Lactose-Free Diabetic Diet Meal Plan

See what someone with diabetes can eat if they are also lactose intolerant

Veggie Burger
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Low-fat dairy products are a traditional component of diabetic meal plans. But what if you are lactose intolerant?

Dairy products are natural "combination" foods, providing approximately 12 grams of carbohydrate and 8 grams of protein per serving. No other food group provides almost equivalent amounts of carbohydrates and protein.

Here's What a Lactose-Intolerant Diabetic Can Do

A lactose-intolerant diabetic clearly can't use low-fat dairy products to round out a meal plan and add protein to the diet.

Here are some alternatives:

  • Substitute lactose-free dairy products in meal plans that contain dairy.
  • Leave dairy out of the meal plan (and ask your doctor or dietitian about how much calcium and vitamin D to supplement daily).

A lactose-free diabetic diet should have the same nutrition goals as one that contains milk, though:

  • 45 to 60 grams of carbohydrate per meal
  • 15 to 30 grams of carbohydrate per evening snack
  • 50% of total daily calories from carbohydrate, 20% calories from protein, and 30% calories from fat (7% from saturated fat)

As Always, Read Labels

If you are very sensitive to lactose, remember to always scan ingredient lists on packaged foods for ingredients that indicate lactose:

  • Whey
  • Casein
  • Caseinates
  • Lactose
  • Nougat
  • Butter
  • Cheese
  • Curds
  • Milk by-products
  • Nonfat dry milk
  • Dry milk solids
  • Dry milk powder

Lactose-Free Diabetic Meal Plan

Here is an example of a one-day lactose-free diabetic meal plan (breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack) that contains 1547 calories – 49% calories from carbohydrate, and 26% calories from fat.


  • 2 slices whole-wheat toast
  • 2 tablespoons peanut butter
  • 1 small banana
  • Coffee with non-dairy creamer


  • Veggie burger
  • 1/2 (6-inch) pita pocket
  • 2 tablespoons avocado
  • 1 apple
  • 1 cup raw baby carrots
  • 1/3 cup hummus


  • 3 ounces grilled flank steak
  • 1 cup raw green beans
  • 1 cup mixed lettuce greens
  • 2 tablespoons reduced-fat salad dressing
  • 2/3 cup brown rice
  • 2 tablespoons raisins
  • 6 chopped almonds


  • 1/2 cup tuna salad
  • 5 whole-wheat crackers
  • 1 plum

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