7 day gut healthy meal plan for diabetes

Keeping your gut happy isn\’t just about healthy digestion. Research, including a 2020 article in the World Diabetes Journal, shows that gut health may play an important role in the development and management of diabetes. And the gut health benefits don\’t end there. A healthy gut microbiome may also promote heart health, reduce colon cancer risk, and improve mood and sleep.


Even the smallest dietary and lifestyle changes can displace microorganisms, AKA the tiny \”bugs\” of bacteria, viruses and fungi known as the gut microbiome, according to a 2021 article in Nutrients. A diet rich in probiotics and prebiotics is key to increasing the good bugs. While you can get probiotics and prebiotics in pill form, they\’re also readily available in many healthy foods.


Probiotics which are gut-healthy bacteria may improve insulin sensitivity and reduce insulin resistance, according to a 2021 article in Gut microbes. Good sources of probiotics include yogurt, sauerkraut and miso. Along with probiotics, you should also consider prebiotics, the food for healthy gut probiotic bacteria. Prebiotics contain a type of fiber called fermentable fiber that promotes the growth of helpful gut microbes while reducing bad bacteria. Good sources of fermentable fiber include artichokes, garlic, oats and soybeans.




This 7-day meal plan includes healthy probiotic foods, such as sauerkraut and yogurt, which increase the number of good bacteria in your gut, and prebiotic foods, such as whole grains and high-fiber fruits and vegetables, which fuel those good gut bacteria. And because this meal plan is specifically for people with diabetes, we skipped foods high in saturated fat and sodium and low in fiber like highly processed foods high in added sugars, artificial sweeteners, and red meat.


This eating plan is set at 1,500 calories, which is a calorie level that promotes weight loss for most people. For those with different calorie goals, we\’re also including adjustments for 1,200 calories and 2,000 calories a day.



Foods with probiotics and prebiotics

Healthy probiotic foods increase the number of good bacteria in your gut while prebiotic foods feed those good gut bacteria. Here is a list of foods that are naturally high in each.


Foods rich in probiotics

Probiotics are foods that have beneficial bacteria from fermented foods. These include:


  • Yogurt
  • kefir
  • Miso
  • sauerkraut
  • kimchi
  • Tempeh
  • Kombucha


Foods rich in prebiotics

As mentioned earlier, foods that feed on probiotics are called prebiotics and are usually non-digestible carbohydrates and fibers such as gums, pectins, inulin, and resistant starches. Foods with prebiotics in high amounts include:


  • Garlic
  • Leeks, especially the green part
  • Asparagus
  • Artichokes
  • Bananas
  • Seaweed
  • Jerusalem artichokes
  • Dandelion greens
  • Soya beans
  • Mushrooms
  • Oats



How to eat Prepare your week of meals

Here\’s what to prepare ahead of time to make eating healthy during the busy workweek easy. There are more “Meal Prep Tips” throughout the week. Be sure to read them ahead of time to know what other preparations can be done during the week.


  1. Make cups of baked oatmeal with banana and walnuts in the evening of day two to have for breakfast on days 3 through 5.
  2. On Day 1, pack some extra brown rice for dinner to use for the pork-kimchi fried rice on Day 2. One cup of dry brown rice will cook 3 cups.



Day 1

Ana Cadena

Breakfast (292 calories, 4 g fiber)



Morning snack (250 calories, 10g fiber)

  • 1 1/4 cups edamame pods


Lunch (304 calories, 12 g fiber)



Afternoon snack (268 calories, 11 g fiber)

  • 1 cup of blackberries
  • 1/4 cup dry roasted unsalted almonds


Dinner (383 calories, 7 g fiber)



Daily Totals: 1,498 calories, 105g protein, 149g carbs, 43g fiber, 56g fat, 1,114mg sodium


To make it 1,200 calories: Omit the morning snack and reduce blackberries to 1/4 cup at the afternoon snack.


To make it 2,000 calories: Add 1 slice of whole-wheat bread with 1 tablespoon of peanut butter for breakfast, 1 medium apple for lunch, and increase to 2 servings of salmon for dinner.



Day 2

Photographer / Frederick Hardy II, food stylist / Marianne Williams, props stylist / Christina Daley

Breakfast (300 calories, 9 g fiber)



Morning snack (260 calories, 4 g fiber)

  • 1 plain kombucha 15 oz
  • 1/4 cup dry roasted unsalted almonds


Lunch (404 calories, 5g fiber)



Afternoon snack (230 calories, 11 g fiber)

  • 1/3 cup roasted chickpeas
  • 2 clementines


Dinner (302 calories, 3 g fiber)



Meal Prep Tip: Make cups of baked oatmeal with banana and walnuts for breakfast on days 3 through 5. Reserve some chicken from Baked Chicken With Onions and Leeks for dinner tonight to use for Creamy Pesto Chicken Salad with vegetables tomorrow.


Daily Totals: 1,497 calories, 90g protein, 155g carbs, 32g fiber, 59g fat, 1,510mg sodium


To make it 1,200 calories: Omit the almonds in your morning snack and reduce the roasted chickpeas to 2 Tbsp. at the afternoon snack.


To make it 2,000 calories: Increase to 2 eggs at breakfast, 1/2 cup of almonds at morning snack, and increase to 2 servings of chicken at dinner.



Day 3

Breakfast (291 calories, 7 g fiber)



Morning snack (200 calories, 8 g fiber)



Lunch (383 calories, 4 g fiber)



Afternoon snack (154 calories, 6 g fiber)

  • 1 cup of sliced ​​cucumbers
  • 1/3 cup hummus


Dinner (481 calories, 6 g fiber)



Daily Totals: 1,509 calories, 87 g protein, 143 g carbohydrate, 31 g fiber, 68 g fat, 1,724 mg sodium


To make it 1,200 calories: Omit the morning snack and reduce the hummus to 2 tbsp. at the afternoon snack.


To make it 2,000 calories: Add 1/3 cup dry roasted unsalted almonds at breakfast, increase to 1 3/4 cups edamame at your morning snack, and increase to 1/2 cup hummus at your afternoon snack.



Day 4

Breakfast (285 calories, 5g fiber)



Morning snack (278 calories, 5 g fiber)

  • 1 plain kombucha 15 oz
  • 2 clementines
  • 3 tablespoons dry roasted unsalted almonds


Lunch (325 calories, 12 g fiber)



Afternoon snack (158 calories, 2 g fiber)



Dinner (452 ​​calories, 14g fiber)



Daily Totals: 1,498 calories, 56g protein, 171g carbs, 38g fiber, 73g fat, 1,025mg sodium


To make it 1,200 calories: Omit the almonds at the morning snack and the ranch dressing at the afternoon snack.


To make it 2,000 calories: Add 1/3 cup dry roasted unsalted cashews at breakfast, increase to 1/4 cup almonds at morning snack, and increase to 2 cups bell pepper, and add 1/4 cup chopped walnuts at afternoon snack.



Day 5

Breakfast (370 calories, 7 g fiber)



Morning snack (195 calories, 2 g fiber)

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar snap peas
  • 2 boiled eggs


Lunch (332 calories, 8 g fiber)



Afternoon snack (142 calories, 6 g fiber)



Dinner (454 calories, 9 g fiber)



Daily Totals: 1,492 calories, 53g protein, 188g carbs, 32g fiber, 65g fat, 1,311mg sodium


To make it 1,200 calories: Reduce to 1/2 cup of blueberries at breakfast, omit the morning snack, and reduce to 1 serving of the avocado-yogurt dip, and omit the cucumber at the afternoon snack.


To make it 2,000 calories: Add 1/3 cup dry roasted unsalted almonds to your morning snack, and add 1/3 cup chopped walnuts to your afternoon snack.



Day 6

Breakfast (382 calories, 11 g fiber)



Morning snack (108 calories, 1g fiber)



Lunch (345 calories, 13 g fiber)



Afternoon snack (262 calories, 1g fiber)

  • 1/3 cup dry roasted unsalted cashews


Dinner (406 calories, 8 g fiber)



Daily Totals: 1,503 calories, 75g protein, 145g carbs, 34g fiber, 76g fat, 1,546mg sodium


To make it 1,200 calories: Omit the morning snack and swap 1 1/2 cups sugar snap peas for cashews at the afternoon snack.


To make it 2,000 calories: Add 1/3 cup of unsalted dry roasted almonds to your morning snack and add 1/4 cup of unsalted cashews to your afternoon snack.



Day 7

Breakfast (303 calories, 9 g fiber)



Morning snack (201 calories, 4 g fiber)

  • 1 medium banana
  • 1 tablespoon of peanut butter


Lunch (535 calories, 10g fiber)



Afternoon snack (30 calories, 1 g fiber)



Dinner (434 calories, 8 g fiber)



Daily Totals: 1,503 calories, 66g protein, 130g carbs, 32g fiber, 87g fat, 1,016mg sodium


To make it 1,200 calories: Switch to 1 small banana and omit the peanut butter at your morning snack, and replace lunch with 1 serving of white bean salad and greens.


To make it 2,000 calories: Increase to 2 tbsp. peanut butter to your morning snack, and add 2 cups edamame pods to your afternoon snack.

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