November is National Diabetes Month

Courtesy Photo

By United Supermarkets Dietitian Team

It’s a time when awareness is brought to the impact that type 2 diabetes has on millions of Americans. In Texas only, 2,694,402 people have been diagnosed with diabetes and 621,000 fellow Texans have diabetes but do not know it. Managing diabetes may be challenging but these next tips will show you how to make eating with diabetes a little less stressful.

Creating a healthy plate

Healthy eating is the number one goal when managing diabetes. This means that your diet should mainly come from the five food groups: frozen or fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins (seafood, beef, poultry and plant-based proteins) and low-fat/fat-free dairy products. Legumes like beans, lentils and peas fall under both vegetable and protein sources, and are extremely nutritious. Incorporating nuts and seeds into your diet such as almonds, pistachios, chia or ground flax seed are helpful for managing your blood sugar levels. Lastly, limiting foods that are ultra-processed, those that are high in fat, sugar, and sodium, will help you maintain your diabetes but also help you meet your weight loss goals. Remember that when creating your meal, half of your plate should include non-starchy vegetables and/or fruits, 1/4 or your plate should include starchy food or vegetables, and 1/4 of your plate should contain 3-4 oz of protein which is equivalent to the size of your palm.

Understanding which foods have carbs/carb counting/carb exchanges

It is possible to enjoy all foods and keep your blood sugar levels in check. Understanding what foods contain carbohydrates, how many carbs you should have at each meal helps you fix your plate accordingly. Carbohydrates are our bodies preferred source of energy, and it includes the starch list (breads, cereals, grains, starchy vegetables, crackers, beans, peas, and lentils), the fruit list, and milk and milk substitutes. Other types of foods that contain carbohydrates include sweets, desserts, sugar beverages, alcohol and combination foods like casseroles. In general, 1 starch choice has 15 grams of carbs and is equivalent to 1/2 cup of cooked cereal, grain, or starchy vegetable, 1/3 cup of cooked rice or pasta, 1 slice of bread, and 3/4 to 1 oz of crackers. 1 fruit choice also has 15 grams of carbs and is equivalent to 1/2 cup of unsweetened canned or frozen fruit, 1 small fresh fruit, 1/2 cup of unsweetened fruit juice, and 2 tablespoons of dried fruit. Lastly 1 milk choice has 12 grams of carbs and is equal to 1 cup of milk or plain yogurt.

Planning your meals

Taking the time to plan ahead makes your life easier and keeps you in line to reach your goals. Eating about the same amount of food (especially carbs), making sure you have a good breakfast, or having your meals every 4-5 hours will help you keep your sugar levels at a normal range. Additionally, including snacks in between your meals can help if you know you won’t be eating a hearty meal within the adequate time frame. You do not want to skip meals because it can lead to low blood sugar if you are using insulin or a type of insulin lowering medication. No matter the time you choose for your meals, spreading your meals and snacks throughout the day will keep you feeling great. Talk to a registered dietitian nutritionist to understand more and help you decide the timing, and size of your meals and snacks that are just right for you.

Having diabetes does not mean that you need to cut out all of the foods that you love. The main ingredients for successfully managing your diabetes is by eating whole foods, understanding which foods have carbohydrates and the amount of carbohydrates in each food, portion sizes and planning your meals ahead of time. For more information talk to your local nutrition expert, a registered dietitian nutritionist.

Cauliflower Breakfast Pizza


  • 1 CauliPower Crust
  • Cooking spray
  • 3 extra-large eggs
  • 2 Tbsp milk
  • Salt and pepper
  • 6 oz Jennie-O Lean Turkey Breakfast Sausage
  • 2 oz Sargento Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
  • 1/8 cup red onion, chopped
  • 1/3 cup bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup kale
  • 4 slices of tomato
  • 2 oz Sargento Shredded Mexican Style Cheese


1. Preheat oven to 425 F and warm a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Once oven is heated, cook CauliPower crust for ten minutes.

2. Whisk eggs and milk until well combined and cook to a medium scramble. Season with salt and pepper and set aside. Cook turkey and break into medium crumbles. Drain excess fat and/or pour into a bowl lined with a paper towel.

3. Layer crust with Mozzarella cheese, kale, chopped vegetables and tomatoes. Spread eggs and turkey evenly across vegetables and top with Mexican style cheese.

4. Cook pizza in the oven for another three minutes, monitoring crust color to prevent overcooking. Remove pizza from oven and cut into 6 slices.