Living with diabetes requires careful and healthy diet planning that controls blood sugar levels and keeps inflammation at bay. Eating a balanced diet with the right amounts of protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, and healthy fats can keep you feeling full and active and sharp throughout the day. Once you’ve established the basic structure of your meals, it’s also important to think ahead about snack time. (Read also | Diabetes: signs of poor blood sugar control in everyday life)
Many people can give in to sudden cravings between meals, which can cause blood sugar levels to spike. From refreshing fruits to healing probiotics to high-protein snacks, gut health expert and nutritionist Avantii Deshpaande suggests some healthy snacks that people with diabetes can easily incorporate into their diets.
“Keeping blood sugar within doctor-prescribed ranges can sometimes be difficult because not only lifestyle changes related to diet and exercise but also stress management and sleep strategies play a crucial role. To achieve better sugar control and prevent spikes, it is recommended that you consume a healthy plate of protein in every meal, including 5 servings of fruits and vegetables, with an emphasis on hydration, reducing simple sugars and processed foods.” , says Deshpaande.
The nutritionist also suggested some quick and easy ideas to try during snack time:
1. Protein snacks
Dry Snacks: This is the best way to avoid the spikes and still feel full. So, along with your cup of sugar-free chai, you can safely chew on some handy snacks like makhanas, moong khakras, namkeen made from dried fruits like almonds, roasted chana, or peanuts.
Another great way to manage your snacking time is to make little bags or packets of nuts like almonds, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, flaxseed, and a few dried fruits like dried figs. Apricots, dates and black raisins.
Small fresh snacks: Easy to make dal chilas, sprout chaat, paneer or tofu cutlets, homemade dhokla, methi or palak paratha, or egg omelettes are great options to serve up as 4 p.m. snack ideas to keep you busy fill up for dinner.
2. Healthy sweets
Yes that’s right. Not all desserts or sweets raise insulin levels. Sweets made from good fats like nuts and seeds and sweetened with natural sweeteners like dates or dried figs will satisfy your sweet tooth without causing a spike in blood sugar. The best part is that it keeps you fuller longer and adds the pleasure of eating a candy. Therefore, a tiny dried fruit ladoo made with jaggery or dates is your best bet. Make sure it’s a nut-based candy, though, as the good fats are most important to avoid a spike.
3. Daily dose of probiotics
Diabetes is caused by inflammation. Gut healing bacteria are an excellent source for reducing inflammation. Cottage cheese contains lactobacilli that act as probiotics. So a small pack of Greek yoghurt or homemade quark with fruit is a great idea for a snack between meals. Make sure no extra sugar is added
4. Don’t just eat fruit as a snack
Fruit is a good prebiotic and snack time is a good time for fruit. Instead of eating fruit independently, however, pair it with a protein source like cottage cheese, nut butter, or just a handful of almonds. This ensures that the sugar doesn’t spike suddenly in case the fruit is overripe. There is no restriction on fruit as long as you combine it this way.
5. Repeat your healthy breakfast
To make sure you don’t overeat at dinner, especially for office visitors, take a small portion of breakfast prepared in the morning and eat it during that time. In fact, overnight oats are a brilliant snack time idea. It also nourishes and satiates.
“A diabetic feels really lost as to what the best snack is, so hit most of the suggested snacks and see the difference in your glucose readings,” concludes Avantii Deshpaande.
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