Though individuals affected by diabetes need to cut down on the intake of food items that contain sugar, their diet should include food items that are rich in protein, healthy fat, minerals, vitamins, etc. This HealthHearty article lists out a few protein snacks for diabetics.
When diagnosed in early stages, the treatment for diabetes is mainly based on making changes in one’s diet, eating habits, and lifestyle. If it is diagnosed at a later stage, drug therapy would be required for keeping the blood sugar levels within the normal range. Thus, from the day a person is diagnosed with diabetes, he/she can no longer enjoy the regular diet. While diabetics have to cut down on the intake of sugar, they also need to follow the guidelines regarding the serving amount and calorie intake. In the following sections, healthy, protein-rich snacks that can be consumed by diabetics are listed.
Protein Snacks for Diabetics
For diabetics, the objective is to adopt healthy eating habits. One of the habits that they need to inculcate is to consume small servings at regular intervals. This brings a balance in the energy supply, without causing fluctuations in the blood sugar levels. For achieving the health goals, it is essential to have nutritious snacks in correct amounts. Also, these snacks should not elevate the blood sugar levels.
You can have ½ cup of fresh fruit salad. You can have fruits such as passion fruit, kiwi, watermelon, papaya, guavas, red currants, apples, and blueberries. You can sprinkle 2 ounces of grated cottage cheese on these fruits. Toss well and serve. Avoid fruits that are rich in sugar.
Vegetable and Bean Salad
Cucumber, broccoli heads, celery stalks, artichokes, lentils, green beans, and carrots can be used for making a vegetable salad. To improve the flavor, serve with a low-fat dressing like raspberry vinaigrette.
For making a vegetable soup, use healthy, non-starchy greens such as spinach, squash, celery, spring onion, etc. You can use vegetable (or chicken) broth in the soup. This vegetable soup is rich in fiber and proteins, but low in carbohydrate content. Also, you can consider adding protein-rich soy milk to impart a creamy texture to the soup.
Tree nuts such as almonds and walnuts are excellent sources of proteins, carbohydrates, dietary fiber, and other essential nutrients. Thus, they make healthy snacks for diabetics. However, keep the serving size small so as to cut down on calories.
Yogurt and Crackers
Low-fat yogurt contains both protein and carbohydrates in moderate amounts. Serve yogurt with 3 Graham wafers. The crackers make up for dietary fiber, which is not present in the yogurt. Thus, yogurt with crackers make a healthy and tasty snack for diabetics.
Peanut Butter and Crackers
Whole grain crackers are indeed healthy snacks for individuals affected by diabetes, as they are loaded with dietary fiber along with proteins. Consume a few crackers with peanut butter. Peanut butter can be replaced with a low-fat humus dip or low-fat cheese.
Bread and Turkey
Take 2 slices of whole grain bread and use baked turkey (strictly 2 ounces) as the stuffing. Top sandwich with slices of tomato, lettuce leaf, and mustard leaf. Baked turkey can be substituted with roasted chicken for variety.
Egg whites contain protein with low-calorie content (egg white from 1 egg is equivalent to 17 calories), as well as negligible saturated fats and cholesterol. Scramble it or make omelet, and serve with whole grain bread.
Banana and Peanut Butter
You can have a medium-sized banana with peanut butter or almond butter. This nut-based butter contains negligible amounts of sugar, salt, and cholesterol. However, check the serving amount, as both peanut butter and almond butter are loaded with calories.
Included in the list of high protein foods are beans and lentils. Also, they are low in fat and rich in dietary fiber. Thus, beans make a good snack for diabetics. Cooked beans can be served alone with flavorful herbs, or they can be used in soups and salads.
Diabetics should make sure that the food items that they consume are moderate in carbohydrates and protein content, and rich in dietary fiber. Also, healthy sources of carbohydrates such as fruits, whole grains, and vegetables should be preferred over others. A simple trick is to consume snacks that contain 1-2 ounces of protein and 1 ounce of carbohydrates; the total calorie count should not exceed 150 per serving.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a nutritionist or a dietitian.