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Muscles pop out of reusable groceries bag filled with cabbage, kale, sweet potatoes, yogurt, and beans.

Do Superfoods for Type 2 Diabetes Exist?

First things first: “Superfood” is a marketing term, plain and simple. It’s not regulated. It can’t be measured. The FDA doesn’t have a set definition for it.

Superfoods for type 2 diabetes

Still, there are some foods out there that sure are super for you if you have type 2 diabetes. Here is an incomplete list and some of my favorite ways to eat them.

Greek yogurt

This type of yogurt is thicker than regular yogurt (which I love), and it’s higher in protein and lower in carbs than regular yogurt, too. It’s also low on the glycemic index (GI), making it a great choice for those with type 2 diabetes (and people in general). Opt for an unsweetened variety and then add berries and nuts for a tasty breakfast.

Beans

Omg, as a vegetarian I love beans and eat them all the time. They’re full of fiber, have a dose of protein to level out their carb content, and are also a low GI food. Black bean and vegetable soup and bean burgers are my favorite healthy ways to consume them. Black bean brownies and as a nacho topping are my favorite fun ways to consume them.

Leafy greens

I mean, come on. You know by now that leafy greens are super for you, I’m sure. If you’re really not a fan, try fresh or frozen spinach, milk of your choice, and fresh fruit in a smoothie. You really can't taste the spinach at all! I also add cocoa powder (unsweetened, great source of fiber and antioxidants) and nut butter to my spinach smoothies. Kale can be used in smoothies as well, but I’d add citrus to your smoothie mix to balance out the flavor—a few squeezes of fresh lemon help quite a bit.

Citrus

Speaking of citrus, it’s a terrific fruit for you if you have type 2 diabetes. It’s full of fiber and lower in sugar, but do not, I repeat, do not drink straight up OJ. You need that fiber from the whole fruit to keep this in the healthy food category. Try oranges on a salad or in a smoothie, or just eat them plain. Smaller citrus fruits are good additions to Asian dishes, too.

Sweet potatoes

Yum, this list is really making me hungry. Sweet potatoes have a lot of things in common with the other items on this list: chock full of fiber, high in vitamins, low on the glycemic index. One tip: Avoid sugary, marshmallow covered dishes if you’re going to eat these on the regular. Try cutting them in wedges, baking them in the oven until baked through, and dipped in a mixture of greek yogurt, cinnamon, and smidge (a smidge!) of honey.

Nuts

Yes, these are higher in fat than many of the items on this list, but recent research has shown adults who have a handful of nuts each day actually maintain their weight over time, rather than gaining.1 Not to mention they are full of fiber and low on the GI thing. Try almond butter on yogurt, a small scoop of nuts on a salad, or simply pop a handful in your mouth to keep you going until dinner.

Other items I didn’t put on the list but still qualify as excellent foods include berries, whole grains, tomatoes, and fish high in omega 3 fatty acids, like salmon and mackerel.

Try including one or two of these each day and see which you like best.

What's your favorite "super" food to eat? Comment below!

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