These consensus-based recommendations emphasize the practical implementation of nutritional advice for people with diabetes, and describe the provision of services required to provide the information. Important changes from previous recommendations include greater flexibility in the proportions of energy derived from carbohydrate and monounsaturated fat, further liberalization in the consumption of sucrose, more active promotion of foods with a low glycaemic index, and greater emphasis on the provision of nutritional advice in the context of wider lifestyle changes, particularly physical activity. Monounsaturated fats are now promoted as the main source of dietary fat because of their lower susceptibility to lipid peroxidation and consequent lower atherogenic potential. Consumption of sucrose for patients who are not overweight can be increased up to 10% of daily energy provided that this is eaten in the context of a healthy diet and distributed throughout the day [corrected]. Evidence is presented for the effectiveness of advice provided by trained dieticians. The increasing evidence for the importance of good metabolic control and the growing requirement for measures to prevent Type 2 diabetes in an increasingly obese population will require major expansion of dietetic services if the standards in National Service Frameworks are to be successfully implemented.