healthy snacking for diabetesWhether you have Type 1 or Type 2 Diabetes, or if you don’t have diabetes at all,  it’s important to consider several things when it comes to snacking:

Carbohydrates and G.I.

Understanding how much and what type of carbohydrate is in a snack will give you a good gauge of how you blood sugar levels will rise and fall after eating. Foods containing carbohydrate such as bread, biscuits, crackers, fruit and milk will make blood sugar levels rise higher than low carbohydrate foods like eggs, nuts or vegetables.

G.I refers to the Glycemic Index, which is a measure of how quickly blood sugar levels will rise and fall after eating a food. Foods high in refined sugars like lollies, biscuits and cakes will make blood sugars levels rise very quickly, but also fall very quickly. These foods would have a High GI.

Foods that have lots of fibre take longer to breakdown and the sugar enters the blood more slowly. As a result your blood sugar levels are more stable and decrease at a less dramatic rate. For this reason its great to look for high fibre, wholemeal and wholegrain snack options where possible. These foods would have a low GI

Protein

Proteins are the building blocks of all our body tissues. Snacks containing protein are more likely to keep you fuller for longer. Plus, foods high in protein and wont’ raise blood sugar levels as high as carbohydrate rich foods. Including protein rich foods such as low-fat milk, yoghurt, eggs and nuts in your snack options can be a great choice to stave off hunger between meals.

Fat

Like protein, snacks containing fat won’t raise blood sugar levels. Having small amounts of healthy fats can be good for a number of health reasons. However, foods high in fat are often high in energy so it is important to be conscious of portion size. Choose snacks foods with a moderate amount of vegetable fat such as avocado and nuts.

walnuts

Vitamins and Minerals

Whenever we think about having something to eat its a great idea to ask ourselves – how is my body going to benefit from eating this food? Looking for foods that have a lot of vitamins and mineral is a wonderful way to ensure your body will benefit from what your eating. Whole fruits and vegetables are the best source of vitamins and minerals and if you get a bit creative, they can make delicious snack options.

Below are some easy snack ideas that tick all the boxes above

a small hand full of nuts vegetable sticks with hummus or cottage cheese rye “Cruskits” with sliced cheese & tomato
1/2 an avocado with lemon juice smoothie (milk, yoghurt & banana) 1/2 – 1 Be Natural (or similar) nut bar
“Chick Nuts” or “Fava Nuts” natural or greek yoghurt 1 boiled egg
a glass of milk or regular coffee (flat white) thickshake (milk and lots of frozen berries) 1 small protein bar or shake

Check out our other article with 27 low calorie snack ideas.

 

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