Diabetic snacking on the go is a fact of life for a type 2 diabetic. Here are some ways to lower your stress about finding good food away from home.
Running errands, taking kids places or waiting in doctor's offices means you may need to eat on the go.
What can you do if that happens?
You can find good snacks anywhere. If your kids want a Happy Meal, you do not have to do without.
One of those fruit and yogurt parfaits makes a great diabetic snack.
It has yogurt and berries. Leave off the super sweet granola topping for diabetic snacking without guilt.
Are you shopping for groceries? Here are some super low calorie foods you can snack on there.
Begin in the produce section with apples and pears, carrots and celery, or a small ready made salad.
All of them take nearly as many calories to digest as there are in the foods themselves.
A small container of strawberries, blueberries or fresh cherries
has very few calories, and diabetic snacking on these superfoods is always a good idea.
Or try one of the new yogurt smoothies in the dairy section. But first read the label to make sure the smoothie does not have lots of added sugar.
For a good salty pretzel, try Newman's Own Organic Pretzels. In 22 pretzels there are 120 calories.
You will also eat 4 grams of fiber and 5 of protein along with 22 grams of carbohydrate. Not bad for a crunchy snack.
If you want chips, the baked ones are best. Look for whole grain or try the veggie chips.
The best whole grain cracker at Walmart is a Wheat Thin or Ryvita. Read the labels and watch for added sugar in some of the flavored types.
You could find a snack size bag and add some string cheese. The whole grain, protein and fat will keep you going for hours without the low that comes later from eating carbohydrates alone.
Granola bars are full of sugar, but fiber bars can be good if you pick a low carb one. Low carbohydrate counts mean less added sugar.
Nuts of all kinds make great snacks, but watch out for trail mixes. They are made for hikers who need lots of carbohydrates for quick energy.
We diabetics do not need the extra sugar. Nuts without coating are best, but the calories add up fast so do not eat the whole bag.
FiberOne makes a 90 calorie brownie in several flavors. The fiber and fat slow down the glucose reaction to the sugar.
You could also try some Weight Watchers candy, but watch out for sugar alcohol.
If you do not like the stomach issues caused by sugar alcohols, try some dark chocolate.
There are 40 calories in one piece of Dove dark chocolate. The antioxidant in them is good for you in small amounts.
Jello Sensations are 90 calorie puddings that satisfy your sweet tooth without ruining your calorie count. I love the lemon ones.
Diabetic snacking on sweets can be delicious and guiltless too, if you are careful.
The lowest calorie drink (besides water) is V8 if you want to avoid artificial sweeteners. That is because it is a vegetable drink.
All fruit juices have more calories than whole fruits (and no fiber), plus many of them have added high fructose corn syrup.
Do you want to compare juices? This list tells you the calories in 8 ounces (one cup).
Remember that most juices come in bottles of 11 or 12 ounces.
V8 vegetable juice - 50
V8 Splash - 70
V8 Diet Splash - 10 (has artificial sweetener)
Orange juice - 112
Apple juice - 117
Pineapple-orange-banana - 100
Grapefruit - 96
Cranberry (sweetened) - 130.
You could just drink flavored water or plain bottled water.
A squeeze of lemon in a glass of water lowers the impact of carbohydrates on your blood sugar. Plus water slows down digestion of carbohydrates.
Smart diabetic snacking includes nuts, cheese and yogurt.
Of course all yogurts are not equal. The Greek ones have the highest protein.
Watch out for ready to eat protein snacks. Most of them are wrapped in high glycemic flour.
Beans are a great source of protein too. Look for hummus, a Mediterranean food made from puree of garbanzo beans (chickpeas), olive oil and sesame seeds.
This high protein snack food can be used as a dip or spread on whole grain crackers.
For diabetic snacking, it adds good protein and olive oil. Two pluses.
Compare it to Fritos bean dip which has 2 grams of protein for every 5 grams of carbs. You can find a hummus that has 1 gram of protein for every 1 gram of carbs.
Deli sliced meat is another good protein choice. There are plenty of low fat ones.
Three slices of smoked turkey breast add up to 90 calories of pure protein. Roll one up to make a finger food that satisfies.
Most deli meats have nitrites, but read the labels and you can avoid this harmful additive.
The chronic stress that type 2 diabetes adds to your daily life does more harm than eating carbohydrates now and then.
This advice on diabetic snacking is given to make your life easier.
If you are away from home and need to eat, these ideas might save you from stress because you are prepared.
But if you are faced with limited choices, do not stress over it.
Chronic stress is a bigger enemy to diabetics than carbohydrates. The page on stress explains why.
I hope these ideas make your busy life easier in spite of type 2 diabetes.
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