Tips On Packing Meals

Packing meals to take with you is the best option. Bring healthy food from home with you, such as sandwiches on whole grain breads, nuts, fruits, and washed, pre-cut vegetables. You can also take cooked vegetables, such as lightly blanched zucchini, small white or sweet potatoes, or a colourful blend of red and white kidney beans, black beans, chick peas, and corn. Lightly season with olive oil and lemon juice or simply enjoy the natural flavours!

Watching your carbohydrates while away from home

Carbohydrate raise your blood glucose. To manage diabetes, you need to know how much carbohydrate is in your meal or snack. This is also important to watch when you are away from home. If you are on insulin, speak to your healthcare team about planning your meals and insulin adjustments.

General guidelines on carbohydrate choices

The amount of carbohydrate you need depends on your age and weight. It also depends on how active you are. Talk to the dietitian on your health care team to see what amount is right for you.

In this chart, 1 carbohydrate choice = 15 grams of carbohydrates.

Women Men
In a meal 3 to 4 carbohydrate choices 4 to 5 carbohydrate choices
In a snack 1 to 2 carbohydrate choices 1 to 2 carbohydrate choices

How to read the Nutrition Facts

In restaurants, ask the server for a copy of the nutrition information for the foods on the menu. This table below appears on packaged foods. Nutrition information from restaurants may not follow the format below; however, these are elements that you may want to consider to look for:

   

Nutrition Facts

What should my blood glucose be before and after meals?

For most people:

Before meals 4 to 7 mmol/L
2 hours after meals 5 to 10 mmol/L

If your blood glucose is going too high after meals, ask yourself:

  • Are my meals balanced?
  • Did I include some protein and fat?
  • Am I eating too many carbohydrates?
  • Am I getting enough exercise?
  • Should I talk to my healthcare team about changing my medications?

Learn more about how to make carbohydrate choices, refer to Paving Your Path to Diabetes Management: Basic Carbohydrate Counting and The Glycemic Index.

Try to eat on time

Your meals should be spaced 4 to 6 hours apart. If your meal will be earlier or later than usual, you may need to adjust your insulin or change the timing of a snack. This will avoid having a high or low blood glucose level. Don’t skip meals or snacks if they are part of your meal plan.

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