Diabetes & Carb Counting For Dummies
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A diagnosis of diabetes doesn't mean carbs should be avoided or even over-restricted. Carb-containing foods provide important vitamins and minerals. People with diabetes should be mindful of their carbohydrate intakes and choose healthy foods in appropriate portions. Count carbohydrates to ensure your needs are met. Limit sugary foods with added fats and sodium. Opt for nutrient-rich carb choices as indicated here:
  • Zero in on whole grains, such as brown rice, oatmeal, quinoa, farro, millet, and bulgur. Look for "whole-grain" breads, pasta, and crackers.
  • Count the carbs in your starchy vegetables, such as potatoes, yams, sweet potatoes, corn, and peas.
  • Eat plenty of nonstarchy vegetables, including broccoli, asparagus, carrots, cabbage, cauliflower, snow peas, mushrooms, tomatoes, and peppers. Load up on leafy green salads. Choose a variety of colorful produce.
  • Look for ways to add legumes. Toss kidney or garbanzo beans into salads, dredge raw veggies in hummus, or have a side of beans.
  • Forage for fresh fruits. Limit to one serving at a time and skip the juice. Eat portions that are the size of a tennis ball or that fit in a 1-cup measuring cup.
  • Choose nonfat, low-fat, and reduced-fat milk and yogurt.

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Sherri Shafer, RD, CDE, is a senior registered dietitian and a certified diabetes educator at the University of California San Francisco Medical Center. She teaches diabetes self-management workshops and provides nutrition counseling for individuals with type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes, prediabetes, and gestational dia-betes. She is also the author of Diabetes Type 2: Complete Food Management Program.

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