What Should Be on the Menu for Someone With Type 2 Diabetes?

tomatoes and friends/CC-BY 2.0

People with Type 2 diabetes should eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and nonfat dairy products, recommends the American Diabetes Association. A diabetes diet should also include beans, poultry, fish and lean meats. It is important to monitor portion sizes and eat a variety of different foods. Foods that contain high-quality nutrients such as fiber, vitamins and minerals should be eaten instead of processed foods.

When forming a daily meal plan, it is important to consider size and level of physical activity, notes Mayo Clinic. Appropriate breakfast options for someone with diabetes who eats between 1,200 and 1,600 calories daily include whole-wheat waffles or pancakes, nonfat vanilla yogurt and fruit. For lunch, some choices include cheese and vegetable pitas, apples and almond butter. For dinner, beef stroganoff and a side salad would be appropriate. Speak to a registered dietitian to form a specific menu plan.

A diabetes diet is not restrictive, states Mayo Clinic. It is a healthy eating plan that involves eating a wide variety of nutritious foods in healthy portions. It is important to eat plenty of fiber, and avoid simple carbohydrates such as starches and sugars. Heart-healthy fish such as cod, salmon, tuna and halibut should be entrees at least twice per week. Foods that contain monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats can lower cholesterol, but consume them in moderation.