MyPlate and Diabetes

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“Eating for diabetes management is a breeze with MyPlate”, according to Victoria Shanta Retelny, RD, LDN, author of The Essential Guide to Healthy Healing Foods, “as it offers an instant way to control portions – and balance your plate with whole, real foods.” So divide your plate into parts:

  • non-starchy vegetables (at least 1 cup, if not more), such as broccoli, asparagus, cucumbers, leafy greens, bell peppers, tomatoes, onions, carrots;
  • grains (1/2 cup, cooked, preferably whole grain vari- eties) like whole grain pasta, brown rice, quinoa (of- fers complete protein, too), whole grain couscous, bulgur and whole grain bread, pita or wraps, as well as starchy vegetables like corn, peas and potatoes;
  • proteins (3-4 ounces), such as lean meats, skinless chicken and turkey breast, pork chops or loin, and beans, peas, legumes, as well as tofu and tempeh or 1 ounce of nuts like almonds, walnuts and pista- chios;
  • fruits (1/2 cup or medium-size) like apples, oranges, strawberries, grapefruits, bananas, peaches, nectar- ines and pears. Avoid the juice and eat the whole fruit!
  • dairy (1 cup), such as low-fat milk or plain yogurt;

Here is an example plate with nutritional analysis:

  • 1 cup non-starchy veggies like lettuce or broccoli
  • 1?2 cup fruit
  • 1?2 cup cooked brown rice
  • 3 ounces chicken breast, no skin
  • 1 cup skim milk

428 calories, 5.5 g fat, 1.5 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat, 82 mg cholesterol, 205 mg sodium, 53 g carbohydrate, 6 g fiber, 41 g protein.

Persons with diabetes may want to have the dairy and fruit later for a snack or dessert so they spread the carbohydrate out better throughout the day (2 snacks are best: one mid morning and one mid afternoon).

Here is what MyPlate looks like when it is filled half way with non-starchy vegetables and the other half with a cooked grain and lean protein:

  • 2 cup non-starchy veggies like lettuce or broccoli
  • 1?2 cup cooked brown rice
  • 3 ounces chicken breast no skin

328 calories, 5.5 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat, 77 mg cholesterol, 131 g sodium, 35 g carbohydrate, 6 g fiber, 36 g protein.

The calories and carbohydrate go down when the fruit is replaced with non-starchy vegetables and the milk and fruit are taken out and given to the snack period.

Visit MyPlate at http://www.choosemyplate.gov

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