HpprKM wrote:I am not a low carber, however, I do try to moderate the amount of carbs I eat and buy low Gi food where possible. The whole topic confuses me so very much, there are people who swear by it and practically jump on me when I say I do not low carb!
Trying to work my way through your post and comment along the way.
By the time I have finished there will no doubt be loads of posts covering the same ground
Until recently I would have described myself much as you do yourself above.
I am possibly at a watershed at the moment and still trying to work out what my recent diet changes imply in the long run and if they are sustainable.
I have been pressured (electronically) in the past by some people who are evangelical about low carbing, carb counting and almost continuous testing but have ploughed my own furrow doing what I have been comfortable with.
However I seem to be working my way into the low carb camp (which is not necessarily a comfortable place to be).
But, for instance on this very site, there are instances of the downside of low carbing and its negative impact on your body ie.
'Are low-carb diets bad for diabetic people?'
featured on this week's newsletter under
'Diabetes and Carbohydrates'
where it is written that
'Low-carb diets also restrict the consumption of fruit and vegetables, and the antioxidants and fibre that is contained in these is therefore also reduced'
I can't locate this bit ATM - I unsubscribed whilst travelling abroad and have only just subscibed again (thanks for the reminder).
I am effectively low carbing at the moment but I am not carb counting.
I am just cutting out certain foods.
The only vegetable I am cutting out is potatoes; I eat everything else including starchy vegetables such as sweet potato. However I tend to eat a mixture either as roast veggies or in some kind of stew, usually with beans and pulses included.
I also eat mixed salads regularly.
Therefore I don't see that my current diet is lacking in antoxidants or fibre.
I am not eating fruit for the last few days which is one area of concern but I think that raw salads and cooked root vegetables should keep me going with fibre and antoxidants.
- however, it is also written that
'However, because of the way in which the weight is shed, many of the fat stores within the body remain the same. For this reason, whilst a person may look slimmer, they are not necessarily healthier'
. As one of the 'slimmer diabetics' this is makes sense as I am slim and am a T2, but it then seems to me that most of the low carbing information seems to be aiming at weight loss or control, and since I do not have issues with either of these, I am really not sure where I should be standing on the subject of low carbing. Also, many of the foods our bodies seem to need naturally contain carbs, <snip>
This I can definitely relate to.
I have been just above then just below the BMI line between normal and overweight over the last three years with my weight gradually reducing.
I tried reducing my carbs with the aim of getting my weight down and this seemed to work, however it was not until I started losing weight off my tummy that I saw a significant improvement in my BG figures.
I dropped from a 38" waistline to a 34" waistline and this seems to have made a big difference.
Whilst in NZ we regularly watched http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mehmet_Oz
on the Dr. Oz show and one thing he was very vocal about was the omentum which is the area of fat which wraps itself around your internal organs.
This is alleged to be closely involved with insulin resistance in T2s and waist measurement is often more important than overall weight in working out if you need to lose weight.
So can someone please tell me why so many people are advocating low carbing? Also, not wishing to appear too dumb here - what foods are considered to be starchy carbohydrates, would this be bread, porridge, potatoes, bananas etc? Then what foods are non starchy carbohydrates - aside of the obvious sweet bars etc?
Answer yes to your list.
Hmmm.....this is where I get to the uncomfortable bit (for me, certainly).
Things I have gradually reduced or cut out:
(1) Where possible, anything with significant sugar especially glucose and sucrose. First action on diagnosis and something of a no-brainer. However this does include fruit so this is a hard one to stick to completely.
(2) Anything made from/with flour. This includes bread, pastry, pasta, cakes. Bang goes the Mediteranean Diet.
(3) Anything which is mainly a plant store for starch; well, at the moment this is potatoes and all cereals including rice although I am still tempted by brown rice. I still eat some starchy root vegetables where there seems to be a better fibe/starch ratio.
(4) I've just cut out baked beans which are lowish GI but highish carbs and up till now have formed part of my big breakfast.
Yes, I have posed many questions in one post I know, but I really want to get to grips with the best diet possible, and I know that many people are going to say that I have to eat and test my sugars after eating to see which foods work and which don't for me personally, and I agree that makes sense, but an inkling of where to start would be nice - or do I just try my normal diet ie I eat porridge for breakfast, I have tried alternatives but I get so hungry so quickly after anything else that I feel I need porridge with fruit each day. Also, why do I feel so guilty at not low carbing and yet, instinctively I feel it is not going to be the right thing to do, it gives me the sense of depriving my body of much needed food it just does not seem natural to me!
Ah! Now we get to the real crunch bit
The only way I have been able to cope with dietary change is to cut out foods, not have just a little.
In cutting out various high carb foods I have found that for days afterwards I have had really strong cravings for the food that I have cut out - as though my body was demanding something it required.
However if you view this as an addicition to a particular food stuff then I think you can get past it and the cravings will go away. They did for me but everyone is different.
So to my mind what your body is saying to you is probably not a demand for something essential but withdrawal symptoms from something it has got used to.
Your main problem stated above is that unless you have porrage for breakfast you feel hungry soon after.
[You are probably one of the lucky ones - if I have porrage for breakfast I am starving within an hour or so.]
You don't say what you have tried instead of porage.
I have found that the "full English" is the answer to my daily diet - it keeps me going for ages without feeling any hunger.
[2 bacon, 2 eggs, large tomato, mushrooms, portion of meat (steak, burgher, sausage), 1/2 tin of beans (now replaced by sliced courgette).]
During the day I have "protein snacks" with tomatoes and sometimes other salad stuff.
These seem to keep my appetitie under control.
[Protein snacks tend to be cold chicken wrapped in bacon, cold sausasages wrapped in bacon, ham wrapped around cheese. You may sense a theme here.]
In the evening I have protein and salad (often fish such as tuna) or some kind of "beany stew" or a chili or dahl. I have been having rice with this but again I am trying not to at the moment.
Sometimes I have this for lunch as well/instead.
I find that the high protein diet makes me "bungo" unless I make sure I eat meals with plenty of beans and pulses included.
I have been using a square of plain chocolate to stave off cravings in the evening but just recently I have found that the Serrano ham from Lidl is a really good tasty snack as well as an excellent appettite supressant.
If anyone can get their head around all of the above, or even any of it I would much appreciate it. I think the confusion I feel is outlined in this post! Also, as a 'slim' T2 I realise that most of my fat is around my stomach and I know this probably the cause of my diabetes but I cannot lose any more weight (hovering between 8. 6 and 8.9 at 5'5" in height, as I would look skeletal in all areas but my tummy
I would not worry about your body image too much - if you feel fit and have enough energy then "looking skeletal" is not a problem.
As long as you are eating a balanced (yeah, what is that?) diet then you should be fine.
Your regular diabetic check ups should identify if there is any problem.
So yes, you can lose more weight if you are carrying an excess around your stomach and this may well be good for your short and long term control.
I note that you say you have good control and your profile says that you are on Metformin.
One target might be to try and achieve good control without the use of Metformin.
If you feel your arms and legs are too skinny then that is lack of muscle.
You can always up your exercise and look really buff
Got through to the end.
So - my BG readings have just dropped from the 7-8 and above (last HbA1C was 7.1 due to poor control whilst on long term holiday) to around 5-6 with some readings below 5 (which is a major first for me). I was getting readings around 14 when I was first diagnosed.
I suspect that the change may be due to my elimination of the remaining "white carb" items from my diet although I have upped my exercise as well.
I seem to be getting a bit thinner but I am not losing weight so assume that I am adding muscle.
This again is thought to be a good thing for BG control as the muscle can take more glucose out of your bloodstream just to maintain itself.
I now have a list of things I don't eat which is far longer than the list of things I do eat which makes walking through a supermarket an interesting experience - 90% of the shelf space requires me to avert my eyes
My wife keeps saying that I shouldn't lose any more weight because I am getting skinny but I am still near the top of my BMI range (not that BMI is an accurate guide to healthy weight but it is a useful approximation).
I would like to lose another few pounds but am not making much progress at the moment.
So - I hope all the above has been helpful in aiding your understanding of one view on low carbing.
Everyone has their own view and many differ very strongly but I suspect that in coming years the establishment will come to embrace low carbing for diet in general and diabetics in particular.
Just please don't anyone prove that alchohol is bad for you.
That might be one step too far.
T2 - diagnosed March 2008.
Diet and exercise have worked up to April 2012 - now added Metformin to try and get even lower.
Pravastatin 40mg for the cholesterol.
Metformin 500mg for the BG control.