Low-carb lunch ideas

Low Carb Lunch Ideas

When you have diabetes, carbohydrates are talked about to exhaustive extents. Many people with diabetes feel that carbohydrates should be eliminated or heavily restricted. However, carbohydrates are the body’s preferred energy source. Your brain requires a minimum of 100 grams of glucose (broken down carbohydrate) each day. If you eat less, your body will be required to use other fuel sources (protein and fat) to make enough glucose to fuel the brain.

In my years as a diabetes educator and registered dietitian, I have seen that a modest carbohydrate restriction can help improve blood glucose control. When carbohydrates are consumed they should come from nutrient dense sources such as whole grains, fresh fruits, vegetables, legumes and low fat dairy.

I have shared a week of menu ideas for low carbohydrate breakfasts and dinners so far. This article includes a week of low carbohydrate lunch ideas. Each meal has 12 grams of carbohydrate or less per serving. To make the meal more complete, choose one of the following foods for an additional 9 to 20 grams of carbohydrate.

  • 1-cup berries (80 calories, 17 g Carb)
  • 1 small apple (78 calories, 21 g Carb)
  • 7 oz plain Greek yogurt (150 calories, 8 g Carb)
  • ½ whole-wheat pita (85 calories, 18 g Carb)
  • 6 Triscuit crackers (120 calories, 20 g Carb)
  • 1-cup skim milk (90 calories, 12 g Carb)

Low Carb Lunch Ideas

Monday

Turkey & Cheese Lettuce Wrap

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz sliced turkey
  • 1 slice mozzarella
  • 1 lettuce leaf
  • 1 tsp mustard

Directions:

  • Place sliced turkey & mozzarella in lettuce leaf.
  • Top with mustard.

Nutrition Facts:

  • 193 calories
  • 2 g carb
  • 25 g protein

Tuesday

Tuna Salad on Sliced Cucumber

Ingredients:

  • 3 oz white tuna in water
  • 1 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 1 cup sliced cucumbers

Directions:

  • Mix together tuna and mayonnaise.
  • Spread on cucumber slices.

Nutrition Facts:

  • 150 calories
  • 7 g carb
  • 8 g protein

Wednesday

Grilled Chicken Salad

Ingredients:

  • 4 oz baked chicken breast
  • 1 cup romaine lettuce
  • 1/4 cup cherry tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp vinegar
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Directions:

  • Bake chicken at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes.
  • Cube chicken and place on top of lettuce.
  • Drizzle with vinegar & oil.

Nutrition Facts:

  • 281 calories
  • 3.5 g carb
  • 26 g protein

Thursday

Cobb Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup iceberg lettuce
  • 1 oz turkey bacon
  • 1/2 hardboiled egg
  • 1/4 cup avocado
  • 1/4 cup chopped tomatoes
  • 3 oz cubed chicken breast
  • 2 tbsp green onion
  • 2 tbsp crumbled blue cheese
  • 1 tbsp ranch dressing

Directions:

  • Top iceberg lettuce with all ingredients.
  • Top with ranch dressing.

Nutrition Facts:

  • 432 calories
  • 10 g carb
  • 33 g protein

Friday

Ham & Cheese Lettuce Wrap

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz sliced ham
  • 1 slice cheddar cheese
  • 1 lettuce leaf
  • 1 tsp mustard

Directions:

  • Place sliced ham & cheddar cheese in lettuce leaf.
  • Top with mustard.

Nutrition Facts:

  • 221 calories
  • 4 g carb
  • 17 g protein

Saturday

Pepper “Nachos”

Ingredients:

  • 3 mini peppers
  • 1/4 cup cheddar cheese grated
  • 2 oz shredded chicken
  • 1/4 cup tomato diced
  • 1 tbsp green onion diced
  • pinch salt
  • 2 tbsp guacamole
  • 2 tbsp salsa

Directions:

  • Cook chicken.
  • Remove stem from peppers and cut in half.
  • Combine shredded chicken, diced tomato, diced green onion & salt in bowl. Mix together.
  • Place peppers on baking sheet.
  • Add shredded chicken mixture to peppers.
  • Sprinkle shredded cheese on top of peppers.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 8 minutes.

Nutrition Facts:

  • 283 calories
  • 12 g carb
  • 26 g protein

Sunday

Deviled Eggs

Ingredients:

  • 3 hardboiled eggs
  • 1 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 1/2 tsp white sugar
  • 1/2 tsp white vinegar
  • 1/2 tbsp chopped onion
  • 1/2 tbsp chopped celery
  • pinch salt

Directions:

  • Cut hard boiled eggs in half.
  • Remove yolk from eggs.
  • Combine yolk with all ingredients.
  • Mix together in bowl.
  • Scoop ingredients into egg whites.

Nutrition Facts:

  • 282 calories
  • 7 g carb
  • 19 g protein
This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Type2Diabetes.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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