carb diet for diabetics?

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ceebee
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 401
   Posted 11/5/2007 12:30 PM (GMT -7)   
Can i go on a carb free diet as a diabetic?
 
(I changed the subject line so you might get more comments about this.  I hope so.)

Post Edited By Moderator (LanieG) : 11/5/2007 2:47:40 PM (GMT-7)


tutorgirl
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 235
   Posted 11/5/2007 12:47 PM (GMT -7)   
OK, I'm not Lainie, but I can answer this and you will get many others offering input also. The answer is Yes, Yes and Yes. You will find that many of us on this forum subscribe to a no or low carb diet. Carbs are the worst thing for a diabetic. Many of us have been able to get a better handle on the control of the disease by eliminating most carbs, especially breads, pastas, cereals, sugar, potatoes, rice, and most fruit. There is a good book that helps with this way of eating called "The Diabetes Solution" by Dr. Richard Bernstein. He is a type 1 diabetic who has figured out that food is a huge factor in controlling diabetes. There are some doctors around who are finally figuring this out. But chances are someone somewhere is going to hand you the Diabetic Exchange Diet from the American Diabetes Association...but it really does little to give you any control. It's still the prevailing thought that we need to follow the pyramid, but don't do it. I tried doing that for 11 years and constantly had trouble controlling my blood sugars and couldn't lose weight. Since I started eating this way, my number are better and I've lost 42 lbs. The most important thing is to test, test, test. If you're unsure of how your body will react to certain foods, test right before you eat and then 2 hours after. Some people can tolerate some carbs, others can handle very little. It's going to take some adjusting on your part and you may even be able to reduce some of your meds eventually. But I really would recommend the book I mentioned. It will give you a wealth of info. Hope this helps. :)
===================
>Karen<
~Forum Moderator/Diabetes~


LanieG
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 5403
   Posted 11/5/2007 2:40 PM (GMT -7)   

Karen said it all, Ceebee!  I've read and re-read the Bernstein book trying to absorb and remember everything in there because it's very informative, not only about diet and food but about all kinds of medication.  It's worth the money to buy that book.  Carbs drive blood sugar up.  Why would we follow the food pyramid based on carbohydrates then?  Keep in mind that since you are on medication, you have to watch your readings carefully because IF a low-carb diet plan lets you lose weight or lowers your blood sugar, you might need to adjust your meds accordingly, so be sure to keep records to share with your doctor in case you do have to change your dosage. 

And about plane travel, that question was asked a couple of weeks ago and there were a few answers, so you might want to check back through the old topics.  But I hope others will still come along and answer your specific questions.  Also, you should inform the airline you're flying that you are diabetic so it can be documented beforehand and when you check in as well. 


Lanie
forum moderator - diabetes
"pre-diabetic" controlled so far by diet and exercise
following low/no carb diet, no meds


ceebee
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 401
   Posted 11/5/2007 3:06 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks:) My insurance does pay for a 4 month course with a dietician and I really need to go after the answers here. The way I was told, I need carbs and can have 5 per meal. Way too much food. So, having 1 or 2 and then going to none sounds good to me:) I just spent 11 days in hospital with the diabetes and a stress asthma attack. I am so full of prednisone right now, I am shaking like a leaf in 50mph wind and trying to figure this out too. On meds in the hospital, my bs kept going to 59 and they gave me OJ. I am still worried they will drop real low in the morning while I am alone or with my 9 month old grandson. I am hving to eat something real sugary at bedtime to keep bs up to 80 when I wake up. Thanks again for all the help...I need all I can get:)

LanieG
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 5403
   Posted 11/5/2007 3:57 PM (GMT -7)   
You will find the nutrition class interesting, but you might also find it at odds with a low-carb diet.  Since the classes are covered by insurance, go and participate and keep an open mind.  Another way of eating is linking amounts of carbs with protein in the Insulin-Resistance diet.  This might also work for you especially since you experience lows.  The bottom line is keeping your blood sugar at levels that don't swing too wide.  That can be tricky on new meds and while on other meds for other conditions that you have so you have to be careful.  Keep a daily log of times for eating which foods, meds, activity along with your blood sugar levels, etc.  This is important to see trends, what affects your readings and so on.  Your doctor needs this information to monitor your dosage.  Only you control what you put in your mouth, so whichever eating plan you choose (no carb, low carb, carbs linked with protein), be sure to always measure your blood sugar.  



Lanie
forum moderator - diabetes
"pre-diabetic" controlled so far by diet and exercise
following low/no carb diet, no meds

Post Edited (LanieG) : 11/5/2007 4:14:39 PM (GMT-7)


gelchick
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 477
   Posted 11/5/2007 4:09 PM (GMT -7)   
I use the Insulin Resistance eating plan. I like it because I am able to eat a greater range of foods than the Bernstein or Atkins low carb plans allow. There is a book called the Insulin Resistance Diet- it's listed on Amazon and there are over 80 comments- so you can geta nice overeview there.
 
Using this plan, I am able to eat oats, wheat berries, quinoa, all kinds of beans and legumes such as lentils, starchy beans, winter squashes, and potatoes without my sugar rising too much. I have been able to keep my A1c around 5 using this plan and metformin and Januvia.  It takes a good deal of testing when you get started, but once you know what protein/carb combos work well for you- it's easy to eat this way- even when you travel or dine out.
 
sandy
I just want to live happily ever after-every now and then. Jimmy Buffett


fergusc
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 230
   Posted 11/5/2007 5:04 PM (GMT -7)   

I thought I'd add my endorsement to Lanie and Karen's posts. I think the more we restrict our carbohydrate consumption, the better our blood sugar control becomes. I've done a lot of research into the effects of the 3 food groups, carbohydrates, protein and fat, on our health. I'm in no doubt that we're perfectly adapted to a diet based on protein and fat, but very poorly adapted to dietary carbohydrates.

And yet the ADA and Diabetes UK persist in advising us to 'eat starchy carbohydrates at every meal'. It's crazy and quite possibly medically negligent. Ceebee, if you're on medication, I've no doubt you'll be able to dramatically reduce it on a low carbohydrate diet. I use 25% of the insulin I used to use before I saw the light!

I could bore you half to death on the subject, so I'd better stop now.

All the best,

fergusc


Jeannie143
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 6056
   Posted 11/9/2007 10:00 AM (GMT -7)   
If I may add something here, try a banana with two tablespoons of peanut butter at bedtime instead of a 'sugary' snack. The fat in the peanut butter will delay the absorption of the starches and sugars in the banana so that you get a kind of 'time release' of nutrition all night long in your intestines. The protein in the peanuts will also counterbalance the starches as well. For myself this works very well. Others have had better success with apples and peanut butter, fruit with almonds or walnuts or pecans.

Good luck with this.
~ Jeannie, Forum Moderator/Diabetes & Fibromyalgia
~Please remember that 50% of all doctors graduated in the bottom half of their class! Yours may be one of them...
"People are like stained glass windows: They sparkle and shine when the sun's out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is light within."- Elizabeth Kubler-Ross


ceebee
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 401
   Posted 11/12/2007 10:29 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for all the help:) I have been staying off carbs and the sugar was staying 90 to 110. Then I had one piece of bread because everyone keeps saying you need carbs as a diabetic. My sugar tested at 244 on that one piece of bread. Apparently I can't handle carbs very well. Why does everyone say to eat carbs if the sugar goes so high with them? Also I am off prednisone and wondering how long I have to be off before I see a change in the sugar level? I have been on prednisone two weeks of every month for over a year for asthma. If I turn out to be prednisone induced diabetic, will I return to normal if i stay off the prednisone? I can't get into the endo until December 28. Do most of you go to an endo or just an general doctor? My doctor said he can handle the diabetes if if stays like it is now but not if there is another problem with it,,,so it is an endo for me. Thanks again for all the help...from someone who now considers carbs a poison.

LanieG
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 5403
   Posted 11/12/2007 2:56 PM (GMT -7)   
ceebee said...
Why does everyone say to eat carbs if the sugar goes so high with them? 
confused
Why indeed?  This is a puzzle to most of us here and should be questioned by any diabetic trying to bring the blood sugar down.  It seems the MO is: eat carbs and then take meds to bring the blood sugar down.  Why?  I don't know.  It's like banging your head against the wall so you can take aspirin a few times a day and then wondering why you have to take aspirin in the first place.  (Welllll, it's because you're banging your head against the wall....)  You get carbs from vegetables, milk products and fruit.  If you eat too much of any of those, not balanced with protein and fats during a meal or snack, you'll see a spike, though maybe not like with that piece of bread.  I don't know the answer to the question about getting off the prednisone and going back to normal.  Hopefully, someone else can answer that.  I still go to my GP and we've talked about what meds to consider if we agree I can't keep my blood sugar down.  I think for you the bottom line is how the blood sugar is controlled.  If it is controlled, then your GP is fine, but since you're on meds, you probably have the option of seeing an endo - and that would be your decision if you think the endo would be able to help you control this more.  Sorry I can't help you out more. 
Lanie
forum moderator - diabetes
"pre-diabetic" controlled so far by diet and exercise
following low/no carb diet, no meds


cured4real?
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1944
   Posted 11/18/2007 9:29 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi ceebee, the is another sort of diabetes, well it's often called metabolic syndrome, but in some cases like me, I produce insulin but my cells are resistant and I store all sugars and carbs as fat in my liver. This condition used to be called fatty liver, diabetic, non-alcoholic fatty liver, non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (fatty liver with inflammation that is destroying it--this is what I have) and metabolic syndrome x. If you have liver involvement, your sugars will be all over and the heart smart diet that so many doctors hand out can make your liver worse. I would find out what your liver levels are by getting copies of your tests and if they are elevated, see a hepatologist (liver specialist, gi docs are not up to date on the latest). As many as 75% of fattty liver patients will end up having to have liver transplants, some articles say. Fatty liver with diabetes is serious. Many people in my family have died from it. I am trying to keep on going but am very ill from it. Because it is a low fat diet, it causes my liver to store carbs and sugars as fat instead of metabolizing them, which will eventually lead to cirrhosis unless I get on the ball. Instead I follow a moderate fat, low carb diet and struggle with my cholesterol, but its coming down. It's my fault because I love steak and beef and don't take enought fatty acids. But anyway, getting checked for fatty liver, esp if you happen to be overweight around the middle or have had elevated liver enzymes or other problems --I have hashis and AI problems--
is very important. I think everyone with diabetes should be checked for this horrible disease, and the awful food pyramid is to blame for it and the tendency is to be passed down in families in my case.

Since my diabetes is not exactly like other peoples, my pancrease still works somewhat and I am insulin resistant and have a carb/sugar metabolic problem, a standard diet or tx isn't right for me. Not all diabetes meds are the same. I take glucophage, which is a standard tx for it, because glucophage will help get the sugar/fat from my liver due to the unique way it works, I was told, and it usually keeps me straight at 100. Being at 80 or 120 can feel as bad as very high and low extremes in other diabetics because I am extra sensitive to the fluctuations.

My dad is no longer producing insulin and takes insulin. He had been on glucophage successfully for a number of years and then a doctor switched him to another med without considering the liver issue and his diabetes went out of control and worsened to the point he was taking tons of insulin to no avail. He went back on glucophage after I told him he would get no relief because he wasn't treating the metabolic problem that led to the diabetes, and he is on insulin and glucophage, has lowered his insulin drastically and is doing fine with numbers stable again. That's why if you have liver problems, you need to know and get the right diet and tx, because you won't be stable without it.

I had to go to a liver research facility to find a hepatologist with a clue about fatty liver and how to treat it, most docs don't know, though you will find plenty of articles all around the net about it. It, coming hand in hand with diabetes, will be our next big epidemic unless dietary changes are made. I'm sorry to go on, but I try to tell people about how serious this problem is, since it was once thought to be harmless, now they know it can lead to lupus like problems, multiple endocrine problems, and cirrhosis and even death (my grandmother died from it at 60). Like diabetes, its not something to mess around with. Wow, sorry to be a bummer and so long. I just wouldn't want anyone to get really sick like me from it.
Love, Marji
--Doctors are men who prescribe medicines of which they know little, to cure diseases of which they know less in human beings of whom they know nothing.--Voltaire (1694-1778)
Ills--Sjogrens-Lupus-like AI Disease, Hashis, Vitiligo, spinal stenosis/fusion with plate, salivary/lymphectomies, Diabetes, NAFLD, COPD, RLS, neuropathy, trigonitis, hystero, diffuse brain atrophy
Meds--Plaquenil, Evoxac, Metformin, Synthroid, HCTZ, Estradiol patch, Prosed, Klonopin, Soma, Ultram, Vicodin, Restasis, Albuterol,steroid injections, Protopic & Triamcinolone Acetonide ointments

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