Following a proper diet plan when you have diabetes keeps you healthy. Still, it also increases the chances of diabetes reversal which improves your insulin in the long run, and this especially plays a significant role with people who have type 2 diabetes.
A diabetic diet meal plan consists of a balanced diet plan such that there are the right amounts of proteins, carbohydrates, fat, fibers, and minerals. A diabetic pyramid helps you get the proper amount of foods and what foods you should eat to help you control diabetes.
Diabetic Food Pyramid
A diabetic food pyramid guides you in making a perfect diet plan that will help control your blood sugar level. The diabetic food pyramid gives you a list of what foods you should eat and what amounts you should eat these foods. Below you will read about the updated versions of a diabetic food pyramid and old diabetic food pyramid. Countries like Australia, Canada, and the UK updated their food pyramid/ diet meal plan.
Old diabetes food pyramid (United States) lowest tier to the highest
- The lower layer (Carbohydrates) – The lower layer of the diabetic food pyramid contains a Carbohydrate diet. This diet is high in calories, and this is where your body gets the energy it needs. Keep in mind that you should take more of the “non-starchy” carbs such as corn and sweet potatoes than carbs that contain more starch such as bread and rice. Starchy carbohydrates increase blood sugar levels immediately. A Carbohydrate diet is limited to 6-8 servings per day.
- Vegetables and fruits – The next level of the diabetic food pyramid contains vegetables and fruits. Like carbohydrates, your vegetables should also be non-starchy and should be served 3-4 servings per day. Fruits are essential for boosting your immunity and maintaining your body’s metabolism. A diabetic person should consume 2-4 servings of fruits per day.
- Meat, meat substitutes, and Protein – Foods such as meat protein to your body which your body needs to repair cells and make new ones. Meat is high in energy, and the amount of intake should be controlled. 2-3 servings per day are enough, and drinking milk is also good for high blood sugar control.
- Fats, oils, and sweets – A diabetic person should avoid high quantities of fats. There are also healthier substitutes for fats like avocado and nuts. You can only consume 15 grams of foods that are high in saturated fats. Sweets can be treats for yourself but as much as possible, avoid consuming them and only consume them on important events or occasions.
New Diabetic Food Pyramid
Australia updated its diabetic food pyramid a couple of years back, and they made some improvements shifting grants and starches up their pyramid and putting vegetables in the spotlight. They also recommend that people with diabetes should drink more water, put herbs and spices in their foods and limit the use of salt in their food. Their food pyramid is arranged like the following (from lowest to highest) :
- Vegetables, legumes, and fruit
- Milk, Yogurt, Cheese, Lean meat, Poultry fish, eggs, nuts, seeds, and legumes.
- Healthy Fats
Ireland updated their pyramid-like how Australia updated their food pyramid, and they also recommended that people drink 8 cups of water a day and get more active. Their food pyramid consists of (lowest to highest) :
- Vegetables, salads, and fruits (5-7 a day)
- Wholemeal cereals and pieces of bread, potatoes, pasta, and rice (3-5 servings a day)
- Meat, poultry fish, eggs, beans, and nuts (2 servings a day)
- Fats, spreads, and oils (in very small amounts)
- Foods and drinks high in fat, sugar, and salt (not every day)
The UK has around image rather than a pyramid, but it’s still based on the old nutrition data with a lot of carbohydrates. They also encourage people to drink 6-8 cups of water and only eat less or limit foods like chocolates or ice creams. Their food meal plan contains the following:
- Beans, pulses, fish, eggs, meats, and other proteins
- Fruit and vegetables
- Potatoes, bread, rice, pasta, and other starchy carbohydrates
- Dairy and alternatives
All of these food pyramids are great to follow, and they can all help with how you prepare your meal plan. Some countries just updated their food pyramid. Talk to your doctor about the best food options and what food meal plan is best for your situation.