Manette Rishardson , RDN, CDE, LDN & Master Trainer Diabetes Prevention Program, 

Manette Rishardson, RDN, CDE, LDN & Master Trainer Diabetes Prevention Program, 


Ask Manette......

If you have questions about your diabetes, what to eat, your medications, or what your numbers mean. then send your questions to Manette.

So what can you eat? I have been avoiding sugar.

We know the arguments against eating carbs. Other than fiber, carbs are either sugars or starches that break down into sugars. Since people with diabetes have little to no effective insulin, which is necessary for handling sugars (glucose), they probably shouldn’t eat them.

It seems clear that the successful ones eat very low amounts of refined sugars and simple starches. They may have small amounts of truly whole grains (not stuff that is marketed as “whole grain” but is actually highly processed). They eat small amounts of fruits and starchy vegetables. (Diabetic low-carb guru Dr. Richard Bernstein says he hasn’t eaten a piece of fruit in decades.)

What’s left? Well, from a carb standpoint, you can eat as much animal food, like meat and eggs, as you want. They don’t have any carbs (although dairy products do). You can vary that with sea animals — they don’t contain carbs either. Nuts are also terrific low-carb foods. Another  option are soy products like tofu.

What’s the difference between carbohydrates and sugar?

Carbohydrates are the types of foods that break down into glucose (sugar) in your blood. Sugar is a type of carbohydrate that turns into glucose very quickly in the body. Carbohydrates are an important part of healthy eating, but because they will affect your blood sugar levels, the amounts and types that you eat matter.

Is diabetes reversible?

Most people with diabetes will have it for the rest of their life or until there is a cure. Even if diabetes cannot be reversed, it can definitely be managed to prevent or delay complications. You can do this by keeping your blood glucose (sugar), blood pressure and cholesterol in target. Physical activity and nutrition are great ways of meeting these targets. Medication can also help.