Diabetic Breakfast With Grits

When you are cooking within the guidelines of a diabetic meal plan, it can be hard to find a way to include classic favorites. A diabetic diet needs to be well balanced with proteins, fruits and vegetables. Include whole grain, low-glycemic carbohydrates with each meal to keep your blood sugar balanced, accounting for every carbohydrate choice according to your doctor's recommendation. Grits are a Southern classic, and can be integrated into a diabetic diet in proper moderation.

Your breakfast menu can include grits if you plan properly to balance the meal. (Image: LRArmstrong/iStock/Getty Images)

Breakfast Planning

When you create a breakfast menu for a diabetes meal plan, focus on adding protein and vegetables first. Egg whites or egg substitutes, low-fat meats or other protein and non-fibrous vegetables should be the focus of your breakfast. A whole grain carbohydrate choice such as multi-grain toast can round out the plate. According to the American Diabetes Association, vegetables should comprise half of the plate, with protein and carbohydrates split evenly across the other half. This guideline helps ensure a well-balanced plate.

Yellow Corn Grits

Yellow corn grits provide the lowest carbohydrate impact and no fat, though they also offer the lowest nutritional benefit. A half-cup serving of yellow corn grits packs 15 g of carbohydrates with negligible dietary fiber and 2 g of protein. The standard serving size offers 4 percent of your daily requirement for iron, but does not contribute to any other nutritional requirements. Top yellow grits with a small amount of shredded, low-fat cheese for extra calcium.

White Corn Grits

White corn grits have a much higher carbohydrate impact than the yellow corn variety. Along with the higher carbohydrate concentration comes an increase in added nutrients. The white corn variety contains 32 g of carbohydrates to a 1/4-cup serving. The single serving contains a 1/2 g of fat and provides 4 g of protein and 10 percent of the FDA daily iron recommendation.

Putting It All Together

Start with the vegetables and proteins, possibly creating an omelet with low-fat cheese and a variety of colorful vegetables. Select many different colors of vegetables throughout the day to give your body a wide variety of nutrients and vitamins. Add extra protein with a side of low-fat turkey sausage or a serving of cottage cheese. Finish off the plate with a serving of your choice of grits, remaining within your dietary recommendations for carbohydrate choices per meal.

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