When you’re diagnosed with diabetes, it can come as quite a shock. Many people worry that they will never be able to enjoy sweet foods again. In this post, we’ve included some diabetic desserts that you can enjoy without having to worry about your blood sugar levels spiking.
What is Diabetes and Why Is It Dangerous?
When we talk about diabetes, we are usually referring to the conditions known as type 1 and type 2 diabetes. A third type is gestational diabetes that occurs during the later stages of pregnancy.
When your body is functioning properly, sugars and carbohydrates are broken down into glucose. Glucose is fuel for the cells in your body.
Your body’s cells need a hormone called insulin to take in the glucose and introduce it to your bloodstream. If you have diabetes, your body either doesn’t make insulin at all, or is not able to use the insulin that it does produce.
Because your body’s cells are not able to take in the glucose, it builds up in your body. This puts you at risk of damage to your kidneys eyes, heart or nervous system.
If severe or not treated properly, diabetes can cause heart disease, strokes, blindness, kidney disease, and nerve damage in your legs and feet.
Foods You Can Eat If You Have Diabetes
Eating a well-balanced diet and engaging in regular exercise are important to maintain your health and well-being, particularly if you have diabetes.
However, this does not necessarily mean that you can no longer enjoy your favorite foods, but you may have to adjust how you eat them.
Many people think you should avoid carbohydrates if you have diabetes. However, you should only avoid refined carbohydrates.
Whole grains, non-fat or low-fat dairy, and non-starchy vegetables are fine to eat in moderation. Starchy vegetables such as sweet potatoes and corn can be eaten in small amounts.
Water is another important aspect of eating well if you have diabetes. It helps to flush toxins out of your body, and also helps you avoid reaching for sodas or other sugary drinks.
How You Should Eat if You Have Diabetes
If you are concerned about your blood sugar levels rising, remember that small portions are much easier for your system to manage than large meals. That means you can have some of your favorite food in small portions.
If small meals don’t appeal to you, the American Diabetes Association has a separate section for recipes on their website. We’ve taken our top 5 Low Sugar Diabetic Desserts from their site.
Top 5 Low Sugar Diabetic Desserts
Almond Joy Hot Chocolate
Serving size: 1 cup, 2 tbsps of whipped topping, and 1 tbsp of sliced almonds
Ingredients: 4 Cups of unsweetened almond milk, 1/4 cup of sliced almonds, 1/4 cup of cocoa powder, 1/4 cup of Splenda sugar blend, 1/4 tsp of coconut extract, 1/4 cup of fat-free whipped topping.
Directions: Sauté the almonds over a medium to high heat, until lightly roasted.
While the almonds are cooling, put the almond milk, Splenda, cocoa powder, and coconut extract in a blender. Blend until the mixture is thoroughly mixed and has a light foam.
Put the mixture into a saucepan and simmer over medium heat.
Pour the mixture into four mugs, top each with 2 tbsps of whipped topping, and then sprinkle over 1 tbsp each of the toasted almonds.
Serving size: 1/2 cup
Ingredients: 1/4 cup of packed brown sugar, 1/4 cup of all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup of old-fashioned rolled oats, 2 tbsps of softened margarine, 1 tsp of ground cinnamon, 1/2 tsp of ground nutmeg, 1 tsp of vanilla extract, 5 peeled and sliced red apples, nonstick cooking spray.
Directions: Preheat your oven to 375°F and cover a 13-inch by 9-inch baking pan with cooking spray.
In a bowl, combine the brown sugar, flour, margarine, oats, cinnamon, vanilla, and nutmeg. Mix with a fork until the mixture is moist and looks crumbly.
Layer the apples in a pan, sprinkle the brown sugar mixture evenly over the apples, and bake for 30 minutes.
Serving size: 3/4 cup
Ingredients: 1 cup of uncooked instant brown rice, 2 cups of fat-free milk, 1 cup of water, 2 tbsps of granulated zero-calorie sweetener, a 3-inch strip of orange peel, 1 cinnamon stick, 1 tbsp of whole flax seeds, 3 whole cloves, 1 tsp of vanilla extract, 1/2 tsp of cinnamon.
Directions: Prepare the rice according to the directions on the package.
Combine the cooked rice with the milk, water, orange peel, sugar substitute, flaxseeds, cinnamon stick, and cloves. Bring these ingredients to a boil in a medium-sized saucepan.
Once the mixture is boiling, reduce the heat to a medium-low setting, and simmer for around 20 minutes or until the mixture is creamy and thick. Stir often while the mixture is simmering.
Remove from the heat and take out the orange peel, cloves, and cinnamon stick.
Stir the vanilla and ground cinnamon into the mixture. Serve.
Serving size: 1 Sundae
Ingredients: 1/2 tsp of ground cinnamon, 2 firm bananas (split in half lengthwise but not peeled), 2 cups of reduced fat and low calories strawberry ice cream, 2 tsps of Splenda brown sugar blend, 6 tbsps of no-added-sugar pineapple (crushed and drained), 6 tbsps of sugar-free chocolate sauce, 6 tbsps of fat-free whipped topping, 6 tbsps of chopped pecans.
Directions: Preheat an outdoor or indoor grill over medium heat.
Whisk the Splenda and cinnamon together in a small bowl, and sprinkle on the cut side of the bananas.
Place the bananas on the grill, cut side down, for 2 to 3 minutes, or until grill marks appear.
Flip the bananas over and cook until you can see the peel start to pull away from the banana.
Take the bananas off the grill and remove the peel. Cut each banana half into thirds, lengthwise.
Place 1/3 cup of ice cream in each sundae bowl. Add two pieces of bananas to each cup. Make sure they are sticking up from the ice cream.
Top each bowl of ice cream with 1 tbsp of pineapple, 1 tbsp of chocolate sauce, 1 tbsp of whipped topping, and 1 tbsp of chopped pecans.
Serving size: 1 Whoopie pie
Ingredients: 1/2 cup of low-calorie brown sugar blend, 1/2 cup of unsweetened applesauce, 1/4 cup of olive oil, 1/2 cup of egg substitute, 1 tsp of vanilla extract, 1 cup of whole wheat flour, 1 cup of old-fashioned rolled oats, 2 tsps of baking powder, 1/2 tsp of baking soda, 1 tsp of cinnamon, 1/4 tsp of ground nutmeg, 2 cups of shredded carrots, 8 ounces of fat-free cream cheese, 2 tbsps of low-calorie granulated sugar substitute, 2 tbsps of maple syrup, 1 tsp of lemon juice, nonstick cooking spray.
Directions: Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with baking paper and coat with the cooking spray.
Combine the brown sugar blend, applesauce, egg substitute, vanilla and oil in a medium-sized bowl and mix well.
Combine the flour, oats, baking soda, baking powder, nutmeg, and cinnamon, in a large bowl.
Once the dry ingredients are blended well, make a well in the center and add the previously mixed wet ingredients. Mix both mixtures well.
Stir in the carrots.
Scoop up heaped tablespoons of the mixture and place them onto the baking sheets. Make sure to space them about 2 inches apart from each other. You should have 24 cookies in total.
Bake for 15 minutes and then allow to cool.
Beat the filling ingredients together with another tsp of vanilla extract until the mixture feels fluffy and smooth.
Join the cookies together in pairs with a light layer of filling.
Diabetic Desserts Are Not Just for Diabetics
These delicious desserts taste just as good, and sometimes better, than other traditional favorites. You can also try adjusting some of your own dessert recipes by substituting ingredients with fat-free, low-sugar options.
Our top 5 diabetic desserts are all quick and easy to make with ingredients that can all be found in your local supermarkets.