What Foods Must Be Avoided on the American Diabetes Association Diet?

While no foods are explicitly prohibited on the American Diabetes Association diet, the does plan discourage over consumption of starchy carbohydrates, sugars, saturated fats and trans fats. These compounds have the greatest impact on blood glucose and cholesterol levels and are often the source of unnecessary calories, states the ADA.

With the American Diabetes Association diet, the type and amount of carbohydrates and fats are emphasized for a satisfying diet with abundant choices. Guidelines recommend choosing carbohydrates that are nutrient-dense and full of fiber, like non-starchy vegetables; fruits and vegetables with edible skins or seeds; whole grain cereals, breads and pasta; nuts and legumes. Added sugars should be avoided as much as possible, especially when it comes to beverages and desserts. Quantity is just as important as quality and individual needs vary. The ADA recommends starting with 45-60 grams of total carbohydrates per meal and adjusting as necessary to meet energy needs.

Fats are embraced as an important part of a balanced diet, however, not all fats are created equally, notes the ADA. Trans fats should be avoided as much as possible, and saturated fats should be limited to less than 20 grams or 10 percent of total calories. Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats are considered healthy and should constitute about 30 percent of total calories.