If you need a pick-me-up between meals, a snack with 15-20 grams of carbohydrate is often the answer. For someone with diabetes, it’s important to eat a fiber-filled and nutrient-rich snack to curb the appetite before the next meal, says Angela Ginn-Meadow, a registered dietitian and a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. Talk to your health care provider about whether a snack will work in your meal plan.
Grapes and Grahams
Want a crunchy, sweet treat that’s quick and easy to whip together? Spread 1 tablespoon light cream cheese on 2 graham cracker squares and top with 1/4 cup halved grapes.
Fruit and Nut Yogurt
Need a snack that will help you go the extra mile? Sprinkle 1 tablespoon dried cranberries and 1 tablespoon toasted slivered almonds atop a 6-ounce carton of plain fat-free Greek yogurt. Greek yogurt has more protein than its regular counterpart to keep you satisfied longer, and the sweet cranberries will balance the tangy zip of the yogurt.
Cereal Nut Mix
Get a good dose of fiber by mixing 1/2 cup unsweetened miniature shredded wheat cereal, 1 tablespoon dried cranberries, and 1 tablespoon roasted pistachio nuts. By using unsalted nuts, you’ll keep the sodium to a record low of 2 milligrams.
Pear and Cheese
Pears and cheese go together like peanut butter and jelly. So next time you need a hearty snack, choose a small pear and a light cheese stick. The cheese will help you meet your calcium goal by providing 16 percent of your daily needs, and the pear provides 4 grams of fiber, getting you that much closer to the recommended 25-35 grams a day.
Tuna Salad Crisps
Tuna salad doesn’t have to be reserved for lunch. Combine 2 ounces of drained water-packed light tuna with 1 teaspoon light mayonnaise and 1 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard, and spoon the mixture atop 2 rye crisps for a satisfying snack packed with heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.
Avocado-Tomato Open-Face Sandwich
Mash 1/4 of a peeled avocado and stir in a dash of garlic salt. Spread onto a slice of toasted whole grain bread and top with a couple of tomato slices for a snack that is packed with flavor and fiber. Even with the generous amount of avocado, this snack contains only 150 calories.
Bananas About Chocolate
For a treat that’s both decadent and healthy, slice half a banana and dip it in 1/2 ounce melted dark chocolate. Studies suggest that components in dark chocolate can help lower blood pressure.
Guacamole and Veggies
For a crunchy, south-of-the-border snack, dip 1/2 of a red sweet pepper, sliced, and 1/2 cup carrot sticks in 1/4 cup purchased guacamole. You’ll cover your daily needs for vitamin A with the carrots, plus you’ll more than meet your daily vitamin C needs thanks to the sweet pepper strips.
For a super quick snack anyone will love, toast half of a round whole grain sandwich thin and top with a couple tomato slices, one sliced fresh mushroom, and a couple tablespoons of shredded reduced-fat mozzarella cheese. Pop it under the broiler for 1 to 2 minutes for a warm, melty treat. The best part — it’s only 100 calories.
Ham and Pineapple
For a low-fat snack that’s sure to please, cut 1 ounce of thinly sliced deli ham into long strips and fold the slices accordion style. Skewer the folded ham slices with chunks of pineapple. Stick to 3/4 cup pineapple, and look for lower-sodium ham.
To get more fiber, and vitamins and minerals, try eating vegetables, fruits, or whole grain crackers or bread. Snacks for people with diabetes should also be heart-healthy, meaning low in sodium , low in saturated fat, and no trans fat.
Review your diabetes goals with your health care team to see how snacking can be incorporated into your diabetes meal plan.