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January 14th, 2011
03:59 PM ET

What should I eat if I have diabetes?

Every weekday, a CNNHealth expert doctor answers a viewer question. On Friday, it's Dr. Melina Jampolis, a physician nutrition specialist.

Question asked by Barbara Ray of Las Vegas, Nevada

I am type 2 diabetic trying to create a daily diet, and snacks, food program that I can use to prevent getting the terrible sick feeling that comes when my sugar goes too low. I would like to store these foods and snacks in my home so that I can reach them when necessary. Please name the foods, and snacks, as well as the proper times to consume them. Also when is the time to take Metformin even if your readings are regular and you feel OK? Thank you for your answer to these questions.

Expert answer

Hi, Barbara. To prevent hypoglycemia and to minimize the complications associated with diabetes including heart disease, kidney disease, eye problems and infection, it is important to keep blood sugar levels as steady as possible throughout the day. To accomplish this, I recommend trying to combine some type of lean protein (skinless chicken, fish, turkey, lean ground beef, beans, egg whites, low-fat cottage cheese or yogurt) or healthy fat (olive oil, canola oil, nuts, seeds, avocado) with a healthy carbohydrate with each meal or snack.

Make sure to choose healthy, low-sugar, antioxidant-rich carbohydrates like whole grains (brown rice, whole-wheat pasta, whole-grain bread, cereal, crackers, quinoa, barley), whole fruit (not juice or dried fruit) and vegetables. These types of carbohydrates are generally low-glycemic, which means they increase blood sugar less rapidly than highly processed, refined, sugar-filled carbohydrates. Naturally high-fiber foods are always a good choice as they slow the emptying of food from your stomach, which helps improve blood sugar control. By preventing spikes in blood sugar, you can also prevent the crashes that follow.

It is also important to try to eat regularly throughout the day. Try not to let more than four hours go by without having either a meal or snack, to prevent blood sugar from getting too low. And do your best to eat within 30 minutes or so of waking up.

How well are you managing your diabetes? Take this test

Since you talk about storing foods in your home, I'm going to give you some of the best canned and frozen choices, although fresh is always a great choice if you have the option. Here are some staples to keep on hand:

1. Nuts: Nuts (both peanuts, which are actually legumes, and nuts like almonds, walnuts, pistachios, etc.) contain healthy fats, fiber and heart-healthy plant-based protein. They make great snacks alone or with a piece of fruit or can be thrown on a salad or into yogurt for added crunch and nutrition.

2. Beans: These are also excellent sources of fiber and plant-based protein. Drain and rinse canned beans to decrease salt content. Beans work great in soups and chili, on salads or as a healthy side dish. I'm a big fan of bean-based soups like minestrone, vegetable or lentil as a healthy lunch or pre-dinner appetizer.

3. Frozen vegetables: I always have lots of frozen vegetables on hand for healthy side dishes. Try seasoning with a little olive oil (healthy fat) and spices instead of salt for extra flavor.

4. Canned tuna and chicken (water-packed and low-sodium when available): These provide a quick and healthy lunch or dinner option. Mix with mustard or a little olive oil-based spread and serve on whole-grain bread or in a whole-wheat pita pocket (both of which you could freeze to have extra on hand)

5. Frozen fruit: I'm a big fan of frozen berries, which are loaded with antioxidants (important to decrease the complications of diabetes) and fiber. I use them to make smoothies for breakfast (with plain non-fat yogurt or protein powder and one or two tablespoons of ground flax seed for healthy fat), and sometimes I defrost them and top with a little light whipped topping or low-fat vanilla yogurt for a healthy and tasty dessert.

Regarding your Metformin, you should talk to your doctor regarding the best time to take it, as it depends on the type of pill you are taking. In general, however, Metformin should not cause low blood sugar episodes and should be taken with meals.

Ask experts a question


soundoff (87 Responses)
  1. Rob

    Dr. Jampolis gave a great answer here, but it's worth mentioning that the principles she espouses in order to control blood sugar levels are also incredibly useful for non-diabetics, as well. Controlling blood sugar and endogenous insulin levels, even in healthy people, is of huge benefit when trying to lose or control body fat, maintain a stable, high energy level throughout the day, and perform well in exercise and sports. A protein-biased approach, along with high fiber and healthy fats, will help keep blood sugar stable, fight hunger, and allow you to perform to your maximum potential. Eating right isn't just for diabetics! We can all learn a lesson from them on the benefits of proper blood sugar control.

    NutritionPerfected.com/np-blog.html

    January 14, 2011 at 16:32 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Murali-Devavrata

      My mother has got control over diabetes by practicing Yoga. Please talk to a Yoga Therapist. FYI.. youtubedotcom/watch?v=FSGkzqYhaks

      January 14, 2011 at 16:51 | Report abuse |
    • FirstResponder

      I think it is reprehensibly irresponsible of this so-called doctor to advise a person with diabetes to eat meat or chicken.
      Eating animal products is what caused the diabetes in the first place.

      Please go read the book "The China Study" by Colin Campbell. It is full of rigorous scientific research of the highest caliber, and makes it crystal clear that a diet free of animal products is needed to prevent or "cure" (i.e., reverse) diabetes.

      January 15, 2011 at 12:18 | Report abuse |
    • D

      First Responder, you are a fool. Just like half the responses on this discussion group you have no idea what you are talking about. First, there are different types of diabetes. People with type 2 can reverse the effects on their bodies through diet and exercise. Type 1 is completely different in that the body no longer produces insulin. The cells which used to produce insulin are no longer present in the body and will not return.... its called an auto immune disease. I hope "first responder' doesn't mean you're an emt or paramedic – I would rather die than have you show up to "help."

      January 15, 2011 at 12:44 | Report abuse |
    • Old Bob

      First Responder

      Don't use your personal preferences in a serious discussion. I had type 2 diabetes and have reversed it. Eating meat has absolutely nothing to do with either type of diabetes. I eat meat in moderation. If anything should be avoided in a diet, it should be foods with a high glycemic index.

      January 15, 2011 at 14:15 | Report abuse |
    • esmiranda

      @FirstResponder – As someone who has type 2 diabetes, I find my blood sugar levels and overall health are best when I eat a moderate amount of lean animal protein, vegetables, and a minimal amount of dairy. I have great difficulty metabolizing carbohydrates. Without lean animal protein it would be difficult to meet my nutritional needs. I'm glad you found a book you like, but with all the people on the planet, it's highly unlikely we are all exactly alike in our tastes and nutritional needs.

      January 17, 2011 at 00:15 | Report abuse |
    • Daina

      It's what you should not have eaten to aquire it and with Americans becoming fatter & more sedentary it will just increase and break the back of the healthcare system. As a healthcare provider I am in the trenches and do get weary of patients who do everythhing possible to sabotage themselves and, upon admission to hospital with a BG of 500 & weight of 300 lbs, look at me and esstentially say 'fix me'! I can put on a 'bandaid' but they'll be back in a month with same scenario.

      January 30, 2011 at 15:53 | Report abuse |
    • Anna

      When you go behind politics we see that type 2 diabetes has already been reversed . Dr Liu in Denmark revealed how to reverse diabetes without any medications. Diabetes has been reversed in over 10,000 people by using a specialized diabetes diet.

      The diet also reversed body fat in people trying to lose weight. Scientists showed food chemicals is the cause of almost all diabetes. They also showed how to reverse your own diabetes without medications

      just google SPIRIT HAPPY DIET

      December 17, 2012 at 09:07 | Report abuse |
  2. AmyLynn

    The Anti Obesity drug makers and diabetes drug makers take in 10 billion$$$$ every year with no cure!!

    Food Chemicals are the cause of the diabetes and obesity crisis NOT Sugar or Fat!

    The FDA and Drug makers know this and are laughing to the Billionaire$$$ bank!

    The food chemicals break the gut(insulin) and this is the cause of the diabetes and obesity crisis

    A filmmaker has been reversing diabetes and Obesity in now 10 countries and the drug makers do not promote the story

    just google SPIRIT HAPPY DIET

    January 14, 2011 at 17:02 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Tyre on Maui

      You are an idiot!

      January 14, 2011 at 22:42 | Report abuse |
    • Susan

      And yet it's on google, hiding in PLAIN SIGHT!

      January 14, 2011 at 22:49 | Report abuse |
  3. margaret

    I have just been diagnosed as being pre-diabetic. I have other health issues as well but am not being given much help from my doctor,she has just turned me lose with an appointment for a Nutritionist and lots of copies of articles on the subject.
    My husband has MS and thinks I am trying to do away with all the things he likes to eat. He does all the cooking since he retired and favors Italian style dishes. What can I do to blend what I need with what he wants?

    January 14, 2011 at 17:08 | Report abuse | Reply
    • m

      There's no such thing as pre-diabetes. You either are or not diabetic. Any Dr. who tells you this doesn't know what he/she is talking about.

      Pre-diabetes is an outdated term.

      January 14, 2011 at 17:27 | Report abuse |
    • JoeB

      I agree totally with M. Pre-diabetes is an oudated term. Your pancreas is producing insulin or it isn't. If it isn't, you are diabetic. If it is, and your body is not using it correctly, you are diabetic. My son is 5 and has been diagnosed with Type 1 for just over 2 years, and my sister is almost 27, and has been diagnosed with Type 1 for just over 10 years. You should not wait to visit an endocrinologist. Find out what your fasting blood sugar numbers are (get a meter from drugstore, or freebie from doc) and get a handle on this right away!

      January 14, 2011 at 18:21 | Report abuse |
    • PasoParent

      JoeB is right that the term "pre-diabetes" is outtdated. Possibly your doctor is erring on the cautious side but you need to lose weight & get active ASAP or you'll end up on Type 2 diabetes medication or even insulin.

      JoeB is wrong, however, when he says your pancreas is either producing insulin or it's not. That's the case with Type 1 (my son has Type 1 diabetes) but not with Type 2. Type 2 patients are usually significally overweight. they produce insulin; however, the insulin their pancreas secretes is either not enough or the body is unable to recognize the insulin and use it properly. The excess fat in your body is causing problems, Margaret. I urge you to take control NOW by losing eight & moving more. Otherwise, the complications you risk are very bad news. Best wishes to you & your hubby!

      January 14, 2011 at 19:35 | Report abuse |
    • Hugo

      @Joe and PasoParent – How about producing some evidence? A search for prediabetes led me to the Mayo Clinic. Then I searched again, along with nih, and found the term a the NIH. Perhaps the term is outdated, but since both those sites use it, the burden of proof is on you, not people who use the term. Please live up to your burden of proof obligation and provide evidence.

      January 15, 2011 at 15:48 | Report abuse |
    • Galina12

      .Dr. Melina Jampoliss an ignorant quack. It is dangerous to the public to .employ such a person to give an advice to.a diabetic. Read the book by Dr. Bernstein"The Diabetics Solution". He is a diabetic himself, has an extremely high success rate of treating diabetics , yourself a glucosameter and use it often in order to know which food caused you a BS spike.

      January 15, 2011 at 22:44 | Report abuse |
    • Galina12

      Margaret, get yourself a glucosameter and use it often. If your husband will see the dangerous upswings of your sugar levels, he will understand better your body needs.

      January 15, 2011 at 22:58 | Report abuse |
    • Maria

      Pre-diabetes does exist, but it is now correctly called insulin resistance. My insulin still works, but not like it would normally. Now it takes much more insulin to counteract my blood sugar than it did 10 years ago. I have PCOS coupled with insulin resistance and it is called Syndrome X. I take metformin and control my blood sugar with diet and exercise as well. If I continue as I am now, I will never lose my insulin production and never need to take insulin shots.

      January 16, 2011 at 01:36 | Report abuse |
    • Shaman

      THe advice to lose weight and get more exercise is right on. Obesity leads to insulin insensitivity and ultimately to Type 2 diabetes. A good book soon to be released that provides help for diabetics and others is "Lose Weight, Live Healthy."

      January 16, 2011 at 15:45 | Report abuse |
  4. MJB

    I believe pre diabetic means that your AC1 test is getting to a point beyond what it should be. After like 3 tests within a yr or so and your levels remain high, then your are considered diabetic. But, you need testing.

    January 14, 2011 at 17:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. amanda

    what has been working well for me is a meat centric extreme low carb diet. My doctor is very happy with the results. Aim for less than 20g of carbs per day. Most of your calories should come from fat.

    January 14, 2011 at 18:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • JoeB

      I disagree. More and more studies show that high meat diets are not healthy. Fruits and vegetables should be a much higher priority than low carb. The human body is not designed to eat meat, and some findings are here :

      http://www.businessweek.com/lifestyle/content/healthday/642824.html

      http://www.peta.org/living/vegetarian-living/The-Natural-Human-Diet.aspx

      Don't get me wrong, I eat quite a bit of meat, but I do not think it responsible to tell people to eat mainly meat...

      January 14, 2011 at 18:26 | Report abuse |
    • gary

      joe – what amanda says cannot be disagreed with. She says that low carb has been working well for her; and her doctor is happy with the results. They are irrefutable. What you are talking about are interpretations of broader studies that have proponents and dissenters. You might get something from "Why we get fat, and what you can do about it" http://www.amazon.com/Why-We-Get-Fat-Borzoi/dp/0307272702

      On a personal note: I eat low carb and I am way more alert, more active, more productive. When I eat the normal american diet I feel terrible most of the time and I am constantly craving carbs. Its all about insulin resistance, which can only be controlled by low-glycemic foods; and meats, fats/oils are zero glycemic. Carbohydrates are completely unnecessary in the diet; the body function perfectly well on high protein, high fats/oils, zero carbs; its a fact. Try it – but make sure you eat a lot of fat/oil with that protein or you won't feel satisfied.

      January 15, 2011 at 11:49 | Report abuse |
    • Old Bob

      Joe and Gary. There is some truth in what each of you are saying. However, the body is designed to eat almost anything. I was a type 2 diabetic, and managed to reverse the condition. It takes both diet and exercise. I eat both meat and carbs. The problem with carbs is that that covers a log of ground. There is a food ranking based on the glycemic index, that rates foods based on how quickly the sugars in the food enter the blood stream. I eat a lot of fruit and veggies, but avoid low fiber breads, cakes, sugars, etc.

      January 15, 2011 at 14:26 | Report abuse |
    • Hugo

      Gary – What about neurons?

      January 15, 2011 at 15:50 | Report abuse |
    • Galina12

      Good job, Amanda to find what gives you a good result! Such diet brought me a relief from migraines and premenopausal mood-swings. It is pretty often when the diet decision is based on ideology rather then on real science.

      January 15, 2011 at 22:50 | Report abuse |
  6. Jingei

    For those who think the term prediabetes is outdated...better notify the American Diabetic Association.

    http://www.diabetes.org/diabetes-basics/prevention/pre-diabetes/

    January 14, 2011 at 18:42 | Report abuse | Reply
    • PasoParent

      The term "juvenile diabetes" is also still used but is being phased out more and more in favor of more accurate terms like "Type 1 diabetes" or "insulin dependent diabetes." The term "pre-diabetes" is definitely still used but iincreasingly health care providers do not tell patients that because it tends to water down the potential risks of developing diabetes.

      Some doctors need to give more tough love to patients: "Look, Mrs. Jones...you're fat. You never exercise. Your blood sugar level is way too high. You've developed Type 2 diabetes because of your lifestyle and the complications can be life-threatening. It's time to do something about it now!"

      The good news is that Type 2 diabetes, unlike Type 1 diabetes, IS preventable and IS reversible.

      January 14, 2011 at 19:40 | Report abuse |
    • NMiller

      I am a nurse, my daughter is type 1 and most of my family is type 2. I can say that Dr's tend to sugar coat when it comes to diabetes. In fact most of my friends and family have no clue on how to manage their disease process. I have to go through so much with them. After I get done it is usually only a matter of a year or less and they are off any medication and have changed their lifestyle to keep their diabetes under control. Just know this, each person is different and what works for one will not for another. It is trial and error at first with medication and foods. Some need snacks throughout the day, while others do not. Keep a record of the food you eat and track your numbers to reflect what you eat. With the help of your Dr, you will be on your way to feeling great and being medication free. I wish you the best.

      January 14, 2011 at 20:47 | Report abuse |
    • Stars

      I think most people would never go back to a doctor who rudely said, "Look, you're fat." And rightly so. The doctor should say, "Look, your weight is at the level of obesity, beyond overweight" or something more respectful.

      January 15, 2011 at 04:53 | Report abuse |
    • Hugo

      NMiller, do you have a problem with celiac or other autoimmune diseases in your family?

      January 15, 2011 at 15:51 | Report abuse |
  7. Sam

    This was very informative. Thank you. Diabetes runs in my family (both my paternal grandparents) had it and though I do not have diabetes or am over weight, I still am at a high risk for it. I'm in my 30's (http://e-healthyaging.com, my blog) and I'm very careful about my diet and what is good or bad for my body. As we should all be.

    I'm kind of new to this site/blog so if anyone could point me to where I can ask a question about L-Carnosine, it would be appreciated. Basically, I wanted to know if L-Carnosine is as beneficial when taken in supplemental form? and what is the recommended daily dose?

    Thank you again.
    Cheers,
    Sam

    January 14, 2011 at 21:15 | Report abuse | Reply
    • ralph

      Sam,
      I am a type ll diabetic and have taken acetyl L-Carnitine and alpha lipoic combination capsules for 2 years. Numbness in my feet caused great problems in balance. After 3 to 4 months I felt the cold floor, since then the numbness has improved tremendously! Walmart sells the capsules 400 mg and 200mg respectively. Hope this helps someone, it sure works for me.

      January 30, 2011 at 06:43 | Report abuse |
  8. wheat-free

    Take away WHEAT, yes WHEAT, and you type 2 diabetes will resolve. Read up on it. It works!!

    January 14, 2011 at 22:36 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Susan

      Wheat is yummy, you're dumb.

      January 14, 2011 at 22:50 | Report abuse |
    • Stars

      People need more information than that. Yes, some people have celiac disease and don't know it, and some have wheat intolerance and don't know it, resulting in many different health problems/symptoms, and eliminating wheat and gluten will help them, but saying, "Stop eating wheat" is not near enough information.

      January 15, 2011 at 04:55 | Report abuse |
    • Hugo

      wheat-free, how about you say something more than "read up on it?" Can you cite a study? Were the subjects screened for gluten sensitivity or celiac?

      If people do want to read something that's actually based on science, try this

      http://www.jdrf.org/index.cfm?page_id=103401

      If you dig around the JDRF site, you can find a lot more about celiac, in addition to diabetes type 1.

      January 15, 2011 at 15:55 | Report abuse |
    • Galina12

      Don't forget to take away sugar.

      January 16, 2011 at 19:15 | Report abuse |
    • esmiranda

      @Susan – yes, i agree wheat is absolutely scrumpdillyumptious!!! MMMMM!!!! Unfortunately, it puts my blood sugar through the roof, so wheat free is not so dumb. Does that mean you are?

      January 17, 2011 at 02:11 | Report abuse |
    • nuffsed

      @Susan – try thinking with your brain and not your tongue. And you call someone else dumb?

      January 17, 2011 at 02:13 | Report abuse |
  9. bill

    I am a Greek..I love beans like Navy and what have you...I use them with olive oil, cider vinegar for taste with whole wheat bread....I stay away from meat if I can...I do not go out of my way to eat processed food like hot dogs or lunch meat..they have chemicals to preserve them....Ants will not for them...If ants stay away from certain food thenwe should also do the same...Garlic, onions, dark greens, Have nuts like walnuts and Almonds...Almonds are a poor mans rooter rooter...cleans you out...everyone has a different body..no two alike....do your own research..Drs. are OK but check things out for your self..

    January 14, 2011 at 23:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Ulises

    I figure that, if one's body isn't able to handle carbohydrates efficiently, then one must eat fewer of them. But, I notice that no one mentioned the uses of cloves and cinnamon to help utilize carbohydrates. This tastes good & doesn't hurt!

    January 14, 2011 at 23:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Oscar

    I just wanted to refute that Type 2 is reversible; all you can do it get good control. Also there's no real evidence that it's totally preventable to the extent pop culture and "gurus' like to make out. There was a study of very slightly over the line people that had some success with some of them (hardly a 100% result) with strenuous lifestyle changes but it's a leap to think that the same would happen with typical elderly or more advanced cases. I know some huge sized people who don't have it, and more normally weighted people who do. Read http://journal.diabetes.org/diabetesspectrum/00v13n4/page197.asp for more insight.

    January 15, 2011 at 01:23 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Stars

      You're probably right that type II diabetes can't be reverse for some people, bu I thinkt it's still healthier to try to reverse it (with the help of a nutritionist or doctor) than merely manage it, if one can.

      January 15, 2011 at 04:58 | Report abuse |
  12. The_Mick

    The last line in the article says what I was thinking as I read the article: Metformin shouldn't cause a strong drop in blood sugar (I take Metformin, too). If you are also taking something else: like a last-generation drug that rapidly drops sugar for relatively short periods, like glimepiride, you might want to make sure you take it close to meals – but this is something where the advice of someone who doesn't know your exact situation is not what you want: ask your doctor. If he doesn't know, consider another doctor. My doctor goes over such things in detail with me.

    January 15, 2011 at 10:27 | Report abuse | Reply
    • The_Mick

      P.S. Actually, I take the time-release version of Metformin called "Fortamet" because Metformin itself bothers my stomach. If it's affordable through your prescription program, that's another way to further balance your sugar levels.

      January 15, 2011 at 10:30 | Report abuse |
    • NMiller

      Metformin causes stomach problems when the dose is too high.

      January 16, 2011 at 15:10 | Report abuse |
    • Galina12

      What about eliminating all starches(except veggies), sugar, fruit and low-fat dairy? I bet you will not need that Metformine.

      January 16, 2011 at 19:20 | Report abuse |
  13. Lane

    Read "Dr. Neal Bernard's Program for Reversing Diabetes." It will help you not just treat your blood sugar, but reverse the physiological cause of Type 2 diabetes.

    January 15, 2011 at 12:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. saltydingo

    I am type 2 as well. The problem I am having is keeping the weight on. "Healthy" foods which are low in sugars and carbs are also low in calories. I don't seem to have the desire to eat constantly. I've lost 60 pounds and I was not big to begin with. In fact my friends have started calling me "Bones." I've tried those Ensure Protein shakes and they are good but at $2 per bottle a bit pricey

    January 15, 2011 at 14:17 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Judy

      Hope you don't mind if I put my two cents in saltydingo. Avoid nutritional drinks such as Ensure as they are full of carbs that will wreak havoc on your blood glucose levels. If you are losing weight rapidly, you might have to introduce more complex carbs such as whole grains. Yes, whole grain pasta and all whole grains have carbs but they also have fiber, a diabetics best friend (they won't cause the rapid rise in BG that more simple carbs will). You might also want to introduce a bit more fat into your diet. Whole eggs as opposed to egg whites, low fat cheese, fatty fish such as salmon and swordfish. You might also consider protein powder as a supplement instead of drinks such as Ensure. Whole fruit is also a great choice (small portions of course). If you are still losing weight at a rapid pace, see your doctor. There might be more going on than meets the eye, i.e., thyroid, depression.

      January 15, 2011 at 17:35 | Report abuse |
  15. Judy

    I am a food demonstrator at a major grocery chain and I am amazed on a daily basis at the number of Type 2 Diabetics out there who lack even the most basic knowledge of diabetes and diet. I do a lot of cereal and cereal bar demonstrations and the diabetics seems to love this type of food. I tell them over and over again that if you are a diabetic, whether a type 1 (like my daughter) or a type 2, you should really avoid cereal all together. And as far as the cereal bars, another terrible choice. I tell my diabetic customers that when it comes to breakfast (which is a crucial meal for a diabetic as it sets the blood glucose tone for a good part of the day) that they should think outside the box for breakfast foods, lean turkey or tuna on a slice of whole grain bread, with a small serving of fresh fruit. No cereal, no juice and NO BARS. It's one thing to hand your patient pills or insulin and tell them what dosage to take but that's only half the job. Doctor's need to do a better job of educating their diabetic patients about what to eat and what to avoid.

    January 15, 2011 at 17:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • NMiller

      I agree with you 100 percent

      January 16, 2011 at 15:08 | Report abuse |
  16. Willow

    Quote: I'm a big fan of bean-based soups like minestrone, vegetable or lentil as a healthy lunch or pre-dinner appetizer.

    Why do bean-based soups have to be a pre-dinner appetizer? If one is trying to keep one's weight down, why not just eat the soup for dinner and nothing else? Or maybe the soup with a small veggie salad? Why do dinners have to be this huge thing?

    January 15, 2011 at 19:39 | Report abuse | Reply
    • nuffsed

      Because some people have a family to cook for, and not everyone likes just soup and salad. Everyone's complaining they're hungry, rummaging through the cupboards and snacking like crazy because they are not satisfied.

      January 17, 2011 at 02:18 | Report abuse |
  17. Phil from CC

    Let's not forget getting rid of sodas. I was drinking 2 to 4 or more a day and quit cold turkey when I found out I have diabetes. My blood sugar dropped siginifcantly instantly.

    January 15, 2011 at 23:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. adam

    I'm a meat lover but have to agree with those who suggest consuming meat in moderation. I only keep boneless skinless chicken breast, tuna and salmon at home.
    Oh, and I believe that beans are a gift from heaven.

    January 16, 2011 at 12:31 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Galina12

      In many people with damage sugar regulation beans wii cause too high sugar spike

      January 16, 2011 at 19:24 | Report abuse |
    • Galina12

      What is wrong with chicken skin, or some grass-fed red meat? It is proven that saturated fats are not guilty.

      January 16, 2011 at 19:27 | Report abuse |
    • nuffsed

      Beans and tofu make my blodd sugar spike so bad you would think they were candy.

      January 17, 2011 at 02:20 | Report abuse |
  19. NMiller

    Hugo, my daughter is the first type 1 in the family, while we have tons of type 2's. She has been tested for celiac as well as other autoimmune diseases. I work with so many people, not just diabetics that basically have no clue about their disease process. It is very scary. I am a cardiac nurse by trade, but since my daughter has been diagnosed I have taken so many classes, read books, and have talked to many others that have lived with the disease. I can tell you that they do not teach nurses a lot of what I have been taught in recent years. No one knows your body like you do, trust that and how you feel when you eat certain things.

    January 16, 2011 at 15:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. undomielsstar

    Meat is the answer to diabetes, not the cause. It doesn't take a brain surgeon to figure out that eating foods with carbohydrate, whether low GI or high GI, increases blood sugar, which stresses the pancreas in Type II and requires more insulin with Type I. Try reading Dr. Richard Bernstein's "Diabetes Solution." Bernstein has had diabetes since 1948 and has no complications despite being Type 1 for so long. He is also a diabetes M.D. specialist that has treated over 30,000 diabetic patients. His a1C is 4.5. He eats only 30 carbs per day and doesn't worry about saturated fat.

    January 16, 2011 at 17:45 | Report abuse | Reply
    • undomielsstar

      If you want to see how a low carb diet can work, experiment yourself for two weeks and see how your blood sugars are by measuring them. You will notice that your blood sugars will be radically improved. The advice to eat whole grains is nonsense

      January 16, 2011 at 17:47 | Report abuse |
    • nuffsed

      I agree. Every nutritionist and diabetes care manager I have worked with has insisted I eat a small amount of carbs with every meal and snack. My blood sugar goes higher and higher. I cut carbs to a bare minimum and Wow! I do fantastic. They say"You're doing so well? What have you been doing?" I say "I cut carbs to a bare minimum." They say "You can't do that! You NEED carbs every day!" So I add back a small amount of carbs, my blood sugar goes out of control. They say "Wow! What have you been doing?" I say "I added back those carbs." They say "Good you need them. You might as well accept the fact that you will need insulin soon." Paid medical professionals. Well, on paper at least.

      January 17, 2011 at 02:26 | Report abuse |
  21. Type2Here

    This was a terrible answer. The question was what to eat *once blood glucose is already low* and the nausea, etc have already hit. The answer is to write down what to do beforehand, as confusion is one of the symptoms of low blood sugar, and have the instructions in a place where they can be seen, like the side of the fridge and by the bed. And the answer is to treat a low blood sugar episode with juice. Keep juice boxes handy. Also the response erroneously states that metformin does not cause lows. Not only is this not true but the person who submitted the question was taking metformin and clearly had experienced more than one low blood sugar episode on it. This doctor doesn't have the first clue how to treat diabetes. The first thing you learn is that it is a disease that everyone experiences differently. You *never* make blanket statements like metformin doesn't cause lows. Everyone responds differently.

    Certainly advice about eating the right foods and eating regularly is good advice, but totally misses the point of the question. Low blood sugar is nothing to mess around with! When it happens you treat it right away with fast-acting carbs, then later you examine the episode and see why you went low - missed a meal? more activity than normal? need to reduce the dosage of the metformin? and you discuss with the endo/CDE. One of the most aggravating things for a type 2 not on insulin is patronizing medical professionals who don't take low blood glucose episodes seriously. Just because bg won't fall low enough to put you in a coma doesn't mean that a low shouldn't be taken seriously.

    January 16, 2011 at 22:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. brother bill

    See http://www.rawfor30days.com for video about 'dietary control' of diabetes, normalizing blood sugar in under 30 days, just by only eating raw fruits and vegetables.

    Dietebes IS curable!

    January 16, 2011 at 22:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. Pork

    Smoke yourself thin.

    January 16, 2011 at 23:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. berrymarymac

    Become a vegan!! http://pcrm.org/kickstartHome/

    January 20, 2011 at 10:26 | Report abuse | Reply
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  27. BadPatient

    Try hunting down the allergy route...eliminate grain (maybe more specifically corn, but try all grain at first), and make sure that you don't have any low flying infections (yeast, strep, etc. not necessarily throwing a temp of 102, but can wreak havoc with your blood sugar anyway. Those have to go).

    January 28, 2011 at 09:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. Cassandra

    I was just diagnosed with diabetes yesterday put on 1 medication and I don't know what i can eat. I have never been sick or had any symptoms of this. Went for a physical and was told to come back in and they hit me with this. Please help. I need a list of foods for breakfast, Lunch and dinner. Please help

    November 23, 2011 at 09:48 | Report abuse | Reply
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  31. Beth Varetoni

    Wow Diana, I hope I never have you, or anyone who thinks like you taking care of me, I would have thought there would be some level of compassion coming from someone who CHOOSE such a noble profession...maybe it's time you find a new one....

    September 24, 2012 at 17:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. naeth

    No cures folks, your controlling your diabetes, you may be controlling it to the point you do not notice you have it, but reversing it I very much doubt it because as far as I know you cannot cure it.

    November 6, 2012 at 05:13 | Report abuse | Reply
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  36. Adrian Gieber

    Hypoglycemia (common usage) is also a term in popular culture and alternative medicine for a common, often self-diagnosed, condition characterized by shakiness and altered mood and thinking, but without measured low glucose or risk of severe harm. It is treated by changing eating patterns.^"`*

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    June 23, 2013 at 04:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Carla

    I am type two diabetic and have problems I deal with can... u or someone help me with it. my sugar be so high that I be so tired. Now I am trying to change my eating habit. Nd can I dtink coffee?

    September 26, 2013 at 16:57 | Report abuse | Reply
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  40. Henry

    you can eat what ever you want you just have to watch your sugar levels

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    September 16, 2014 at 17:59 | Report abuse | Reply
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    September 16, 2014 at 18:00 | Report abuse | Reply
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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.