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Can people with diabetes eat desserts and sweets?

Question: Can people with diabetes eat desserts and sweets?

Answer: Yes, but this is one of the areas that has the most limitations. Simple sugars found in desserts and sweet treats can lead to the greatest rise in blood sugar levels compared to substances like protein, fat, or fiber. The trick to including them in a healthy diet is controlling both the amount you eat as well as the frequency in which you eat them. Perhaps you're used to munching on candy bars throughout the day or you love digging into a big hunk of cake in the evening.

Healthier ways to get your sweet fix would be to switch to mini-sized candy bars, and having one a day. Or, have a small piece of cake two to three nights a week. In addition, instead of diving into a hot fudge sundae in the middle of the afternoon, you should eat your sweets along with or soon after a meal. The other foods in the meal can help slow the sugar absorption, helping to prevent a rapid spike in blood sugar. With these guidelines, you can satisfy your sweet tooth while keeping your blood sugar in check.

NOTE: After eating sweets, the body's response varies form person to person. Depending on how your blood sugar levels react, you may need to make adjustments accordingly. If you have concerns or questions about sweets, be sure to discuss them with your doctor.

If you are issued a new prescription, be sure to discuss potential drug-food interactions with your pharmacist or physician.

About Heidi McIndoo

Heidi McIndoo, MS is a registered dietitian dedicated to helping others develop healthy eating habits.

 

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