Diabetes is a growing condition among the elderly age groups in India. Diabetes is a health issue that can lead to severe symptoms and risks to the body and its functioning. Therefore, it is necessary to control diabetes and maintain healthy blood sugar levels.
Following a safe and healthy diet plan is very crucial for the management of your diabetic health. As an Indian, it might often get confusing about what items to eat and what to avoid ensuring the safety of blood sugar levels.
Today, we will go through a 7-day vegetarian diet plan according to Indian cuisine to assist in your diabetes management and make the best food choices.
Indian diets for diabetics
In India, almost all meals have elaborate servings and are filled with several nutrients that assist in keeping the body healthy and energetic.
The balance of several different nutrients such as carbohydrates, protein, fats, fiber, vitamins, and minerals combined in a plate can help maintain health.
However, for diabetic patients, it is necessary to add all of these in controlled amounts with the right portion sizes and items that help with blood sugar lowering.
As suggested by diet and health experts, an average adult diabetic patient following an Indian diet must stick to 1500 to 1800 calories daily. Furthermore, this total calorie consumption limit must be distributed into a ratio of 60:20:20, including carbohydrates, proteins, and fats, respectively.
Fiber is an important component that you must include in all meals and good numbers to ensure good diabetic blood glucose management. In addition to this, fiber also helps keep the metabolic functioning proper and reduces digestive health risks.
Indian diets are inclusive of several food items per meal. The most common items are a serving of grains like rice, wheat-made roti, etc., followed by a bowl of pulses as dal, and finally a serving of vegetables.
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This combination is beneficial but needs proper alteration to ensure that you cater to your diabetic health conditions.
We have devised a 7-day meal plan for you that you can significantly benefit from. It is all vegetarian, as many in India follow vegetarian diets.
But before jumping into the chart, let us look at the different elements that we include in an Indian diet.
Elements of an Indian diet plan
Having whole grains supplies the body with roughage that assists in keeping the digestive system healthy and smoothly functional. Grains like whole-wheat are used extensively for their flour to make roti, which is the staple of many Indians.
Apart from whole wheat, other healthy grains such as millets, buckwheat, barley, rye, whole corn, gram flour, etc., are also used to make bread. They are higher in fiber and contain more nutrients as they are unprocessed.
On the other hand, process wheat made into refined white flour should be avoided. This is high in carbs and stripped of its beneficial bran and germ layers.
Rice is also an equally inevitable part of the diet and a staple for many. However, white rice is a risky choice as it is very high in carbs and calories. Instead of white rice, you can opt for brown rice that is considerably low in carbohydrates and enriched with more fiber and minerals.
2. Pulses and legumes
Dal is an everyday side serving that is rich in protein. Pulses, lentils, and legumes are the primary source of protein for vegetarian individuals.
They are also rich in healthy fats that help to control cholesterol when done right. In addition to this, the presence of fiber makes dal even more advantageous to one’s diabetic health.
There are endless choices for pulses, some of the best being – kidney beans, green beans, chickpea, black-eyed peas, chana, moong, etc.
3. Fresh and fiber-rich vegetables
Vegetables as curry, stir-fry, or salad are included as either one meal of the day or another.
Green leafy vegetables make some of the healthiest additions. They are rich in fiber, have vitamin C, and are almost absent of carbs. Cabbages, kales, and spinach are some of the best options.
Gourds, pumpkins, carrots, radish, tomatoes, cucumbers, cauliflowers, capsicums, okra, etc., are very healthy and diabetes-safe vegetables.
You can have them in many dishes cooked in versatile ways.
Fruits are sugary items that are rich in minerals and vitamins. You can have one whole fruit like an apple, a pear, peach, orange, etc., in a day. Apart from this, watermelon and berries are also diabetes-safe options.
Fruits are healthy snack choices that can substitute for your unhealthy cravings. Avoid fruit juices as they have added sugars.
Dairy is an important part of a vegetarian meal as it is a source of fat. Skimmed milk and its products can be good for the health.
Greek yogurt, paneer, buttermilk, etc. had in controlled quantities can be very useful in managing diabetes.
Let us now move on to deducing a good overall weekly diet inclusive of these items.
7-day vegetarian diet plan for Indian cuisine
A weekly diet plan with several healthy food items and Indian dishes can help you follow a certain limit of food and include foods that are safe for diabetic patients.
We have a vegetarian special diet plan that includes all meals that a diabetic should have.
1. Day 1
|Early morning||Overnight Fenugreek soaked water – 1 glass|
|Breakfast||Vegetable stuffed roti – 1 Or Vegetable dalia – 1 bowl|
|Mid-morning||1 Fruit Or one bowl of fruit salad|
|Lunch||Roti with jowar – 2, dal – 1 bowl, vegetables – 1 bowl, curd – 1 bowl|
|Evening snacks||Roasted chana|
|Dinner||Whole-wheat chapati – 2, vegetable curry – 1 bowl|
|Bedtime snacks||Warm milk with added cinnamon and turmeric powder, no sugar – 1 glass|
2. Day 2
|Early morning||Overnight fenugreek soaked water Or 4-5 almonds|
|Breakfast||Toasted wheat bread – 2, spouts – ½ bowl|
|Mid-morning||Apple/ orange – 1 whole|
|Lunch||Whole-wheat chapati – 2, dal – 1 bowl, cucumber salad, vegetables like – peas, capsicum, tomatoes|
|Evening snacks||Roasted nuts|
|Dinner||Whole-wheat chapati – 2, vegetable soup – 1 bowl|
|Bedtime snacks||Warm milk with no sugar – 1 cup|
3. Day 3
|Early morning||Home-made tomato juice|
|Breakfast||Veg oats appam – 2 Or Vegetable quinoa – 1 medium plate|
|Lunch||Vegetable khichdi, buttermilk|
|Evening snacks||Fruit salad – 1 cup|
|Dinner||Brown rice – 3/4th cup, sambar – 1 bowl, green leafy vegetable – ½ bowl|
|Bedtime snacks||Warm milk added with cinnamon and turmeric powder, no sugar – 1 glass|
4. Day 4
|Early morning||Overnight soaked fenugreek water Or Soaked okra water|
|Breakfast||Poha – 1 medium plate Or Milk and muesli – 1 bowl|
|Mid-morning||Apple/orange/ guava/ pear – 1 whole Or Cut papaya – 1 cup|
|Lunch||Multigrain roti – 2, veggie salad – 1 bowl, dal – 1 bowl|
|Evening snacks||Boiled chickpeas|
|Dinner||Dalia with veggies fried 3/4th cup, tomato soup – 1 bowl|
|Bedtime snacks||Warm milk with nutmeg, no sugar – 1 glass|
5. Day 5
|Early morning||Fenugreek water Or Okra water|
|Breakfast||Multigrain bread vegetable sandwich – 2 slices of bread, 1 cup homemade tomato juice|
|Lunch||Whole-wheat chapati – 2, okra curry – 1 bowl, raita – ½ cup|
|Evening snacks||Nuts like almonds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, walnuts – a handful|
|Dinner||Bajra chapati – 2, green leafy vegetables, salad – ½ cup|
|Bedtime snacks||Warm milk with turmeric – 1 glass|
6. Day 6
|Early morning||Overnight fenugreek soaked water|
|Breakfast||Vegetable oats/upma – 1 bowl, coffee/tea (without sugar) – 1 cup|
|Mid-morning||Roasted and spiced chana – a handful Or Sprouted greens – 1 cup|
|Lunch||Brown rice – 3/4th bowl, dal – 1 bowl, cucumber, and tomato salad – ½ bowl, low-fat curd – 1 bowl|
|Dinner||Besan vegetable cheela – 2, salad – 1 bowl Or Vegetable khichdi/oats|
|Bedtime snacks||Warm milk with no added sugar|
7. Day 7
|Early morning||Overnight soaked fenugreek water Or Overnight soaked okra water|
|Breakfast||Rava idli – 2, tea/coffee (no sugar) – 1 cup|
|Mid-morning||Unstrained vegetable juice like tomato, bitter gourd, bottle gourd – 1 glass|
|Lunch||Whole-wheat chapati – 2, paneer curry – ½ bowl, salad – cucumber, tomato, and carrots – 1 bowl, buttermilk – 1 bowl|
|Evening snacks||Sprouts – 1 bowl|
|Dinner||Multigrain chapati – 1, palak sabzi – ½ cup, brown rice – ½ cup, dal – 1 cup|
|Bedtime snacks||Warm milk with cinnamon and turmeric powder, no sugar – 1 glass|
Some foods to avoid:
- Avoid sugary desserts, baked goodies, sweets, sweetened beverages, or fruit juices.
- Do not have jaggery or honey as an alternative to sugar.
- Avoid paratha, naans, chapatis made from refined white flour.
- Do not include fried and oily snack items like samosas, tikkis, namkeens, etc.
- Do not overdo using ghee. Stick to 1-2 tablespoons in a day only.
Some tips to keep in mind:
- Select low or medium glycemic index food items.
- Use fresh vegetables and fruits at all times.
- Use less salt while preparing any dish.
- Roasting and boiling vegetables are the best ways to keep the overall calories low.
- Always have toned milk and milk products.
- Keep your food portions under control and do not overdo the limits.
- Have unstrained vegetable juice for more fiber.
- Include all the mentioned meals and do not skip.
- Drink lots of water throughout the day.
- Always keep monitoring your blood sugar levels.