Diabetes Diet Recommendations: Foods to Eat & Shopping Tips

This is a follow up post to the last one where we talked about foods to avoid to lower your blood sugars and A1c number. When it comes to lowering your A1c number, it can be very difficult for many people. Don’t get discouraged though, I got you covered!

If you haven’t downloaded the items that you want to avoid in your diet, be sure to jump back to the post prior to this to grab a copy of that.

A few tips when it comes to grocery shopping

  1. Stay on the outer isle of the grocery store and just a small amount of time getting what you need on the inner isles.
  2. Anything that has low fat, all natural, whole wheat, no saturated fat labels plastered all over them screaming how healthy they are- you’ll want to avoid. The amount of ingredients that are in that item in order to take out these items just means there are additional additives to make up that difference. This is usually done when they take out saturated fat, they hike up the sugar to make it taste better.
  3. Meal plan before you go to the grocery store. This will decrease your cost spent at the grocery store and keep you on track if you make the commitment to not get anything extra if it’s not on the list before you go.
  4. I would suggest going once per week in order to get fresh produce and gain familiarity with the store in order to stay on track and get what you need.
  5. Don’t go hungry. I know, we’ve all heard this, but it’s so true. I find myself wandering about trying to satisfy my hunger now when I’m hungry. When I eat before I go, I am committed to the plan and can stay on track.

Plan Ahead

I’m not here to tell you that you need to count calories or starve yourself, that is not my idea of fun. There’s no reason that you should feel hungry all the time, if you are hungry, you should eat. I’m just suggesting to be prepared in doing so and pack healthier snack options.

If you feel like getting your “snack-on” around 10 am and 2 pm while you’re at work, be sure you have snacks available at the ready so you’re not asking a coworker for a chocolate chip cookie.

When you deprive yourself  from eating, you just get more hungry then end up eating all of the wrong things when it comes time to actually sit down and eat.

Foods + Relationship?

We all have a relationship with food going back to when we were kids. Mine started with a “hell-of-a-lot” of sugar. I couldn’t make this up if I wanted to and never thought I would be sharing it with anyone, but here goes nothing…

I had undiagnosed ADD as a child and was very impulsive and defiant from an early age. I would drink Coke with my cereal in the morning (no joke) and refuse to eat dinner with the family and instead made my mom make me a peanut-butter and grape jelly sandwich.

Needless to say, my parents racked up quite the dentist bill on account of all that sugar. The story takes some twists and turns as I’ve grown older, but the point is it takes commitment and time in order to break these bad habits that we’ve forever had.

It’s good to know where these habits and thoughts about food came from in order to know how to move past them. Food is comfort for most people, including myself. I know in the U.S. it’s quite a celebration.

There’s always going to be temptations when you go to any dinner party, family function, or birthday parties, you just have to remember why you have decided to change your habits in order to be in better health for family AND for yourself.

Now let me get to delivering what you came for ūüėČ

Foods to Eat to Lower Your A1c

Meats: Beef, lamb, chicken, turkey, pork, fish, & seafood. Choose meats that have a low concentration of fat. If you can, choose grass-fed animals or organic. I’m not trying to get fancy here, but it really does make a difference where your meat comes from because it translates into what nutrients your body is actually getting and not getting.

Eggs: Free-range or pastured eggs are fine

Vegetables:¬†These are pretty much open for fair game, nothing is completely off limits. Even though it’s good for you, the carbohydrates found in some fruits and veggies still get processed in your body like any other pasta carbohydrate and it’s eventually turned into sugar or glucose.

Fruits: For those with diabetes, fruits contain a large amount of natural sugar that builds up in your blood stream and causes havoc for a lot of people. It’s okay in small doses and in moderation, but don’t have a fruit salad every day for breakfast lunch and dinner. Avocados, Olives, berries, grapefruit, lemons and limes are your safest bet due to their lower concentration of sugar.

Nuts: Are fine in smaller doses due to the amount of Omega-6s they contain. You’ll of course want to choose the unsalted or flavored kind due to the sodium and fluff they put on them. Yes, fluff, extra nonsense stuff…

Oils: Avocado, Blackseed, Coconut, Macadamia, Olive and Sesame are fine to cook with.

Sugars: If necessary when preparing a meal, you can have smaller amounts of whole leaf or unrefined Stevia.

For recap purposes, we’ll just review a little about the diet for Diabetics or anyone for that matter.

Portion control matters, don’t eat until you’re busting at the gills.

Limit the amount of red meats, eat more fish and seafood.

Eat vegetables with most of your meals and snacks.

Cut out processed foods and sugar.

Drink more water (see previous post)

Sounds easy when I say it like that, I know. The hardest part is getting over the mental hurdle that we all have. Nobody said you have to be perfect on day 1, just do the best you can and remember why you’re doing it. This isn’t a quick fix, but a lifestyle change.

It’s just time to start building some better habits and remember, I have full faith in you!¬†If you have any other questions regarding this information, feel free to drop a comment below and I’ll get back with you shortly!

For those that aren’t yet part of the Healthy Family Advocate community, I would love to get a chance to connect.¬†Thank you again for stopping by and make it a great rest of the day!


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