10 Foods To Avoid With Trulicity For Better Results In Diabetics


Trulicity is a commonly prescribed injectable medication used to improve blood sugar control in adults with type 2 diabetes. It works by regulating blood sugar levels through a few different mechanisms of action. As with any diabetes medication, certain diet considerations should be made while taking Trulicity. Being mindful of what foods you eat can help maximize the effectiveness of this treatment.

This article will discuss 10 foods that are best to limit or avoid altogether when on Trulicity to help manage blood glucose levels. We’ll also overview some key information about trulicity vs mounjaro, using Trulicity and metformin, whether Trulicity needs refrigeration, and how long Trulicity stays in your system.

Trulicity For Diabetics Management

Foods To Avoid With Trulicity

Trulicity is a once-weekly injectable medication used to improve blood sugar control in adults with type 2 diabetes. It contains the active ingredient dulaglutide and works by slowing digestion and reducing the liver's glucose output, which together help lower hemoglobin A1c levels.

As a GLP-1 receptor agonist, Trulicity also helps control appetite and promotes weight loss. With a convenient automatic single-use pen, minimal side effects, and proven A1c reductions of up to 1.5% in clinical trials, Trulicity can be an effective add-on treatment to improve diabetes management.

Foods To Avoid With Trulicity

When it comes to managing your blood sugar levels with Trulicity, being mindful of your diet is key. Certain foods can cause spikes in blood glucose, making it harder for this medication to do its job effectively. Let's explore the 10 foods to avoid so you can make smart choices while using this medication.

1. Simple carbohydrates 

Foods high in simple carbs, like white bread, pasta, rice, and sugary foods, can cause blood sugar spikes. When taking Trulicity for diabetes management, it is best to avoid eating too many simple carbs in one sitting. Foods to avoid with Trulicity include white bread, bagels, regular pasta, white rice, sugary breakfast cereals, candy, soda, and desserts like cakes, pies, and ice cream. 

2. Alcohol 

Alcohol can also significantly impact blood sugar levels. Beer, wine, and liquor all contain carbohydrates that can cause blood glucose spikes in those taking Trulicity. Additionally, alcohol impacts the liver’s ability to release glucose into the bloodstream, which can be problematic with diabetes medications. It’s best to avoid or strictly moderate intake of alcoholic beverages when taking Trulicity to manage diet considerations. 

3. Fruit juice 

Although fruit is healthy, fruit juice packs a concentrated dose of natural sugar that can spike blood sugar. The fiber has been removed during processing, so the sugar in the juice is rapidly absorbed. Foods containing fruit juice, like juice blends, smoothies, and even jars of pasta sauce or salad dressing can impact blood sugar control when taking Trulicity.

4. Refined grains

Refined grains, like white flour, white rice, and products made with refined grains can also be problematic. Refining processes remove the nutritious bran and germ, leaving only the starchy endosperm. This leads to quicker digestion and rapid blood sugar spikes. 

5. Fried foods 

Fried foods are a double trouble when taking Trulicity. The carbohydrate-containing coating mixes with fat during frying, making for quick carb and calorie overload. Fried foods to avoid include french fries, fried chicken, chicken nuggets, tater tots, fried fish, potato chips, and other deep-fried appetizers. These fatty foods can cause sharp blood sugar spikes soon after eating, disrupting steady blood glucose control.

6. Full-fat dairy 

Full-fat dairy foods like whole milk, full-fat cheese, cream, butter, and ice cream are very high in calories and fat. While delicious, these foods can lead to weight gain and blood sugar control challenges. Limit full-fat dairy when taking Trulicity. Some lower-fat alternatives include skim or 1% milk, part-skim mozzarella cheese, low-fat yogurt, and low-fat cottage cheese.

7. Packaged snack foods 

Pre-packaged snack foods like chips, crackers, granola bars, snack cakes, and candy should be avoided when taking Trulicity as well. These items are typically made with simple carbs, sugars, white flour, and unhealthy fats that quickly increase blood sugar. They provide very little nutrition and make diabetes management with Trulicity more challenging.

8. Salt and sodium

A diet high in sodium can cause fluid retention, elevated blood pressure, and other cardiovascular problems. This is concerning for those with diabetes who already have an increased risk for heart disease and related complications. Processed and pre-packaged foods tend to be very high in added sodium. When taking Trulicity, aim for less than 2,300 mg of sodium per day. 

Avoiding sources like frozen meals, fast food, chips, pretzels, salted nuts, canned soup and vegetables, deli meats, soy sauce, and table salt helps reduce sodium intake.

9. High cholesterol foods 

Those taking Trulicity should be mindful of dietary cholesterol from foods as well. High-cholesterol foods like red meat, processed meat, full-fat dairy, eggs, shellfish, fried foods, pastries, and high-fat plant foods can negatively impact blood glucose and cardiovascular health. Avoiding these supports better blood lipid profiles and insulin sensitivity when taking Trulicity for diabetes care. Seek plant-based protein options like beans, lentils, tofu or tempeh.

10. Nutrient deficient choices

Empty-calorie foods that contain added sugars and unhealthy fats while lacking vitamins, minerals fiber provide very little health value. They take up space where nutrient-dense options should be and can spike blood sugar as well. While using Trulicity, make it a priority to avoid candy, soda, fruit drinks, pastries, ice cream, sugary cereals, processed snack foods, fruit juice, fried items, and table sugar. 

Does Trulicity Need To Be Refrigerated?

Trulicity is an injectable medication used for managing type 2 diabetes that does not require refrigeration for routine, short-term use thanks to its chemical stability. The single-dose pens and syringes can be stored at room temperature up to 86°F for up to 14 days without losing effectiveness. This makes Trulicity convenient for taking doses on the go without needing to transport them in a cooled container.

Refrigeration can extend Trulicity's shelf life beyond 14 days if needed but is not necessary for its typical use. Storing it at room temperature allows flexibility in dosing. However, it should be protected from direct sunlight and heat over 86°F, like leaving it in a hot car. Avoid using Trulicity if it has been exposed to excessive heat or direct sun that could degrade the medication.

How Long Does Trulicity Stay In Your System?

Trulicity has a long duration of action, remaining active in the body for several days after each dose. This long half-life is a key advantage of Trulicity compared to some other diabetes medications.

After injecting a dose, Trulicity reaches peak blood concentration in 2-4 days. It then binds to receptors that help reduce blood sugar over the next few days. The concentration slowly declines but remains therapeutic for 3-5 days after each dose. The total time Trulicity stays in your system depends on the dosage. At the starting 0.75 mg dose, it can take up to 5-7 days to be fully eliminated from the body. At higher 1.5 mg doses, Trulicity stays active for 7-10 days based on its slow breakdown and excretion.

So in summary, from peak action to complete elimination, Trulicity stays in your system anywhere from 5 days to over 1 week depending on the dosage. This prolonged coverage from a once-weekly shot makes it an attractive treatment option for managing type 2 diabetes.

Bottom Line

When taking Trulicity for type 2 diabetes management, being mindful of certain dietary considerations can promote better blood glucose control. Limiting intake of refined carbohydrates, sugary foods and beverages, fruit juice, alcohol, fried items, full-fat dairy, packaged snacks, sodium, cholesterol, and empty calories supports steady blood sugar levels. Replacing these with whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, fiber-rich legumes, nuts, seeds, and healthy fats allows for balanced nutrition that complements Trulicity treatment.

Compared to similar injectables like Mounjaro, Trulicity has a longer half-life, staying active in the body for several days which provides consistent blood sugar regulation between doses. Using Trulicity with metformin is common and this oral and injectable combination leads to enhanced glycemic control. While Trulicity does not require refrigeration due to its long shelf life, avoiding temperature extremes helps keep the medication effective as prescribed.

Finally, it stays active in the system for multiple days, allowing once-weekly dosing to properly manage type 2 diabetes over time. Does a plant-based, whole-food diet seem most compatible with Trulicity in your experience? I’d love to hear your insights in the comments!


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  • Schwartz S, DeFronzo R. Is incretin-based therapy ready for the care of hospitalized patients with type 2 diabetes? The time has come for GLP-1 receptor agonists! Diabetes Care. 2013;36(7):2107–2111. doi: 10.2337/dc12-2060. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3687277/

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Dr. David G Kiely is a distinguished Medical Reviewer and former General Medicine Consultant with a wealth of experience in the field. Dr. Kiely's notable career as a General Medicine Consultant highlights his significant contributions to the medical field.

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