So much has got to change when you’re diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. How often you eat, portion sizes and, of course, your food options. That last one is the toughest pill to swallow for most folks.
No one wants to say goodbye to all their favorite foods, or give up on snacking forever. And it turns out you don’t have to.
Following are four superfoods that don’t just make delicious snacks, but may also help you manage your diabetes.
Although garbanzo beans are super healthy, both high in fiber and nutrients, we understand that most folks don’t consider them snack material. But trust us, they can quickly be transformed into a creamy or crunchy treat that’s worthy of any snack attack.
Toss a can of garbanzo beans, a clove of garlic, a quarter cup of olive oil and two tablespoons lemon juice, along with a dash of salt, pepper, cumin and paprika into your food processor or blender. Blend until smooth and creamy, adding a tablespoon of water or two if needed.
You’ve just made hummus! Serve it with broccoli and cauliflower florets. Superfoods in their own right, cruciferous broccoli and cauliflower can help protect your heart, which is also important when treating diabetes.
Prefer a crunchy snack? You can transform that same can of garbanzo beans into a kicky snack mix instead. Mix together one can of beans, a tablespoon of olive or coconut oil, a sprinkle of sea salt and around two teaspoons of your favorite Mexican or curry spice mix. Spread evenly on a cookie sheet, and put in the oven at 400 degrees for around 30 minutes, or until crispy. Dump into a bowl and dig in.
Garbanzo beans (and chickpeas) have a low GI score of 10, which makes them an excellent choice for avoiding blood sugar spikes.
Packed with protein and high in vitamin D, plain Greek yogurt can be transformed into a superfood with the right partner.
For a savory snack try mixing in walnuts. These delicious nuts are brimming with inflammation lowering polyunsaturated fat, and are an excellent source of fiber, L-arginine, vitamin E and powerful antioxidants and phytonutrients proven to help fight heart disease and diabetes.
Want something sweeter? Mix in blueberries. One of the original superfoods, blueberries are especially good for folks with diabetes. In a study by the USDA, blueberries were shown to lower blood glucose levels. The berries are rich in anthocyanins, which experts say trigger the release of adiponectin, a hormone which helps regulate your blood sugar.
Sweet potato wedges or chips:
A little sweet and a little savory, sweet potatoes may be the perfect snack food. Loaded with vitamins and nutrients, these orange spuds are also a terrific source of healthy fiber.
Like blueberries, sweet potatoes are loaded with anthocyanins, which stimulate the release of adiponectin, helping reign in your blood sugar and increasing insulin sensitivity. Experts say sweet potatoes can help lower A1c and fasting blood glucose levels when eaten in moderation.
For a second superfood punch try sprinkling your oven baked sweet potatoes wedges or chips with cinnamon. According to a study published in the journal Diabetic Care, a daily dose of cinnamon could help reduce your blood sugar levels by as much as 30 percent, while dropping your cholesterol and triglyceride levels at the same time.
We bet you thought your days of indulging in rich and delicious chocolate were behind you, right? Well, they don’t have to be if you make sure it’s the dark variety.
The flavonoids in dark chocolate can help reduce insulin resistance while improving insulin sensitivity, and lower fasting blood sugar. They’ve even be shown to help keep diet-busting cravings at a minimum.
The same flavonoids make dark chocolate a heart hero too. Researchers say flavonoids can help reduce your stroke and heart attack risk, as well as lower high blood pressure.
The key is moderation, of course. A couple of squares of the dark chocolate—the darker the better—should do the trick.
A lot changes when you’re diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, but that doesn’t mean you have to give up on snacking for good. Have a chat with your doctor about how you can incorporate these delicious and healthy, diabetic-friendly snacks into your own diet plan.
We believe that everyone has good ideas about how best to care for our loved ones and ourselves. Many of our contributors are doctors that have spent their life’s work invested in the health and well being of the human body and mind. Some have spent their lives tirelessly researching health and the human body, developing new vitamins and products dedicated to making people healthier.
Others are ordinary people that have natural family cures passed down from generations, or discovered an inexpensive home remedy out of necessity or even by accident.
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