Does Your Diabetes Diet Give You What You Need?
People who eat high-fiber diets tend to be less likely to get high blood pressure and heart disease.
Most Americans don't eat enough fiber. So focus on these foods:
- Fresh fruits and vegetables
- Cooked dried beans and peas
- Whole-grain breads, cereals, and crackers
- Brown rice
- Bran foods
It’s best to get fiber from food. But if you can’t get enough, then taking fiber supplements can help. Examples include psyllium, methylcellulose, wheat dextrin, and calcium polycarbophil. If you take a fiber supplement, increase the amount you take slowly. This can help prevent gas and cramping. It’s also important to drink enough liquids when you increase your fiber intake.
Diabetes makes you more likely to get heart disease. So you’ll want to limit unhealthy fat such as saturated fat and trans fats.
The main sources of saturated fats are cheese, beef, milk, and baked items.
Avoid trans fats, which are bad for your heart. Check the ingredients list for "partially hydrogenated" oils. Also, know that if a product says "0 grams trans fat," it may actually have up to half a gram of trans fat per serving.
For a healthy diet:
- Choose lean cuts of meat.
- Don't fry foods. Instead, you can bake, broil, grill, roast, or boil.
- Choose low-fat or fat-free dairy foods. Include them in your daily carbohydrate count.
- Use vegetable cooking spray or cholesterol-lowering margarine that has stanols or sterols.
- Pick liquid vegetable oils instead of animal fat.
A registered dietitian can give you more information on how to prepare and choose the right fats for you.
Diabetes raises your risk of getting high blood pressure. Too much salt can add to that risk. Your doctor or dietitian may ask you to limit or avoid:
- Salt and seasoned salt (or salt seasonings)
- Boxed mixes of potatoes, rice, and pasta
- Canned meats
- Canned soups and vegetables with salt
- Cured or processed foods
- Ketchup, mustard, salad dressings, other spreads, and canned sauces
- Packaged soups, gravies, and sauces
- Pickled foods
- Processed meats: lunch meat, sausage, bacon, and ham
- Salty snack foods
- Monosodium glutamate (MSG)
- Soy and steak sauces