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5 Diabetes-Friendly Breakfast Ideas

Stay full all morning long—without spiking your blood sugar.

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By Christie Donnelly

We all know breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but if you’re living with type 2 diabetes, it can be hard to choose (and prep!) a satisfying breakfast. Pastries and sugary cereals are simple to grab and go, but can leave you feeling lousy or, worse, cause a spike in your blood sugar. Instead, opt for one of these nutritious, easy-to-make breakfasts that will keep you sated—plus keep your blood levels steady—all morning long. 

Scrambled eggs and toast

2 / 6 Scrambled eggs and toast

You can still enjoy this classic breakfast combo—as long as you make it with healthier ingredients. Swap butter or margarine with cooking spray or olive oil to scramble your eggs, and avoid white bread, which has a glycemic load around 70. A single egg contains 6 grams of protein and whole grain bread is packed with fiber, so you’ll feel full all morning long.

Whole grain cereal

3 / 6 Whole grain cereal

Whether you opt for hot or cold, whole grain cereal paired with low-fat skim milk or fruit (or both!) is packed with fiber, so you’ll feel fuller, longer, as well as essential vitamins. Although whole grain cereals like plain oatmeal are low in sugar, they’re high in carbohydrates, so stick to a ½ cup of dry cereal. Avoid instant oatmeal, too—it can contain additives and extra sugar. 

Smoothies

4 / 6 Smoothies

Breakfast smoothies make it super easy to get your daily dose of fruits and veggies without downing an entire plate of greens. Combine your favorite low-glycemic fruits, like cherries, pears, strawberries or apples, and veggies with a low-calorie base like water, low-fat yogurt or milk, and a protein, like protein powder or a single serving of nut butter for a nutrient-packed breakfast. Pro tip: Toss your smoothie ingredients into the blender and refrigerate overnight, so you can grab, blend and go in the morning.

Breakfast burritos

5 / 6 Breakfast burritos

Breakfast burritos feel indulgent, but if you use the right ingredients, they can make a healthy, filling and portable breakfast. Simply scramble an egg with veggies, like peppers or spinach, then wrap in a whole wheat tortilla and top it all off with nonfat cheese and salsa. You can take your breakfast on-the-go by wrapping it in foil.

Want to save even more time? Prep a large batch of breakfast burritos, wrap them individually in foil and freeze. That way, all you have to do is pop ‘em into the microwave. 

Avocado toast

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Avocado toast has been all the rage in cafes across the country, but it’s super easy to make at home, too. The good-for-you fats in avocados increase HDL cholesterol to promote heart health, and will keep you full all morning long. It can be easy to overeat avocados, so stick to 1/3 of a medium fruit. Just mash avocado with lemon juice, salt and pepper, and plop it onto your favorite toasted whole grain bread. Want to pack in some extra protein? Slice a hard boiled egg on top of your toast for an additional 6 grams. 

more from this guide

Diabetes-Friendly Snacks to Keep in Your Desk
Sip This Peanut Butter and Raspberry Smoothie
Treating Your Type 2 Diabetes
How Type 2 Diabetes Affects Your Organs