Diabetes Forecast

The Healthy Living Magazine

What Is the Plate Method?

The Diabetes Plate Method is an easy "formula" that helps you eat right with every bite

By Lara Hamilton, RD, CDE
Learn More about Eat Well America

Recipe by Ronaldo Linares; plate photography by Renée Comet

Wondering what to eat for your best diabetes health? For American Diabetes Month, here's a great way to eat right with every bite.

The Diabetes Plate Method is a simple guide for planning meals. The result is tasty meals that are good for you, boost energy, and keep you feeling satisfied. Using the "formula" encourages you to eat more healthy food and fewer unhealthy foods.

The Diabetes Plate Method helps you control portion sizes of starchy, carbohydrate-containing foods that have the most impact on blood glucose levels. It focuses on eating more nonstarchy vegetables, which are low in carbohydrate and calories and high in vitamins, minerals, and fiber. It also helps you get enough lean protein.

You can use the plate method for your specific health and nutrition goals including weight loss or maintenance, blood glucose management, and simple good nutrition. The plate method is also a useful meal planning tool for people with prediabetes and for those who simply want a healthy approach to eating.

Start today by filling half your plate with nonstarchy vegetables. Then fill one quarter of your plate with whole grain or starchy foods and the remaining quarter with lean protein foods. The Diabetes Plate Method includes fruit and low-fat dairy on the side, as your meal plan and calorie needs allow. Healthful fats, which can be used in any section of the plate for food preparation or as condiments, are also key ingredients.

The best part about the Diabetes Plate Method? It doesn't require a lot of math and you can use it almost anywhere. Use it when you eat out, at holidays or special events, and most important—when you prepare food at home for yourself!

>> See how to create your plate.