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How Many Carbs Should A Diabetic Have Each Day

How Many Carbs Should You Eat Per Day When You Have Diabetes

How Many Carbs Should A Diabetic Have Per Day?

So youve decided to try the low-carb lifestyle to help manage your diabetes. Great choice! Its been shown to help lessen symptoms and keep blood sugar levels under control.

But the term low-carb can be confusing because its so vague. What exactly does it mean? Whats the right number of carbohydrates to eat per day when youre living with diabetes?

Annoyingly, theres no magic number of carbohydrates that will get rid of your symptoms and make you feel your best. Everyone tolerates carbs differently, and the amount you need can change day to day, depending on factors like your activity level.

Before you make any drastic changes to your diet, talk to your doctor or dietitian to figure out a method that will work for your life in the long term.

But were not gonna leave you hanging. There may not be a one-size-fits-all solution, but you can use simple strategies to monitor your carb intake and determine what foods make you feel your best.

Healthy Target Range For Glucose Levels

Time of Blood Sugar Test Healthy Target Level
Fasting glucose level No higher than 95 mg/dl
One hour after breakfast, lunch and dinner No higher than 140 mg/dl

Talk to your health care provider about what to do if your glucose level is outside the healthy target listed here. You may have to adjust your treatment plan to get your levels into a healthy range.

How Many Carbs Can I Eat Per Day

As we said, it varies by person, but the average person with diabetes gets 40 to 45 percent of their daily calories from carbohydrates. Some very low-carbohydrate diet plans may contain half this amount per day.

Starting slowly and steadily lowering your carb intake will help you avoid feeling fatigued or overwhelmed by the lifestyle change.

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How Many Carbs Should A Diabetic Have A Day

It is important to understand where our nutrients come from in our foods. Each food contains calories, with varying amounts in the carbohydrate, protein and fat categories. The way a food is prepared determines the amount of calories from fat: a potato that is fried has more fat, as does a potato topped with unhealthy toppings. Meanwhile, chicken that is skinless and sautéed or baked are healthy compared to deep-fried or otherwise prepared. Here’s dietary recommendation for diabetes, especially the carbs intake.

Personalize Your Carb Intake For Diabetes

How Many Carbs Should A Diabetic Have In One Day ...

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Why Diabetics Should Eat Fruit

+ References

Mastering Diabetes has strict guidelines for scientific references in our articles. We rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, governmental organizations, and reputable medical organizations. We do our best to avoid using non evidence-based references in all articles. The references in this article are listed below.

5. Lifestyle Management: Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes2019 | Diabetes Care. .

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How Many Carbs Per Day

If you eat 2,000 calories a day, you should consume about 250 grams of complex carbohydrates per day. A good starting place for people with diabetes is to have roughly 45 to 60 grams of carbs per meal and 15 to 30 grams for snacks. While snacks are key for people with diabetes who use insulin or pills that increase insulin production , they arent essential for non-insulin users.The goal for anyone with diabetes, whether or not they use insulin, is to keep their blood sugar as steady as possible and to maximize their intake of nutritious carbs and minimize consumption of less healthy ones.

Great Now Which Foods Have Carbs

Generally, the foods with the highest carbohydrate counts are grains, starchy vegetables, sugar, and processed foods.

Low-carb foods include leafy vegetables, lean meats, dairy, oils, nuts, and seeds. These foods wont spike your blood sugar and will help your energy levels feel more even throughout the day, especially when eaten consistently at every meal.

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Adding Fat And Protein

Making plates that contain carbs, protein, and healthy fats can help you keep your glucose levels in better balance than by eating simple or refined carbs alone.

Proteins to include as part of your healthy diet:

  • Meat, such as poultry, fish, and lean red meats
  • Eggs

Your Practical Action Steps Right Now

How many carbs should you eat each day with type 2 diabetes?
  • Breakfast: 30 g carbs
  • Dinner: 30 g crabs
  • 2 x snacks: 15 g carbs each or 3 x snacks 10 g carbs each

If you want to work on losing weight and getting optimal results for blood sugar and a1c aim for 50-80 g carbs per day.

  • Breakfast: 15-20 g carbs
  • 2 x snacks: 5-10 g carbs each
  • Before bed: 10 g carbs

If you dont know what carbohydrate foods are, or which ones are best to eat take the 30 Day Turnaround Program our members discover that after years of trying diet after diet without success, our process truly turns their lives around!

P.S. Please share this info with friends, family or colleagues it could be life changing.

*Reverse diabetes: while diabetes is not reversible from a diagnostic standpoint once you have it, you have it diabetes can be reversible from a physiological standpoint, in many. That is, you can endeavor to bring your blood sugar and A1c levels within a normal healthy range, improve your metabolism, reduce the need for meds and live a healthy, happy, normal life.

With a few simple changes to your diet lowering carb intake and eating whole foods you can start seeing your numbers move in a downward direction, fast!

Take the 30 Day Turnaround Program well show you how easy it is to do.


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Are Carbs Or Sugar Worse For Diabetics

They do affect your blood sugar levels, which is why youll need to keep up with how many you eat each day. Some carbs have vitamins, minerals, and fiber. So choose those ones, such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. Starchy, sugary carbs are not a great choice because they have less to offer.

Carbohydrate Guidelines For Type 2 Diabetes

Carbohydrates are an essential part of a healthy diet. But carbs also raise your blood sugar. When you have , its important to aim for a balanced carb intake. It can seem confusing and a little overwhelming at first, but dont be discouraged. Your doctor, diabetes educator, or can help you find a meal plan that works for you.

Foods that contain carbohydrates include:

  • Grains, such as breads, cereals, pasta, and rice

  • Fruits and fruit juices

  • Starchy vegetables, such as potatoes and

  • Dried beans and peas

  • Dairy foods, such as milk and yogurt

  • Sweets, such as cookies, pastries, cakes and candy

  • Snack foods, such as potato chips

To find the carb content of a food, check the amount of total carbohydrate on the food label. Be sure to look at the serving amount as well. If youre eating twice as much as the listed serving, youll need to double the total carbs. If a food doesnt have a label, there are many apps and books available to help you track carbs. One great free tool is MyFoodAdvisor from the American Diabetes Association. At first, you may need to look up almost everything. But with time, youll start to learn how many carbs are in your favorite foods and dishes.

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How Many Carbs A Day For Diabetics Type 2

How Much Is Enough? The American Diabetes Association recommends getting about 45% of your total calories from carbs. You should spread out your carb consumption throughout the day. Typically, that works out to about 45 to 60 grams of carbs per meal and 10 to 25 grams per snack, eaten twice a day between meals.

Are Carbohydrates Good Or Bad For Diabetics

How Many Carbs Should A Diabetic Have Per Day

Because the body turns carbohydrates into glucose, eating carbohydrates makes blood sugar levels rise. But that doesnt mean you should avoid carbohydrates if you have diabetes. Carbohydrates are a healthy and important part of a nutritious diet. Some carbohydrates have more health benefits than others, though.

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What Determines Ideal Carb Count

Figuring out the ideal number of carbohydrates you should eat daily needs to be a collaborative effort between you and your healthcare team. Specific factors that influence your carbohydrate intake include:

  • Age
  • Blood glucose response
  • Exercise

Some people benefit from eating a consistent carbohydrate diet. For example, eating the same amount of carbohydrates per meal daily can help take the guesswork out of managing medication at mealtimes.

A good way to determine your ideal carb intake is to test your blood sugar before and after you eat. If it’s within target range two hours after a meal, then you know your meal plan is working for you. If it is higher, you may need to adjust your meal plan by reducing your carbohydrate intake.

Target Blood Glucose Levels 2 Hours After Eating
Adults who are not pregnant 180 mg/dL or less

Using The Plate Method

Some people with type 2 diabetes use a less formal method of gauging how many carbs to eat. Called the plate method, it doesnt require any counting at all. Instead, you simply imagine dividing your plate in half. Then divide one side in half again.

Fill the large section with nonstarchy veggies. Fill one small section with grains, starchy veggies, or cooked beans and peas, and the other with meat or another protein food. Add a cup of low-fat milk and a piece of fruit, and youve got a balanced meal.

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How Can Carbohydrate Counting Help Me

Carbohydrate counting can help keep your blood glucose levels close to normal. Keeping your blood glucose levels as close to normal as possible may help you

  • stay healthy longer
  • prevent or delay diabetes problems such as kidney disease, blindness, nerve damage, and blood vessel disease that can lead to heart attacks, strokes, and amputationssurgery to remove a body part
  • feel better and more energetic

You may also need to take diabetes medicines or have insulin shots to control your blood glucose levels. Discuss your blood glucose targets with your doctor. Targets are numbers you aim for. To meet your targets, you will need to balance your carbohydrate intake with physical activity and diabetes medicines or insulin shots.

Tracking Your Carb Intake

How Many Carbs Should a Diabetic Eat?

The easiest way to manage your daily carb intake is to pay attention to the number of carbs youre eating and when youre consuming them.

Chat with your doc about your exact number. In general, women will want to stick to 30 to 45 grams per meal and men to 45 to 60 grams per meal.

Apps like MyFitnessPal allow you to input everything youve eaten throughout the day and see a full nutrition profile, so you can get an idea of where your carbs, protein, and fat are coming from.

Or you can choose a calculator specifically designed for people with diabetes, like Fooducate or BG Monitor Diabetes. If youre feeling ambitious, write it all down in a daily food journal.

This will help you know exactly how many carbs youre eating and give you a better idea of which high-carb foods youre consuming most often.

Once youre in the groove of logging and tracking carbs, dont forget to make time to plan meals ahead so you can avoid high-carb foods and prevent those annoying french fry cravings.

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How Many Calories Should A Diabetic Eat Per Day Best 3 Diabetes Programs For 2021

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Its Important To Experiment

Each individual is unique and what works for one person may not work for the next. Its important to do some self-experimentation and figure out what works best for you.

If you have type 2 diabetes, talk to your healthcare provider before making any changes, because this diet can drastically reduce your need for medication.


For people who are physically active or want to maintain their weight, a range of 100150 grams of carbs per day may have benefits. For those aiming to lose weight quickly, going under 50 grams per day under the guidance of a healthcare provider may help.

A low carb diet isnt just about weight loss, it may also improve your health.

For this reason, the diet should be based on whole, unprocessed foods and healthy carb sources.

Low carb junk foods are often unhealthy.

If you want to improve your health, choose unprocessed foods such as:

  • lean meats
  • avocados
  • healthy fats

Choose carbohydrate sources that include fiber. If you prefer a moderate carb intake, try to choose unrefined starch sources, like potatoes, sweet potatoes, oats, and brown rice.

Added sugars and other refined carbs are always unhealthy options, its recommended that you limit or avoid them.

For more details on specific foods to eat, check out this list of low carb foods and this detailed low carb meal plan and sample menu.


Its very important to choose healthy, fiber-rich carb sources. A healthy diet includes plenty of vegetables, even at the lowest level of carb intake.

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How To Read A Food Label

The Nutrition Facts label lists the total amount of carbohydrates per serving, including carbs from fiber, sugar, and sugar alcohols. Sugar alcohols are often used in sugar-free foods, although they still deliver calories and carbs. Sugar alcohols and fiber don’t affect blood sugar as much as other carbs, because they’re not completely absorbed. If food contains sugar alcohol or 5 or more grams of fiber, you can subtract half of the grams of these ingredients from the number of total carbs. (See more details at the

What Is A Very Low Carb Diabetic Diet

How Many Carbohydrates Per Day Should A Diabetic Have ...

Avoid processed food and bakery for your diet for type 2 diabetes

A very low carbohydrate diet is not the same thing as keto diet. In a very low carbohydrate diet a diabetic individual can have 15-30 gr of carbs.

Now, when I say very little what I mean by that? I mean like 20 to 30 grams of carbs per meal. And thats very generous. And the reason I say its very generous is that youre really not burning any calories. Yes, I know. you may want to eat more. Thats the only thing you enjoy nowadays. And I understand that but if you want to eat more carbs youre going to need more medications. Sometimes more medications may mean more side effects. Yet, we have a lot of ways, especially at SugarMDs. We have a variety of ways to help our patients.

Even if you want to use medications in addition to what youre already on, then I would suggest you can go up to a maximum of 45 grams of carbs for a woman at that stage. You may end up needing insulin as well of course.

The good news this, we have a lot of non-insulin medications we can use depending on your activity level and diet. Basically, even for very inactive people or people with disabilities or joint problems we have ways to get them to exercise one way or another. If youre really not exercising, youre really looking for 20 to 30 grams of carbs and if you want to force it 45 grams.

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