Type II diabetes is an adult-onset or non-insulin dependent form of diabetes. It is a condition that affects the way your body metabolizes sugar. With type II diabetes, it’s either your body resists insulin or it doesn’t produce enough to maintain your blood sugar levels.
There’s no cure for it but it can be managed well by proper dieting and exercise. A total lifestyle change is necessary to ensure that the condition is well controlled by eating the right kind of foods at the right amount and keeping the body active.
For those who just love to eat and find snacking to be a favorite pastime, this could be a nightmare. You don’t necessarily have to deprive yourself of snacks just because you feel like having a small bit of food between meals.
Here are some snacks that taste good and won’t cause your blood sugar levels to spike. Limit them to just about 200 calories or less. Make sure they contain protein and fiber and just about 15 to 30 grams of carbohydrates. Think of them as mini meals that will help you make it through the day.
1. Dark Chocolate
Chocolates are most people’s favorite snacks. If you find yourself having a craving for chocolates, make it the dark kind. Dark chocolate is high in flavonoids that have been proven to improve insulin sensitivity and reduce insulin resistance.
Instead of dessert, you might want to consider having some dark chocolate instead but make it the ones with at least 85% cocoa content for best results.
2. String Cheese and Whole Wheat Crackers
Low-fat string cheese are readily available. You can find them even in convenience stores. Combine a single serving of low-fat string cheese with some whole wheat crackers. You may also add in some apple slices. This will keep your craving for a snack at bay and will keep you full until the next real meal.
Popcorn is a low-sugar, low-calorie food choice to snack on. It is slowly digested and absorbed resulting in gradual rises in blood sugar and insulin levels.
If you choose to have popcorn, make sure not to have those that come with extra butter or sugar. Movie theater butter popcorn is a definite no-no. Same goes for caramel or candy-covered ones that will do you more harm than good.
Instead, try popcorn made with coconut oil. It’s high in fiber and you benefit from the effects of coconut oil in the body.
4. Hard Boiled Eggs
Hard boiled eggs are rich in protein and are good snacking alternatives. They are known to promote fullness and are ideal for people with Type II diabetes.
A study was conducted with about 65 people with Type II diabetes who ate 2 eggs daily for 12 weeks. The study concluded that participants experienced not just a reduction in their blood sugar levels but also a lower hemoglobin A1c which measures long-term blood sugar control.
5. Non-fat Cottage Cheese
A half-cup of cottage cheese provides about 13 grams of protein and only 4 grams of carbohydrates. This is apart from the vitamins and minerals that are also present in this snack choice for diabetics.
Majority of the calories from cottage cheese come from protein so you don’t really need to worry much about serving size. The protein stabilizes blood sugar levels and are more low calorie than regular cheeses.
You can choose to combine your cottage cheese snack with some fruit for added fiber.
The bacterial fermentation of milk results in the formation of a popular dairy product – Yogurt. The fermentation process produces lactic acid giving yogurt its unique flavor. Plain, unsweetened, low-fat yogurt is the choice for diabetics.
Low-fat yogurt contains high quality carbohydrates and protein that prevents or slows down the rise of blood sugar levels. Also, the calcium from yogurt reduces the risk of type II diabetes. Fat-free Greek yogurt has twice as much protein as regular low-fat yogurt. You might want to try taking it together with a bit of fruit for added flavor and fiber.
Although avocados are rich in fat and calories, this isn’t necessarily a reason for diabetics to avoid them. The monounsaturated fatty acids found in avocados are considered healthy fats and can help lower blood sugar levels. A diet high in monounsaturated fats and low in carbs improves insulin sensitivity.
Add a few slices of avocado on toast or mash it and combine with a bit of cilantro, lime juice and tomatoes for a nice guacamole dip.
If you love berries, there’s no stopping you from eating these if you are diabetic. Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries all have Glycemic Index (GI) scores below 40 making them easy to digest and are less likely to cause blood sugar spikes.
Eating 1 to 2 cups of these berries a day can lower bad cholesterol and triglycerides as well as help raise good cholesterol levels. Aside from their low glycemic index, they are also high in fiber and can be mixed in with other diabetes-friendly foods such as yogurt.
Don’t deprive yourself just because you are on a diet. Choosing the right food to eat at the right time can do wonders to help you manage your diabetes. Always remember to keep portions in check. Too much of anything is always not a good thing.
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