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The plate method helps patients understand portions of food groups to help control their blood sugars. A 9 inch plate is divided into quarters, where one quarter consists of meats and starch and two quarters or a half consists of vegetables. Adjacent to the plate is a fruit serving and a dairy serving in a one cup portion (you can add a free food like a glass of water or coffee [without sugar] to your meal). Along with the plate method, the National Dairy Council’s “Seven Ways to Size Up Your Serving” is an easy tool to help visualize appropriate portion sizes. The most challenging aspect of working with nutrition management of the diabetic patient is helping patients understand portion control. This tool is a very simple way to educate patients about serving size and helping them conceptualize portions using common body parts or tools to teach portion control.
A sample Food List for diabetes is shown below: .