Diet for Type 2 Diabetes and Overweight

nutrition for diabetes

The use of any drugs for type 2 diabetes still cannot fully compensate for the impact of malnutrition on blood glucose levels.Proper nutrition is an essential part of effective type 2 diabetes management and will help you reach your blood glucose targets.

Nutritional approaches for people with type 2 diabetes who are or are not overweight, arterial hypertension, etc. will vary somewhat.

The vast majority of overweight people with type 2 diabetes. Excess weight prevents its own insulin from acting effectively, which is why blood glucose levels remain high.Therefore, weight loss is an indispensable condition for rational treatment!Even moderate weight loss (by 5-10%) improves carbohydrate metabolism, especially in the early period of the disease.

How to achieve weight loss?

It should be noted right away that there are no specific products or medicinal plants for weight loss. Currently, there are no medications that by themselves, without dieting, could provide highly effective and completely safe weight loss.

The only reliable way is to limit the intake of energy in the body. (it is indicated in calories), i. e. compliance with the ruleslow-calorie food. The resulting energy deficit leads to the fact that the energy reserves "conserved" in adipose tissue will be spent on various needs of the body, and the weight will definitely decrease.

Energy carriers in food are its three components:proteins, fats and carbohydrates. The most high-calorie of them are fats, they contain 9 kcal per 1 gram; in proteins and carbohydrates - 4 kcal per 1 gram.
The most effective way to reduce the calorie content of a diet is to reduce its fat content. This is not only safe, but also useful for a modern person, since our diet, unfortunately, is oversaturated with fats. Compared to fats, the calorie content of proteins and carbohydrates can be considered moderate, however, in order to achieve a good effect in weight loss, they still need to be slightly limited.

There are a number of products that do not need to be limited when losing weight. On the contrary, it is these products that can compensate for the above restrictions and replenish the reduced amount of food. This group of foods is represented mainly by vegetables, which are poor in nutrients but rich in water, as well asvegetable fibersthat are not digested. Vegetable fibers bring many benefits to the body: they improve intestinal function, help the absorption of vitamins, have a beneficial effect on fat metabolism, etc.

There are three groups of products that, in order to reduce weight, need to be consumed in different ways.Looking at these groups, you will definitely have an association with a traffic light.

Maximum limit

High-calorie foods: rich in fats, alcohol, sugar and confectionery

Examples:any oil, lard, sour cream, mayonnaise; cream, fatty cottage cheese and cheese; oily fish, poultry skin, canned meat; fish and vegetable in oil; fatty meat, smoked meats, sausages; sugar, sweet drinks, honey, jam, jams, sweets, cakes, cookies, chocolate, ice cream, nuts, seeds, alcoholic drinks.

Moderately limit (eat half of the previous usual portion)

Medium calorie products: protein, starchy, dairy products, fruits and berries.
Examples:milk and sour-milk products of regular fat content or low-fat / skimmed, cheeses less than 30% fat, cottage cheese less than 4% fat, eggs, lean meats, fish, pasta, bread and lean baked goods, cereals; fruits, potatoes, corn, mature grains of peas and beans.

Use without restriction

Low-calorie foods: vegetables (excluding potatoes, corn, mature peas and beans), and low-calorie drinks.
Examples:radishes, radishes, beets, carrots, mushrooms, cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, zucchini, eggplant, bean pods, young green peas, lettuce, greens, spinach, sorrel, any cabbage; tea, coffee without sugar and cream, mineral water.

Is it possible to maintain a low-calorie diet without counting calories?

This is quite possible if guided by the principles of product selection outlined above. Moreover, it has long been recognized by experts that it is not the number of calories that a person needs to consume that is important (it is rather difficult to specify it for each person), but the one by which a person actually reduced his diet!

An indicator of the correct observance of the principles of low-calorie nutrition will be the achievement of the result: weight loss! If the weight does not decrease, this indicates that it has not yet been possible to significantly reduce the caloric content of the diet.

How do different carbohydrates affect blood glucose levels?

Carbohydrates are the only nutrients that directly increase blood glucose, but this is no reason to limit them drastically.

Carbohydrates in the diet of any person, including a person with diabetes, should be enough (at least 50% of total calories), as they are a source of energy for the body. Moreover, different carbohydrates have different effects on blood glucose levels.

There issimplecarbohydrates (they are called sugars), which are digested very easily, because they consist of small molecules and are quickly absorbed in the digestive tract (after 10 minutes). They immediately and very strongly increase the level of glucose in the blood. It is from these carbohydrates that sugar, honey are made, a lot of them are found in fruit juices (they are also found in natural fruit, but due to the presence of fiber, the absorption of carbohydrates is not so fast), beer. Such carbohydrates are also found in liquid dairy products, but due to the fat content, carbohydrates are not absorbed as quickly.

Another type of carbohydratecomplex(starches), they also increase blood glucose levels, just not as quickly and not as much as simple carbohydrates. Representatives of such products: bread, cereals, pasta, potatoes, corn. The starch molecule is large, and in order to assimilate it, the body has to work hard. Therefore, the glucose formed as a result of the breakdown of starch is absorbed more slowly (after about 30 minutes), which increases its level in the blood to a lesser extent.

Culinary processing of starchy foods (any grinding, prolonged thermal exposure) contributes to the rise in blood glucose levels. This means that a strong increase in blood glucose when eating starches can be prevented by using certain methods of processing and cooking. For example, it is more correct to cook potatoes not in the form of mashed potatoes, but to boil them whole in their skins, so that they remain dense. It is also better not to cook porridge for too long. It is preferable to cook them from large uncrushed grains (buckwheat, rice).

Enrichment of food with plant fibers prevents an increase in blood glucose levels. Therefore, it is better to buy grain or bran bread, and not from fine flour. Fruits and berries should be consumed in their natural form, not in the form of juices.

There are such types of carbohydrate products -"free", after which the level of glucose in the blood does not rise or rises slightly. These products include almost all types of vegetables in normal quantities (except potatoes). For example, cabbage, lettuce, parsley, dill, radish, turnip, zucchini, eggplant, pumpkin, pepper, etc. Among the products of this group, the largest amount of carbohydrates is found in beets and carrots, but the rise in blood glucose after them is not very large. Therefore, if you eat them in moderation (as a side dish, no more than 200 g), they can also be ignored.

Do I need to count carbohydrates?

A person with type 2 diabetes who is on oral antidiabetic drugs or who is just on a diet does not need to accurately calculate the amount of carbohydrates in food. Many people with diabetes have heard of the so-called bread units. A system of such calculation exists for those who receive insulin. It allows you to correlate the amount of carbohydrates consumed with the doses of short-acting insulin that these people with diabetes inject before meals.

Special "diabetic" products

Sweeteners can make food taste sweeter without raising blood glucose levels or gaining weight. But in this case we are talking only about non-caloric sugar substitutes. These include aspartame, saccharin, cyclamate, acesulfame potassium, sucralose, stevioside. They do not affect blood glucose levels and weight at all. However, most "diabetic" foods (cookies, chocolate, waffles) instead of sugar contain sorbitol, xylitol or fructose, which are almost as high in calories as sugar. Therefore, when overweight, they must be limited as much as possible, like regular sweets.

Fractional diet

Fractional mode means multiple meals during the day (5-6 times, but still not more often than after 2. 5-3 hours) in small portions. This is useful because hunger can occur when following a low-calorie diet. Eating more often will help reduce it. In addition, a small portion of food contains few carbohydrates, and this will facilitate the work of the pancreas.


Due to its high calorie content (7 kcal per 1 g), alcohol can contribute to weight gain. In addition, it directly worsens the indicators of fat metabolism and blood pressure. So limit your alcohol intake as much as possible.

Alcohol is known to have adverse effects on the liver. It can cause hypoglycemia if a person with diabetes is on glucose-lowering drugs and insulin. Never drink alcohol on an empty stomach!