The 1800 Calorie Diabetic Diet is a diet plan especially created for diabetics to guide them in eating healthy and maintaining their blood sugar level to normal. There are two common methods in the 1800 calorie diet; the diabetic exchanges and carbohydrate counting.
The Diabetes Exchange system guides you in selecting the right food items to eat each. The exchange system is divided into six categories: meat/meat substitutes, starches, fruits, fats, milk and vegetables. Some food items are also called free foods as they have very low amount of carbs and/or calories.
Basing on the serving for each food item in each category, the carbohydrate, protein and fat amounts are similar for all. It just means that each food item in a particular category can be exchanged for another food item in the same category.
Here is an example:
One vegetable exchange is 5g carbs, 2g protein, 0g fat and 25 calories.
So, a cup of raw vegetables can be exchanged to a half cup of tomato or vegetable juice.
Using the diabetic exchange system, you can achieve the 1800 Calorie Diabetic Diet by becoming familiar with the serving sizes for each food item and also how much carbs, protein and fat are in each category.
Food items that are high in carbohydrates are foods that may raise your blood sugar so you need to be extra careful. With the Carb counting system, all you need to pay attention to is the number of carbs of each food. Like the amount of carbs of a cup of milk, or a slice of bread or an apple.
Spread your carbohydrate servings into a minimum of three meals per day and foods which consist of mainly protein and fat should be consumed in moderation. If you eat more of these, you might gain weight and you will not meet your 1800 Calorie Diabetic Diet.
Food labels help you determine the carb count of each food item so you make sure to check them always.
A typical 1800 Calorie Diabetic Diet is consists of 50% carbohydrates, 20% of protein and 30% of fat. This diet plan is very helpful to diabetics however, it is best to first consult your dietitian first as they may provide you with an individualized meal plan.