Diabetes mellitus (MEL-ih-tus), often referred to as diabetes, is characterized by high blood glucose (sugar) levels that result from the body’s inability to produce enough insulin and/or effectively utilize the insulin. Diabetes is a serious, life-long condition and the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. Diabetes is a disorder of metabolism (the body's way of digesting food and converting it into energy). There are three forms of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that accounts for five- to 10-percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. Type 2 diabetes may account for 90- to 95-percent of all diagnosed cases. The third type of diabetes occurs in pregnancy and is referred to as gestational diabetes. Left untreated, gestational diabetes can cause health issues for pregnant women and their babies. People with diabetes can take preventive steps to control this disease and decrease the risk of further complications.

Recently Answered

  • 3 Answers

     A dietitian can help you learn any of these approaches to managing your food:

    • What types of foods and how much you need to eat every day.
    • How many grams of carbohydrates to eat each day to keep your blood glucose within your target range—and how to count carbohydrates (see more on carbohydrate counting in the next section).
    • How many grams of fat to eat if you want to keep your fat intake low. Generally, this means that the fat in your diet provides no more than 30% of the calories you take in per day. You may also want to discuss how to count fat grams.
    • How to adjust your meals for exercise.
    • Which foods to have on hand to treat hypoglycemia and sick days.
    • New ideas for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks.
    • How to reduce your sodium intake—and how to count sodium in milligrams.
    • How to read food labels.
    • How to meet your nutritional needs when following a specific meal plan such as a vegetarian diet.
    See All 3 Answers
  • 1 Answer
    A answered

    If you have diabetes and trouble with high blood sugar, you might want to make this one of your mainstay snacks: a handful of walnuts.

    Walnuts are already in a heart-healthy league of their own because of their cholesterol-improving powers. And now a small new study suggests that eating walnuts every day may help give blood vessels a much needed tune-up in people with diabetes.

    In the study, people with type 2 diabetes were asked to eat about 2 ounces of walnuts every day. After 8 weeks, endothelial function improved significantly in the walnut eaters. Why is this good news? Because endothelial cells -- that thin layer of cells that lines the inside of blood vessels -- may be one of the first places to go bad when people with diabetes start developing vascular disease.

    Compared to other nuts, walnuts have higher amounts of alpha-linolenic acid, which may help protect against plaque formation in arteries. Walnuts also are a great source of an amino acid called L-arginine, which helps relax blood vessels and control blood pressure. And surprisingly, the nut eaters in the study didn't suffer any deleterious effects to their weight and waist sizes. Could be all the protein and fiber in walnuts helped the study participants eat less overall.

  • 4 Answers
    A Nutrition & Dietetics, answered on behalf of

    Carbohydrate containing food will affect blood sugar the most quickly. Examples of carbohydrate containing food include: milk; yogurt; breads; cereals; grains; starchy vegetables like corn, peas, beans and potatoes; and fruit and fruit juices. Carbohydrate containing foods that contain fiber will help slow down the absorption of carbohydrate in the body whereas foods that are simple sugars like sugar, honey, syrup, and candy will absorb quickly into the blood stream giving a quicker rise in blood sugar.

    See All 4 Answers
  • 1 Answer
    A answered

    White rice is a whole rice grain that has been polished until just the endosperm -- essentially an easily digestible starch bomb -- is left. Not surprisingly, recent studies have shown that eating white rice can raise blood glucose significantly, especially if eaten often or in large quantities. One study showed an 11% increase in diabetes risk with each daily serving of white rice. If you love rice with your stir-fries, switch to brown rice. Your blood sugar will thank you.

  • 1 Answer
    dLife - turkey meatloaf
    This updated meatloaf recipe uses lean ground turkey instead of ground beef. Sautéed onions, leeks, garlic, and red wine boost this low-carb meatloaf's flavor -- and a secret ingredient keeps it moist.

    Click below to watch chef Michel Nischan mix up this low-carb meatloaf.

    Low Carb Meat Loaf


    1 tbsp grapeseed oil (or olive oil)
    1 fresh leek, thinly sliced
    1 small onion, peeled and chopped
    3 medium garlic cloves, peeled and finely minced
    6 oz tomato sauce
    1/2 cup dry red wine
    1/2 cup low sodium chicken broth
    2 tsp fresh basil, chopped
    1 tsp oregano leaves, choppped
    1 pinch salt, or sea salt (to taste)
    1 tbsp light spelt flour (or any whole grain flour)

    1 lb ground turkey
    1 tbsp light spelt flour
    1 egg, lightly beaten
    2 egg whites, lightly beaten
    1/2 cup chopped zucchini, peeled and grated
    1 pinch kosher salt
    1 pinch ground black pepper


    1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
    2. Coat large skillet with grapeseed oil. Heat over medium. Add leek, onion, and garlic. Sauté until just golden brown. Add flour, stir and cook for 2 minutes.
    3. Add wine, chicken broth, tomato sauce, basil, oregano, flour, and salt to skillet. Bring to boil, reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered for 15 minutes. Set sauce aside.
    4. In large bowl, combine ground turkey, eggs, zucchini, and flour. Mix well. Add 1/4 cup sauce, and stir in gently. Grease or line 4" x 8" loaf pan. Form meatloaf into pan. Cover with foil. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes. Discard any drippings.
    5. Heat remaining sauce and serve with meatloaf.

    Additional Information
    For a classic dinner combo, serve with Green Beans Amandine. 

    Makes 8 servings

    Amount Per Serving

    Calories 167.9
    Total Carbs 6.4 g
    Dietary Fiber 1 g
    Sugars 2.3 g
    Total Fat 8.7 g
    Saturated Fat 2.1 g
    Unsaturated Fat 6.6 g
    Potassium 293.9 mg
    Protein 13 g
    Sodium 292.5 mg
  • 1 Answer
    Yes! Grapes contain carbohydrate, as all fruits do, and carbs raise blood sugar, but the red skins on grapes have other great heart-healthy benefits, just like red wine does. Just be sure you watch portion size and test your blood sugar after eating. Also, combine them with a protein food like cheese to help moderate the impact on your blood glucose levels.
  • 1 Answer
    This easy hummus recipe includes a puree of chickpeas (also called garbanzo beans), garlic, cumin, and other Indian spices. Serve this dip with whole-grain chips or crackers for a low-carb snack perfect for people with diabetes. Keep in mind that one serving of this dip is two tablespoons.

    Hummus with Indian Spices


    1/2 cup minced onion
    1 tsp canola oil
    2 medium garlic cloves, minced or pressed
    1 tsp ground coriander
    1/2 tsp ground cumin
    1/2 tsp garam masala
    pinch ground cayenne (red pepper)
    1 cup canned unsalted diced tomatoes
    1-1/2 cups canned garbanzo beans
    2 tsp fresh lime juice
    1 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
    pinch salt, to taste
    1/2 cup cold water, as needed


    1. In medium skillet, heat oil to low, add onions and sauté 5 minutes, or until soft.
    2. Add dry spices, sauté for 1 additional minute, stirring constantly.
    3. Add tomatoes, reduce heat low, stir. Cover, simmer 5 minutes.
    4. While onion mixture is cooking, add chickpeas to food processor and puree, adding enough water to create smooth texture.
    5. Stir puree into tomato mixture, add lime juice and cilantro.
    6. Cook on low 5 minutes.
    7. Add salt to taste. Serve.

    Additional Information
    Serve with low-carb, whole-grain chips or veggie dippers.

    Makes 8 servings

    Amount Per Serving
    Calories 66.9
    Total Carbs 10.5 g
    Dietary Fiber 2.2 g
    Sugars 3.2 g
    Total Fat 1.4 g
    Saturated Fat 0 g
    Unsaturated Fat 1.3 g
    Potassium 59.2 mg
    Protein 2.9 g
    Sodium 153.7 mg
  • 1 Answer
    This soothing tea recipe has a surprising ingredient: rhubarb. Rich in vitamins and low in carbs, rhubarb is a great ingredient for people with diabetes. And it gives this chilled tea a bright color and tangy flavor.

    Rhubarb Tea


    3 cups fresh rhubarb, diced
    3 cups cold water
    2 tbsp light honey
    1 cinnamon stick
    2 tbsp fresh lemon juice, more or less to taste


    1. In large saucepan, place rhubarb, water, honey, and cinnamon. Bring to boil.
    2. Lower heat and simmer 10 minutes. Remove cinnamon stick and simmer additional 5 minutes. Remove pot from heat and let rest for 1 hour.
    3. Using fine strainer over a large pitcher, strain contents of pot (do not squeeze). Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least 2 hours. Stir in lemon juice and serve over ice.

    Makes 4 servings

    Calories 57.3
    Total Carbs 14.7 g
    Dietary Fiber 2.6 g
    Sugars 9.2 g
    Total Fat 0.2 g
    Saturated Fat 0 g
    Unsaturated Fat 0.1 g
    Potassium 278.2 mg
    Protein 1 g
    Sodium 11.4 mg
  • 1 Answer
    dLife - barbecue beef brisket
    This low-carb recipe uses only a few ingredients to create a spicy marinade that infuses the beef brisket with barbecue flavor, perfect for people with diabetes. Beef is also a natural source for vitamin B12, which is important for a strong, healthy body.

    Click below to watch chef Michel Nischan bake up this rich, barbecue-flavored dish.

    Barbeque Beef Brisket


    5 lb whole lean beef brisket, trimmed
    pinch salt and pepper, to taste
    3 tbsp roasted, chopped garlic cloves
    1/4 cup light honey
    1/4 cup cider vinegar
    1/4 cup light soy sauce
    2 cups drained canned tomatoes, chopped
    2 tbsp dried Chipotle peppers, seeded and finely diced
    1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped


    1. Trim any excess fat from the brisket, and season the brisket with the salt and pepper.
    2. In a small bowl, combine the honey, vinegar, lite soy, tomatoes, and chipotle. Spread over the brisket. Cover, and refrigerate overnight.
    3. Preheat the oven to 300°F.
    4. Transfer brisket and marinade to Dutch oven or heavy baking dish.
    5. Bake, covered, 5 to 6 hours, or until brisket is tender. Sprinkle generously with freshly chopped cilantro and serve.

    Makes 12 servings

    Calories 367.8
    Total Carbs 7.9 g
    Dietary Fiber 0.4 g
    Sugars 7.1 g
    Total Fat 15.8 g
    Saturated Fat 5.6 g
    Unsaturated Fat 10.3 g
    Potassium 721.1 mg
    Protein 45.4 g
    Sodium 434.4 mg
  • 2 Answers
    Fast food restaurants have more healthy options than ever. There are many side items that feature vegetables and fruits such as salads, apple slices, and carrots. These are some of the obvious healthy foods that you can choose. Order these options as often as possible instead of French fries or onion rings.

    Some establishments dedicate a section of their menu to healthier options. For example, Taco Bell offers their Drive-Thru Diet menu and Dunkin Donuts has their DDSMART menu. Remember, these menu items are usually better choices than what is on the rest of the menu, but you still need to consider portion size, calories, carbohydrates, fat, and sodium.
    See All 2 Answers