The Best Diet Plans for Type 2 Diabetes
4. The Volumetrics Diet
On this plan, you eat lots of water-rich foods, including fruits, vegetables, and broth-based soups. Whole grains are also a staple because they're high in fiber, which will satisfy you and help keep blood sugar levels stable.
"I stand by the Volumetrics Diet because it's nutritious and very filling," London says.
5. The Biggest Loser Diet
You'll eat a specific percentage of carbohydrates, protein, and fat on this plan, which is based on the hit TV show.
The Biggest Loser Diet is healthy for people with diabetes and it's something you can stick with, because no food groups are entirely off-limits, Smithson says.
The plan limits refined carbs and other high-carb foods, and that may be a good thing for people with diabetes, Brown-Riggs says. "It seems like a diet that's balanced, and it follows the basic guidelines for people with diabetes," she says.
6. American Diabetes Association Carbohydrate Counting
It's not a "diet" in the traditional sense. The main purpose isn't weight loss.
Carb counting is a great way to manage your blood glucose levels. Many high-carb foods also tend to be high in calories, so cutting back on them often leads to shedding pounds.
If you choose this approach, ask your doctor or a diabetes educator how many carbs to eat at each meal (45-60 grams per meal is an average, but your number could be different.) "An individualized meal plan must be designed based on your nutritional requirements, caloric needs, medications, and exercise routine," Smithson says.
7. Ornish Diet/The Spectrum
Research shows that people who followed the Ornish Diet (which is essentially a vegetarian diet) for a year lost an average of 11 pounds, and many of them were able to lower their dosage of diabetes medication or switch from insulin to an oral drug.
The catch, however, is that this diet may be a little too restrictive for some people, which means it could be difficult to maintain if you’re not used to eating only plant-based foods.
"Most people aren't able to make a 180-degree turn," Brown-Riggs says. A more flexible version, called The Ornish Spectrum, might be easier to follow.
8. Weight Watchers
You count "points" instead of calories, you get group support, and nothing is off-limits. But since you can spend points on anything you want, it's possible to lose weight without making healthy choices (such as by eating too many processed foods).
"The primary emphasis of Weight Watchers is weight loss, and people with diabetes still have to be careful about how many carbohydrates they're eating in a particular meal," Brown-Riggs says. "You can absolutely follow it, but if you have diabetes you need to be aware that it's not all about the points."