A typical Insulin Resistance Diet Menu

By | 7 March, 2015

Insulin Resistance Diet MenuInsulin Resistance Diet Menu

One of the challenges insulin resistance brings is the planning of your meals from day to day. Before I was diagnosed, my meals were very different – cereal for breakfast, sandwich for lunch, main meal at night would pretty much always include rice or pasta or potatoes. I’m sure many of you are the same, and things need to change on a low carb diet! So what is a typical insulin resistance diet menu?

Breakfast on an Insulin Resistance Diet

For many people, breakfast means eggs. I don’t like them much so I’d never want to start my day that way, but I know I’m in the minority! Have them any way you want – they’re nutritious even with the yolks, and we all know there are a lot of different ways to cook them.

If you’re low-carbing the Atkins Way, you can have bacon with them… or make an omelet and add some other ingredients like mushrooms, scallions, a little cheese or bell peppers.

There are low GI cereals you can have (such as All-Bran, coarsely flaked oatmeal and certain brands of muesli/granola), but please be careful to check the sugar content – you could be sabotaging your entire day if you choose a cereal that is going to shoot your blood glucose through the roof.

coffee and insulin resistanceBetter choices are protein based – but don’t skip breakfast! You can have a nice satisfying breakfast and it will set you up for hours without hunger or cravings. Since I am always rushing in the morning, my breakfast preference is for my own quick and easy protein shake – full of protein and fiber.. and if you’re thinking either a) it will be too messy to make or b) it won’t fill you up, you couldn’t be more wrong! 🙂

And let’s not forget your morning coffee. You don’t have to give that up. Some people suggest decaffeinated is better, so try that if you think it will help. I like green tea too – and the benefits are well documented – but you can’t beat coffee in the morning! PS: Need I say – do NOT have sugar in your coffee or tea. Try stevia instead if you like it sweet. If you like your coffee white, use milk or cream (full fat is best). Never use those fake creamer powders.

Lunch on an Insulin Resistance Diet

If you’re Linking and Balancing, lunch can still be a sandwich – but just one, and you should choose a high fiber bread, preferably a low GI type such as rye or sourdough. You just need to ensure the filling is good lean protein.

If you have the opportunity to make a salad in the morning, that’s probably the best lunch you can have. Again, add cheese cubes, chicken pieces, turkey, tuna, roast beef – even lean ham is OK. If you’re a little bored with lettuce and tomato, try adding some avocado, pine nuts, mixed beans, or a few sprigs of fresh coriander (cilantro) or mint to give your taste buds a fresh treat. You can get bean salads pre-made but you should rinse the beans because they tend to be soaking in starch!

You can always have salad dressing but check those labels! I don’t mean check for fat – I mean the sugar! The majority of salad dressings are way too high in carbohydrates but there are some good ones out there – I like Paul Newman’s and you can get the classic vinaigrette, balsamic or Caesar varieties that have very few carbs. The fat content is higher but that’s not what we need to worry about.

insulin resistance diet foodOn colder days, you may want to have some delicious warming soup. The best kind is home-made, as you’ll know what has gone into it.

As always, stick to lean protein and non-starchy veggies as the main ingredients. You can use beans to thicken the soup up, but don’t be tempted to use potatoes. Legumes – beans, chickpeas, lentils – are all great choices, or try barley or quinoa.


Insulin Resistance diet Snacks

Almonds are a nutritious snack – the danger is just that you may not be able to exercise constraint.. you should only have a few as a snack, maybe 10. I find it hard to restrict myself if I have a whole packet of them on hand! All nuts are great snack choices.

insulin resistance diet snacksOne of my favorite snacks is cottage cheese – I know many people hate it, but I find a few spoonfuls will take the edge off my appetite between meals. Better than a cookie anyway! Cheese in general is a good choice for a snack. Eat with a celery stick or just on its own – forget the cracker!

And although I have to watch my intake of it (due to the high fat content), I also enjoy peanut butter. Yep, by the spoonful – straight out of the jar! Choose the type that has no added sugar or salt. You can add a bit of salt but you do not want the sugar they usually add. Be careful not to have too much, though – calories still count.

Any of these snacks are low carb and won’t disrupt your insulin production. Drink plenty of water when you feel like snacking.

Dinner on an Insulin Resistance Diet

insulin resistance diet recipesEvening meals should not be an ordeal for you. You can make the same for yourself as for the rest of your family, just don’t have as much of the pasta, rice or potatoes. You can even try leaving out the starch altogether and you may be surprised how little you miss it. Have more protein and vegetables instead and you’ll be very full. Cauliflower can be cooked till it’s very soft and then mashed up, and that can make a great base for your dish. You can make a cauliflower cheese bake another day if you have some left over.

Other ideas for veggies as meal base alternatives: pumpkin, spaghetti squash, alfalfa or bean sprouts, a medley of zucchini, onions, red peppers, button squash, eggplant… add garlic, herbs, lemon juice for flavor.

If you’re having a delicious Thai curry, just make yourself some extra vegetables instead of rice. Thai coconut soup with chicken (tom kah gai) is definitely allowed and one bowl will be more than enough.

If you don’t have much time for cooking, consider investing in a slow cooker – you can throw meat and veggies into it in the morning before you go to work, and you’ll have a hearty meal ready when you get home. Just don’t make dishes with potatoes! Beans are a better choice. As long as your meals consist of protein and lots of non-starchy vegetables, you’ll be fine.

Or barbecue meat, prawns or fish and have a big helping of salad.

Hungry yet?? As you can see, there is still a LOT of delicious food you can have. I hope I have given you some insulin resistance diet menu ideas.  And don’t forget to check out some low-carb cookbooks and you’ll have inspiration for every meal in every season. If you still need some direction and lists of food to choose from, check out my Quick Start Guide  to help you make the right choices. Or take a look at this 21 day sugar detox program that could change everything for you in just 3 short weeks!

Please note: this is not a diabetes website. The recommendations are for those of you who are INSULIN RESISTANT or possibly PRE-DIABETIC or suffering from METABOLIC SYNDROME. My aim is to help you avoid becoming diabetic in the first place!

20 thoughts on “A typical Insulin Resistance Diet Menu

  1. Akhtar

    I found this website through Google and found it very interesting. I have not been diagnosed insulin resistant, but I know I have all the symptoms.

    I have liked it and shared with my Facebook friends and will Tweet it too.

  2. Katie

    Thank you soooo much! I’ve been feeling down because I was just diagnosed as Insulin Resistant and I knew I couldn’t eat my favorite foods anymore. It’s nice to know there are still yummy foods i can eat! 🙂

  3. Linda K

    Thank you for having this site. I was diagnosed just in the last 2 weeks to be insulin resistant. I have been so depressed over it. This is a very informative site. I was put on medication and I want to be able to eventually go off it. Thank you for hope!

  4. tim

    I’ve been insulin resistant for 12 years and read almost every day on some new way some new pill some new diet. First thing to do is find out why your becoming resistant. Every valid website agree eliminate or limit as much as possible breads, any type with gluten. There are lots of choices now avaiable, gluten free rice bread with flax taste almost like whole grain. Never consume Aspartame read the label carefully. No high fructose corn syrup or any version of corn syrup. Corn seems to cause me glucose problems in any form. Rice products may work better for you too. Yogart gives me massive munchies. Fibers clam me up. Try a hand full of almonds. There are lots of tasty fibers like blackberries,just do alittle reading.

  5. Shirley Noble

    I am interested in purchasing the next weeks of your diet Please advice me as to how to go about it

    1. IR Diet Info Post author

      Hi Shirley,
      For the next step, go to my other website (click here), put in your name and email address, and you’ll be able to get started right away! The first 2 weeks of the program are free – you’ll just need to confirm your interest by email. Thank you, and I hope you find the program useful!

    2. Ruth Ashfield-Smith

      I am Insulin Resistant with Type 2 Diabetes and struggling with my weight and have cravings for something sweet mostly at night. I also now have Sleep Apnoea to finish of the senario. Using a CPAP machine also adds my dilema! I also live with chronic pain. The neuropathic pain is the worst.
      It is really torture at times.

      I watch my carbs and sugar intake.

      I also do binge at times when am really fed up, especially at night when I can’t sleep due to pain.

      I would appreciate any advice you may have.

      Thank you for your time.


      Ruth Ashfield-Smith

      1. IR Diet Info Post author

        I sympathize with your other health issues! For the sweet cravings, I find it best not to give in to them too often – they do eventually become less frequent and it gets easier. If you need help with this I can highly recommend the 21 Day Sugar Detox program.

        However, for some people it’s enough just to find an alternative sweetener like stevia or erythritol (I like xylitol) – then you can make yourself a few little treats that will be better for you! If you do this, make sure you substitute regular flour with almond flour too.

        And whenever you have something with sugar or starch in it, have some protein too – that will help to balance out the carbohydrate and prevent a “sugar crash” later.

  6. Debbie F

    I haven’t actually been diagnosed as insulin resistant but I figured it out on my own. I just started an IR diet at the beginning of the year and today I weighed myself and I lost 11 pounds in 16 days! I feel wonderful, full of energy, I have been sleeping great, the ringing in my ears has stopped, my mood swings are in check. It was a little rough getting use to all the chopping, measuring and label reading but it is so worth it! I was beginning to think I was crazy because I would try to diet and I would feel so out of control that I would binge for days at a time and end up gaining weight and starting the whole cycle over and over again. I haven’t been able to stick to a diet for years and my belly just kept getting bigger and I kept getting more depressed and I gave up until I finally found something that matched what I was living with everyday! Praise the Lord!!!!

  7. Tandra C

    My daughter is 13 and was just diagnosed with insulin resistance and she is also a very picky eater. This is gonna be a big transition for our whole family, but I figured it would be good for us all to do the IR diet and she wouldn’t feel alone in this situation. I’m thankful for this site.

  8. raima

    This is a wonderful website! My daughter was diagnosed with PCOS back in 2006. I bought the Insulin Resistance Diet book as I want to get her weight down to 60 kilos as per the endocrinologist,s suggestion. She has horrible cravings and because she also has special needs, it is even more difficult for me to control her diet. I have been googling practically every day to find out more about the link and balance diet and have been hoping that I find someone who is in a position to offer guidance and support as far as planning meals is concerned. I will be contacting you shortly as I am definitely interested in purchasing the diet plan. Please keep up the good work!!

    1. IR Diet Info Post author

      Hello Raima – thank you for your kind comments! I have emailed you about this and referred you to someone who knows all about PCOS and may be able to help you with meal plans.

      For anyone else who is specifically interested in PCOS-related issues, I’d recommend you visit Amy’s website http://pcosdiva.com (and tell her I sent you!).

    2. Ambra

      I understand your concerns, I have PCOS and IR and all that comes with them. I have been reading a lot to understand it. I recommend you these books: “The Power of Your Metabolism” by Frank Suarez. “The Carbohydrate Addict’s Diet: The Lifelong Solution to Yo-Yo Dieting” by Dr. Rachael F. Heller and Dr. Richard F. Heller. “The Metabolism Miracle: 3 Easy Steps to Regain Control of Your Weight… Permanently” by Diane Kress.
      Read them and choose the diet that best suits your daughter’s needs and lifestyle.
      Hope that helps.

  9. Maritza

    Hi I’m insulin resistant and have a terrible weight problem!!I’ve started on a high protein diet yesterday and this morning when I woke up my blood sugar range was 7.7 where it is suppose to 4.5 to 5.8 can you shed some light on why that would happen?

    1. IR Diet Info Post author

      People who are insulin resistant also very often have high blood sugar as well. High blood sugar won’t disappear overnight. If you have only just started on a high protein, low carb diet, it will take some time for those numbers to come down. Try again in about a week and you should see a difference. Don’t lose hope, you’re definitely on the right track!

    1. IR Diet Info Post author

      You shouldn’t be – but if this happens to you, the answer is to have more fiber, in the form of LOTS of vegetables. These should be mainly green and should fill half your dinner plate, replacing anything starchy like potatoes or rice. Also, drink plenty of water (you can add lemon or lime juice if you want), and add psyllium husk to your morning protein shake (see this post: http://insulinresistancediet.info/the-easiest-insulin-resistance-breakfast/). Exercise is very important too!

  10. m valorie hren

    hi i have found out thati have insulin resistance his last may i started eating different right away so far i have lost 23 pounds i eat small helping of meatlots of veggies salads beans and fruit this last week my weight has stayed the same ,i saw the one comment about maybe to much cheese i do have some cheese several times a week that might be the problem i will try to cut down on that and see what happens. thanks for the tip

  11. claire

    Hi I am looking at various reasons and why my weight increase is mainly on my belly I am 45 have suffered with various gynea issues, had medication to put me into early menopause etc etc….. I have read lots of articles and IR seems a possible cause I am visiting my GP next week to ask for tests, however I have started a low carb diet and followed the eating plans suggested and also cut out wine which I would drink most nights, I have followed everything, no sugar, no white bread, potoates, pasta or rice no snacking just healthy options and I have put 4lb on, Kind of disheartened any suggestions??

    1. IR Diet Info Post author

      Sorry to hear about that! Of course it is the time of year where most of us have put on a few extra pounds, but in your case it definitely sounds as if it’s more a hormonal issue. I’m not a doctor but I would suggest that the medication to put you into early menopause is the most likely cause. Menopause usually exacerbates IR if it’s a pre-existing medical condition! Unfortunately this is not something you can always fix through diet alone, but in general higher protein and lower sugar and starch (combined with regular exercise) is the best diet for IR. If you haven’t already seen this post, check it out – there may be one or two tweaks you can make that will help!


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