Diabetes Diet

Diabetics Must Watch Their Carbohydrate Intake

If you are suffering from diabetes, then you need to be extremely careful of the amount of carbohydrates present in your diet. Here are some things that diabetics should know about carb watching.

Count your carbs
'Carb counting' can be an important meal planning technique in case you are suffering from diabetes. This meal planning technique aims at keeping a tab of carbohydrates present in your diet to keep your glucose levels in control. Since carbohydrates are known to increase your blood sugar levels, it is important that you be careful of the amount of carbs you eat.

Know your ideal carbohydrate intake
Once you start counting your carbs, it is important that you know what your ideal carbohydrate intake should be. The ideal carbohydrate intake varies from one individual to another as it depends upon carious factors like your medications and the level of physical activity. Ideally, 45-60 grams of carbohydrates per meal is more than sufficient for diabetics.

Check the carbohydrate content of foods
Since you are trying to control the amount of carbs you eat, it makes sense to know about the carb content of various foods. Though every food contains some amount of carbohydrates, there are some foods that contain a higher quantity.

Some examples of such foods are starchy foods like rice, bread, crackers, fruits, milk, and dried pinto beans. Sweet foods and ready to eat snacks like chips, nachos, pastries, candies etc are also an excellent source of carbohydrates. Starchy vegetables like potatoes and corn also contain abundant carbohydrates.

It is also important that you have a general estimate of the amount of carbohydrates present in each food item. For instance, a small piece of fruit or a single slice of bread contains 15 grams of carbohydrates. 2/3 cup of plain fat-free yogurt, 1/2 English muffin and 2 small cookies contain the same amount of carbs.

Reading the food labels becomes extremely important if you are trying to gauge the amount of carbs present in various food items. When checking food labels, there are two things that you need to take note of- the serving size and the grams of total carbohydrate.

Ideally, the amount of carbs in a food item are given on per serving basis. So, if you are buying a food item that calls for a larger serving then you need to multiply the amount of carbs given into the number of servings you will need.

The total amount of carbohydrates used in the food item should also be taken into consideration. Total carbs include fiber, starch and sugar. Also, make sure that you check the amount of saturated fats, trans fats and calories in the food item.

Keep a tab on your carbohydrates and you will be able to deal with your diabetes better.