Diabetes Diet Plan for Vegetarians

If you are vegetarian and a diabetes patient, you must plan your diet well. The usual diet plan for diabetes patients, as recommended by ADA (American Diabetes Association) i.e. “the plate method” can not be used for vegetarian diabetics, because one of the portions of the plate method, i.e. one fourth of the plate consists of meat and meat substitutes such as fish or other animal products, which vegetarians do not eat. The vegetarian diet for diabetics must be well planned.

The numbers of vegetarians are increasing even in western industrialized world, although in many countries such as India a major percentage of population is vegetarian traditionally. The vegetarian diet is healthy, even if you have diabetes. Recent research suggests that eating vegetarian diet can help in controlling diabetes as well as in preventing diabetes. Eating vegetarian diet is a healthy option.

Make sure to add different vegetables, fruits, beans, whole grains, nuts and seeds in your diet. Vegetarian diet is high in fiber and very low in saturated fats, unlike traditional western diet, where a major portion consists of red meat. A diet high in fiber content can stay longer in stomach and helps you feel full for longer time, which helps you to eat less. In fact if you eat high fiber (more than 50 grams of fiber) vegetarian diet, you can never eat too much to become obese.

How to plan your vegetarian diet for diabetes?

In ADA recommended “plate method” of diabetes diet one fourth (25%) of plate consists of meat or meat substitute, half of plate consists of non starchy vegetables and remaining one fourth consists of starchy foods (such as rice, peas, pulses, whole grains etc.).

If you are planning vegetarian diet for diabetics (may be for yourself) fill half of the plate with non starchy vegetables (as recommended by ADA) and one fourth with starchy foods (as recommended by ADA). The remaining one fourth of the plate can be filled with nuts, seeds, soy beans, soy protein, mushrooms etc.

Do not forget to add fresh vegetable salad in addition to usual plate. Fruits with lower glycemic index can be added with every meal.

Image: Suat Eman / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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