People with diabetes have to be extra careful when it comes to their diet. They must ensure that they consume healthy food and avoid unhealthy food at all times. They must eat three square meals a day and not skip any meals since it can affect their blood glucose levels.
- Grilled portobello mushroom and vegetable stir-fry with quinoa
- Veggie and Hummus Sandwich
- Mediterranean Turkey Wrap
- Grilled Salmon with greens and sweet potatoes
- Cobb Salad
- Egg Salad on a Whole Grain Bun
- Brown rice with pinto beans and spinach salad
- Choosing the right ingredients
- Foods to avoid
- Tips for maintaining healthy blood glucose levels whenever you eat lunch
- Try out some of these easy diabetic lunch ideas
This article will provide some healthy lunch ideas and tips on how diabetics can maintain their blood glucose levels when having lunch. Without further ado, here are some easy and diabetic-friendly lunch ideas.
Grilled portobello mushroom and vegetable stir-fry with quinoa
- Heat 2 teaspoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic, mushrooms, bell pepper, and red onion; sauté for 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender-crisp.
- Add quinoa; cook 1 minute more or until heated (do not drain). Remove from heat; stir in lemon juice, salt, and pepper to taste.
- Divide mixture among 4 plates; top each serving with 1 tablespoon yogurt and 1 teaspoon parsley before serving.
Veggie and Hummus Sandwich
If you're on a budget, the best way to ensure your meal is diabetic-friendly is to choose whole grains over refined ones. You can still enjoy sandwiches by making your own hummus and using veggies that don't contain too many carbs. A couple of whole wheat bread slices will give you enough energy to last through lunch without adding unnecessary sugar or fat.
To keep it simple, pick out one vegetable from each color group: red (tomato), yellow (cucumber), green (lettuce), blue/purple (spinach), and orange-ish/brownish things like bell peppers or carrots.
If you want more protein in your sandwich, throw in some canned tuna or boiled egg whites for extra flavor but try not to add any other meats since those are higher in protein than these options (and therefore less healthy).
If possible, always opt for low-fat dairy products—like low-fat cheese instead of regular cheese—or non-dairy alternatives such as sour soy cream or almond milk yogurt so they won't be loaded with sugar like regular versions.
Mediterranean Turkey Wrap
- Cook the turkey: Heat up a skillet over medium-high heat and add about 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add chopped turkey breast to the pan, season with salt and pepper, and then cook until browned on all sides (about 7 minutes).
- Make the wrap: While the turkey is cooking, slice up a baguette into thick slices (you'll want about 4) and brush lightly with olive oil or butter on both sides. Toast in oven at 350 degrees for 5 minutes until golden brown.
- Assemble your wrap: Lay out a piece of parchment paper or foil on your workspace, so it's long enough to hold your wrapped sandwich; spread hummus evenly over 3 slices of bread; top each slice with arugula leaves (about 2 tablespoons per slice), sliced tomatoes (about ¼ cup per slice), sliced cucumber slices (about ¼ cup per slice)
Then place cooked turkey breast on top, followed by crumbled feta cheese if desired; finish by topping with remaining slices of bread spread with hummus before wrapping tightly in parchment paper or foil.
Grilled Salmon with greens and sweet potatoes
This lunch idea combines delicious salmon, sweet potatoes, and greens. The combination of protein and fiber makes it a perfect meal for someone who wants to stay fit.
Salmon is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are known to be heart-healthy and may help lower blood pressure. It’s also a source of lean protein, meaning you can get all your necessary nutrients without too much saturated fat or calories.
Sweet potatoes are high in fiber and low in fat, making them ideal for diabetics who want to avoid sugar spikes from simple carbs like white bread or pasta (which can cause blood sugar levels to rise quickly).
Greens such as kale or spinach provide vitamins A, C, and K as well as iron — an important mineral for those with diabetes since it helps regulate glucose production in the body.
A Cobb salad is a variation of the traditional chef's salad. It consists of chicken, bacon, cheese, and hard-boiled eggs. A good source of protein, it can provide your body with much-needed energy when you're feeling tired.
To make a Cobb salad:
- Add some lettuce to the bottom of your bowl or plate.
- Add chopped chicken breast to the top of the lettuce layer; season with salt and pepper if desired (use about 1 teaspoon salt and half a teaspoon pepper).
- Add chopped turkey ham next; add seasonings again if desired (use about 1 teaspoon salt/half a teaspoon pepper). You could substitute roast beef for this step or omit it entirely if you prefer not to have meat at all! And that would still be fine too 🙂
Egg Salad on a Whole Grain Bun
Eggs are a good source of protein, so if you're looking for a meatless meal packed with protein, egg salad is an excellent option. Whole grain bread is also high in fiber and low in fat compared to other types of bread.
You can make your own egg salad by mixing hardboiled eggs, mayonnaise or mustard (if you want), dill pickles, onion, and celery. You can add other ingredients like salt and pepper to taste as well. If you have time before your lunch hour, this recipe will take about 15 minutes to make at home!
Egg salad on whole grain bread makes for an easy-to-eat diabetic lunch idea that's also very filling thanks to its high fiber content from both sources: whole grains plus eggs themselves being loaded with essential vitamins such as selenium which helps prevent cancer cell growth, among other benefits including lowering blood pressure levels!
Brown rice with pinto beans and spinach salad
- Prepare the brown rice by cooking it for about 30 minutes in a covered pot with 1 cup of water and 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
- Prepare the pinto beans by soaking them overnight, then boiling them for 20 minutes or until they're soft enough to eat, and then adding salt and pepper if desired (not necessary).
- Mix the brown rice, pinto beans, and spinach salad with a light dressing of your choice (I like vinegar-based dressings).
- Serve warm or chilled! You can also make this dish to store in the fridge overnight, so you have an easy lunch ready to go when you wake up in the morning—make sure it's cool enough before putting it into your lunch box, so the bread doesn't get soggy.
Choosing the right ingredients
When choosing your ingredients, choose lean protein sources such as fish, chicken, and beans. Choose whole grains over refined grains such as white flour products or pasta. Also, choose low-fat dairy products over high-fat options like cheese and butter.
In choosing the right ingredients for your meal, you also need to ensure that the food is prepared correctly by using healthy cooking methods like baking instead of frying or grilling instead of griddling or pan roasting. You should also avoid processed foods whenever possible because they are often high in sodium which may cause high blood pressure in diabetics with an elevated risk for this condition due to their insulin resistance.
To further reduce your risk of developing high blood pressure from eating too many processed foods with added sodium (salt), try sautéing rather than frying when preparing meats/poultry/seafood, as well as steaming vegetables rather than boiling them when making vegetable side dishes.
Foods to avoid
There are many foods that people with diabetes should avoid. Some of the most common food items that you should avoid:
- Fried foods
- Alcoholic beverages (unless you have been cleared to consume alcohol by your doctor)
- White bread and pasta
- Creamy soups
Foods like these contribute to high blood sugar levels and can cause health problems if consumed excessively. In addition, it is important not to overeat when you're eating out because portion sizes at restaurants tend to be larger than at home.
Tips for maintaining healthy blood glucose levels whenever you eat lunch
With these tips, you can maintain healthy blood glucose levels any day.
- Eat a healthy breakfast, even if you're not hungry: Eating breakfast helps to stabilize your blood sugar and decreases the likelihood of overeating later in the day. If you don't feel like eating in the morning, try drinking some tea or juice instead.
- Eat a small snack before lunch: Eating a small snack before lunch helps to prevent hypoglycemia between meals and can help keep your appetite under control throughout the day. You should also consider taking your medication at this time as well—it's important not to skip it!
- Eat a healthy lunch: Your lunch should be made up of foods with complex carbohydrates (such as whole grain bread) and lean protein (like chicken breast). Vegetables such as broccoli or tomatoes are also great additions because they contain vitamins necessary for good health!
- Eat another small snack after lunch: It's best practice to eat something every three hours so that sugar levels remain stable throughout our entire day; this will help prevent dips in energy levels, which can lead us towards those delicious treats we've been trying so hard not eat all day long! Again though, remember not too much.
- Choose whole grains instead of refined products, such as white rice or white bread;
- Try eating more vegetables instead of meat;
- Limit salt intake in order not to increase blood pressure levels any further
Try out some of these easy diabetic lunch ideas
We hope this article has inspired you to try some of our easy diabetic-friendly lunch ideas. Remember, always consult your doctor before making any significant changes to your diet.
We're excited for you to try these recipes, and we hope they make your life easier!