iodine radio active treatment for my toxic goiter last 1986.Again Doc, Daghan kaayong salamat…. More power and God Bless….

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  37. i am a 52 year old female.i have ra have been on prednison for 12 years.have type 2 diabetes.sugars are always recently i have experienced neuropathy in my toes..that is very painful..and i have high blood pressure…afraid to eat anything any advice u can give me would be helpful..i am so stressed out .thank you darlene

    • Doc Gerry Says:

      Hi Darlene… your doctor can give you something for your painful neuropathy. Even if you are on prednisone, one can easily optimize your treatment so you can still achieve good control…

  38. Pooja Bhargava Says:

    Hi! I recently took a 2hr GTT test by Glucometer which gave the following results :
    Fasting: 88
    After 70 g glucose
    1/2 Hr: 153
    1 Hr: 179
    11/2 hr: 147
    2 hrs : 140

    I am 35 years of age and would like to know that whether I am in the pre-diabetic stage?

    As per my doctor my 2hr level should have been around 126 to be a perfect reading so as per him I have full chances of developing diabetes

    I am worried and wish to know how can I change my daily habits to avoid being a diabetic

    Funnily I am 5ft 6′ in height weighing 62-63 kgs, have been gymming and walking regularly, dont eat much of sweets or rice or bananas or any other foods which are being asked to avoid.Also there is no family history!Still cannot comprehend how can i get it!

    Your advice is pretty valuable


  39. Julius Says:

    HI Doctor Gerry, hmm I am confused of what basic exercise can a diabetic person can do? And is it okay if a diabetic person continue smoking? Thanks 🙂

  40. lorraine smith Says:

    hi i was diagnosed with diabetices a year ago the same time has i was told i has breast cancer, please can you tell me the food to eat.

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  45. rasel Says:

    doc gerry,

    how long can a diabetic live if he/she diet and exercise the right way?

  46. […] Foods To Eat If You Are A Diabetic | That … – As an endocrinologist handling patients with diabetes during these holidays is a challenge. Keeping them on the right path in terms of eating what is right can be a … […]

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