11 Healthy Snacks for Diabetes: Easy and Low-Carb

Snacks for Diabetes

Healthy Snacks for diabetes patients not only provide nutrients but also keep their blood sugars in control.

It is better for diabetic patients to take small frequent meals than to miss meals or take one or two heavy meals.

People with diabetes need small frequent meals with at least one or two healthy low-carb snacks to avoid hypoglycemia as well as spikes in their blood glucose.

Women with gestational diabetes, in particular, need a lot of calories. Simultaneously, they also need to have more strict diabetes control than non-pregnant diabetic women.

Healthy snacks that have a low glycemic index may be best to cover both aspects, providing calories and nutrients as well as controlling blood glucose.

It is not true to believe that snacking is unhealthy and for diabetics in particular, it is one of the recommended dietary changes they have to adopt.

All you have to do is make sure that your snacks are nutritionally rich and balanced and that you are good to go.


What Snacks Are Considered Healthy?

The nutritional value of your snacks should be healthy and less energy-dense. It is preferable that you choose snacks that are:

  • Fiber-rich
  • Protein-rich
  • Good sources of healthy fats
  • Contain less added sweeteners and sugars

The following list details the 11 healthy snack ideas for diabetic patients, including women with gestational diabetes.

1. Almonds: 

almonds healthy snacks for diabetes and gestational diabetes
Almonds are one of the favorite healthy snacks for diabetes and gestational diabetes

The benefits of almonds as a snack for diabetic people are far greater than thought. The nutritional composition of almonds includes:

One Single ounce serving of Almonds contains

Proteins6 gms
Carbohydrates6 gms
Fibers3 gms
Fats14 gms
Calories165 Kcals

Apart from this, almonds are rich in vitamins like riboflavin, and the magnesium content of almonds is beneficial for maintaining blood glucose levels.

Almonds lower the incidence of cardiovascular diseases by lowering the level of cholesterol.

They are also helpful in weight management, lowering A1C, LDL, and total cholesterol. For these reasons, almonds are good for preventing type 2 diabetes [Ref].


2. Fruit Salad For Diabetics:

mix fruit salad healthy snacks for diabetes
Mix fruit salad

Just because fruits are sweet doesn’t mean you can not take them. People with diabetes can eat and should eat fruits because they are rich in vitamins and minerals.

Fruits that have a low glycemic index are preferably recommended. The following table summarizes fruits based on their glycemic value [Ref]:

Glycemic Index Range


High (60-70)Cantaloupe, Bananas, Grapes, Raisins
Moderate (47-59)Prunes, Blueberries, Grapefruit, Mangoes, Dates
Low Glycemic IndexApples, Pears, Oranges, Peaches, Plums, Apricots, Strawberries
  • Cherries:

Cherries have a glycemic index of 20 and they are rich in potassium and antioxidants which are healthy for your immune system

  • Apples:

Apples are also low in glycemic index (39), and they are rich in fiber.

  • Strawberries:

Strawberries with a glycemic index of 41 and being a healthy source of vitamin C can be a good addition as well

  • Plums:

Plums can be a good choice as they have a GI of 38, and their subtle sweet taste and fiber-rich content (if eaten with the peel on) are healthy and tasty

For diabetics, using the fruits stated above and making a delicious fruit salad can be phenomenal as a mid-day snack.


3. Peanut Butter Sandwich For Diabetics:

peanut butter toast sandwich
Peanut butter toast sandwich

Eating a sandwich as a snack is always a great idea. Diabetics can use peanut butter as a sandwich spread.

Peanut butter has a low glycemic index and contains magnesium, manganese, and vitamin E all of which can help lower your blood glucose level.

To make it more nutritious, you can add pieces of boiled egg whites to your peanut butter sandwich, as egg whites contain a good amount of protein.

In one study, peanut butter consumption was found to be inversely related to diabetes and BMI. This means that people with a high intake of peanut butter were lean and had less chance of developing diabetes [Ref].


4. Greek Yogurt And Strawberries for Diabetes:

greek yogurt with berries
Greek yogurt with berries

Greek yogurt has a lower glycemic index as compared to other types of yogurts. It also has a rich protein content which makes it all the more beneficial.

In addition to its low glycemic index, it has probiotics that help in modulating gut bacteria resulting in a balanced glycemic control.

This may help in reducing the risks of developing type 2 diabetes when combined with other healthy diet, especially in individuals with underlying cardiovascular diseases [Ref]

Strawberries can make a good addition to your snack if you do not fancy eating plain Greek yogurt. They have good fiber content and are packed with antioxidants.

Strawberries being a low glycemic index fruit are useful in reducing hyperglycemia.


5. Oatmeal with Fenugreek Seeds: Porridge for Diabetes:

oatmeal porridge snacks for diabetes
Porridge for Diabetes

Oatmeal (Porridge) can be a nutritious snack. It helps in balancing blood glucose and simultaneously provides antioxidants, iron, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and zinc.

Top your Oatmeal with Fenugreek seeds which are known for their role in lowering the risk of type 2 diabetes.

Fenugreek seeds are used in different countries as a remedy for diabetes, weakness, and edema, and to stimulate breastmilk production after the birth of a child [Ref].

It is highly rich in potassium, magnesium, and calcium and hence may lower blood pressure too.


6. Popcorn For Diabetes:

popcorn for diabetes
popcorn for diabetes

Popcorns are energy deficient as they provide only 31 calories in one cup. They also contain fiber which classifies them as a good choice for diabetics.

Popcorn is a whole-grain snack that promotes weight loss and this may aid in reducing blood sugar levels and helping with the management of type 2 diabetes.

In one study, it was found that individuals who consume 1 to 6 servings of popcorn daily had an 8% reduced likelihood of developing diabetes compared to non-consumers [Ref].

The same study also noticed the association with diabetes was like a “J” shaped curve where the incidence reduced with taking a small amount of popcorn daily and increased when the intake exceeded more than 1 servings per day.


7. Sweet Potato for Diabetes Patients:

sweet potatoes for diabetes
sweet potatoes for diabetes

Sweet potatoes contain plenty of minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants making them a healthy and diabetes-friendly option.

Sweet potatoes affect blood glucose via multiple mechanisms. It modulates pancreatic Beta cell function, enhances insulin sensitivity and secretion, reduces glucose production by the liver, and has anti-inflammatory properties [Ref].

In one study, the daily intake of sweet potatoes lowered the A1C by -0.3% [Ref]

There are many ways you can eat sweet potatoes as a snack:

  • You can boil sweet potatoes and mash them, and add a teaspoon of lime on top for a savory taste
  • Make a sweet potato salad by adding some boiled egg whites and black beans to a bowl of boiled sweet potato cubes
  • Add pieces of boiled chicken to your sweet potato salad

8. Boiled Eggs for Diabetes:

boiled eggs for diabetes
boiled eggs for diabetes


The best thing about eggs is their high protein content. For diabetics, protein is an important component.

Daily consumption of eggs can result in a significant decrease in fasting blood sugar level and HbA1c level. This inverse relation between diabetes and egg consumption was obvious in men compared to women in one study [Ref].

In another study, the daily intake of eggs reduced body weight, waist circumference, visceral fat rating, and percent body fat in adults with type 2 diabetes. The HbA1C lowering effect was statistically not significant [Ref]

Boiling eggs and sprinkling some black pepper on them will give you a piquant taste.

A major consequence of type 2 diabetes is an increase in weight or the development of obesity. Eggs can be used for the management of type 2 diabetes because they tend to make you feel full.


9. Nuts for diabetes patients:

nuts for diabetes
Nuts for Diabetes

A variety of nuts can be used as a snack.

  • Cashews:

Cashews are good for reducing fasting blood sugar levels and increasing HDL levels in diabetics

  • Pistachios:

Pistachios tend to have a lowering impact on your blood glucose level, making them a safe-to-eat snack for diabetes

  • Walnuts:

Walnuts can help build insulin sensitivity in the body and aid in weight loss by promoting satiety. This will be beneficial for people with type 2 diabetes

  • Peanuts:

Peanuts have a fiber and protein-rich content and a low glycemic load. These factors make peanuts beneficial for diabetics.


10. Vegetable Salad Snacks for Diabetes Patients:

vegetable salads for diabetes
Vegetable Salads for Diabetes

Just like a fruit salad, vegetable salad can be a healthy and refreshing evening snack for diabetics.

Making a salad using carrots, tomatoes, and cucumbers can be a good choice. Carrots can maintain your blood sugar level and they are non-starchy.

Cucumbers have a low carbohydrate content which allows you to eat as many of them as you want, not only do they reduce your blood sugar level but they can also prevent hypoglycemia in case your blood sugar level drops down.

Similarly, tomatoes being a low glycemic vegetable make a good inclusion in your salad.


11. Dark Chocolate for Diabetic Patients:

dark chocolates and berries
dark chocolates and berries

If you are addicted to eating chocolates then this one is for you. As unbelievable as it may sound, consuming dark chocolate is associated with a positive impact on your blood sugar level and insulin sensitivity.

In human studies, it was observed that compared to white chocolate, dark chocolate reduces insulin resistance and improves beta-cell functions [Ref].

Dark chocolates, when taken in moderation, may also help in improving cardiovascular health.


In Summary:

Snacks for Diabetes patients, including women with gestational diabetes, provide nutrients, and vitamins, and do not have a negative impact on blood glucose.

Snacks may reduce cravings and prevent rapid glucose spikes.

What do you think?

Written by Dr. Ahmed

I am Dr. Ahmed (MBBS; FCPS Medicine), an Internist and a practicing physician. I am in the medical field for over fifteen years working in one of the busiest hospitals and writing medical posts for over 5 years.

I love my family, my profession, my blog, nature, hiking, and simple life. Read more about me, my family, and my qualifications

Here is a link to My Facebook Page. You can also contact me by email at or at My Twitter Account
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