When counseling patients with type 2 diabetes about their diets, keep in mind the following general principles:
- Note that there is no single, specific diet for diabetes that applies to all patients; individualized planning should be the goal.
- Consider referral to a dietician
- Stress the importance of moderation.
- Base calorie recommendations on the goal of achieving near-ideal body weight.
- Use a reasonable starting formula of 10 calories per pound of current body weight plus 20% for sedentary patients, 33% for those who engage in light physical activity, 50% for moderately active patients, and 75% for those who are heavily active.
- Avoid saturated fats.
- Follow a regular meal schedule, particularly if on insulin.
- Note that frequent small meals might aid in weight loss and in control of blood-glucose level.
- Choose complex carbohydrates (e.g., starches, cereals) over simple sugars.
This content is from ACP Smart Medicine, the College's new web-based clinical decision support tool developed specifically for internal medicine physicians. Information about ACP Smart Medicine is online.