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Top 30 Foods to Help you Manage Diabetes

Last updated on : 16 May, 2024

Read time : 8 min

Diabetes is a significant threat to health, affecting a considerable population. You are more susceptible to diabetes if you are overweight and lack physical activity. The most potential treatment for diabetes is switching to healthy eating. It includes generous amounts of fruits, vegetables, fibre, healthy carbs, and healthy fats. Healthy eating will help regulate your blood sugar levels and reduce your risk of cardiovascular diseases and certain types of cancer. 

Checkout this list of 30 Best food you can include in a diabetic diet:

1. Blueberries

Blueberries are rich in antioxidants and fibre. They also contain necessary vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C, vitamin K, manganese, and potassium, which help reduce oxidative stress in people with diabetes.

2. Chia seeds

Chia seeds provide a good source of protein and fibre. These are rich in high antioxidants and omega-3. The greater extent of fibre help in type 2 diabetes by slowing down digestion and releasing glucose. You can consume chia seeds as chia sprouts in salads, chia seeds in beverages, in cereals-based foods, and even in raw form.

3. Bitter gourd or karela

Bitter gourd or karela is a very popular vegetable in Indian grocery stores. It contains certain chemicals that seem like insulin and helps lower blood sugar levels.

It contains vitamins A and C, beta-carotene and minerals like iron and potassium. Besides, diabetes can treat skin diseases, asthma, and digestion problems.

4. Extra virgin olive oil

Olive oil is high in antioxidants and healthy fatty acids, which should replace other cooking oils in the kitchen. It has a high potential to manage and prevent the risk of type 2 diabetes.

5. Yoghurt

Probiotic yoghurt is a recommended nutritional approach for type 2 diabetes and obesity. It is a source of protein (8.5 g per cup) that contains all nine essential amino acids. It improves gut health, lowers cholesterol, reduces oxidative stress and inflammation, and increases insulin sensitivity. Therefore, it is a preferred choice for patients with type 2 diabetes.

6. Sweet potatoes

Sweet potato or shakarkandi is low in glycemic index, which makes it a good choice for diabetes. Besides, it is an excellent source of fibre that controls the blood sugar spike. 

7. Canola oil

Expeller-pressed canola oil is rich in omega 6 fatty acids and omega 3 fatty acids, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. Therefore people with diabetes must replace it with their ordinary cooking oil.

8. Jamun

The glycemic index of Jamun is 25, which is exceptionally low, which is why they are considered the best fruit for people with diabetes. Since Jamun has a low glycemic index, it effectively controls high blood sugar levels. Besides, it can also help in weight loss and prevent the onset of diabetes.

9. Peanuts

Having peanuts or peanut butter helps control your blood sugar throughout the day. You can also combine these with foods with a high glycemic index to lessen the insulin spike.

10. Walnuts

People with diabetes are susceptible to heart disease or stroke, so they must incorporate healthy fatty acids into their diet. Walnuts are enriched with healthy fats, which are suitable for reducing cholesterol.

Read more Walnut for diabetes

11. Pumpkin

Incorporating pumpkins into the diet can help regulate blood sugar levels for people with or without diabetes. It is low in calories and glycemic load, which is good for weight loss as well as managing diabetes.

12. Kidney beans or Rajma

Kidney beans are low on the glycemic index and high in protein. It can help lower blood sugar levels better than many other starchy foods.

13. Eggs

Eggs are an excellent choice for people with diabetes. It is suitable for managing cholesterol levels in people with diabetes. One egg offers only 75 calories,7 g of high-quality protein, 5 g of fat, and 1.6 g of saturated fat.

14. Cucumber

Incorporating cucumber into a diabetic diet reduces blood sugar levels, lowers the risk, and prevents blood sugar drops during hypoglycemia.

15. Brown rice

Brown rice is high in fibre content. Eating brown rice can significantly reduce blood sugar levels post-meal in overweight people with type 2 diabetes.

16. Oatmeal

Oatmeal from whole grain oats has a low glycemic index (GI) and is rich in soluble fibre. It can help type 2 diabetes patients control their diabetes.

17. Whole grain pasta

Pasta made of Whole grains is considered a complex carb. Further, Complex carbohydrates are loaded with fibre, vitamins, and minerals and are digested more slowly by the body than refined carbs. So whole grain pasta will not cause a blood sugar spike.

18. Broccoli

Broccoli contains sulforaphane, which helps reduce blood glucose levels in diabetes.

19. Spinach

Spinach is a good source of potassium, vitamin A, and calcium fibre. Incorporating spinach g into the diet can help regulate blood sugar levels and lower blood pressure in people with hypertension.

20. Carrots

Carrot is a non-starchy vegetable and rich in fibre. Therefore, it is a safe choice for people with diabetes.

21. Strawberries

The glycaemic index of strawberries is 41, meaning it will not spike your blood sugar level. Besides, it is also rich in magnesium which can improve insulin resistance and reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.

22. Oranges

Oranges are rich in vitamin C and antioxidants called hesperidin and naringin. These antioxidants exhibit antidiabetic effects and are highly recommended to be incorporated into a diabetic diet.

23. Beetroot

Beetroot is rich in antioxidants that can help regulate glucose, insulin levels, and other chronic conditions in type 2 diabetes patients.

24. Mustard greens

Mustard greens, famous by the name saag, are a prevalent winter food in India. Mustard greens are rich in antioxidants like beta carotene, which are good for the skin and lower risk factors for diabetes.

25. Gram flour

The glycemic index of gram flour ranges from 28–35, which is very low compared to wheat flour. Besides, the carbs in gram flour are also half the white flour, making it the best substitute for flour.

26. Multigrain bread

A multigrain bread contains flaxseed, chia seeds, wheat bran, sunflower seeds, and oats. These ingredients make the bread more fibrous and low in glycaemic index. Therefore it is a recommended substitute for white bread.

27. Amaranth 

Amaranth is a gluten-free pseudocereal, and its seeds are traditionally consumed in beverages and food preparations such as soups and bread. It is rich in lysine protein, dietary fibre, bioactive compounds and vitamins. Incorporating amaranth into the diet can stimulate insulin secretion in type 2 diabetes.

28. Quinoa

The dietary fibre in quinoa is higher than any other available grains. Therefore it is a beneficial grain for people with diabetes to prevent their sugar levels from a spike. 

29. Buttermilk

Buttermilk or chaas is a healthy, fermented beverage that offers protection against the onset and therapeutic benefits to control type 2 diabetes.

30. Cottage cheese

Cottage cheese is an excellent snack for people with diabetes. It is low in carbs and protein, which is suitable for controlling blood sugar levels.

The 30 foods mentioned above for diabetes are readily available in your kitchen. These superfoods can work wonders to bring glucose levels to a normal range. Besides, you should explore which foods best work on your body to lower glucose levels. 

Disclaimer: The information given in this article is true to our best knowledge. Still, we recommend you consult your registered dietician or nutritionist before taking any foods mentioned in this article.

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Our healthcare experts have carefully reviewed and compiled the information presented here to ensure accuracy and trustworthiness. It is important to note that this information serves as a general overview of the topic and is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to diagnose, prevent, or cure any health problem. This page does not establish a doctor-patient relationship, nor does it replace the advice or consultation of a registered medical practitioner. We recommend seeking guidance from your registered medical practitioner for any questions or concerns regarding your medical condition.


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