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Dietary Tips

Dietary Tips

Here are suggestions for preparing diabetes-friendly dishes at home from Phyllis Woodson, MS, RD, CDE, a registered dietician/diabetes nutrition specialist and certified diabetes educator at the EVMS Strelitz Diabetes Center.

The average meal for a person who has diabetes (or someone trying to lose weight) may consist of about 30 to 60 grams of carbohydrates. That’s generally 30 to 45 grams for women and 45 to 60 grams for men, though individual needs may vary. Find the carb content of foods.


Use less sugar

Consider some use of sugar substitutes for part of the sugar in recipes.


Use less fat

Consider substituting about 1/3-1/2 of the fat in the recipe with applesauce or pureed or canned vegetables; limit sauce, cheese, creamed and gravy-type foods.


Use less butter, margarine, cream and mayo

Consider substituting margarine for butter (and tub spreads or olive oil for margarine or at least part of it); consider substituting hummus for mayo if used as a spread.


Avoid/use less sour cream, cream cheese, half & half, whipping cream, etc.

Consider substituting non fat Greek yogurt for these foods and low fat/non fat cottage cheese for the cream cheese; choose low fat or non fat milk; choose smaller amounts of cheese in food preparation; consider low fat cheese eg Swiss or Mozzarella having about 3 g of fat or less per oz.


Consume fewer breaded/fried foods

Use more roasted, grilled, broiled, poached, boiled foods. Trim the fat, remove the skin; avoid hot dogs, bacon (Canadian Bacon is okay), bologna and sausage.


Consider fruit and nuts for dessert


Eat smaller portions of meat, fish, chicken

Most of us eat 2 - 3 x what is recommended; it is suggested to eat about 3-4 oz at lunch and at dinner.


Consider smaller portions of starchy foods

For example, potatoes, peas, corn, pasta, rice; choose small potatoes with the skin, whole grain pasta, brown rice.


Offer larger servings of vegetables

For example, salad, tomatoes, squash, asparagus, broccoli, beets, eggplant, etc; raw, salad, cooked, or in soups.


Limit or avoid added salt