Vegetables and fruits are among the healthiest of carbohydrate-containing foods. That's because they contain fiber, as well as vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Your body needs carbohydrates for energy and overall health. If you're watching your weight, choose healthy carbohydrate foods instead of restricting your daily carb intake, recommends the Harvard School of Public Health.
Non-starchy vegetables contain a smaller amount of carbohydrates than starchy versions, such as potatoes, corn and peas, states the American Diabetes Association. A cup of raw or a half-cup of cooked non-starchy veggies counts as a serving and provides only 5 grams of carbohydrate. Enjoy high-fiber salads with spinach, diced green peppers, sliced carrots, cherry tomatoes and artichoke hearts. Steam or lightly saute Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, okra, collard greens, zucchini, Swiss chard or green beans for a good source of fiber.
Fruits That Fit The Bill
A tennis ball-size piece of whole fruit, a half cup of cut fruit or a 3/4-cup serving of berries contains 15 grams of carbohydrate, according to the ADA. Low-carb, high-fiber choices include apples, pears and fresh or frozen blackberries, raspberries and strawberries. If you're craving dried fruit, enjoy four medium dried apricot halves or 1 1/2 dried large figs for a low-carb, high-fiber treat.
- Institute of Medicine: Dietary Reference Intakes for Energy, Carbohydrate, Fiber, Fat, Fatty Acids, Cholesterol, Protein, and Amino Acids
- American Diabetes Association: Non-Starchy Vegetables
- Mount Sinai Health System: Fiber Chart
- American Diabetes Association: Fruits
- University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture: The Exchange List System for Diabetic Meal Planning