How I Crushed Type 2 Diabetes in Only Weeks and Completely Changed My Outlook on Life

Editor’s note: We found Rey’s remarkable story in the diabetes online community, and asked him if he would share it with us. Rey experienced extraordinary rapid success by following a precise diet and medication regimen immediately after diagnosis with type 2 diabetes. His improvement was incredible, but others making the same changes may not experience the same success. Please speak to your doctor or caregiver before enacting any major health changes of your own.

I’m Rey, and I’m a 44-year old male with a history of high blood pressure and being overweight, but until recently I had no major health issues. Only this past summer I learned that I had dangerously uncontrolled diabetes. Within the span of just a couple of months, I completely changed my diet, started and then stopped glucose-lowering medications, and got my blood sugar back into the normal, healthy range. Here’s my story.

My First Health Scare

My story is ultimately a diabetes story, but there were some bumps along the way that I think are worth including before I jump into the diabetes.

My adventure really began in the summer of 2020. After some stressful life events, I developed a rather constant state of anxiety, which seemed to be preventing me from getting good sleep. Even while using a sedative, I was up at least 4-5 times during the night, every night. I didn’t have a previous history of mental health problems, so this was all new to me. The especially challenging part was that as time passed, lying in bed became a trigger for the anxiety, which made the sleep even harder to come by. I felt like I was just going through the motions to get through life.

Fortunately, after months of stubbornness and sucking it up the best I could, I finally got to the bottom of things. I discovered it was sleep apnea, and started CPAP treatment. The result was truly life-changing, sleep returned to normal, and my anxiety went away 100%.

Life was great and I’d survived and handled my major mid-life health crisis…. or so I thought! Little did I know, but that relief would prove to be short-lived as in the coming months I started to experience a new set of symptoms.

I was at my highest weight yet and my BMI was creeping towards 30. Some reading this will scoff and think “30 is nothing, I’m well above that,” but everyone’s body is a little different and apparently 30 was my personal breaking point.

My fasting blood sugar was over 100 mg/dL, and my doctor said something about pre-diabetes, but she didn’t sound too concerned about it.

The Symptoms

I was again experiencing sleeplessness. Now I was finding that instead of sleep apnea waking me up during the night, my bladder was sure filling up and I was getting up to pee several times a night. Also, I was quite thirsty when this would happen. I did notice it was nights that I’d eat pizza or pasta for dinner that were the worst. Some combination of stubbornness and perhaps denial kept me from taking this too seriously, so I just kept on with things. Besides, this was March 2021 and you didn’t dare go into a medical clinic unless you were on your covid deathbed. Surely, this was no big deal, and getting checked out could wait.

Still, I sensed something was wrong and I reduced the amount of pizza and pasta I was eating for dinner (maybe twice a week instead of five nights a week), eating beans with rice and veggies for dinner instead. In hindsight, not great, but a minor improvement.

The next major symptom arrived in April: blurry vision. At first, I wasn’t worried. I’d gotten LASIK eye surgery done 12 years earlier, and this change seemed like a mild return of my nearsightedness. I was also in my mid-40s, which I’m told is a time where focusing becomes harder and your vision changes.

Then it got really bad: I was on a trip to Florida when I couldn’t read a menu board that was 8 feet in front of me. I had to resort to taking a picture of it with my phone and then looking at that picture to read the menu. Something was majorly wrong!

When I got back from Florida (after some real nerve-wracking and likely dangerous driving), I went in to get my vision checked and received a -2.0 diopters prescription. The optometrist was shocked that I had let my vision get that bad before getting glasses and made a comment about diabetes, but was also of the impression that my vision would change throughout the day as my blood sugar changed. That clearly wasn’t happening to me (turns out it’s more complicated than that).

The last major symptom was that I had been losing weight at a pretty decent clip (5-10 pounds a month). Obviously, this must have been due to cutting back on pizza and pasta, right? Curiously, past attempts at eating better had never been quite this effective, but why question such great progress when you’re on a roll! At this point, it was late April and the earliest I could get in for a check-up was mid-June, so why not ride out another month of weight loss and see how great my labs come back then?

My Diagnosis

A little over a week before the appointment I started researching diabetes online, since I was starting to wonder about what my doctor and optometrist had said. But surely that takes years to develop, right?

Obviously, my “diet” was working since I had now lost 25 pounds this year and weighed less than I did in my 30s. Who knew eating healthy was so easy!

After a little light reading, I quickly realized how wrong I was, that everything that had happened in the last few months was explained perfectly by diabetes, and that the weight loss might have been diabetes rather than my new diet. This was hard to process.

I picked up a blood sugar meter, and on a Friday night fumbled with the thing enough to figure out how to get a reading. I was shocked when the meter read 567 mg/dL. That can’t possibly be right! My girlfriend tried the meter and her result came in at 77 mg/dL. I tested mine again and this time it registered 596 mg/dL!

At this point, it was 11 PM on a Friday night, and my safest course of action would have been to go to the ER, but I figured if high blood sugar hadn’t killed me in the last 3-4 months, it probably wasn’t going to kill me that weekend. I decided to read more about diabetes, give myself a couple of days to get my wits about me, and go into urgent care on Monday. I also continued to test my blood sugar and it seemed to stay in the 300 to 450 mg/dL range that weekend, regardless of what I ate or whether I was eating.

At urgent care my A1c came in at 13.7%, and my fasting blood sugar was 449 mg/dL. Based on my history, I was more likely to have type 2 diabetes (and additional testing would later confirm that). I was prescribed metformin, and advised to take insulin, advice that I wasn’t ready to take.

Rey kept track of his blood sugar measurements from the moment he began testing, before he was diagnosed with diabetes. You can see his girlfriend’s healthy reading, 77 mg/dL, on the first day.

A New Diet

I now understood that the reason I had lost so much weight so quickly was my uncontrolled diabetes, at least 3 months of it!

I immediately cut most high-carb foods out of my diet and subsisted largely on a diet of full-fat cottage cheese, full-fat plain Greek yogurt, hard cheese, nuts, avocadoes, and canned beans with olive oil. I also kept some fruit and berries in my diet initially. Throughout the day I ate random combinations of these foods. I didn’t really prepare them or fancy them up at all with cooking (other than heating the beans in the microwave so they’d be warm).

I knew I had screwed things up, and if there was going to be any hope of reversing the damage I feared I had done to my body I needed to focus. Maybe I would be able to go back to eating pizza, pasta, and all those delicious carb-filled foods that I loved someday, but it was clear now wasn’t the time for that.

I’d certainly thrown in the towel on diets plenty of times before and gone back to eating like crap, but this time it felt like there was a gun held to my head, and quitting wasn’t an option. Perhaps I’m being overly dramatic about this, and perhaps it wasn’t the healthiest outlook, but it’s how I saw things and it got me through the first weeks where I was at my highest level of motivation.

I wasn’t using a particular diet system I had found on the internet or in a book, it was just me trying to think of all the foods (as a vegetarian) that I normally ate that were lower on the glycemic index, and sticking to those. Frustratingly, there seemed to be a lot of disagreement online in regards to what the “best” diet was for a diabetic, but I’ll come back to that later.

The Right Medications

With this diet and metformin, my blood sugar still ranged from about 250 to 400 mg/dL that first week. My blood sugar really needed to come down since the longer it remained elevated, the greater my risk for diabetes-related complications. Clearly, a week of my new diet and metformin wasn’t enough, and I was more open to exploring what else could be done.

When I saw my primary doctor after that week, she wanted to put me on insulin too, in order to stabilize my blood sugar. Although I knew that insulin would have rapidly brought my blood sugar down to normal levels, using it would have made it difficult for me to gauge if my dietary changes were getting the job done.

Through my research, I had become convinced that SGLT2 inhibitors were the only class of drugs that made any sense for a person with new uncontrolled type 2 diabetes to take (in addition to metformin). Normally in uncontrolled diabetes, your kidneys excrete sugar to your urine as a means of keeping your blood sugar from getting dangerously high, but that effect doesn’t really kick in until your blood sugar levels are way up there. With an SGLT2 inhibitor, your kidneys are just doing that all the time, keeping your blood sugar down in the process. The real beauty of this is instead of insulin, which causes your body to store that excess sugar (only delaying the problem), once you pee out the excess sugar, it’s gone forever.

I asked my doctor for a referral to an endocrinologist and a prescription for an SGLT2 inhibitor instead. She didn’t have much experience with SGLT2s and started talking about other drugs, but she could see I had a pile of notes with me on different drug classes, the research I had done on them. I think she also realized that although she was the one to write the prescription, that I was ready to argue my case.

As soon as I started taking the SGLT2 inhibitor my blood sugar came down almost immediately.

On Farxiga, within days my blood sugar dropped to the 100 to 150 mg/dL range. I had to pee a little more at first too, which suggested the drug was doing exactly what it was supposed to. After a few days, I found I wasn’t peeing any more than normal, which was probably due to my fairly low-carb diet.

[Editor’s note: Rey had an incredibly positive experience with SGLT2 inhibitors, but they are not for everyone, and do carry side effects and risks, especially when combined with low-carbohydrate diets. Please speak to your doctor about changing your medication.]

This was a great improvement over where I was before, but like every newly-minted diabetic I had dreams of reversing my diabetes and getting my blood sugar back to “normal.” I obviously wasn’t there yet and just because you want something doesn’t mean it’s possible or realistic, but I was holding onto that dream.

Remission is a very controversial topic. Most ADA and official-looking literature I found said that diabetes was a progressive disease. As time passes, more drugs are required to maintain the same degree of control, and some pretty awful complications occur as it gets worse and worse. That was a rather depressing outlook. If it all falls apart in the end, why not just go back to enjoying all those carb-rich foods that I love and enjoy whatever time I’ve got left? Fortunately, I didn’t fall into that trap, but I have to imagine many do.

Intermittent Fasting

I was aware of internet doctors out there on the fringes saying type 2 diabetes can be reversed and people can manage through diet alone, without drugs. Are they selling false hope, similar to new-age healers selling energy crystals to cure cancer? Most of them are talking about low-carb and “keto,” which I’d previously assumed to be just another random fad diet. “They’re obviously quacks,” I thought. I figured that American Diabetes Association was most certainly correct about diabetes being progressive, just giving me the cold hard truth. But just for the sake of argument, I decided to hear the quacks out first.

Of the doctors on Youtube, the first to really suck me in was Dr. Jason Fung, a Canadian nephrologist. He had a very intuitive model for explaining type 2 diabetes, and used research on treating the condition with gastric bypass surgery (which has been highly successful) as a starting point. He suggested a low-carb diet combined with fasting in various forms. Hey, I’m already doing the low-carb thing and it seems to be helping. Maybe fasting would be the next nudge I needed.

I started with 3 set meals a day (eating between 7:30 AM and 7:30 PM, and then fasting from 7:30 PM until 7:30 AM the next morning). Around the time I started Farxiga, I moved into the next phase of fasting, which was to skip breakfast and then eat only lunch and dinner (eat at 12 PM and then 8 PM). To my surprise, I no longer felt hunger when I wasn’t eating. I now know that’s a common benefit to the keto diet, but if someone had tried to tell me about that a year earlier, I would have thought they were crazy. Also, I didn’t really know I was doing keto. I was just doing a tighter version of the diet I’d explained earlier, with less fruit and no beans.

I completed my first full-day fast the weekend after starting Farxiga. I didn’t eat anything at all starting Friday after dinner until around 1 PM on Sunday, for a 40+ hour fast. Again, Farxiga had gotten my blood sugar down to under 150 mg/dL on a regular basis, but this was the kick that finally got me back under 100 mg/dL. Throughout Friday it was testing 130 to 150 mg/dL, Saturday morning I was at 144 mg/dL, but as Saturday dragged on and my fast continued I started getting multiple readings under 100 mg/dL. My Sunday morning fasting result was 96 mg/dL and, it got as low as 79 mg/dL on Sunday afternoon before I finally broke my fast. To my surprise, breaking my fast only bumped me to 119 mg/dL and 5 hours later my blood sugar was back down to 82 mg/dL. Seeing this progress felt truly amazing and it was only 16 days after finding out I had diabetes!

Maintenance

Rey’s blood sugars improved rapidly and remarkably with the right combination of diet and medication.

Of course, you don’t eat your way to diabetes in two weeks and you don’t undo your diabetes in two weeks either. I was taking 2,000 mg of metformin a day as well as the SGLT2 inhibitor. The week after my big fast, my fasting blood sugar readings would go back over 100 mg/dL, but I kept plugging away, only eating two larger meals a day during a narrow set of eating hours. I also tested the high-carb waters with a 6-inch Subway sandwich – it spiked my blood sugar to 190 mg/dL, which is much higher than a non-diabetic would likely hit from that meal. That helped knock me back down a peg and remind me that I still had diabetes, after all.

The next weekend I noticed that my blood sugar numbers were starting to come down to under 100 mg/dL without extended fasting. I also noticed that foods that previously spiked my blood sugar a great deal were now spiking it much less. On June 28th (day 24 of knowing I had diabetes and 13 days after starting my SGLT2) I decided to stop taking Farxiga and see what effect it would have. This was not a responsible decision, as you should always consult with your doctor before discontinuing medication, but with my improved blood sugar levels, I questioned if Farxiga was still doing anything for me. It turned out my guess was correct. There was no significant change in fasting or post-meal blood sugar readings in the days that followed, and my type 2 diabetes was now well-controlled via just diet and metformin!

About a week later I started wearing a Freestyle Libre 2 to get a broader picture of my blood sugar trends, and for convenience. My readings were still in the 80-90 mg/dL range throughout the day, with small bumps up over 100 mg/dL after a meal. When I finally was due for my appointment with an endocrinologist to discuss my diabetes treatment, the feel of the visit could best be summed up as “why are you here?” My data showed that my average blood sugar in the previous 10 days had been 95 mg/dL, which would extrapolate to a 4.9% A1C (compared to the 13.7% result when first tested). This is, of course, only an estimate. And my blood sugar had only been well controlled for 2-3 weeks at this point.

Blood sugar wasn’t the only improvement either over last year’s numbers: total cholesterol dropped from 238 mg/dL to 172 mg/dL, with HDL (“good cholesterol”) fairly steady from 64 to 62 mg/dL. LDL (calculated) dropped from 141 to 90 mg/dL. Triglycerides dropped from 165 to 102 mg/dL. The endocrinologist agreed that I no longer needed Farxiga and indicated there really wasn’t a reason for me to see her again, but that I was free to set up another appointment if things changed.

My Best Path Forward

Since then, I’ve done more reading on the keto diet and feel that’s my best path forward to continue to maintain my health, both in terms of diabetes and beyond. I’ve improved enough that I no longer wear a CGM or perform finger sticks to check blood sugar on a regular basis, only checking maybe once a week “just to be sure.” Although I’ve tested out eating some of my old high-carb favorites and been impressed by how much less they spike my blood sugar now, I’m no longer interested in eating them on a regular basis, which is surprising to me. I’ve also found I can sleep through the night just fine without my CPAP machine due to the 35 pounds of weight I have lost from my peak of 215 lbs. The sleep apnea isn’t completely gone, so I still wear the mask most nights, but it appears to be dialed back from severe to mild.

It’s a very weird feeling: when I first found out I had diabetes I wanted nothing more than to continue eating the foods I loved and found comfort in. I felt like something had been stolen from me and feared that my body was permanently broken. Why should other people be able to eat what they want to, and I can’t? It felt very unfair and I really wanted there to be a drug or a treatment that would let me eat how I wanted to. Now that I’ve immersed myself in a better understanding of just how bad those foods were for me, I view things very differently.

I share my story not to lord my results over you if you’ve been less successful with your diabetes. I got really lucky, finding good dietary advice quickly after my diagnosis. Sadly, much of the official guidance out there seems sure to fail. I was also lucky with my uncontrolled diabetes “helping” with the first 25-30 pounds of weight loss.

I no longer have aches and pains when I get up out of bed or have to roll a certain way to avoid them, my memory has improved quite a bit and I’m no longer struggling to recall things I was just told, as I did with high blood sugar levels. I have so much more energy and stamina rather than feeling lethargic or struggling to complete physical activities. It’s like I’m in my 20s all over again (except for a little gray hair)! The downside is I now know if I go back to a lifestyle of enjoying carbohydrate-rich foods, things will go poorly for me, but as long as I don’t, I get to enjoy life so much more than I had before. And there are plenty of delicious foods that aren’t packed with carbs that I’m free to enjoy.

I think diabetes has been a net positive for me, as strange as that sounds. The me of today is very different than the me of a year ago.

Source: diabetesdaily.com

10 Diabetes-Friendly and Affordable Finds at Trader Joe’s

Trader Joe’s is a great resource for people looking for convenient and affordable food that is diabetes-friendly and healthy.

The first Trader Joe’s was opened in 1967, and the business has grown to over 500 stores across the United States. They are known for their affordable branded products and offer great customer service, with a full refund guarantee if you are not satisfied with your purchase. The atmosphere is light and friendly with store managers referred to as “captains” and employees are “crew members”. Their Hawaiian shirts and friendly service make this a place you want to go back to.

I have a Trader Joe’s in walking distance from my house but do not take advantage of it enough. There are delicious frozen meals, fresh fruit galore, and tasty desserts all that won’t put you over budget. They also offer great wine and fresh flowers, making this a great place to run in and accomplish more than just picking up dinner.

I reached out to the diabetes online community and the Diabetes Daily forum members to get their recommendations on what to try next. Here are some healthy and affordable options to check out on your next visit.

1. Turkey Burgers

These turkey burgers are made with a combination of white and dark meat, rosemary, and salt, and contain 0 carbs and a whopping 22 grams of protein. They are also extremely convenient as you can cook them without defrosting them. These burgers come in a pack of 4 (think ahead, make two and throw the second over salad for lunch) and cost only $3.29, which makes for a few cheap meals. Be sure to check out their salmon and shrimp burgers too!

2. Mexican Style Riced Cauliflower

This flavorful spicy riced cauliflower makes for a great side dish next to your favorite protein or a great base for a burrito bowl. You can get creative and add grilled shrimp and have a delicious and healthy dinner that only contains 5 grams of carbs!

Cauliflower Gnocchi

Photo credit: Trader Joe’s

3. Cauliflower Gnocchi

Don’t be fooled by the fact it is made with 75% cauliflower. This delicious entree is made for Trader Joe’s in Italy, giving it a little more clout. For 16 net carbs, you can enjoy an authentic tasting pasta-like dish.

4. Oven-Baked Cheese Bites with Summer Truffle

I debated including this one because it is a seasonal item, but keep this on your radar for next year. With only 1 carb, this delicious snack packs a great amount of flavor, with a rare hint of ultra-gourmet truffles, and can be used to make a creative and healthy snack at your next celebration. The recipe attached suggests turning this into a luxe snack mix by adding nuts and pretzels.

5. Butternut Squash Mac N’ Cheese Bites

These bites are made from butternut squash, macaroni, a blend of cheddar and gouda cheese, and some seasonal spices. They are fried and make for a delicious appetizer or side. Coming in at only 18 carbs, this is a unique treat you can definitely sink your teeth into.

6. Egg Frittata with Swiss Cheese and Cauliflower

This is one of my favorite recommendations, to which a store employee agreed, as she excitedly told me she eats them 2-3 times a day!  Coming in at only 10 grams of carbs and 25 grams of protein for 2, this is a great low-carb, high-protein way to start your day that will keep you satiated until your lunch break.

Chewy Chocolate & Peanut Butter Protein Bars

Photo credit: Trader Joe’s

7. Chewy Chocolate and Peanut Butter Protein Bars

With only 12 net carbs, this Trader Joe’s protein bar rivals its competitors in taste and in price too. It can be tough to find good (and affordable) lower-carb snacks to eat on the go. This great snack on the go packs 10 grams of protein, making it a worthwhile snack to keep on hand.

8. Organic Freeze-Dried Berry Medley

If you are looking for something sweet without a ton of sugar to add to your smoothies, shakes, yogurts, and such, look no further. One entire bag only contains 29 carbs (along with 9 grams of protein), so you can feel free to use this sparingly to add some sweet flavor and healthy goodness to any of your favorite protein-filled snacks.

9. Jicama Sticks

This raw root vegetable is ready-prepared for you into small sticks so you can throw over a salad, or get creative and turn it into jicama french fries. Simply sprinkle with olive oil and any seasoning of your choosing and roast or air fry for about 10 minutes at 425 degrees (just double the time if you are using a conventional oven) for a crispy, tasty alternative to french fries.

10. Cauliflower Pizza Crust

This low-carb, high-fiber alternative to the real thing will keep your blood sugars stable and is quite tasty. Top this base with any of your favorite pizza toppings to make a delicious meal for you or your family.

This list just scratches the surface of what healthy finds Trader Joe’s has to offer. Please keep in mind that their offerings do change seasonally and while some of these are not linked to their website, I spoke with a manager who confirmed they are all still offered. Please be sure to also check out their dips, cheese spreads, and fresh produce.

Have you found any healthy good finds at Trader Joe’s? Be sure to share and comment below!

Source: diabetesdaily.com

Matcha Latte Bombs: Low-Carb, Dairy-Free & Satisfying

This content originally appeared here. Republished with permission.

These keto-friendly green tea Matcha Latte Bombs are a fun take on the Tik Tok recipe trend, just like my Bulletproof Coffee Bombs! So if you’re looking for a little extra and want to have some fun, make these matcha latte bombs! There are a few simple steps to take to get them just right, so keep reading.

Sure, you could take these ingredients and make a regular matcha latte (and it would be fabulous!), but think it’s worth the extra effort to make the bombs because they have a super satisfying melt and pop.

Take it from a former barista, matcha lattes are even better than espresso!

Keto Matcha Latte Bombs

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Keto Matcha Latte Bombs

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Make the best ever bulletproof Keto Matcha Latte, and level it up with these fun melting bombs!
Course Drinks
Cuisine American
Keyword matcha
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 1 serving
Calories 117kcal

Equipment

  • milk frother

Ingredients

Keto Matcha Latte

  • 1 cup almond milk unsweetened
  • 1 teaspoon matcha powder
  • 1.5 – 2 teaspoons monk fruit sweetener or erythritol
  • 2 teaspoons coconut oil

Optional Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon whipped cream sugar-free
  • 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

Make the Matcha Latte Bombs

  • Spoon about one teaspoon of softened room temperature coconut oil into each half sphere of your silicone mold, two half spheres for each bomb you plan to make. Pay extra attention to coat the sides, all the way up to the edges. Set the mold in the freezer for about 15 minutes, until hardened.
  • Use your hands to carefully remove the hardened half spheres, and set them on a chilled plate. Fill half of the pieces with matcha and sweetener.

    One at a time, rub the unfilled spheres face down in a warmed skillet, just for about 5 seconds. This will melt and flatten the edge, then use your fingers to close over one of the filled half spheres, smoothing and sealing the edges. If necessary, take a little more room temperature coconut oil and fill any gaps.

  • Set the filled bombs in the freezer for another 5 minutes, then sprinkle lightly with a little more matcha powder. Last, transfer the finished matcha bombs to an airtight container and store in the freezer until you’re ready to make your latte!

Make the Latte

  • Heat the almond milk in a small sauce pan until it starts to simmer, then transfer to a mug. Use a spoon to gently drop the the matcha bomb into the mug and wait for it to melt. Use a milk frother to fully combine and froth.

Notes

To store: Set in an airtight container and store in the freezer until you’re ready to use them!

Nutrition

Calories: 117kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Sodium: 325mg | Potassium: 1mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 200IU | Calcium: 300mg | Iron: 1mg


Please note that the nutritional information may vary depending
on the specific brands of products used. We encourage everyone to check specific
product labels in calculating the exact nutritional information.

Keto Matcha Latte Bombs Recipe

Source: diabetesdaily.com

10 Fruits with 10 Net Carbs or Less

Fruits are high in vitamins and minerals and have several health benefits, including reducing the risk of obesity, heart attack, and stroke. However, all fruit contains sugar, and this can be challenging for those of us living with type 1 or type 2 diabetes. The fruit mentioned below all have a carbohydrate count of 10 carbs and are low GI foods which means they won’t spike you as quickly. These fruits are also loaded with fiber, which can help keep you fuller longer, promote good digestion, and help your overall blood sugar management.

Be mindful of the carb count of the fruit you’re eating: it will help you enjoy this healthy and delicious food without spiking your blood sugar. And please note that fresh fruit and frozen fruit are always better choices than fruit that comes in a can or jar. Also, avoid processed fruits and dried fruits that contain extra sugar.

Here are 10 fruits that contain 10 carbs or less per serving:

Tomatoes

Surprise! The tomato is a fruit, and I find it to be one of the most versatile fruits to work with. You can eat tomatoes over a salad, serve them with fresh mozzarella and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar, roast them, or turn them into a sauce and add it to any of your favorite proteins. Tomatoes contain a slew of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants and only contain 4.8 grams of net carbs for an average-sized tomato (about 123 grams/4.3 punches).

avocado

Avocados

Containing only 1.7 grams of net carbs per 3.5 ounces/100 grams of avocados, this is a great choice that is full of healthy fats and antioxidants. It is also high in fiber, contains potassium, Vitamin K, Vitamin C, and folate. Adding some avocado to a salad is a flavorful way to get in some good nutrients without spiking your blood sugar. You can also turn this into guacamole and serve it with your favorite crudite.

Strawberries

This personal favorite of mine contains only 8 net grams of carbs per cup. This fruit is high in vitamins, fiber, and antioxidants, along with many other nutritional benefits. You can do so much with strawberries and don’t have to worry too much about your blood sugars. Make a smoothie, toss on your favorite summer salad, or dice them up and add to greek yogurt. Add a drizzle of sugar-free chocolate syrup for a decadent and healthy snack.

Lemon and Lime

While most people don’t actually eat whole lemons and limes, either is a great addition to water to make it more palatable. It is also great to mix with your favorite alcohol for a low-sugar tasty drink. Lemon and lime both only contain 7 net carbs per serving, so feel free to use them generously in your drinks and to season meals as well.

Blackberries

Out of all the really fruity fruits, berries contain the lowest amount of carbs, only 8 net carbs per cup. (Blueberries, by contrast, contain 17 net carbs per 1 cup serving). They are packed with vitamins and high in fiber, making them a great choice.

kiwi

Photo credit: Pranjall Kumar (Unsplash)

Kiwi

Unbeknownst to many, kiwis are berries, and like most other berries they have minimal sugar, coming in at 8 net carbs per kiwi. The health benefits of kiwis are plentiful, they are packed with vitamins, antioxidants and are high in fiber, which will help aid digestion. When it comes to using kiwi, the options are endless- smoothies, puddings, desserts, even bread. Check out these recipes for more ideas on how to use this super fruit.

Plums

This fruit only contains 7.5 net carbs per average-sized plum and is packed with nutrition. Plums have also been found to reduce blood sugar thanks to a hormone, adiponectin, which helps regular blood sugars.  The fiber will also help avoid a quick spike in your blood glucose levels.

Rhubarb

Coming it at only 1 net carb per cup, this fruit is worth the effort. You can eat it on its own (only the stalk; the leaves are poisonous), but most people use it to bake with. This superfruit is packed with vitamins and antioxidants and has numerous health benefits, such as aiding collagen production and fighting inflammation, to name a few.

Watermelon

With only 8 grams of carbs per 100 grams/3.5 ounces of watermelon, this is a delicious refreshing fruit you can enjoy any time of year. Not just high in vitamins and antioxidants, watermelon also contains lycopene, which has has been found to lower blood pressure and cholesterol, reduce inflammation, and benefit brain health.

Cantaloupe

Like watermelon, cantaloupe only contains 8 grams of carbs per 100 grams/3.5 ounces. It is full of vitamin A, C, and potassium. You can get pretty creative with this succulent fruit by turning it into sorbet, cantaloupe chia pudding, or even this refreshing drink

Do you try to stick to low-carb fruits? What are some of your favorites and how do they impact your blood sugar levels? Share and comment below!

Source: diabetesdaily.com

Reasons to Try Low-Carb… and Reasons Not To

If you are looking to lose weight and/or lower your blood sugars, you may have considered eating low-carb. There are many health benefits to reducing your carbohydrate intake. For those of us with diabetes, our bodies cannot properly break down sugar, so lowering carbs should naturally lower our blood sugar. Also, if you use insulin, cutting back on the carbs can also help you to reduce your insulin requirements.

With that said, people can be successful at weight and blood sugar management on both low-carb and high-carb diets. When I was eating very low-carb, I found the diet too restrictive and it messed with my mental health. In a previous article, I talked about how I increased my carb intake and still achieved the same A1c of 5.8.

The main goal is to find a way of eating that works for you, one that you can sustain and be successful at. I thought it would be nice to hear our community’s thoughts and experiences on eating low-carb…or not. While the definition of low-carb changes from person to person, the voices below define it as 100 grams of carbs a day or less.

People Living With Type 1 Who Prefer to Stay Lower Carb

“I feel better on low-carb for most things. Nothing strict, but I like to choose high protein and high fat over carbs. I think it’s definitely a personal preference. And I do splurge sometimes, though I’ll sometimes regret it because I can *feel* the unpleasant spike.” – Jessica R.

“I love low-carb. It helps me manage with way better accuracy and I do a lot of sports. The biggest issue is when I reintroduce a night out and I make a calculation error and it takes a couple of days of fumbling back to get on track.” – Nick G.

“I am not keto but do eat lower-carb. I have for many years and find it to be very helpful. I eat a higher protein diet. I am also an endurance athlete.” – Cathy J.

“Super easy and it regulates my blood sugar. I use a modified Paleo-type diet as a guideline. I typically have between 30-45 grams of carbs a day.” – Annie A.

“I try my best to be low-carb. It definitely helps me to lower my blood sugar. I try not to buy high-carb things when I shop, like bread and crackers, and when I eat out I do the best I can. If I am at a sandwich shop, I’ll eat what is on the menu and adjust my bolus for it.” – Mason R.

“I accidentally started low-carb one day and it has been great. Every 2-4 hours I eat 4 oz of protein and 2 oz of any vegetable. I never have to give myself insulin for it and my blood sugars stay stable all day with no unexpected highs or lows.” – Kelley B.

“I have been keto for about 10 years and have had type 1 for 32 years. I cycle and run and have found it much easier to manage under a keto diet. With so much less insulin on board, any highs or lows come on much more slowly. I have ridden century rides and run marathons with only needing water and with solid flat readings on my CGM the entire time. I miss a good carby beer, but overall well worth it.” – Owen F.

“I stick to low-carb most of the time but I don’t deprive myself if I want something carby. I use my insulin and most of the time my blood sugar remains stable.” – Allison C.

People Living With Type 1 Who Prefer Moderate to High Carb

“I don’t really worry about low-carb, I just try to eat good carbs. I know white rice, white flour and other types of carbs shoot my blood sugar through the roof so I try to limit those. I eat a lot of fruit though and whole wheat bread (love Dave’s Killer Bread). I can’t imagine doing keto or very low-carb though.” – Amanda S.

“I was low-carb, high-fat for about a year. Most days I was eating under 20 grams and always under 40 grams of carbs. Low-carb, high-fat worked great for snowshoeing at 9,000+ feet. It worked poorly for life in general (brain function, dependant on glycogen, glucogenesis from fat is slow). Cardio like running or cycle was a real struggle. Heart lungs and legs need glycogen when your heart rate elevates.” – Rob C.

“I work out 5 days a week and do strength training. For me personally, I like to use carbs before my workout for energy and I don’t limit them in general. Mastering the right dose of insulin at the right time is what it is all about” – Matt F.

“People with type 1 can still eat whatever they want. I enjoy my pizza and cake and still maintain optimal blood sugars.” – Kelly V.

Photo credit: iStock

People Living With Type 2 Who Choose Low-Carb

“I eat low-carb because it simplifies my life and reduces stress. I am a very carb-intolerant type 2. I ‘eat to my meter’ i.e. limit carbs enough to keep my meter readings in an acceptable range. For me, that’s about 30 grams of carbs a day. My choices are to eat what my body can handle or eat more carbs and take medication. I prefer to take the least amount of medicine, so low-carb it is. I don’t find it a big sacrifice, and after 11 years of low-carb, I feel better and less bloated, less hungry with no carb cravings.” – Lynn W.

“I needed to find a way of eating that helped all of the health issues I was facing (basically metabolic syndrome). A low-carb, healthy fat, moderate protein “diet” fit that bill quite nicely.” – Forum member

“[Low-carb] brought my blood sugar down, off all drugs. Sometimes I go off a bit (birthday parties?) but I see the impact on my daily blood test and it keeps me on course. Now I just avoid sugar and common carbs (rice, potatoes, bread, pasta) and that is enough. Oh, I have a house full of sugar substitute non-wheat flour baked bread, muffins, cookies & cake so I don’t miss anything. Just have to watch when out eating socially although there is usually enough to choose from.” – Forum member

“I joined a diabetes forum the day I was diagnosed with type 2 in 2011 and read many stories of doing well on an LCHF diet by members. The foods they reported eating to bring their diabetes under control are many of my favourites, so I decided to give it a go. The result was that I discovered I was very grain intolerant and my digestion improved dramatically when I stopped eating them. My weight started to drop fast as well, even though I was eating very high calories. Six months later I decided to take the extra step to go to a ketogenic diet, and everything improved even more as [I lowered] my carb intake to 12-20g a day and tested my ketones daily to make sure I was constantly in nutritional ketosis. I still test my ketones daily with my fasting glucose, and report both numbers here to keep myself honest. Nearly 10 years after starting low-carb, the weight loss has been maintained and I have never taken even a single metformin tablet. My quarterly HbA1c has been constantly between 5.0 and 5.2 (except for two 5.4 results) since six months after starting my low-carb diet. And I love the food I eat, so see no reason ever to go back to eating carbs for energy.” – Forum member

“I have type 2 and had my A1c in the 12 range. I was carb intolerant. My goal is to be medicine-free, have normal numbers, and to limit disease progression – and to keep the weight off.

“’Keto’ along with exercise helps my numbers remain ‘normal,’ weight is coming down slowly, BP numbers are in check, cholesterol is in normal limits, no longer have sleep issues/apnea. No T2 meds required, hope to be off my BP meds soon. A1C now in the low 5’s with normal fasting numbers.” – Forum member

People Living With Type 2 Who Prefer Moderate to High-Carb

“I’m type 2 and I don’t go low-carb since it’s a very restrictive diet. I have done low-carb in the past, and lost weight doing it. I just found it too hard to stick with when the people I dine with aren’t doing low-carb.” – Forum member

“I’m doing CICO (calories in and calories out) since you are allowed to eat anything as long you don’t go over calorie budget.” – Forum member

“I have been a type 1 since 2019. Before discovering low-carb I ate the advised 45-60g per meal which I got from Google/USDA guidelines. Truth is I’ve never been low-carb, more like moderate carb 100-200g per day. That was enough to promote rapid weight loss & return insulin sensitivity which improved over a year. My CGM trial had my A1c estimated at 4.6% & I only spent 1% of time above 140mg/dl.”- Forum member

“I do a lot of weight training and rely heavily on carbs for energy.” – Peter M.

“I’ve done research ad nauseum on what diet works best for diabetes, and long term, it appears that low-carb can actually increase insulin resistance. At first, it will definitely help your numbers, but other diets like the Mediterranean diet (which I am currently following) and Paleo have fared better in the long-term. It’s ultimately very individualized and depends on what works for you.” – Forum member

As you can see from our community members’ experiences, you can achieve both optimal blood sugars and weight on any diet. The trick is to find something you enjoy so that you can stick with it long-term.

Have you tried eating lower-carb? What was your experience like?

Source: diabetesdaily.com

Low-Carb Taco Tortilla Chips for Snacks

This content originally appeared on Sugar-Free Mom. Republished with permission.

If you love all things taco flavored, these super easy Low Carb Keto Taco Tortilla Chips are one for your must-make list. They use almond flour tortilla as a base, then spiced with a homemade taco seasoning with no added preservatives or sweeteners!

You can make these tortilla chips in the air fryer or your oven. For the ultimate in crispness, the air fryer method wins. Baking these tortilla chips in the oven is just as delicious, just a touch softer, more like a crisp cracker.

You can make these almond flour keto taco tortilla chips nut-free if you or your family have tree nut allergies. Simply swap the almond flour for sunflower seed flour in the same amount and you will have perfectly crispy keto nut-free taco tortilla chips!

Low-carb keto taco tortilla (1)

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Low-Carb Keto Taco Tortilla Chips

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These crispy keto taco tortilla chips are easy to make at home, can be made nut free, and can be prepared in your oven or air fryer! They are the perfect party snack with any dip or salsa!
Course Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword Tortilla Chips
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Total Time 23 minutes
Servings 12 servings
Calories 76kcal
Author Jo Harding

Ingredients

Taco Seasoning

  • teaspoon chili powder
  • teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon oregano
  • ¾ teaspoon cumin
  • ¾ teaspoon smoked paprika

Tortilla Base

  • 1 cup almond flour or 100g
  • 2 tablespoons psyllium husk powder or 15g
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon xanthan gum
  • teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil or olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons water

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 355F / 180C / 160 fan.
  • Prepare the taco seasoning by whisking all the ingredients together in a small bowl.
  • Place the dry ingredients (almond flour, psyllium husk powder, baking powder, xanthan gum, salt, and taco seasoning) into a mixing bowl and stir to combine.
  • Add in the wet ingredients (eggs, oil, and water) and mix well.
  • Place in the fridge to rest for 15 minutes then shape into a ball with your hands.
  • Cut the ball into 2 pieces. Place 1 ball between 2 sheets of parchment paper and flatten with your hands. Then, roll thinly using a rolling pin to about the thickness of a coin.
  • Remove the top sheet of parchment Cut into triangles. Gather up any dough ends from ball one and include them in ball two. Cut remaining dough into triangles. You should have 60 triangles in all.

Oven Method

  • Place triangles on a baking sheet with space around each one, so they don’t overlap.
  • Bake for 7- 10 minutes or until golden. Keep an eye on them, as cooking times will vary depending on how thin you roll them. Remove from the oven and allow to cool to firm up.

Air Fryer Method

  • Spray chips with a fine spray of olive oil on both sides. Preheat your air fryer if your model requires it. Lay the tortilla chips in a single layer, so they don’t touch each other. Cook at 335F or 168C for 4 minutes. Allow chips to cool to crisp up. Note: you will need to do this in batches to cook all the tortillas.

Storage

  • Tupperware for 4 days or freezer for 2 .months

Notes

Net carbs: 2g

Nutrition

Serving: 5chips | Calories: 76kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 16mg | Sodium: 140mg | Potassium: 31mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 103IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 32mg | Iron: 1mg


Please note that the nutritional information may vary depending
on the specific brands of products used. We encourage everyone to check specific
product labels in calculating the exact nutritional information.

Low-Carb Taco Tortilla Chips for Snacks Recipe

Source: diabetesdaily.com

6 Healthy Snack Recipes Your Kids Will Enjoy

“What’s for snacks?” With your kids spending more time at home during this pandemic, you’ve probably heard them ask this question 239 times in a month. While there are nutritious options in the market, below are recipes you can try at home (with them if you need another activity to keep them entertained).

Sugar-Free Fruitless Fruit Snacks

Your kids would have no idea that these tasty jellos are not made with fruits. What’s the secret ingredient? Caffeine-free, flavored herbal tea! These snacks are so easy to make, and you’ll have fun creating those cute shapes with molds or cookie cutters. Yes, this can be an enjoyable kiddie kitchen activity, too.

pecan crackers

Photo credit: Jennifer Shun

Pecan Crackers

Pecans, nuts that are excellent sources of fiber, protein, and copper, make these savory and nutritious crackers a better alternative to store-bought ones. These snacks go well with sharp cheddar, apple butter, or a slather of warm brie. And if you need an interesting trivia to share with your kids while they enjoy their bite, here’s one: Pecans are the only tree nut native to North America.

oreo chaffles (1)

Photo credit: Lisa MarcAurele

Oreo Chaffles Recipe

Do you know a kid who doesn’t love Oreos? Probably not. Those classic cookies are a real treat for children, but if you’re looking for a low-carb alternative, this recipe is what you need. “They are deliciously chocolatey inside, and the creamy topping is very much like the cream filling in an Oreo cookie – without all the unneeded carbs,” says the author.

Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

The title tells us what to expect: veggie-infused snacks that can satisfy anyone’s sweet tooth. Top the muffins with chocolate chips for more chocolatey goodness. Since this is a guaranteed favorite, you can make this recipe in a big batch and store them properly in the freezer.

strawberry fat bombs

Photo credit: Laura Miner

Strawberry Cheesecake Fat Bombs

These fat bombs taste like mini strawberry cheesecakes. They are low-carb and so easy to make with just four ingredients. Using freeze-dried strawberries is key to making these rich and creamy scoops extra flavorful. You can use fresh or frozen strawberries, but they can be watery.

Snack Bars

Anyone can enjoy these healthy snack bars. You can make this with pecans, macadamia nuts, or any keto-friendly nuts. With its sweet and salty taste, nutty flavor, and crunchy texture, you might want to prepare extra servings and keep them in an airtight container for up to 1-2 months at room temperature. No-hassle storage, easy to grab when you’re on the go.

Which of these snacks are you adding to your meal plan? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

6 Healthy Snack Recipes Your Kids Will Enjoy

Source: diabetesdaily.com

Blueberry Cream Cheese Muffins for Breakfast, Brunch or Snacks

This content originally appeared on Low Carb Yum. Republished with permission.

When it comes to eating a low-carb diet, we often feel like we give up some of our favorite carb-filled recipes. But, it’s super easy to transition them to work with your new lifestyle.

Take for instance muffins. By subbing out all-purpose flour for cream cheese you are left with a keto version! Cream cheese is one of those staples that I always have on hand in my kitchen.

Cream cheese is a super versatile ingredient and a staple in many keto and low-carb homes. However, be sure to read the nutritional labels when you are shopping for cream cheese at your local grocery store. The amount of carbs varies from manufacture to manufacture.

Because of the high-fat content, cream cheese is sustainable on the keto diet, in moderation. Cream cheese is also high in Vitamin A.

These healthy blueberry cream cheese muffins are perfect to serve for breakfast or brunch.

blueberry cream cheese

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Blueberry Cheese Muffins

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These low-carb blueberry cheese muffins are more like cheesecake than muffins. They are gluten-free and can be eaten plain or with fruit and nuts on top.
Course Breakfast, brunch
Cuisine American
Keyword cheesecake, muffins
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Total Time 28 minutes
Servings 12 people
Calories 155kcal

Ingredients

  • 16 ounces cream cheese
  • ½ cup low-carb sugar substitute or equivalent
  • 2 eggs adding 4 will lighten the texture (see note)
  • ¼ teaspoon xanthan gum optional
  • ½ teaspoon sugar-free vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup blueberries
  • ¼ cup sliced almonds

Instructions

  • Beat softened cream cheese with electric mixer until smooth and creamy.
  • Add sweetener, xanthan gum, eggs and vanilla.
  • Beat with mixer until well blended.
  • Fold in blueberries and almonds.
  • Spoon into 12 muffin molds lined with the papers.
  • Bake at 350°F for about 20 minutes or until set and tops just starting to brown. Cool and store in the refrigerator. Best served chilled.

Notes

Using room temperature cream cheese allows for a smooth cream cheese mixture.

Per reader comment, adding 4 eggs instead of two provides a much lighter cheesecake-like texture.

The following can be added in place of the blueberries:

  • sugar-free chocolate chips
  • raspberries
  • strawberries
  • blackberries
  • nuts
  • broken low carb cookie pieces

Instant Pot Directions:

Put the batter into half-pint jars with rings and lids, not tightened, just loose, and steam for 15 minutes, then NPR (natural pressure release) for 20 minutes.

Nutrition

Serving: 1muffin | Calories: 155kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 69mg | Sodium: 134mg | Potassium: 78mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 547IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 1mg


Please note that the nutritional information may vary depending
on the specific brands of products used. We encourage everyone to check specific
product labels in calculating the exact nutritional information.

Blueberry Cream Cheese Muffins Recipe

Source: diabetesdaily.com

Five Reasons Why I Choose Multiple Daily Injections

Since the day I was diagnosed, I have had people telling me I should consider an insulin pump. Seven and a half years later, I still say no. My A1c has always been in a healthy range, and I am fine with only having one device, the Dexcom G6 continuous glucose monitor (CGM), on my body. I know pumpers rave about their tight control and I am truly amazed by the pump’s capabilities, even more so now with the new features on the Medtronic 670G. However, I prefer a KwikPen, which is true to its word — it is quick and easy and just the way I like it!

Here are my five top reasons for being on team MDI (multiple daily injections):

1. No Kinks or Knots

I constantly hear stories of people waking up with a blood sugar in the 300s, and they had no idea. This is because there was a kink or knot in their tubing and the insulin wasn’t getting into their body all night long. Yes, if they are wearing a continuous glucose monitor (CGM), it should have alerted them, but that sounds like a pain you don’t get from the poke of a pen!

2. Fewer Bruises and Scar Tissue

Don’t get me wrong, the pokes of 6-8 injections a day does add up, and I do have bruises on my body. But have you seen the needle on those pump infusion sets? They are a lot longer and thicker than my Humalog pen. Also, the cannula stays in your body, therefore, leaving much larger holes. This means more bumps and bruises and also means more scar tissue.

3. No Crazy Calculations

As I mentioned above, I am amazed at what a pump can do. It can give you a precise amount of insulin right down to the decimal point. It can also tell you what your insulin on board (IOB) is. My pen can’t do either of these things! However, I do use Humalog Luxura, which is a half-unit pen so I can get more accurate dosing. Also, I mostly eat low-carb, so my dose is usually between 1-3 units. I prefer not having to count every carb I consume; math is not my strong suit!

4. Quick and Easy

KwikPens are quick and easy and take one second to use! I compare these seconds of my day to a lifetime of walking around with another device attached to me, tubing included, and that’s just not for me. Between CrossFit and being a mom, the tubing would not be kind to me.

5. I Don’t Have to Carry Around My Pancreas

When people first recommended the pump, I really only focused on not wanting to wear something else attached to my body. What I didn’t consider was the fact that I would have to actually carry around my new pancreas! When I went to my first type one weightlifting event, Bolus & Barbells, I was so surprised to see everyone with their phones in one hand and their stand-in organ in the other. I imagine that showering and going to the bathroom is a little more challenging than it is for the average Joe!

Photo by Allison Caggia

While I know there are many benefits to wearing a pump; it is just not something I am considering at this time. For me, the fewer reminders of this disease, the better. And with another device attached to me, especially with tubing, I would feel tethered. If I were to consider a pump, it would be the Omnipod since it is tubeless. For now, I will remain loyal to team MDI.

Are you someone who is on multiple daily injections and won’t have it any other way? Or are you someone who was MDI and made the switch to a pump and are glad you did? Share your story!

A previous version of this post has been updated.

Source: diabetesdaily.com

Our Community’s Top Picks of Low-Carb Protein Bars

If I was stranded on a deserted island and had to choose 3 foods to get by with, a protein bar would definitely be first on the list. These bars make for an easy-to-grab, healthy and satisfying snack and/or meal replacement and can help keep you on track with your nutritional goals.

There are so many different brands and types to choose from; it can get overwhelming. And I personally like to look for low-carb, high-protein bars that also aren’t too caloric. It is a tall order to fill, so I asked the diabetes online community what their favorites were, and here is what they had to say:

Built Bars

Photo credit: Built Bars

1. Built Bars

Containing between 4-6 grams of carbs in each bar, these tasty treats can easily be used as a meal replacement thanks to their generous amount of protein, ranging between 17-19 grams per bar, which will keep you full for hours. The best part for me is that each bar only contains between 130-140 calories, which is significantly less than a lot of other high-protein bars on the market. There is also a great variety of flavors to chose from, making this a new staple in my pantry.

Muck Pack Keto Bars

Photo credit: Munk Pack

2. Munk Pack Keto Granola Bar and Keto Fruit & Nut Bars

I had never heard of these bars until I reached out to the community for their suggestions. I was pleasantly surprised by the flavor and nutritional information on this product. Munk Pack bars are plant-based and gluten-free and come in a wide variety of flavors. The bars contain natural ingredients such as almonds, flax, plant protein, pumpkin seeds, coconut oil, peanut butter, and allulose, which is a natural sweetener that leaves no aftertaste. Keto Granola Bars and Keto Fruit and Nut Bars all contain a small amount of protein but come in at  2-3 grams net carbs and don’t contain a ton of calories.

Quest and Quest Hero Bars

Photo credit: Quest Nutrition

3. Quest and Quest Hero Bars

This is a great choice that won’t spike your blood sugars, and you can find a flavor for every palate. The consistency is chewy and delicious, and it packs in a ton of protein with bars averaging around 20 grams of protein and 5 grams net carbs or less. Thanks to our community, I also learned about Quest Hero bars, which is a new take on the old favorite, and instead of a chewy bite, it is packed with a tasty crunch. It’s around the same macros as the original, so you can’t go wrong either way.

Ratio Keto Friendly Bars

Photo credit: Ratio Food

4. Ratio Keto-Friendly Snacks

I was excited to learn about this brand as I had never seen it before. Thankfully, I looked and it is offered in a few locations near me. I look forward to trying their protein bars with 12 grams of protein and 2 gram net carbs each! They also offer Greek yogurt in some enticing flavors, and I will definitely be purchasing soon.

Kind Nut Bars

Photo credit: Kind Snacks

5. Kind Bars

In recent years, Kind has really upped their game. Offering many different bars, including thins (which contain a lot fewer calories with a crunchier texture), protein bars, and my favorite- their nut bars, to name a few. The nut bars have 5-6 grams net carbs and 6-7 grams of protein per bar. Also, look out for their latest, Kind Clusters, which is my new favorite bite-sized snack. Mix this with Greek yogurt for a great high-protein snack.

Power Crunch Bars

Photo credit: Power Crunch

6. Power Crunch Bar

This is my favorite protein bar and has been for years. I love the French Vanilla bar with coffee in the morning, and the peanut butter chocolate bar is a perfect sweet treat to end the day. Power Crunch bars average around 14 grams of protein and 5 grams net carbs per bar. The consistency can’t be beaten and is reminiscent of Kit Kat bars with their wafer-like crunch. Look out for some of their newest products, including bars just for kids and their Proto Whey Protein Powder; I am certainly going to give that a try!

Photo credit: Pure Protein

7. Pure Protein

Best known for their protein powder and nutritious shakes, their bars also do not disappoint. With 200 calories or less, this is a delicious treat that contains around 20 grams of protein and 3 grams net carbs or less. Be sure to also check out their newest bars, which stay chilled, and Pure Protein Puffs (a healthy take on cheesedoodles), and Pure Protein Cookie Sandwiches.

NGR Bites

Photo credit: NGR Foods

8. NRG Bites

These protein bites will be sure to keep you satisfied without elevating your blood sugars.  This low-carb, high-protein snack was developed by chef Paul Kahan, who lives with type 1 diabetes himself. I use these bars for a quick breakfast or a snack on the go or before the gym, and I never have to worry about a blood sugar spike.  I was glad to see so many others in our community enjoying them, too, as they were quick to recommend. I recently wrote a review on this company where you can learn more about their offerings.

Nature Valley Protein Bars

Photo credit: Nature Valley

9. Natural Valley Protein Bar

Once again, I am so glad I reached out for the community’s help on this because I had completely forgotten about this bar. I used to enjoy this years ago and will be sure to add them back on my grocery list since they only contain around 7 grams net carbs and 10 grams of protein… and they also happen to be absolutely delicious.

Perfect Bar

Photo credit Perfect Snacks

10. Perfect Bar

I first tried Perfect Bar’s original refrigerated protein bars a few years back and gave it rave reviews. I have watched this company grow so much in the past few years and am happy to see so many new products coming out. If I am watching my carb intake, these are a little high for me, ranging between 19 and 29 grams of carbs, but with some fiber to lower the total net carbs. They have a great flavor and taste like real, rich and creamy peanut butter. They also offer mini-bars, dark chocolate peanut butter cups (my favorite), and kid bars too!

Protein bars are healthy, tasty, and versatile, depending on your nutrition goals. These bars are a great choice for someone looking to get in more protein, less carbs, and enjoy a tasty treat!

Do you take advantage of the benefits of protein bars? Which is your favorite? Share and comment below!

Source: diabetesdaily.com

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