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The Best Diet Plans for Type 2 Diabetes

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3. Mark Bittman's VB6 Diet

Being a part-time vegan ("VB6" stands for “vegan before 6 p.m.”) is the secret to this plan's success. "It's one of my favorites," says Jaclyn London, RD, senior dietitian at The Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York. 

"You're choosing more plant-based foods, so you automatically wind up eating more fiber and less saturated fat and trans fat," she says. "It's just a generally healthy way of eating." 

The VB6 Diet also emphasizes being careful about where the small amounts of meat, fish, and dairy you eat are coming from. "It's designed to restrict you so you make better choices when you do indulge,” London says. “You're saving up for that small piece of local, organic, grass-fed beef."

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.

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If the level is below 70 or you are experiencing symptoms such as shaking, sweating or difficulty thinking, you will need to raise the number immediately. A quick solution is to eat a few pieces of hard candy or 1 tablespoon of sugar or honey. Recheck your numbers again in 15 minutes to see if the number has gone up. If not, repeat the steps above or call your doctor.

People who experience hypoglycemia several times in a week should call their health care provider. It's important to monitor your levels each day so you can make sure your numbers are within the range. If you are pregnant always consult with your health care provider.

Congratulations on taking steps to manage your health.

However, it's important to continue to track your numbers so that you can make lifestyle changes if needed. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.

Your level is high if this reading was taken before eating. Aim for 70-130 before meals and less than 180 two hours after meals.

Even if your number is high, it's not too late for you to take control of your health and lower your blood sugar.

One of the first steps is to monitor your levels each day. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.

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