Because blood glucose is of primary concern to people with diabetes, Diabetes Food Groups focus on the way in which certain foods affect blood glucose levels. For example, in standard food groups, beans and legumes are usually grouped with meats due to their protein content. In diabetes food groups, however, beans are grouped with starches, because they affect blood glucose in the same way that starchy foods do.
Grains & Starches (carbohydrates)
Whenever possible it is recommended to choose whole grains. Low fiber
foods have a high glycemic index which raise blood glucose levels.
Choose more often whole wheat bread, cooked oatmeal, and less often,
Bagels (white), croissants and tortilla’s with white flour.
A portion is about the size of your 2 fists.
These generally cause a quick rise in blood glucose levels. Examples
include strawberries, apples and watermelons.
A portion is about the size of your fist.
Most are low in carbohydrates. Good, low carbohydrate options include
green beans, broccoli and spinach.
A portion is as much as you can hold in both hands.
Milk and Alternatives (carbohydrates)
Low fat dairy choices do not raise blood glucose levels as much or as
quickly as other foods. Examples include milk and soy milk.
A portion is equal to one glass of milk.
Meat & Alternatives (proteins)
Examples include cheeses, salmon, chicken, ground beef, lentils and
One portion is the size of your palm and the thickness of
your little finger.
Choose low fat sources more often. Examples are low fat cheeses, lean
“Bad” fats include saturated fats and trans fats.
“Good” fats are monounsaturated and polyunsaturated. They
include avocados, fish and oils like sesame, olive and canola oils.
Limit fats in your diet. A portion size is equal to the tip of your thumb.
Limit snacks and sweet high in simple carbohydrates (contain refined sugars
and very few vitamins and minerals), like cookies, regular soft drinks, jams
and ice cream.
You may consume low-calorie, low carbohydrate extras such as coffee, tea
and diet soft drinks.