If you are overweight, losing weight will have big health benefits and will help you more successfully manage your diabetes. Make sure you consult your doctor before you begin a weight-loss plan. Here are some helpful tips to keep in mind:
Eat more often (at least three times per day)
• Less hunger: Eat less at meals, but add snacks so you're not hungry
• Make good choices: When we are very hungry it's harder to make good choices and often eat too much
• Rev up metabolism: Eating regularly also helps keep your metabolism up and this helps you burn more calories.
Eat lots of fruits and vegetables
• Nature's health food: low in calories and very filling!
• Healthy snacking: Switch fruits and veggies for chips and candy to fill your body with disease-fighting nutrients
• Hunger check: If you're not hungry enough to eat a fruit or veggie, you're probably not hungry!
Choose light or low-fat options - but always check the label!
• Light: Usually means lower fat, sugar, and calories
• Low-fat: Less fat, but check the label for carbs and calories
• Low-carb: May be lower in carbs, but still have calories.
• Sugar-free: Does not mean "carb-free."
Make your favorite restaurant foods at home
• "Secret" ingredients: Pizza, nachos, stir fry, pasta, burgers and fries...! Restaurants often make foods with extra fat, salts, sugar, and calories; making them at home can save you lots of calories.
• Healthier ingredients: Use thinner crust, baked chips, low-fat cheese, lean meats, less oil or spray oil, light salad dressings, low-fat milk, bake instead of fry, etc.! Be creative!
Eat high fiber foods
• Fiber helps fill you up faster and stay full longer - but does not contain any calories!
• On the label: Look for things that have 3 grams or more of fiber per serving
• Typical foods: Whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and beans (none in meat, dairy, or fats like oil/butter)
Drink plenty of water
• Thirst and hunger: Sometimes we think we are hungry when we are actually thirsty
• Outsmart your body: Drink 8 ounces before each meal and snack
Use small plates
• Trick your brain: Using a smaller plate will make you think you eat more than you do!