Back to the Diet Basics

Back to the Diet Basics

Back to the Diet Basics
Back to the Diet Basics
Back to the Diet Basics

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It can be overwhelming trying to manage diabetes, but we are here to help you take back control with our ‘how to’ guide.

Are you experiencing ‘Diabetes Burnout’?

It is natural to feel overwhelmed and fed up sometimes when you have diabetes. Lots of people diagnosed with diabetes may feel "burned out" from time to time. So if this is you, try not to worry, we are here to help.

 Symptoms can include: 

  • Feeling overwhelmed and defeated by diabetes 

  • Worrying about not taking enough care of your diabetes but feeling unmotivated or unwilling to change 

  • Not caring about blood sugar levels 

  • Reverting to unhealthy behaviors, eg. poor diet1 

Get your foundations right

With every food choice you make you have the power to make a positive impact on your glucose level.  Selecting the right foods in the right portion at every meal and snack is fundamental to good control. So, no matter how many years you have had diabetes, you need to get the diet basics right. Start getting your foundations right by following our tips below:

  • Ask to see a dietician
    No two people with diabetes eat the same way and everyone responds to food differently. So, ask your doctor for a referral to a dietitian. Your dietitian will educate you on essential diet fundamentals and work with you to personalize your eating plan to suit your lifestyle, personal eating preferences, and the state of your health so you can sustain the changes and achieve good glucose control. Remember that your body’s ability to manage blood glucose will diminish over time, so attend planned follow-up sessions to tweak the plan along the way.


  • Control & space out your carbs
    Carbohydrates (carbs in short) raise blood glucose more than protein or fat. You need to include carbs in your daily diet to avoid low blood glucose as well as to ensure you are not overeating proteins or fats. Keep ‘added sugar’ to a minimum as it can cause sugar spikes and use up precious calories without delivering any essential vitamins, minerals, or fiber. But, not all carbs are bad. Every main meal and snack should include some starchy carbs, preferably of the wholegrain variety, as they provide energy for daily tasks, but the quantity at each meal and snack needs to be adjusted and spaced through the day to suit your lifestyle and medications to achieve glucose control.


  • Go for low Glycemic Index (GI) foods
    Some carbohydrates provide a slower and more sustained release of glucose into the bloodstream. Others release glucose rapidly, which can cause a spike in blood sugar levels. The glycemic index (GI) is a number assigned to each food which shows how quickly it causes an increase in blood glucose levels. Including more low GI foods in your diet can help you gain tighter control over your blood sugar levels3.


Carb counting and selection of low GI foods are useful tools in helping to control blood sugar levels. Both methods can be combined to optimize blood glucose management via good dietary choices.


  • Stay fully engaged
    Take charge of your diabetes. To sustain essential lifestyle changes, keep on learning, keep on asking questions and always evaluate your treatment and progress. Monitor key health parameters such as weight, blood glucose, blood pressure, and blood lipids. While most of these can be effectively done in your medical reviews, consider including more frequent self-blood glucose monitoring to provide immediate feedback. With wearable technology easily available, blood glucose feedback may help you stay in the know. Knowing how your body responds to foods, meals, and snacks will help you make better choices and control portions.


  • Avoid Burnout. Get Support.
    Speak up to your healthcare team and family when you feel upset and angry about the demands diabetes is placing on your food choices and lifestyle. It is natural to feel overwhelmed sometimes.  But, never give up, rework your goals, and allow for some balance. Small wins every day add up, stick with it!

Be empowered with Diabetes-Specific Formulas (DSFs)

To help you on your journey, consider adding a diabetes-specific formula as part of your individual meal plan. These may help you achieve better glucose control with greater convenience and help you feel confident that you are getting complete and balanced nutrition.

Here’s how to add a diabetes-specific formula into your diet:

1. Swap A Snack. Tempted by the calorie and carb-laden “ensaymada” or “lumpia”? Replace unhealthy, high GI snacks with an equal calorie portion of the diabetes-specific formula

2. Do a Partial Meal Replacement. A favorite meal choice sending your blood sugar out of whack? Eat only half the portion and top up the remaining allocated calories for the meal (if any) with a diabetes-specific formula

3. Replace an Entire Meal. Want to lose weight effectively to attain good blood glucose control? Find that you are either missing a meal or giving in to temptations at mealtime? How about giving up your “lechon manok” meal for a controlled portion of the diabetes-specific formula to save 309 calories immediately. Sustained over time, you will see the extra pounds peel off.

1 Source: Accessed on 23 November 2019 at

2 Zafar MI, Mills KE, Zheng J, Regmi A, Hu SQ, Gou L, Chen LL. Low-glycemic index diets as an intervention for diabetes: a systematic review and meta-analysis. The American journal of clinical nutrition. 2019 Oct 1;110(4):891-902.

3 Source: PinggangPinoy-Adult.pdf (

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How can Glucerna® support your
diabetes management plan?

Glucerna® Vanilla Flavor

Glucerna® is the number 1 selling diabetes nutritional supplement in the Philippines*. It contains 35 nutrients, slow-release carbohydrates and 4x more inositol vs previous formulation, that delivers a dual action for tight blood sugar control.

* NielsenIQ Retail Index, Dietetics-Adult Segment-Diabetes Subsegment, July 2020 – June 2021