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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Can you recommend a liquid breakfast for someone with type 2 diabetes?

    I have never enjoyed eating a large breakfast but don't mind smoothies and shakes. What is diabetic friendly?
  • Find a professional to answer your question

  • 3


    Sarah Perkins

    Dietitian, Exercise Scientist, Nutritionist

    Sarah is a Dietitian, Exercise Scientist & Nutritionist.Sarah is the director of the successful diet and exercise clinic Eat Play Live in Sydney’s inner west. … View Profile

    Many people are out of the habit of and therefore don’t plan or feel hungry for breakfast, this can lead to cravings, over eating and choosing poorer quality foods later in the day.

    Carbohydrate (sugars found in foods such as breads, cereals, fruit, most snack foods and dairy) are the foods that raise bloods sugar levels. Ultimately many people with type 2 diabetes, especially those struggling with being overweight or obese don’t need to eat a large breakfast as a large amount of carbohydrate is going to cause large increases in blood sugar levels. However ensuring that they consume a small meal containing some carbohydrate and a small amount of protein to help keep them full can assist in managing appetite, weight and blood sugar levels.

    One of the most affordable liquid breakfast options is a homemade skim milk shake with berries, passionfruit or your favourite fruit. Keep in mind the serving size - as it is often a lot easier to drink calories than eat them!
    Alternatives could be low GI options (as tested by SUGIRS) that are portion controlled such as Tony Fergusons shakes, Revival Soy SShakes and Aussie Bodies Shakes.

    Ultimately breakfast and the needs of a diabetic will be individual. For individual advice find a dietitian near you at

  • 2


    Samantha Ling

    Dietitian, Nutritionist

    Samantha is an Accredited Practicing Dietitian (APD), consultant and food and nutrition enthusiast. Samantha works in a private practice on the Central Coast, NSW, Rostant … View Profile

    I'm so happy to see that you are giving breakfast a go! It is very important to eat breakfast everyday.

    As Sarah has nicely pointed out - it's the portion size and quality of the carbohydrate that you use (eg. high GI or low GI) that makes the biggest difference with diabetics and controlling your sugar levels. Generally, high GI foods will quickly raise your blood sugar levels and not keep you full for very long (so you'll feel hungry sooner and be more likely to over-eat at the next meal). Low GI foods slowly raise your blood sugar levels and help keep you feeling fuller for longer.

    An example of a portion controlled option that is also low GI includes:
    - Sanitarium Up & Go 250ml tetra packs and a piece of fruit (eg. a banana)

    Alternatively, as Sarah pointed out, home-made smoothies (which are also more cost-effective):
    Recipe serves 1 - blend all ingredients
    - 1 cup (250ml) skim/light milk
    - 1/4 cup low fat natural/greek yoghurt
    - 1 banana or 1 punnet of fresh strawberries and blueberries
    -  1 egg (optional)
    - 1 teaspoon sugar or artificial sweetener
    - 1 tablespoon psyllium
    - ground cinnamon, allspice or nutmeg for garnish

    * Recipe is from "Diabetes: Eat&Enjoy 4th Ed. by Christine Roberts, Margaret Cox and Jennifer McDonald".

    Hope all feedback is useful!

    Samantha Ling
    Rostant Nutrition
    (Find us on facebook at )

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