Diabetes is a serious problem that can lead to numerous health complications and even death. Because of this, the diet of a diabetic is extremely important. Here are 10 foods that diabetics should avoid to help keep their cholesterol levels and blood sugar level in good shape.
1. French Fries
While most of us love their deep fried tastiness the fact that they are deep friend means that French fries are off limits for diabetics. An order of fries from a fast food restaurant can contain up to 1/3 of the daily calories that the average person should be eating in addition to being loaded with sodium and saturated fat.
This is another fast food favorite that is off limits. These calorie bombs can contain up to 400 calories for the small basic burger while containing loads of sodium, saturated fat, and cholesterol. So if a diabetic simply must have a burger, it would be best to make it at home with super lean meat and grill it so that the fat drains away and serve it on a whole wheat bun.
3. Fish Sandwiches
While fish itself is very healthy, and a great choice for diabetics, the breaded and deep fried varieties offered at most fast food joints is not. Like burgers, these are loaded with fat, carbs, sodium and calories, all of which are not things that a diabetic needs to eat. There are alternatives available for diabetics in the super market including things like salmon burgers or baked fish filets.
4. Fried Chicken
Who doesn't love fried chicken? Whether in its classic form or as buffalo wings, there is no doubt that fried chicken is delicious. However because it's fried, diabetics should steer clear. There is the option to oven fry the chicken, which isn't fried at all but the crispy breading and chicken skin is still off limits to diabetics. Fried chicken is also usually loaded in sodium.
5. Commercially Produced Baked Goods
Nearly 40 percent of the trans fat consumed in the United States is consumed in the form of commercially produced baked goods like cookies and cakes according to Diabetic Living Magazine. In addition to the trans fat, commercially available baked goods are also high in saturated fat as well as sugar and simple carbs, which is very bad news for diabetics.
6. Frozen Dinners
Frozen dinners in general and pot pies specifically are another no-no for the diabetic. These products contain high amounts of sodium, fat, cholesterol, carbs and calories. Unfortunately there really aren't any diabetic-safe alternatives to these products, so it's best for diabetics to avoid them altogether.
7. Deli Meat
Think a deli sandwich is a safe bet? Think again. Deli meats are full of massive amounts of sodium and fat, making them bad choices for diabetics. Fortunately there are low sodium lunch meats available, and diabetics can cut down on the blood sugar spikes by using whole grain breads. Wraps are an even better option. When made with whole wheat tortillas, wraps are even lower in carbs.
8. Soft Drinks Or Flavored Waters
These drinks are full of empty calories in the form of sugar. Since diabetics are unable to process the sugar without the aid of medications or insulin injections, soft drinks and flavored waters are a bad idea. Of course there are diet varieties available, though how healthy these drinks are is something to be debated. The best choice for everyone, whether diabetic or not, is water.
9. Purchased Smoothies Or Milkshakes
While milkshakes are notoriously unhealthy, smoothies might seem healthy on the surface, but in fact they can be loaded with sugar and calories. Even the "light" smoothies can have more than 30 grams of sugar, more than 30 grams of carbs and 170 calories in a 16 ounce serving. Since this is what is in a "light" version, it's best to avoid these drinks altogether.
10. Frozen Or Delivery Pizza
While pizza is among one of the most popular convenience foods in the United States, it's bad news for diabetics. Frozen or delivery pizzas are loaded with carbs, sodium, fat and calories. One slice can have over 300 calories, but who eats just one? When talking about two or three slices, the calories and extra carbs can add up.
Eating healthy is essential to a diabetic and none of the things on this list fall into the "healthy" category. By sticking to a proper diabetic meal plan, diabetics will be much healthier and, in the long run, they'll be much happier too.