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Diabetes Diet Chart Plan – Best Indian Diabetic Meal Chart

DIABETES DIET

To understand what type of food a diabetic patient should consume for better health it is important to understand diabetes and its relation to food. 

Only when a person understands all the above-mentioned concepts then it would help them follow a diet plan to improve their health. 

Understanding diabetes 

Diabetes is commonly called diabetes mellitus. It is a disease that occurs when the blood glucose level is high. 

World Health Organisation (WHO) defines Diabetes as a chronic disorder that occurs when the pancreas is no longer able to make insulin, or when the body cannot effectively use the insulin, it produces. Diabetes is a lifestyle disorder that, when not treated, paves the way for other metabolic disorders. 

Blood glucose or blood sugar is the main source of energy which is derived from the food we eat. 

To understand diabetes in one sentence- it is a metabolic disorder that is characterized by high blood sugar levels in the body for a prolonged period of time.

Diabetes may cause serious health complications. 

The health complications include:

  • Cardiovascular diseases
  • Strokes
  • Foot ulcer
  • Nerve damage
  • Kidney damage
  • Liver damage
  • Eye damage
  • Multiple organ failure
  • Cognitive impairment and 
  • Death

Diabetes can be classified into a few types. They are:

Pre-diabetes is when the blood sugar level is higher than normal but which hasn’t reached enough for diagnosing type two diabetes.

Type one diabetes is an autoimmune disease. This attacks the cells present in the pancreas where insulin is produced. 

Type two diabetes is when the body becomes insulin resistant. During this stage, the sugar level builds up in the blood. 

Gestational diabetes is when there is a high blood sugar level in the body during pregnancy. 

When a person has diabetes, they may exhibit symptoms like

  • Increased hunger and thirst
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Frequent urination
  • Tiredness
  • Vision impairment
  • Scores that take more time to heal. 

What are the causes of diabetes?

Diabetes occurs because the body is unable to use blood sugar properly. 

The main cause of the condition is a mystery but genetic and environmental factors play a big role. 

Some of the factors which cause diabetes are:

  • Lack of insulin production
  • Insulin resistance
  • Genetics 
  • Hormones 
  • Obesity
  • Poor diet and 
  • Lack of exercise

The main cause of type one diabetes is when the body loses the ability to produce insulin. 

Insulin is a hormone that is required to move blood sugar throughout the body. 

When there is a disturbance in insulin production or resistance there will be too much sugar in the blood. 

Similarly, type two diabetes occurs when insulin is produced but the body loses the ability to move the blood glucose into the cells for fuel.

Type two diabetes is also a result of lesser insulin production in the body and an increase in insulin resistance. 

Apart from insulin, genetics play an important role in determining how likely a person will develop diabetes.

There are a few genetic conditions that can damage the pancreas and lead to the development of diabetes. 

People also develop the risk of type two diabetes when they age. This is likely because of the reduced exercise and the weight gain people adopt as they age.

Obesity can cause insulin resistance. The fat cells may cause inflammation and lead to insulin resistance.

The food choices a person makes matter a lot when they have diabetes. 

It is important for us to understand that blood glucose or blood sugar is obtained from the food we eat. 

Irrespective of the type of diabetes a person has making the right food choices is essential to keep the blood sugar levels in check. 

Nutrition and diabetes 

Nutrition is the study of nutrients present in food. Studying nutrition helps us understand how the body utilizes them and it ensures a good relationship between diet health and related diseases. 

Having a healthy diet promotes the health of an individual and reduces the risk of various diseases. 

Splitting up the diet into various nutritional elements helps us to understand the needs of the body. 

make up the most important components of nutrients. Consuming all the nutrients is essential to make a balanced diet. 

The nutrients are further classified into macronutrients and micronutrients. 

The term balanced diet has been explained by various healthcare professional’s influencers teachers and doctors. 

Eating a balanced diet means choosing food containing all the above-mentioned nutrients. 

Carbohydrates or carbs are the sugar molecules that are present in food. The body is designed to break down carbohydrates into glucose. 

Glucose is the main source of energy for the body. The glucose is stored in the liver or muscles and used later.

Proteins or fondly called building blocks of the body. Protein plays an important role in a healthy diet. 

Proteins are made up of amino acids. The amino acids are used by the body to build and repair muscle bones and produce hormones and enzymes. 

Fat is the tissue usually greasy and forms an important part of a healthy diet. 

Fat is further classified as good fat or bad fat. LDL cholesterol is harmful to the body. 

Vitamins and minerals are micronutrients that are a must for the body in order to carry out normal functions. 

These vitamins and minerals are not produced by the body and must be obtained from the food we consume. 

All these essential nutrients are to be consumed in the right proportions in order to have good health. 

Specifically, if a person suffers from the health condition diabetes, they need to closely monitor what they consume. 

Consuming the wrong food will increase the blood sugar level in the body and would eventually lead to diabetes over a period of time. 

Diabetic Diet Plan

It is recommended that a person with diabetes actively engage themselves in self-management, education, and treatment planning along with an individualized diet plan. With India being the diabetes capital of the world, it is high time that people with diabetes follow a diabetic diet chart since it significantly helps in maintaining blood glucose levels and alleviating symptoms of diabetes.

Diabetic Diet Chart

Best Indian Diabetic Diet Chart 

 A person with diabetes can consume small and frequent meals to maintain their blood glucose level. Skipping meals may be disadvantageous since it may lead to hypoglycemia in a few people and for the same reason, a bedtime drink/snack is recommended since it prevents nocturnal hypoglycemia. A Diet plan is prepared by including factors like age, height, weight, activity level, and blood glucose levels to make it individualized.

Note: The diet chart mentioned is a generalized one. A qualified Dietitian can curate a personalized diet plan for an individual with diabetes. 

7 – Day Diet Plan

Day 1

MEAL TIMINGMENU
Early Morning (6 AM)Cinnamon water – 1 glass 
Breakfast (8 AM)Broken wheat upma – 1 Cup, Green Chutney – 1 tablespoon
Mid-morning (11 AM)Buttermilk – 1 glass
Lunch (1 PM)Egg Chapathi/ Panneer /chapathi – 2 , Tomato onion sabzi – 1 cup
Evening (4 PM)Channa – 1 Cup
Dinner (7 PM)Horse gram dosa – 2, Veg Sambar – ½ Cup
Bed Time (9 PM)Milk (No Sugar) – 1 glass

Day 2

MEAL TIMINGMENU
Early Morning (6 AM)Milk (No Sugar) – 1 glass
Breakfast (8 AM)Vegetable Dosa – 2 , Mint chutney – ½ Cup
Mid-morning (11 AM)Tomato Soup – 1 cup
Lunch (1 PM)Lemon rice – 1 Cup, Green Leafy Vegetable salad – 1/2 cup , Egg white – 1
Evening (4 PM)Carrot & Cucumber slices – 1 katori
Dinner (7 PM)Spinach chapathi – 2, Veg gravy – ½ Cup
Bed Time (9 PM)Cinnamon water – 1 glass

Day 3

MEAL TIMINGMENU
Early Morning (6 AM)Almonds – 6
Breakfast (8 AM)Bajra dosa – 2 , Sambar – ½ Cup
Mid-morning (11 AM)Cucumber – 1
Lunch (1 PM)Rice – 1 Cup, Dhal – 1/2 Cup, Spinach salad – 1/2 Cup, Capsicum vegetable – 1/2 Cup, Egg white – 1
Evening (4 PM)Mixed sprouts – 1 Katori
Dinner (7 PM)Multigrain chapathi – 2, peas gravy – 1/2 Cup
Bed Time (9 PM)Herbal buttermilk – 1 glass

Day 4

MEAL TIMINGMENU
Early Morning (6 AM)Fenugreek Water – 1 glass
Breakfast (8 AM)Finger millet idly – 2, Tomato chutney – ½ Cup
Mid-morning (11 AM)Green tea – 1 cup
Lunch (1 PM)Chapathi -2, Soya gravy – 1/2 Cup, Dhal – 1/2 Cup,
Egg white omelette – 1
Evening (4 PM)Nuts (Almonds (2) + Walnuts (3) + Pumpkin Seeds (1 teaspoon))
Dinner (7 PM)Horse gram dosa – 2, Ridge gourd chutney – 2 tablespoon
Bed Time (9 PM)Turmeric milk (No Sugar) – 1 glass

Day 5

MEAL TIMINGMENU
Early Morning (6 AM)Milk (No Sugar) – 1 glass
Breakfast (8 AM)Lemon Aval Upma – 1 Cup, Capsicum chutney – 1 tablespoon
Mid-morning (11 AM)Vegetable soup – 1 cup
Lunch (1 PM)Peas pulao – 1 Cup, Green salad – 1/2 Cup, Snake gourd raita – 1
Katori, Egg white – 1
Evening (4 PM)Sprouted green gram – 1 Katori
Dinner (7 PM)Chapathi – 2, Palak gravy – 1/2 Cup 
Bed Time (9 PM)Cinnamon water – 1 glass

Day 6

MEAL TIMINGMENU
Early Morning (6 AM)Walnut – 6
Breakfast (8 AM)Green gram dosa – 2, Veg Sambar – ½ Cup
Mid-morning (11 AM)Cucumber slices – 1, Katori
Lunch (1 PM)Brown rice – 1 Cup, Sambar – 1/2 Cup, Spinach sabzi – 1/2 Cup,
Egg white – 1
Evening (4 PM)Green tea – 1 cup
Dinner (7 PM)Oats idly – 2, Tomato Chutney – 2 tablespoon
Bed Time (9 PM)Skimmed milk (No Sugar) – 1 glass

Day 7

MEAL TIMINGMENU
Early Morning (6 AM)Almonds – 6
Breakfast (8 AM)Vegetable Dosa – 2, Coriander chutney – ½ Cup
Mid-morning (11 AM)Buttermilk – 1 glass
Lunch (1 PM)Rice – 1 Cup, Dhal – 1/2 Cup, Boiled Ash gourd – 1/2 Cup, Egg white – 1
Evening (4 PM)Nuts – 1 tablespoon
Dinner (7 PM)Spinach Pulka – 2, Vegetable Gravy – 1/2 Cup
Bed Time (9 PM)Milk (No Sugar) – 1 glass

Foods to include

Vegetarian Diabetic Diet Plan

1.Whole Grains

Whole grains are complex carbohydrates that are rich sources of fiber. They help in managing diabetes and blood cholesterol levels due to their lower glycemic index (GI). Brown rice, oats, semolina, and whole wheat are a few examples.

Millets are another superfood for managing diabetes. They have a low glycemic index, high fibre content, and aid in reducing the spikes in blood glucose levels.

2. Nuts and Seeds

Nuts and seeds are excellent sources of protein, dietary fiber, magnesium, and omega-3 Fatty acids. Many nuts also possess antioxidant properties in them. Consuming the right quantity assists in weight loss, maintaining blood sugar levels and cholesterol levels. Nuts such as Walnuts, Almonds, Pistachios are diabetic friendly and seeds like flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds are highly nutritious to a person with diabetes.

3. Whole Pulses and legumes

Whole grams have a generous amount of protein in them along with other nutrients making them suitable for diabetes. Certain whole pulses and legumes include Chickpeas, Moong dhal, red lentil, and kidney beans.

4. Green Leafy Vegetables

These antioxidant-rich foods are yet another superfood. They are Low GI foods, have high magnesium content, low calorific value, and are a rich source of high-quality protein. Green leafy vegetables such as spinach, drumstick leaves, amaranth, and mint leaves are also good sources of iron. A diabetic can consume all green leaves unless and until they have other complications in addition to diabetes.

5. Vegetables

All water-based vegetables and general vegetables are good for diabetes. They keep the stomach full for a longer time and don’t induce hunger. Vegetables have lower carbohydrate content, making them an ideal food for a person with diabetes. Examples include all gourd vegetables, brinjal, and cauliflower.

6. Milk and Milk Products

Consumption of low-fat or skimmed milk is advisable for a diabetic since they possess similar nutrient content as whole milk and a lower fat content which is suitable for weight loss as well as for maintaining blood glucose levels due to their low calorific value. Similarly, Milk Products derived from low-fat milk are preferred.

7. Cinnamon

Cinnamon has potential health benefits which are useful for regulating blood sugar levels since it increases insulin sensitivity. Cinnamon water helps to remove toxins and aids in digestion which is effective for weight loss as it burns excess fat in the body.

8. Tender Coconut water

The replenishing fresh coconut water is stacked with essential nutrients, has high fibre content, low Glycemic index, boosts metabolism and aids in weight loss, making it an ideal drink for a diabetic.  

Despite its various benefits, there is a dilemma for diabetics as it may cause a spike in sugar levels.

As per recent studies researcher, Mr. Peswani says that diabetics who work out on a regular basis can consume one tender coconut water a day (without malai). This will not lead to any spike in glucose levels. People with highly uncontrolled blood sugar levels should refrain from consuming it as coconut water can cause fluctuation in the blood sugar levels immediately.

Coconut water is a safe, healthy beverage for most people; however, those with kidney diseases along with Diabetes should limit consumption of foods that are too high in potassium.

Non – Vegetarian Diabetic Diet Plan 

1. Egg

Eggs are one of the best high-quality proteins that are packed with nutrients. Eggs fill the stomach and also slow down the absorption of glucose, favouring diabetics. One whole egg per day is preferred as there isn’t any risk of an increase in blood sugar. However, there isn’t any limitation on the consumption of egg whites, which are super healthy, low-calorie food with a good amount of protein. The cholesterol content in egg yolk is the reason to limit its consumption to one per day.

2. Fish

Fish are a major source of omega-3 Fatty acids, Protein, Iron, and Vitamin B12. They help in controlling glucose levels and reducing symptoms of complications such as diabetic neuropathy.

3. Lean Meat

Lean Meat is one of the best choices for a diabetic owing to its low-fat content. High-Fat foods tend to elevate blood sugar levels drastically while lean meat provides proper nutrients in addition to being low in fat.

4. Skinless Poultry

Skinless Chicken contains less saturated fat than whole chicken but has a similar protein content. This is a good option for diabetes who are non-vegetarians as it will not affect the blood glucose level.

5. Seafood

Seafood, being a natural source of omega-3 fatty acids and being low in fat helps in stabilizing blood glucose levels. They enhance the efficacy of insulin and help in decreasing the side effects of diabetes.

Foods to avoid

1. Refined Flour & Instant Cereals

Refined Flours are simple carbohydrates that elevate blood sugar levels the same way as instant cereals which are highly processed and have a high glycemic index. They have low levels of nutrients and can rapidly break down food which in turn raises the blood sugar levels. These include maida, noodles, pizza base, sweets, biscuits, etc. 

2. Refined Sugar

Refined sugar is the white sugar that is in fact processed. No proper research has established the direct connection between sugar intake and hyperglycemia. However, a high intake of refined sugar leads to weight gain which in turn causes insulin sensitivity that increases blood sugar levels. Consumption of sugar, in general, is a precursor to many other metabolic disorders and cardiovascular diseases.

3. Roots and Tubers

Potato, yam, colocasia, carrot, beetroot, and radish are a few roots and tubers. Roots and tubers are generally loaded with carbohydrates along with a minimal amount of other nutrients. Cooking these roots and tubers increases the starch content in them that raises the blood sugar making it difficult to manage diabetes. Occasional consumption of raw carrot or other roots and tubers is manageable. 

4. Fruits

Fruits with a high glycemic index are to be restricted for diabetics. A few of them include banana, mango, dates, and grapes among others. The natural sugar in them called fructose elevates the blood sugar level. Fruit juices are to be totally avoided since the sugar is broken into simple sugars which spikes the blood glucose levels.

5. Whole Milk Products

The pre-skimmed milk has high calories and fat compared to skimmed milk but with similar calcium content in them. Consuming whole milk can be limited for a diabetic in order to manage blood sugar levels.

6. Sodium Rich Foods

High Sodium foods comprise salt, pickle, papad, canned foods, baking soda, baking powder, baked products, instant soups, sauces, mayonnaise, chip, and fried snacks. People with diabetes are more likely to get high blood pressure and consumption of sodium-rich foods elevates blood pressure and also increases the risk of other heart diseases.

7. Red Meat

Red meat contains more saturated fat, which raises blood sugar and cholesterol level while also increasing the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

8. Carbonated Beverages

The sugar content in these bottled products is way too much which leads to insulin resistance which causes a sudden elevation in blood sugar levels. Consumption of carbonated beverages is a precursor to various other diseases as well. 

9. Coconut

Coconut being high in saturated fat is not recommended for a diabetic. Too much intake may increase the risk of heart diseases. However, occasional consumption is advised along with a balanced meal.

The importance of food in health should never be written off. Food must be consumed accordingly to improve the health of a person. Eliminating food that harms health is necessary.

To sum up

Diabetes is a disease that occurs when the blood glucose level is high. Consuming the wrong food will increase the blood sugar level in the body and would eventually lead to diabetes over a period of time. 

A person with diabetes can consume small and frequent meals to maintain their blood glucose level. Having a healthy diet promotes the health of an individual and reduces the risk of various diseases. 

It is recommended that a person with diabetes actively engage themselves in self-management, education, and treatment planning along with an individual diet plan. 

FAQ

1.Can a Sugar patient consume alcohol?

No. High alcohol intake lowers blood sugar levels and severe hypoglycemia is associated with dangerous effects in the body which may even result in seizures, coma, and eventually death of the patient. Occasional drinking in moderate quantity may have considerable effects on health.

2.How does exercise help type 2 diabetes?

Exercise aids in weight loss, improves insulin sensitivity, lowers blood pressure and insulin resistance helping diabetic patients to keep their blood sugar levels at bay. 

3.Is rice good for diabetes?

White rice has high starch content which may elevate blood glucose levels. Cooking rice by straining method may reduce the starch content in them. Brown rice is a good substitute for white rice as they have high nutrient content in addition to being rich in fiber. Method of cooking and portion size plays a major role for a diabetes patient. 

4.Is almonds good for diabetes?

Nuts, in general, are healthy, especially almonds are beneficial to a diabetic as they possess healthy fats and high protein which helps to keep blood sugar levels at bay. They are also rich in other nutrients such as iron, zinc, vitamin B, magnesium, and calcium. 6-8 almonds per day are considered ideal for a diabetes patient.

5.Is banana good for diabetes?

Bananas are loaded with carbohydrates and natural sugar called fructose which greatly raises blood sugar levels. In addition to it, they are also low in GI and have high fibre content. So, the Consumption of bananas twice or thrice a week along with balancing nuts and seeds may help in managing the blood glucose levels.

6.Which carbohydrate should I include in my diet?

Complex carbohydrates are preferred for diabetes since they are rich in fibre which keeps you saturated for a long time compared to simple carbohydrates which get digested quickly and also have low fibre content. They help in weight control and also in supervising blood sugar levels.

7.Why should a sugar patient be physically active?

Physical activity boosts metabolism, helps in weight management, and controls blood sugar levels since a diabetic person is way more sensitive to insulin than a normal individual. Being physically active is not just to control diabetes but is a change to a healthy lifestyle for any human.

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