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The Cardiac-Diabetic Diet

Last week, my husband who is a cardiac patient, was told that he is pre-hyperglycemic (pre-diabetic). His glucose blood level is 109 and it should be below 99. So we must undergo another lifestyle/diet change. Jim has been following the cardiac diet. Now it looks like he’ll do better with the cardiac-diabetes diet. Here’s is the cardiac-diabetes diet that was given to us at the Boston Medical Center:

  • The Cardiac-Diabetic Diet is a special diet designed for patients with a history of both heart disease and diabetes. This eating plan is designed to help patients manage their cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar. Abiding by the principles of the cardiac-diabetic diet will help in preventing further complications of heart disease and diabetes:
  • What is a Cardiac-Diabetic Diet:
    -Low in total fat: limit oils, mayonnaise, salad dressing, margarine
    -Low in saturated fat: limit butter, lard, animal meat, coconut, cheese, ice cream
    -Low in trans fat: avoid packaged snack foods, chips, French fries, donuts
    -Low in sodium: avoid salt, pickles, ketchup, soy sauce, baking soda
    -Low in cholesterol: avoid whole milk, cream, egg yolk, organ meats
    -Low in concentrated sweets: avoid sugar, jelly, candy, syrup, marshmallow

You can still consume many of your favorite foods while following the cardiac-diabetic diet, but it is very important to pay attention to how much you are eating at each meal. Controlling portion sizes will help to limit your intake of fat, cholesterol, sodium and sugar. Following the Diabetic Food Guide Pyramid is an easy way to ensure you are eating a wide variety of food and getting all of the nutrients you need. Below you will find the number of servings you should consume daily from each group with examples of what constitutes a serving size.

Healthy cooking methods: grill, boil, steam, braise, broil, roast, microwave, bake

  • What Counts as a Serving?
    Breads, grains & other starches (6-11 servings): 1 slice of bread, 1 oz. unsweetened ready-to-eat cereal, 1/2 cup rice, pasta, cooked cereal 

    Vegetables (3-5 servings): 1 cup raw leafy vegetables, 1/2 cup other vegetables, cooked or raw, 3/4 cup low sodium vegetable juice

    Fruits (2-3 servings): 1 medium apple, orange, banana, pear, 1/2 cup chopped, cooked, canned fruit, 3/4 cup fruit juice

    Milk & Dairy (2-3 servings): 1 cup skim or 1% milk, 1 cup low-fat or fat-free, no sugar added yogurt, 1 1/2 oz. natural cheese, part skim milk, 2 oz. processed cheese, low sodium, part skim

    Meats & Meat Substitutes (2-3 servings): 2-3 oz. cooked lean meat, poultry or fish, 1/2 cup cooked dry beans, 1 egg counts as 1-oz. of lean mean, 2 tablespoons of peanut butter counts as 1-oz. lean meat, 1/3 cup of unsalted nuts counts as 1-oz. meat

    Fats, Oils, Sweets (Use Sparingly)

  • Foods Allowed on the Cardiac-Diabetic Diet
    Meats: chicken (without skin, white meat), turkey (without skin, white meat), pork tenderloin or center chops (with visible fat trimmed off), ham (no cured or canned with salt added), duck & pheasant (without skin), venison, lamb (roast, chop, or let), beef (round, sirloin, flank steak, tenderloin, roast (rib, chuck, rump), steak (T-bone, porterhouse), ground round. Select choice grades only, with visible fat trimmed off. 

    Meat Substitutes: egg whites, egg substitute (Egg Beaters, Scramblers), tofu (no added salt), fresh fish (no smoked or salted), canned tuna (canned in water and rinsed after opening, no salt added), fresh shellfish (**high in cholesterol…limit to less than 6 oz. per day), dry beans, lentils, legumes, canned beans, lentils, legumes (no salt added)

    Dairy: skim or 1% milk, low fat or nonfat, no sugar added yogurt, fat free cream cheese, low fat or 2% cheese, fat free sour cream, low fat cottage cheese

    Condiments & Seasonings: sugar free jelly or jam, Mrs. Dash, fresh & dried herbs, spices (avoid garlic salt & onion salts), sugar substitutes (Equal, Sweet ‘n Low), pepper, hot sauce, Tabasco, lemon juice, light soy sauce

    Fruits: all fresh fruits, canned fruit in water or juice (no syrup), no sugar added dried fruits, 100% fruit juice (no sugar added)

    Vegetables: all fresh vegetables, canned vegetables with no added salt, all frozen vegetables (with no sauces or salt added), low sodium vegetable juice, low sodium salsa

    Grains, Cereals, Pastas: whole wheat breads, whole grains (wheat, bulgur, bran, corn, rye, etc.), basmati or long grain rice, whole grain crackers (unsalted tops), wheat pasta, whole grain oats, whole grain, high fiber cereals

    Fats: avocado, canola, olive, peanut oil, nuts (almonds, cashews, mixed, peanuts, pecans (unsalted, no salt added)), peanut butter, unsalted, light or fat free margarine


4 Responses

  1. Marie Edwards

    I have been looking for this type of diet for a verylong time. Thank you so very much.

  2. Pizza Pie 123

    Thanks. This was very helpful.

  3. Mary

    I hate, hate the kitchen and all that goes with it, yet I am supposed to follow this type diet. I wish I could find menus to copy for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I would be happy to eat the same meals more than once. I have no interest whatsoever in monkeying around with food and just wish someone would make it very simple. Any ideas?

  4. Charlene

    thanks so much. my step mom just had open heart surgery and we found out she is also diabetic. I had no idea what to cook for her! I appreciate you posting this!!!