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Appendix B: Sample menu

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To give you an idea of what a planned day of meals and snacks might look like, a menu example for one day is shown below. This menu is designed for a woman who weighed 130-135 pounds before becoming pregnant and developing gestational diabetes. The menu shown here may not be the right menu for you; this menu is not meant to take the place of your health care provider's advice on menus and meal plans. Talk to your health care provider for more specific information about the right meal plan for you.

Breakfast—Hard boiled egg, toast, grapes, and milk

  • 1 egg, hard-boiled
  • 1 slice whole wheat bread
  • 1 tsp canola-based, trans-fat free margarine
  • 1/3 lb grapes (any kind)
  • 12 fluid ounces, non-fat skim milk

Fat: 11g; Calories: 394; Protein: 22g;
Total Carbohydrate 56g;
Exchanges: 1.3 fat; 1.3 milk; 1.6 fruit; 0.8 meat; 0.8 bread

Mid-Morning Snack—Half a peanut butter and jelly sandwich with milk

  • 1 slice whole wheat bread
  • 1 TBSP peanut butter (smooth or chunky)
  • 1 TBSP reduced-sugar jelly or reduced-sugar jam
  • 8 fluid ounces non-fat skim milk

Fat: 9.7g; Calories: 276; Protein: 14.5g
Grams (g) carbohydrate: 36g
Exchanges: 0.5 other carbohydrates; 1.6 fat; 0.9 milk; 0.4 meat; 0.8 bread

Lunch—Cheese, tomato, and black bean pita with milk

  • 1 pita, large, whole wheat
  • Blend the following for inside the pita: 1/2 cup uncooked black beans, 1/2 fresh tomato (chopped), 1 ounce low-fat sharp cheddar cheese (shredded), 1 TBSP salsa, and 2 tsp olive oil
  • 8 fluid ounces non-fat skim milk

Fat: 17.7g; Calories: 547.7; Protein: 29.2g Grams (g) carbohydrate: 71g
Exchanges: 2.8 fat, 0.9 milk, 0.5 vegetable, 1.0 meat, 3.4 bread

Mid-Afternoon Snack—Apple and peanut butter

  • 1 medium apple with peel, cored and sliced
  • 1 TBSP peanut butter (smooth or chunky)
  • 12 fluid ounces, non-fat skim milk

Fat: 9.2g; Calories: 295; Protein: 15.8
Grams (g) carbohydrate: 41g
Exchanges: 1.6 fat, 1.3 milk, 1.3 fruit, 0.4 meat

Dinner—Grilled chicken with pineapple, rice, and green beans

  • 3 ounce chicken breast, boneless/skinless, raw
  • 4 ounce pineapple rings, canned in juice
  • 1 TBSP sesame seeds, toasted
  • 1 TBSP sesame oil, dark
  • 2 tsp soy sauce, low-sodium
  • 1/2 cup green beans, cooked
  • 1/4 cup instant rice, uncooked
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 1/4 lb fresh strawberries
  • 8 ounces water

To prepare: place chicken breast in shallow container; combine 1/2 pineapple juice, toasted sesame seeds, sesame oil, cornstarch, and soy sauce in bowl; pour over chicken breast. Place half the rings from the pineapple over the chicken; refrigerate 1 hour or overnight. Remove chicken and pineapple from marinade and discard marinade; grill or broil chicken breast and pineapple until cooked through (turning as needed). Cook rice as indicated on package. Prepare green beans as indicated on package. Serve with strawberries for dessert.

Fat: 16.2g; Calories: 523.7; Protein: 23.0gGrams (g) carbohydrate: 60gExchanges: 2.4 lean meat, 2.8 fat, 1.8 vegetable, 1.8 fruit, 1.1 bread

Daily Totals

Total fat: 63.8 g; Total Calories: 2036.4; Total Protein: 104.5 g Grams (g) carbohydrate: 264 g

Exchanges: 10.1 fat, 4.4 milk, 4.7 fruit, 2.6 meat, 2.4 lean meat, 2.3 vegetable, 6.1 bread, 0.5 other carbohydrates

"Free" Food and Snack Options

  • Raw vegetables—You can have up to 2 cups of these "free" raw vegetables, without having to count the calories or carbohydrates into your meal plan: cabbage (all varieties), celery, cucumber, endive, lettuces (all varieties), mushrooms, peppers, radishes, spinach.
  • Drinks—You can count 8 fluid ounces of these sugar-free or unsweetened drinks as 1 snack: broth, bouillon, or consommes (also the low-salt varieties), carbonated or mineral water, club soda. You should also drink a lot of water while you are pregnant with gestational diabetes.
  • Condiments—You can use the following in your meal plan, in the amounts listed: catsup (1 tablespoon), fat-free cream cheese (1 tablespoon), horseradish, fat-free mayonnaise (1 tablespoon), fat-free margarine (1 tablespoon), reduced-fat margarine (1 teaspoon), mustard, non-stick cooking spray, fat-free salad dressing (1 tablespoon), salsa (1/4 cup), fat-free or reduced-fat sour cream (1 tablespoon), soy sauce (light), taco sauce (1 tablespoon), vinegar, Worcestershire sauce
  • Seasonings—Use these items to season your foods without adding condiments. Please note that "salt" seasonings are high in sodium; use only in small amounts. Serving size for these seasonings is 2-3 dashes: garlic, herbs (dried or fresh), flavoring agents, pimento, spices, Tabasco or hot pepper sauce.

Source: Kraft™ Foods Diabetic Choices Daily Recipes, 2002; also Treating Diabetes with Good Nutrition, Diabetic Meal Plans,, Inc. 2000.

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Last Reviewed: 04/06/2007
Vision National Institutes of Health Home BOND National Institues of Health Home Home Storz Lab: Section on Environmental Gene Regulation Home Machner Lab: Unit on Microbial Pathogenesis Home Division of Intramural Population Health Research Home Bonifacino Lab: Section on Intracellular Protein Trafficking Home Lilly Lab: Section on Gamete Development Home Lippincott-Schwartz Lab: Section on Organelle Biology