In diabetes meal planning, blood sugar control is the main goal. Typically, people with diabetes are advised to follow carbohydrate-controlled diets in order to minimize blood sugar spikes and manage their disease. Since many foods contain carbohydrates, this can be a challenge. One must learn not only which foods contain carbohydrates, but how to control those portion sizes and divide the carbohydrate foods appropriately into meals and snacks for the day. |
During this process of learning and planning, you may also hear about "free foods." In the diabetes world, ''free'' foods are defined as foods (or drinks) that contribute a very small amount of carbohydrates and are also very low in calories. There are two categories of ''free'' foods.
Category #1: Even though this group is called "free," people with diabetes cannot eat them with reckless abandon (the name is slightly misleading). Rather, these foods are considered "free" because when eaten in specified portions, they do not need to be added to a person's allotted carbohydrate amount for a meal or snack. That's because these particular foods, although they may contain a small amount of carbohydrates, have a very minimal impact on blood sugar levels.