I’ve recently created a free meal plan for prediabetes. It gives you a list of meals, as well as shopping guidance. This can help with your diabetes management. You can get it at this link . The meal plan for prediabetes is a simplified meal plan for those trying to juggle other health concerns. Regardless of your individual needs, one of these meal plans will fit your lifestyle.
Eat More Veggies
You feel fuller with plant-based fiber without having your blood sugar go up. Additionally, vegetables are nutrient-rich. Aim for at least three to five servings per day. That is either 1 cup raw or 12 a cup cooked. Choose from fresh, frozen, or canned options. Choose a low- or no-sodium variety, nevertheless. Colorful, non-starchy vegetables should make about half of your dish. Carrots, bell peppers, broccoli, and leafy greens like spinach or kale are a few examples.
Cut Back on Starchy Vegetables
These have more carbohydrates than their nonstarchy counterparts. But they have healthy nutrients, too. If you use the plate method, give them a quarter of the space. Starchy vegetables include white potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn, and winter squash like acorn or butternut.
Snack on Fruit
These vegan treats contain sugar, but that doesn’t mean you should stay away from them. Fruit is a great source of fiber, nutrients, and vitamins. Per day, aim for two to three servings. That is equal to one tiny apple or one and a half cups of strawberries. Ask your doctor if choosing low-sugar options is a good idea. That includes oranges, melons, kiwi, and berries. Try eating your fruit with nutritious proteins like Greek yogurt, almonds, or natural nut butter.
Choose Whole Grains
Whole grains, as opposed to processed grains, retain all of their original fiber and other nutrients. They can be consumed as a side dish at lunch or dinner or for morning. They can be found in a variety of foods, such as quinoa, oats, brown rice, whole-wheat bread, and pasta. Even cookies can be made with whole-grain flours. If you purchase a packaged item, check the label to verify if the word “whole” appears before the grain.
Add More Nuts and Seeds
Grab a handful of any kind you like. Just make sure they’re unsalted. And stick to the serving size, about an ounce. Nuts and seeds have healthy fats, but they’re also high in calories. Good choices include walnuts, pistachios, peanuts, sunflower seeds, and cashews.
Add Some Protein
Make an effort to include protein in all of your meals and snacks. It promotes fullness and slows the absorption of carbs into the bloodstream. That’s crucial for maintaining stable blood sugar levels. Lean meats, eggs, low-fat dairy, fatty fish and shellfish, plant-based proteins like beans and lentils, and so on are some sources.
Avoid Sugary Drinks
These drinks raise blood sugar because they lack other nutrients that would help digestion, such as fiber and protein. It’s a good idea to limit or avoid the following 100% fruit juice, soda, and sweetened coffee drinks if you have prediabetes. Avoid drinking lemonade or sweet tea, mixed alcohol cocktails, energy or sports drinks, or lemonade. The impact of artificial sweeteners on individuals with prediabetes is unclear to experts. If they are suitable for you, ask your doctor.
Limit Added Sugars
To find out how much added sugar is in a packaged food or beverage, check the Nutrition Facts label. The 5-20 rule can be applied: It is a low source of sugar if it has a daily value (DV) of less than 5%. You should return it if the DV is at least 20%. Many processed goods, including cookies, candies, and cakes, include added sugar. It can also be found in jelly, ketchup, and flavored oats.
Don’t Skip Breakfast
Try to eat within 2 hours of when you wake up. That may help control your blood sugar later in the day. In general, it’s a good idea to eat when you feel hungry. That’s because you might overeat or grab something easy — and possibly less healthy — if you go a long time without food.
Talk to a Dietitian
You don’t have to figure all this out on your own. Ask your doctor to refer you to a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN). That’s a trained professional who’ll help you make simple dietary changes based on your lifestyle.
Explore Healthy Eating Patterns
If you’re looking for a specific eating plan, a Mediterranean or plant-based (vegetarian or vegan) diet may help. The DASH (dietary approaches to stop hypertension) diet is also an option.
What About the Glycemic Index (GI)?
Food is ranked on the GI scale based on how much it raises your blood sugar. Experts don’t generally agree that it’s a useful tool for those with prediabetes. It can be really perplexing. Additionally, you might omit items that are good for you. Instead, it is preferable to include a variety of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins in your meals and snacks. Consult a dietician or your doctor if you’re unsure how to proceed.
Learn how to manage your diabetic symptoms by improving what you eat. In some cases, you may be able to reverse your prediabetic indicators
Reverse your Prediabetes by Eating Better
We want to support you in making adjustments that will help you permanently reverse prediabetes. You can get all the information you need about prediabetes on this page. We can assist you with anything from the fundamentals of what foods to eat and what to avoid for prediabetes to crafting a strategy that is uniquely suited to you and your situation. Additionally, the DASH Diet and Glycemic Index can be very useful tools for controlling your eating patterns and identifying the best foods to include in your new diet.
You are not the only person who has recently learnt about prediabetes. Only 10% of Americans, who make up one in three, are aware of their ailment. Consider prediabetes as a flashing Type 2 Diabetes warning indicator, comparable to your car’s “Check Engine” light.
Prediabetes is marked by:
- Elevated blood sugar (glucose)… but not quite high enough to be considered diabetic
- Often caused by insulin resistance (more on this later)
- Yet, there is plenty you can do RIGHT NOW(!!) to make things better
What exactly is prediabetes (and, a prediabetes diet)?
You have prediabetes, which is a precursor to Type 2 Diabetes. The good news is that you caught it in time to stop the train and stop your condition from getting worse. It is helpful to understand what prediabetes is in detail prior to beginning to make lifestyle adjustments. You have prediabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association, if:
- Hemoglobin a1c is between 5.7-6.4%
- Fasting Blood Glucose is between 100-125 mg/dL
- Oral Glucose Tolerance Test 2 hours after eating reads between 140-199 mg/dL
So what does this mean?
Most of the time, these numbers measure insulin resistance, which means that your body isn’t using insulin as well as it should. Insulin is a hormone released by the pancreas in response to glucose. When your body is using insulin properly, the process looks like this:
Consider insulin to be the key, and your cells to be the lock. Insulin opens the cells in a person who does not have insulin resistance, allowing glucose to leave the bloodstream and enter the cells for energy.
It appears as though the cells have changed the locks in a person who has insulin resistance. Insulin no longer interacts with cells or functions as an energy source. Rather, the glucose stays in the circulation, which keeps your blood sugar levels high. These blood sugar levels therefore show up on your lab results..
Improve your Prediabetes symptoms and take action — today!
Take your reading on the go and download the PDF, included with your downloadable guide is a 7-day meal plan complete with easy-to-follow recipes.
Am I at risk for developing prediabetes?
The challenging aspect of prediabetes is that many patients don’t exhibit symptoms until Type 2 Diabetes has developed. As part of your continuous physical examinations with your doctor, routine blood tests are the most effective way to identify prediabetes. If you have a higher chance of getting prediabetes, it is extremely crucial to be vigilant with your screening.
Risk factors for prediabetes include:
- Weight and waist size Overweight and high fat tissue increase insulin resistance. Studies have also shown a connection between insulin resistance and waist size: men with 40+ inch waist / women with 35+ inch waist.
- Dietary patterns. Eating processed foods and drinking artificially sweetened beverages increases your risk of prediabetes and Type 2 Diabetes.
- Inactivity. Regular exercise helps you control our weight, uses stored glucose as energy, and helps your body’s cells avoid insulin resistance.
- Genetic factors such as family history and race / ethnicity Individuals with a family history of diabetes are more likely to develop prediabetes. African Americans, Hispanics, Native Americans, and Asian-Americans are also more likely to develop prediabetes.
- Other conditions Health conditions such as gestational diabetes (for both the mother and the child), polycystic ovarian syndrome, and obstructive sleep apnea, can increase your risk of pre-diabetes.
Other aspects of general health that are related to prediabetes include a few others. People with prediabetes frequently have high triglyceride levels, high blood pressure, and high levels of bad cholesterol called low-density lipoprotein. You can better manage all of these issues by adopting a controlled prediabetes diet and increasing your level of physical activity.
How to reverse prediabetes
The risk of acquiring Type 2 Diabetes can be decreased by more than 60% by making three key lifestyle changes, according to substantial study on prediabetes reversal conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It has been demonstrated that these lifestyle modifications, which are directly tied to eating habits and exercise, are even more beneficial than prescription drugs. How to effectively incorporate these adjustments into your lifestyle is something you and your dietitian can decide! The three primary methods to reverse prediabetes are described here.
Moderate weight loss 5-7%
According to research, a moderate weight loss of 5–7% can significantly lower the risk of acquiring Type 2 Diabetes. For comparison, this would be a 10–14 pound decrease for a 200-pound person. The Diabetes Prevention Program trial found that altering eating behaviors and upping physical activity helped participants lose weight and keep it off. To prevent your blood sugar from reentering the danger zone, the goal is to maintain a healthy weight over the long term. Even if you are not overweight, adopting healthier habits through a prediabetes diet and increasing your physical activity could be the two final elements needed to help your blood sugar levels return to normal. Let’s investigate the best course of action for this.
Regular physical activity
The CDC’s investigations have demonstrated that increasing physical activity is one of the key factors in curing diabetes. You might be thinking, then, how much exercise is sufficient. The CDC advises engaging in 150 minutes or more of physical activity per week. The “conversation test” can be used to identify moderate activity levels. You should be able to chat and have a brief discussion while performing your activity, however singing is not permitted. Your blood sugar will be lowered and you will lose weight if you include 150 minutes of exercise per week! The activity you choose should be something you enjoy doing and is entirely up to you. The options are unlimited, but you might discover that you like swimming, zumba classes, or going for walks outside with friends.
Despite the fact that there are numerous potential causes of prediabetes, eating choices are the main factor (the elusive prediabetes diet). In addition to having a direct impact on your body’s physiological functions, your dietary choices can also affect your weight. As you have already discovered, being overweight can cause prediabetes on its own. All of these elements are interconnected, therefore the key is to choose foods that will promote weight loss while also assisting in the restoration of our bodies’ physiological functions. But you might be wondering where a diet for pre-diabetes begins. The main guidelines are to increase your intake of high-fiber foods, fresh produce, and lean meats while lowering your intake of overly processed foods and sugary beverages. Let’s take a closer look at some of the foods that make up a diet plan for prediabetes.
So what foods will help me lower my blood sugar?
We advise consuming meals that are somewhat low in carbs and take longer to digest as part of a prediabetes diet. This helps stop a huge burst of glucose from sending your blood sugars through the roof. Lean proteins, foods with a low Glycemic Index, and foods high in fiber are all advised. See our list of things to eat if you have prediabetes:
|High FiberFiber-rich foods digest and absorb more slowly in the GI system, causing a slower rise in blood sugar. This helps prevent rapid “sugar spikes”.||Steel-cut oatsStone-ground whole wheat breadBeans and legumesFruits and vegetables|
|Lean ProteinsPrediabetes has been linked to other chronic conditions, such as heart disease. Including more lean proteins as opposed to proteins higher in saturated fat can have a cardio-protective effect!||EggsChickenFatty fish such as salmonGreek YogurtNuts|
|Low Glycemic IndexA food’s glycemic index reflects how quickly any given food will raise your blood sugar. To avoid drastic spikes in blood sugar, choose foods with a low glycemic index.||Non-starchy vegetables, such as carrotsSweet potatoesLeafy greensSquashCornWhole wheat pasta|
|Functional FoodsThere are also a handful of “functional” foods that can regulate blood sugar levels. Functional foods are naturally occurring foods that are shown to have additional medicinal benefits beyond basic nutrition.||CinnamonChia SeedsTumericExtra-virgin olive oilFlax SeedsApple Cider VinegarGarlic|
Are there foods I should avoid in my prediabetes diet?
We advise avoiding processed and refined foods as much as possible as part of your prediabetes diet. These foods frequently lack nutrients and have a high GI, which can result in sharp increases in blood sugar. Try to consume these components and meals in moderation:
- Highly Processed and Refined Foods
Processed and refined foods are extremely low in fiber and nutrients, which tends to absorb more quickly in the GI tract. These are the types of foods that cause drastic spikes in blood sugar. Replacing these foods with more nutrient-dense options will help prolong the release of glucose into the bloodstream.
- Trans fats
- White breads, pastas, and rice
- Packaged snack foods
- Foods High in Sugar and Sweeteners
Avoiding foods high in sugar and other sweets is crucial for managing prediabetes since they will produce a quick surge in blood sugar. Given that, you might be curious as to why fruit is still regarded as a “safe” diet for controlling prediabetes. Fruits are “OK” since the sugar type is natural (as opposed to added) and much lower than what you’d find in items with added sugar. To satiate your sweet taste, try substituting some fresh fruits for these dishes.
- Flavored coffee drinks
- Sweetened breakfast cereals
- Sugary drinks like soda
Lower and regulate your blood sugar with this pre-diabetic 7-day meal plan full of healthy, tasty ideas
- Prediabetes is extremely common but can be easily managed and even reversed with the right diet.
- A pre-diabetic diet won’t just help control blood sugar, it’s a healthier way to live your life.
- Our 7-day meal plan includes stir-fries, stews, chilis, zoodle dishes, curried lentils, and more.
Changing your diet is one of the best strategies to reverse prediabetes.
Untreated prediabetes, a health condition characterized by excessively high blood sugar levels, can eventually progress to type 2 diabetes.
Additionally, prediabetes can raise your risk of developing heart disease, metabolic illness, and stroke while also causing increased thirst and urination, headaches, and impaired vision.
Thankfully, it may be reversed with the appropriate lifestyle adjustments, chief among which is what you consume every day.
Note: About one-third of adult Americans, or 96 million people, are thought to have prediabetes.
According to Justine Chan, a registered dietitian in private practice and certified diabetes educator, the goal of a pre-diabetic diet is to control blood sugar levels so that your condition doesn’t worsen into full-blown diabetes.
Chan and other trained dietitians offer some advice on what to eat and what to stay away from when following a prediabetic diet below, along with a practical 7-day sample meal plan.
7-day prediabetes meal plan
When trying to control blood sugar levels and prevent spikes, here are some general rules of thumb:
- Limit carbs so you only get about half of your daily calories from carbs. So, for a 2,000 calorie diet that’s equivalent to about 250 grams of carbs per day. (This is the CDC recommendation for those with diabetes but it’s a good guideline for controlling prediabetes, too.)
- Limit added sugars, like what you find in non-diet soda and many processed foods (baked good, salad dressings, bottled marinades), to no more than 36 grams (9 tsp) per day for men and 25 grams (6 tsp) per day for women. Your doctor may want you to limit it to even less depending on the severity of your condition.
- Consume healthy complex carbs from sources like whole grains, fruit, beans, and vegetables that contain fiber and therefore take longer to digest, thereby helping maintain steady blood sugar.
- Pair carbohydrates with fat and protein to also help slow digestion and prevent blood sugar spikes.