About the Diabetic Food Pyramid

If you are a newly diagnosed type 2 diabetic, making delicious and attractive diabetes meal plans can be confusing.

As a type 2 diabetic, you need to be aware of every morsel of food that you put in your mouth. When you eat according to the Diabetic Food Period, you will likely feel better than you have in a long time.

Eating Consciously

One of the benefits of the Diabetic Food Pyramid is that is helps you stay in control of what you eat. Rather than grab a couple of donuts or a bag of chips and eating until you are full, you are required to think about what you are eating. This tool is based on the various food groups and the specific foods within each group. According to The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), diabetics need to eat a certain number of calories based on gender, amount of exercise and whether or not they want to lose weight.

The Diabetic Food Pyramid also helps you know when you should eat. This is an important factor to keeping your blood glucose levels where they should be within your target range. Before meals, target blood glucose levels for those with diabetes should be between 70 and 130. One to two hours after beginning a meal, it should be less than 180. Eating small meals throughout the day is best, beginning with breakfast. Morning, afternoon and evening snacks are usually recommended, along with lunch and dinner.

Designing Your Meals

Using the National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommendations at can be very helpful in planning your meals, especially if you have recently been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. You can map out exactly how many starches you need each day, depending on your particular circumstances. Then, move on to vegetables, fruits, milk, meat and meat substitutes, and fats and sweets. If you're doubtful on how to categorize a food, this helpful tool explains exactly which foods fall into each category.

It is also easy to use a copy of the pyramid from your nutritionist or doctor to plan your meals. After you are used to eating healthy diabetic meals, you will easily know how to categorize foods into healthy portions. In most cases, you will eat more variety that you previously ate, but in smaller servings than those of non-diabetics. With more variety in your diet, you will not even notice that you are eating smaller portions. When you stick to this way of eating, you will feel better and greatly reduce your chances of developing heart disease, stroke and other health issues caused by diabetes.

Source: National Institute of Health

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