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Healthy Cooking Tips for People with Diabetes 

A healthy diet is not only key to correct diabetes management, but it also helps you stay at a desirable weight, control your blood pressure, and prevent heart disease and stroke.

Always talk with your healthcare provider or a registered dietitian or nutritionist to get advice on planning and preparing healthy meals.

Some healthy cooking tips to lower caloric intake, saturated fats, and added sugars are:

  • Use nonstick cooking spray instead of oil, shortening, or butter.

  • If you do use oil, choose olive, avocado, corn, peanut, sunflower, safflower, vegetable, or flaxseed oil.

  • Season foods, like meats and steamed vegetables, with herbs and spices (like pepper, cinnamon, and oregano), vinegar, lemon juice, or salsa instead of salt, butter, or sugary sauces.

  • Use low- or no-sugar jams instead of butter or margarine on breads.

  • Increase your intake of omega-3 fatty acids. Try to get at least 2 servings a week of omega-3 rich foods. These include salmon, sardines, mackerel, herring, rainbow trout, and albacore tuna. Walnuts, flaxseed, and soy products are other omega-3 rich foods that can be added to a healthy diet. 

  • Eat whole-grain, high-fiber cereals or oatmeal with skim or 1% milk.

  • Use low-fat or fat-free dairy products like milk, yogurt, cottage cheese, and sour cream in place of full-fat versions.

  • Drink 100% fruit juice that has no added sugar. And limit your serving size. Eating whole fruits is a better choice.

  • Trim excess fat off meats and eat chicken or turkey without the skin.

  • Always buy lean cuts of meat and choose a healthy cooking method, like broiling, roasting, stir-frying, or grilling.

  • Buy whole-grain breads and cereals instead of ones made with processed, refined grains like white flour.

  • Balance carbohydrate foods with lean protein and healthy fats in the same meal or snack. Spread your carbohydrate intake evenly throughout the day.

  • Examine food labels. Pay attention to portion sizes, added sugars, and carbohydrate content.

Healthcare providers and other healthcare professionals can direct you to helpful resources that further cover meal planning, offer healthy recipes and cooking tips, suggest exercise programs, give you tips to manage your weight, and more. 

Online Medical Reviewer: Brittany Poulson MDA RDN CD CDE
Online Medical Reviewer: Heather M Trevino BSN RNC
Online Medical Reviewer: Rita Sather RN
Date Last Reviewed: 1/1/2024
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