5 Breakfast Ideas For People With Diabetes: Start Your Day Off Right

If you’ve been diagnosed with diabetes, eating a good diet is one of the most important things you can do to manage your condition and prevent complications.

Every day, you have the opportunity to make choices that will either help or hurt your health. A nutritious breakfast not only sets you on a path for making more good choices throughout the day, but it also helps to regulate your glucose levels and prevent blood sugar spikes that can quickly spiral out of control into dangerous territory.

Overnight oats

Oats are a great breakfast choice for people with diabetes because they’re high in fiber and protein, which means they’ll help you feel full (preventing overeating) without raising your blood sugar levels too much.

With overnight oats, there is no need to cook anything in the morning, simply add your favorite toppings and enjoy. You can add whatever flavor and ingredient combinations you like and change it up regularly to prevent breakfast boredom.

Sweet Potato Toast

With diabetes, limiting your intake of refined carbs like white bread is important.

One great alternative is sweet potato toast. Sweet potatoes are a complex carbohydrate, which means they’re slowly digested and won’t cause high spikes in your blood sugar levels the way simple sugars can. They also contain fiber and antioxidants that can help reduce inflammation and improve your overall health.

To make sweet potato toast, slice a sweet potato into thin slices, then bake them in the oven or pop them in the toaster. Spread with your favorite toppings, banana slices, jam, avocado, or nut butter, and enjoy.

Veggie-Packed Egg Scramble

Eggs can be prepared in countless ways, but one of the healthiest is combining them with lots of vegetables. This way, you’ll get the protein and nutrients from the eggs and the fiber, vitamins, and minerals from the vegetables.

You can add any vegetables you like. Popular favorites include:

  • bell peppers
  • spinach
  • mushrooms
  • tomatoes
  • onions
  • broccoli

Fresh Fruit

Fruits are a great source of vitamins, minerals, and fiber and are also low in calories.

And while some fruits do contain sugar, they also have a low glycemic index, which means they won’t cause spikes in your blood sugar levels.

Some of the best breakfast fruits for people with diabetes include:

  • apples
  • oranges
  • pears
  • grapes
  • strawberries
  • blueberries
  • bananas
  • grapefruit

You can eat them on their own, mix them together in a fruit salad, or add them to yogurt or oatmeal for a more filling breakfast.

What Foods To Avoid

Knowing what to eat for breakfast is just as important as knowing what to avoid. When you are living with diabetes, it’s essential to limit your intake of foods that will make your condition worse.

Some of the foods you should avoid include:

  • red meat
  • processed meats (bacon, sausage, deli meats)
  • refined carbs (pastries, bread, pasta)
  • sugary drinks
  • fried foods
  • processed foods (pop-tarts, cereal bars, granola bars)
  • foods high in saturated and trans fats

Refined carbohydrates and sugary drinks are easily converted into glucose, which can cause spikes in your blood sugar levels. So, when you’re breakfast is made of bread, sugary cereals, or pancakes drenched in syrup, you’re likely to see a dangerous rise in your blood sugar.

Red meat, processed meats, and fried foods are high in saturated and trans fats, contributing to insulin resistance—the underlying mechanism of type 2 diabetes. So if you eat sausage, bacon, and processed foods every morning, you’re making it harder for insulin to clear away the sugar in your blood.

On the other hand, if you fill yourself up on delicious, healthy, nutrient-rich foods like eggs, fruit, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, and seeds, you won’t cause your blood sugar to spike. You’ll improve your overall health, and you might even find it easier to lose weight and manage your diabetes.