The best vegetables for diabetics are nonstarchy options including beans, broccoli, carrots, celery, eggplant, peppers, Swiss chard, sugar snap peas and radishes. The American Diabetes Association recommends diabetics eat three to five servings of vegetables a day; a serving is half a cup of cooked or 1 cup of raw vegetables.
Other suitable vegetable options include artichokes, asparagus, beets, cabbage, cucumbers, collard greens, sprouts, chayote, jicama, onions, mushrooms, leeks, rutabaga, tomatoes and water chestnuts. Salad greens are also a good choice for diabetics, including lettuce, escarole, endive, chicory, spinach, romaine, arugula, watercress and radicchio, notes the American Diabetes Association. Several varieties of squash are recommended, including cushaw, spaghetti, crookneck, summer and zucchini.
These vegetables are all low on the glycemic index, according to the American Diabetes Association. Vegetables are full of phytochemicals, fiber, mineral and vitamins, and they have very few carbohydrates and calories, making them ideal for diabetic nutritional goals.
The best vegetable choices for diabetics are vegetables that are fresh, canned or frozen without the addition of sugar, fat or sodium. Rinsing canned vegetables with water can help to remove some of the sodium used in packing them. Typically, canned and frozen vegetables in sauce have higher sodium and fat content, explains the American Diabetes Association.