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Grams of Carbohydrates Per Meal for a Diabetic

author image Amy Long Carrera
Amy Long Carrera is a registered dietitian in Los Angeles who has been writing since 2007 for such publications as The Insider, On the Other Side and Arthritis Today. She is a certified nutrition support clinician and her writing employs current research to provide evidence-based nutrition information. Carrera holds a master of science degree in nutrition from California State University, Northridge.
Grams of Carbohydrates Per Meal for a Diabetic
Young man eats a healthy meal of salmon and vegetables. Photo Credit: Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images

Meal planning doesn’t have to be complicated when you have diabetes. Although your body is not efficient at making or using insulin to process carbohydrates, you can eat just about anything in moderation. Aim for between 45 to 60 grams of carbohydrate at each meal, recommends the American Diabetes Association.

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Carb-Conscious Meal Ideas

A serving of carbohydrate provides 15 grams of carbs. That means you can have three or four carbohydrate servings per meal. At breakfast, enjoy a slice of whole- wheat toast, a tablespoon of jelly, 1/2 cup of oatmeal and a small banana. For lunch, opt for 1/3 cup of rice, 1/2 cup of beans, 1 cup of soup and six small crackers. Dinner might include a quarter of a large baked potato, 1/3 cup of pasta, one small peach and 1/2 cup of ice cream. Do not count protein foods, such as eggs, fish and chicken, unless they are prepared with carbohydrate, such as breading. Check with your health care provider for more specific recommendations based on your medical history.

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