Making Better Choices When Carb Counting with Diabetes

By Sherri Shafer

Part of Diabetes & Carb Counting For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Managing carb intake is important for everyone with diabetes because carb choices and portions directly affect blood-glucose levels. Your food choices influence more than just diabetes management; what you choose to eat affects your weight and overall health. With a few simple modifications, you can improve the quality of your diet and lower your intake of fat, calories, sugar, and salt. That’s good news for your diabetes, weight, heart health, and blood pressure.

  • Instead of: Whole milk, regular cheeses, cream cheese, sour cream
    Choose: Nonfat, low-fat, or reduced-fat versions
  • Instead of: Bacon, sausage, ribs, salami, pastrami, hot dogs
    Choose: Canadian bacon, ham, lean roast beef, poultry, veggie dogs
  • Instead of: White, refined breads, crackers, pastas, rice
    Choose: Whole-grain breads, crackers, pastas, brown rice
  • Instead of: Sweet rolls, breakfast pastries, donuts, Danish, muffins
    Choose: Fruit spreads on whole-wheat toast or an English muffin
  • Instead of: Potato chips, corn chips, buttery popcorn
    Choose: Baked versions of chips, air-popped or microwave lite popcorn
  • Instead of: Deep-frying foods
    Choose: Baking, steaming, grilling, poaching, boiling, broiling
  • Instead of: Regular sugary soft drinks, sodas, sweetened iced tea
    Choose: Diet drinks, mineral water, unsweetened (or diet) tea
  • Instead of: Solid fats such as butter, stick margarine, and shortening
    Choose: Liquid vegetable oils such as olive, canola, soybean, sesame, and peanut oils
  • Instead of: Salt
    Choose: Salt-free seasonings, herbs, spices, pepper