Diabetes Dietary Tips and Tricks

If you have diabetes, you already know that it’s essential to eat a healthy diet. You need to focus on low-fat protein, complex carbohydrates, fruits and vegetables, and fiber. You also have to watch your carbohydrate intake very closely. There are, however, some dietary tips and tricks that even longtime diabetics may not know.

1. Vinegar may help your blood-sugar levels go down. The acetic acid in vinegar is thought to lower blood sugar. One study published in the November 2007 issue of Diabetes Care showed that taking two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar with one ounce of cheese before bed could lower fasting blood sugar levels by four to six percent. Consuming vinegar can also help reduce postprandial (post-meal) blood sugar levels – if taking tablespoons of vinegar bothers your stomach, try making vinaigrette dressing, dipping bread into olive oil and vinegar, or marinating meat in a sauce containing vinegar before cooking it.

2. Artificial sweeteners aren’t all created equal. Aspartame, saccharin, acesulfame potassium and sucralose are all fine for diabetics to consume – that means Sweet n’ Low, Splenda, NutraSweet, Equal and Sunett are OK. Be careful, however, when eating foods or drinking beverages containing sugar alcohols like mannitol, sorbitol or xylitol. Sugar alcohols can raise your blood sugar.

3. If you’re going to have a beer, have a Guinness: a 12-ounce serving contains slightly fewer carbs than other beers. If you want a margarita, skip the sour mix and make it with just lime juice, triple sec and tequila. Made with sour mix, a four-ounce margarita has 29 grams of carbs or more! Made with lime juice and triple sec, the same four ounces will only cost you 7.5 grams of carbs.

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