No meal is as important as breakfast in your day. Hence, a diabetic breakfast just might be the key to revitalized health.
Why is Breakfast so Special?
A good breakfast kick-starts your day, giving you enough energy to work and study. In fact, skipping breakfast causes you to lose focus and forces you to overeat later, to compensate.
This means a healthy breakfast should be top on your list to help you reduce you weight, which will improve your blood sugar control and insulin sensitivity. A great benefit for people with diabetes (especially type 2); and a defense against heart and kidney diseases, conditions that arise from diabetes.
Studies show that breakfast consumption should cover at least 15% to 25% of your energy intake per day. Aim for 30 to 45 grams of energy giving carbohydrates per day.
Besides carbohydrates, include fiber and protein.
You Can’t Go Wrong With These Foods
Once you know the right ingredients, you can make a variety of delicious and healthy diabetic breakfast meals.
Here are the best foods to consider:
- Capitalize on whole grains like oatmeal and whole grain bread.
- Fruits such as apples and oranges are great treats and high in fiber, and control blood sugar.
- Research shows eggs won’t sway your cholesterol levels, but it’s wise for diabetics to take no more than three eggs per week. Season boiled eggs with black or cayenne pepper for exceptional taste.
- Multiple protein sources including milk, beans, flax seed and nuts.
- Plain Greek yoghurt sprinkled with strawberries or blueberries.
- Try out sweet potatoes, broccoli, leafy greens (spinach and kale), carrots and bananas.
- If you can’t do without coffee, take only one cup of black coffee after breakfast. It lowers risk of type 2 diabetes, endometrial cancer and stroke.
That’s all good, but how do you prevent impulse eating?
Stock up your kitchen with healthy foods. If you do impulse eat, at least you’ll only have nutritious options to binge on.
Diabetic Breakfast Examples
[content-egg module=Amazon template=custom/list]
You’ll never have a dull breakfast ever again with these tantalizing options:
With 4 servings (one sandwich each) and 25 grams of carbs per serving, this healthy meal from Diabetic Living will both excite your taste buds and satisfy you.
- 4 multigrain sandwich thins
- 4 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon snipped fresh rosemary or 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
- 4 eggs
- 2 cups fresh baby spinach leaves
- 1 medium tomato, cut into 8 thin slices
- 4 tablespoons reduced-fat feta cheese
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat your oven to 375 °F. Split sandwich thins and brush cut sides with 2 teaspoons of the olive oil. Place on a baking sheet; and toast in oven for about 5 minutes or until edges are light brown and crisp.
- Simultaneously, heat the rosemary and remaining 2 teaspoons olive oil in a large skillet, over medium-high heat. Then, one at a time, break eggs into the skillet. Cook for 1 minute or until egg whites are set, while the yolks are runny. After breaking the yolks with a spatula, flip the eggs and cook other side until done. Finally, remove the skillet from heat.
- Get four serving plates and place the bottom halves of the toasted sandwich thins on each plate. Next, divide the spinach over those sandwich thins and top them with an egg, 1 tablespoon feta cheese and two tomato slices. Sprinkle salt and pepper on it, and finally cover with the remaining sandwich thin halves.
Making 4 servings (four small pancakes each), WebMD’s diabetes-friendly pancake packs in fiber, proteins and wholesome carbs.
- 1½ cups nonfat cottage cheese
- 4 eggs, lightly beaten
- ¼ tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp orange zest (optional)
- 1 tbsp sugar
- ½ cup whole wheat pastry flour
- 2 tbsp chocolate chips
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 1½ cups raspberries, fresh or frozen
- In a food processor, blend cottage cheese, eggs, vanilla extract, orange zest (if using) and sugar until smooth.
- Add whole wheat pastry flour and chocolate chips, then pulse 2-3 times or until flour is just incorporated (don’t over-mix).
- Apply cooking spray on a large nonstick skillet, and then place it over medium heat. Use ¼-cup servings to pour pancake batter, when the pan is hot enough.
- When pancakes start to bubble, scatter raspberries over top, and flip to cook the other side, for about 1 minute.
Each serving offers: 261 calories, 20 g protein, 26 g carbohydrate, 8 g fat (4 g saturated fat), 172 mg cholesterol, 410 mg sodium, 5 g fiber, and 9 g sugar. 28% of the calories come from fat.
Remember to check your blood glucose before a meal and two hours thereafter.
Advantages and Disadvantages of a Diabetic Breakfast
Why should you go through all the trouble of making a special diabetes-friendly breakfast?
The benefits you get include:
Blood sugar control
This is the singular goal in diabetes management. Hence, a diabetes-friendly meal controls the quantity of carbohydrates you eat for enhanced blood sugar management.
With proper management, your blood sugar levels should range from 90 to 130 milligrams per deciliter before meals; and not more than 180 milligrams per deciliter after two hours.
For an overweight and diabetic person, any weight reduction improves blood sugar. A diabetic diet is much like a weight-loss meal plan, which achieves this through emphasis on whole grains, lean protein, fruits, and vegetables.
However, you may have to overcome a few disadvantages of such a diabetic diet:
It’s no fun eating the same food at the same time every day, as the diabetic meal plan recommends; but without that consistency, you’re less likely to achieve blood sugar control.
When planning your diet, you need to count the carbs you eat in every meal. Some people might find this quite complex at first, although a few useful planning tools can simplify the process.
Eating healthy complements the medication you take and other blood sugar management strategies. Fortunately, with the right plan, diabetic meals will no longer be something you suffer through, but enjoy.