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What are good snacks for diabetics?

Asked by John Goldrick, Los Angeles, California

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What are good snacks for diabetics to eat during the day?

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Diet and Fitness Expert Dr. Melina Jampolis Physician Nutrition Specialist

Expert answer

This is a great question, as smart snacking can help keep blood sugar and energy levels stable throughout the day and can help prevent overeating at meals, which may lead to weight gain and poor blood sugar control. Here are a few suggestions when it comes to smart snacking for diabetics (and for everyone else for that matter).

1. Limit sugary, highly processed snacks and beverages like chips, cookies, candy, juice, sugary waters and sodas, which can cause a rapid rise in blood sugar often followed by a subsequent crash, which can lead to fatigue and hunger.

2. Try to combine either lean protein (low-fat dairy is especially good) or a healthy fat such as nuts, nut butters or seeds with a healthy source of carbohydrates such as fruit, vegetables or whole grains.

3. Choose higher-fiber foods whenever possible to slow digestion and cause a more gradual rise and fall in blood sugar.

Here are a few ideas:

1. Plain, low-fat yogurt topped with 1 to 2 tablespoons of chopped nuts (add non-caloric sweetener as needed)

2. Carrots and hummus (hummus contains olive oil, another healthy fat source)

3. A half-cup of low-fat cottage cheese and an apple

4. Whole-grain crackers with 1 to 2 tablespoons of peanut butter

5. Half a turkey sandwich on whole-wheat bread with mustard

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