Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Advice for people with diabetes and their families

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Budget meal plan

With the UK currently in a recession due to the coronavirus pandemic, more and more of us are having to manage our finances more carefully.

With this in mind, we have devised a delicious, nutritious, budget-friendly weekly meal plan. This is ideal if you want to save money on food shopping and reduce your food waste. 

There’s no one-size-fits-all way of eating, but the budget meal plan is both calorie and carb counted for your convenience, and contains at least five portions of fruit and veg per day. It aims to help you maintain a healthy balance, while keeping a budget in mind. 

We’ve included the value for fibre too to help you make sure you are meeting your nutritional requirements. We know lots of people in the UK aren’t eating fibre, so it’s important to try and include good sources in your diet everyday. Though it is important to note children under 16 years of age require less fibre than adults.

Some of the recipes within this plan serve anywhere from 1-6 people. You can either reduce the quantities to serve as many people as needed or look at the chef’s tips to see if the recipe can be made in bulk and frozen for a later date. This will also help reduce waste. 

Please speak to your diabetes health care team before making significant changes to your diet. This is especially important if you treat your diabetes with insulin or other diabetes medications that increase the risk of hypos. Reducing carbohydrate intake and changes to body weight may mean your medication needs adjusting.

Important information about following this meal plan

  1. This meal plan has taken nutritional information from our recipes and the sixth edition of Carbs and Cals, unless otherwise stated.
  2. A mix of whole milk and semi skimmed has been used, but please use whichever you prefer. Any dairy alternative should be unsweetened and fortified with calcium. 
  3. This meal plan meets your recommended amount of fibre across the week.
  4. This meal plan outlines daily food intake, but it’s still important to remember to drink regular fluids. This includes plain water, plain milk, and tea or coffee without added sugar.

Disclaimer: every effort has been taken to make these meal plans as accurate as possible but there will be some variation in nutritional values. Speak to a dietitian or your diabetes healthcare team if you have questions about your individual dietary needs. 

Further information on following this meal planner

The weekly overview 

You can also download our budget meal plan as a pdf (PDF, 83KB), which contains a full breakdown of the nutritional information per day.

Monday

Breakfast: Banana porridge – make with 27g uncooked oats, 250ml whole milk, and one banana.

Lunch: Scrambled eggs with wholemeal toast and tomato.

Dinner: Spiced mince and lentil stuffed peppers with broccoli.

Pudding: Hot soufflé apple with natural yogurt.

Snacks: 70g avocado, fruit and nut bar, one small pear.

Milk: 225ml semi-skimmed milk.

Tuesday

Breakfast: Two wheat biscuits with 150ml semi-skimmed milk, raisins and pumpkin seeds.

Lunch: Crisp salmon salad with natural yogurt.

Dinner: Turkey and mushroom mince and a medium baked potato.

Pudding: Tinned peaches in juice with ready-made custard.

Snacks: one small pear with almonds, one medium orange, one slice of wholemeal toast with peanut butter.

Milk: 225ml whole milk.

Wednesday

Breakfast: Pineapple porridge - make with 27g uncooked oats, 250ml whole milk + 80g pineapple canned in juice.

Lunch: Chicken with avocado, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, mixed leaves, light mayo and new potatoes. 

Dinner: Potato and lentil curry.

Pudding: Fruit and nut bar.

Snacks: one small apple, one pear and almonds, natural yogurt with raisins and pumpkin seeds.

Milk: 225ml whole milk.

Thursday

Breakfast: Two wheat biscuits with 150ml whole milk, raisins and pumpkin seeds

Lunch: Roast butternut squash and red lentil soup.

Dinner: Tortillas stuffed with chicken and salad.

Pudding: Natural yogurt.

Snacks: Cottage cheese and cherry tomatoes, one orange and almonds, two oatcakes topped with peanut butter.

Milk: 225ml semi-skimmed milk.

Friday

Breakfast: 30g of no added sugar muesli with 200ml whole milk and a banana.

Lunch: Two slices of wholemeal bread with cheddar, tomato and vegetable oil-based spread.

Dinner: Fish parcels with broccoli and cauliflower.

Pudding: Natural yogurt with canned pineapple in juice.

Snacks: two oatcakes with cream cheese, one slice of malt loaf with vegetable oil-based spread, portion of plain almonds.

Milk: 225ml whole milk.

Saturday

Breakfast: Banana porridge – make with 27g uncooked oats, 250ml whole milk, and one banana.

Lunch: Two slices of wholemeal bread with salmon, sweetcorn and mayo.

Dinner: Butternut squash and borlotti bean stew.

Pudding: Natural yogurt with a small pear and a portion of almonds.

Snacks: one orange, cottage cheese with cherry tomatoes and pumpkin seeds, one slice of malt loaf with vegetable oil-based spread.

Milk: 225ml semi-skimmed milk.

Sunday

Breakfast: Scrambled eggs on wholemeal toast with vegetable oil-based spread and sliced tomato.

Lunch: Cauliflower and leek soup topped with pumpkin seeds.

Dinner: Roast chicken, new potatoes, broccoli, green beans and gravy.

Pudding: Tinned peaches in juice with natural yogurt.

Snacks: one small pear, portion of almonds and cheddar cheese, mug of hot chocolate (made with 150ml whole milk, one teaspoon of cocoa powder and calorie-free sweetener).

Milk: 225ml whole milk.

General healthy eating information

The budget meal plan is aimed at helping an average adult to maintain their body weight. But it should be adjusted according to your needs as everyone requires a slightly different amount of nutrients each day. For example, we don't all need to eat the same amount of calories. Men, who are generally heavier and have more muscle compared to women, need more calories. 

Young children also need fewer calories than adults. But boys older than 11 and girls aged 15 and above are likely to need more calories. Children’s nutritional requirements change as they get older. So, adjust portion sizes accordingly to meet your families needs and appetites. 

You may need to adjust portion sizes for each member of your family as it is likely you won’t all eat the same portion size. 

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