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15 Healthy Snacks For Diabetics

Living with diabetes can limit one's desire to lead a normal life in various ways. And one amongst the limitations or difficulties is the struggle to chose a healthy snack. When you are on medication for diabetes, you have to eat at short intervals; pointing out the importance of carrying around snacks which will not adversely affect your health or worsen the condition. Therefore, it is critical that you chose a healthy snack which will help prevent your blood sugar level from becoming dangerously low [1] .

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There are a lot of specifications on what individual suffering from diabetes can and cannot eat, due to the high blood sugar [2] . Although it is critical and important to choose a healthy snack, it is not difficult to choose one. The everyday items that you consume and come across could make healthy snacks if they are eaten the right way, paired with the right food, and consumed in the right quantity.

Take a look at the number of options mentioned below.

Healthy Snacks For Diabetes

1. Apple with peanut butter

A rich source of dietary fibre, consuming apples can keep you feeling full for longer and if consumed before a meal, it could help you control your calorie intake. Sliced apples with peanut butter provide you with the necessary amount of energy and fibre. You can take one medium-sized apple and 2 tablespoons of peanut butter. Make sure that you do not eat more than one apple[3] .

2. Raw vegetables

A healthy option for snacking, munching on raw vegetables can help keep your blood sugar levels in a balance. Carry a box full of chopped carrots, cucumber and lettuce with you. These vegetables can be eaten raw and have little impact on your glycemic index [4] .

veggies

3. Almonds

These provide you with sustainable energy due to the omega-3 fatty acids present in them. Almonds also help provide Vitamin E. Have a handful (6-8) of almonds only because they are quite high in calories [5] .

4. Hard boiled egg whites

The protein from the egg whites is extremely good for your health, as it helps keep your blood sugar stable. You can also make egg muffins, which are made by mixing vegetables and egg whites [6] .

5. Salami lettuce wrap

Diabetics need to rely on protein snacks instead of carbohydrates. So salami (chicken, turkey or ham) is a great snack that comes up to just about 80 calories. Add some lettuce to it for dietary fibre[5] .

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6. String cheese

A protein-rich snack, these can help stabilise your sugar level and gives the required amount of energy. Two helpings of string cheese add up to 100 calories.

7. Homemade protein bars

A great option for diabetics, protein bars can help provide the necessary amount of protein. Unlike the store-bought protein bars which are extremely high in sugar, homemade protein bars has low sugar content. Try making protein bars with peanut butter, whey protein and oat flour [7] .

8. Fruit smoothies

Diabetics can try papaya, strawberry or grapefruit smoothies to control their weight and get some healthy nutrients. Consume fruits that have a low glycemic index (55 or less).

fruit

9. Pistachios

These help lower the bad cholesterol levels and does not increase your blood glucose levels. The most unique advantage of eating pistachios is that you have to shell them and thus be compelled to eat slowly [8] .

10. Sugar-free crackers

Diabetic crackers are widely available in every store these days. Have 3-4 of these crackers at a time.

11. Shredded cottage cheese

Rich in proteins and possessing very low sugar content, cottage cheese help improve your energy levels and is a safe choice of snack. You can grate cottage cheese and season it with omega-3 fatty acid-rich flaxseed oil [9] .

12. Peanut butter on breadsticks

As mentioned before, peanut butter is one of the best choices for a diabetic snack. Peanut butter provides the necessary dose of mono-saturated fats and also a wealth of hunger quenching proteins. You can have peanut butter with a breadstick or two for an energy-rich snack [3] .

butter

13. Black bean salad

Rich in fibre and protein, black beans are extremely beneficial for individuals suffering from diabetes. Mix cooked black beans with chopped vegetables (onions and bell peppers) to make the salad. These can help lower the insulin levels after meals as well as prevent blood sugar spikes [10] .

14. Popcorn

Although it may seem like unhealthy food, popcorn is a healthy whole-grain snack food; and is deemed as being one of the best snacks for people with diabetes. Low in calories, popcorn can help with weight control and blood sugar levels. Have one cup of popcorn as a snack and do not buy pre-packaged popcorn [11] .

15. Roasted chickpeas

A good source of protein and fibre, chickpeas are beneficial for your overall health and aid in preventing the progression of diabetes, due to its ability in managing blood sugar levels[12] .

Some of the other healthy snacks you can consider are yoghurt, tuna salad, hummus, guacamole, beef sticks, avocado, chia seeds, trail mix, and edamame (green soybeans).

Healthy Snack Recipes For Diabetes

1. Peanut butter protein balls (low-carb & gluten free)

Ingredients [13]

  • 1 cup creamy unsalted peanut butter
  • 1½ scoop vanilla protein powder
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 tsp. stevia
  • 20 raw, unsalted peanuts

Directions

  • Place the raw peanuts in a blender and blend until they become crumbly.
  • Transfer to a plate and set aside.
  • Mix the remaining ingredients together in a bowl until smooth.
  • Roll the dough into small balls.
  • Then, roll balls in the peanut crumbles and transfer them to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Place it in the refrigerator and let sit for 20-30 minutes.
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2. Avocado salsa

Ingredients

  • 1 medium avocado, peeled, cored and diced
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup peeled seeded chopped cucumber
  • ½ cup chopped fresh tomato
  • 1 bell pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon hot pepper sauce

Directions

  • Combine the avocado, onion, cucumber, pepper, tomato, 2 tablespoons cilantro, salt and hot pepper sauce into a medium bowl and gently mix.
  • Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.

3. Mediterranean deviled eggs

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup finely diced cucumber
  • ¼ cup finely diced tomato
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 6 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and sliced in half lengthwise
  • 1/3 cup roasted garlic or any flavour hummus
egg

Directions

  • Combine cucumber, tomato, lemon juice, and salt in small bowl
  • Gently mix it all together.
  • Remove the yolks from eggs.
  • Spoon 1 teaspoon of hummus into each egg half.
  • Top with ½ teaspoon cucumber-tomato mixture and parsley.
View Article References
  1. [1] Oba, S., Nagata, C., Nakamura, K., Fujii, K., Kawachi, T., Takatsuka, N., & Shimizu, H. (2010). Consumption of coffee, green tea, oolong tea, black tea, chocolate snacks and the caffeine content in relation to risk of diabetes in Japanese men and women.British Journal of Nutrition,103(3), 453-459.
  2. [2] Hernandez, J. M., Moccia, T., Fluckey, J. D., Ulbrecht, J. S., & Farrell, P. A. (2000). Fluid snacks to help persons with type 1 diabetes avoid late onset postexercise hypoglycemia.Medicine and science in sports and exercise,32(5), 904-910.
  3. [3] Smart, C. E., Ross, K., Edge, J. A., King, B. R., McElduff, P., & Collins, C. E. (2010). Can children with type 1 diabetes and their caregivers estimate the carbohydrate content of meals and snacks?.Diabetic Medicine,27(3), 348-353.
  4. [4] VanderWel, B. W., Messer, L. H., Horton, L. A., McNair, B., Cobry, E. C., McFann, K. K., & Chase, H. P. (2010). Missed insulin boluses for snacks in youth with type 1 diabetes.Diabetes Care,33(3), 507-508.
  5. [5] Gillespie, S. J., D KULKARNI, K. A. R. M. E. E. N., & Daly, A. E. (1998). Using carbohydrate counting in diabetes clinical practice.Journal of the American Dietetic association,98(8), 897-905.
  6. [6] Wilson, D., Chase, H. P., Kollman, C., Xing, D., Caswell, K., Tansey, M., ... & Tamborlane, W. (2008). Low‐fat vs. high‐fat bedtime snacks in children and adolescents with type 1 diabetes.Pediatric diabetes,9(4pt1), 320-325.
  7. [7] American Diabetes Association. (2007). Diabetes care at diabetes camps.Diabetes care,30(suppl 1), S74-S76.
  8. [8] Yale, J. F. (2004). Nocturnal hypoglycemia in patients with insulin-treated diabetes.Diabetes research and clinical practice,65, S41-S46.
  9. [9] Wolever, T. M., Jenkins, D. J. A., Vuksan, V., Jenkins, A. L., Buckley, G. C., Wong, G. S., & Josse, R. G. (1992). Beneficial effect of a low glycaemic index diet in type 2 diabetes.Diabetic Medicine,9(5), 451-458.
  10. [10] Geil, P. B., & Anderson, J. W. (1994). Nutrition and health implications of dry beans: a review.Journal of the American College of Nutrition,13(6), 549-558.
  11. [11] Alhassan, A. J., Sule, M. S., Atiku, M. K., Wudil, A. M., Abubakar, H., & Mohammed, S. A. (2012). Effects of aqueous avocado pear (Persea americana) seed extract on alloxan induced diabetes rats.Greener Journal of Medical Sciences,2(1), 005-011.
  12. [12] Sievenpiper, J. L., Kendall, C. W. C., Esfahani, A., Wong, J. M. W., Carleton, A. J., Jiang, H. Y., ... & Jenkins, D. J. A. (2009). Effect of non-oil-seed pulses on glycaemic control: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled experimental trials in people with and without diabetes.
  13. [13] Diabetes self-management. (n.d.). Diabetic Snack and Appetizer Recipes [Blog post]. Retrieved from, https://www.diabetesselfmanagement.com/recipes/snacks-appetizers/

Story first published: Thursday, May 30, 2019, 18:30 [IST]
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