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High to low carb

Discussion in 'Low-carb Diet Forum' started by emma_jo, Aug 12, 2009.

  1. emma_jo

    emma_jo · Member

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    Hi guys & gals,

    I have been on a high carb diet since I was diagnosed in 1992, until a few months ago. I was completely fed up with high blood sugars, swinging blood sugars, not being able to keep up exercise etc etc...

    I tried low carbs for approx 2 weeks, and although my blood sugars were the most stable (perhaps a little high) they've been for years (at 5-6mmol/l) I quickly got fed up!! I had constant headaches, missed my morning toast and felt completely exhausted... Not to mention hated the idea of eating another egg!

    Anyway, here I am, fed up with crazy blood sugars again... thinking about low carbing again, but determined not to get fed up!

    So... my questions are... how's best to switch from high carb to low carb? Gradually or go 'cold turkey'? (I went gradually over about 5days last time) Are headaches/exhaustion normal?

    I had a flick through the posts on here but couldn't find anything, apologies if I've missed something!

    Any hints, tips suggestions welcome!

    Em
     
  2. hanadr

    hanadr · Expert

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    Em
    the choice is yours, cold turkey( :lol: ) or creep down gradually
    The headaches may have been a kind of De-tox reaction to clearing out the"junk"
    I think I went cold turkey when I started about 3 years ago, but I dropped taking Gliclazide at the same time. I have trieed to be even tighter since then.
    Hana
     
  3. cugila

    cugila · Master

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  4. inwales

    inwales · Well-Known Member

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    You need to do it gradually!
     
  5. emma_jo

    emma_jo · Member

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    Thanks!

    Thanks Ken- I'd already had a flick through that section of the forum... I couldn't find much on peoples experience of the actual "switch" to low carb though...

    I was wondering myself if it was some kind of carb-withdrawal and just didn't give it long enough....

    Hmmm.
     
  6. timo2

    timo2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi Emma,

    I really wouldn't recommend carb cold turkey for a type 1. Five days is far too quick to get into a new routine. If you can manage it in five weeks you'll be doing well.

    Cutting out the carbs is really only half the battle. Getting into the alternatives is really where you stand or fall when low-carbing. A gradual changeover gives you a chance to see which alternatives are going to be viable. At the end of all your adjustments, you'll hopefully end up with mind-blowingly good control on a diet that you really enjoy, but which just happens not to contain very much carbohydrate.

    All the best,
    timo.
     
  7. emma_jo

    emma_jo · Member

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    Thanks Timo, that's really helpful... I think I might come up with a vague plan before I try it again! I struggled a lot last time because I got bogged down in what I could and couldn't eat and ended up on a very limited diet (despite looking at recipes)...

    I guess fruit isn't low carb? Are there any fruits that are worse or better than others? (I'm not sure I could give up fruit!)

    Em
     
  8. Doczoc

    Doczoc · Well-Known Member

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    I went cold turkey and it worked a treat BUT I am a Type 2, wouldn't recommend for type 1
     
  9. sugarless sue

    sugarless sue · Master

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    Well that is low carb ,Doc!! :lol: :lol: :lol:
     
  10. Dobbs

    Dobbs · Well-Known Member

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    hi Emma Jo,
    berries are all very low carb - blackberries, blackcurrants, gooseberries, raspberries, strawberries. So is rhubarb. Apples and bananas are fairly high carb, pears and peaches medium. I hadn't a clue about these things until I bought the Collins Gem Carb Counter - dead cheap (£3.99) and fascinating reading! Every diabetic should have one.
    Good luck.
     
  11. the_anticarb

    the_anticarb · Well-Known Member

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    Personally I went cold turkey (ha ha), reducing from probably 300+ g carbs to less than 50 per day and have stayed there ever since. I'm an insulin dependent they-can't-work-out-what-type-I-am-some-sort-of-MODY, and erred on the side of underdosing on the insulin, testing regularly. Did go hypo a bit at first though as my need for insulin instantly diminished and I now take no bolus insulin at all, only a tiny bit of basal plus metformin.

    But a lot of that has to do with my mental attitude, I'm very much an all or nothing person and don't do well with middle grounds.

    So each to their own .I found that I did get some cravings initially, but whenever I was hungry (or felt as if I was hungry, you'll soon realise a carb craving hunger is not the same as real hunger) I munched on some meat or some other low carb goodie, and after about five days I was feeling ok.

    It's a bit like tearing a plaster off - all at once or bit by bit?

    Good luck!
     
  12. emma_jo

    emma_jo · Member

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    Haha, tearing a plaster off (and for most things in life) I'm an all at once person... It didn't seem to agree with me last time though! Gunna see what happens... 8)
     
  13. scottishkate

    scottishkate · Well-Known Member

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    Hello!

    I'm a type one and went cold turkey almost 18 months ago now. It was hard but I don't like to do things by half - once I've made my mind up that's it. Took me a while to get my head around all the changes but my body responded with great blood sugar levels almost instantly. I love my low-carbing - stick with it and you will soon adapt :D

    Katie
     
  14. fergus

    fergus Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Type 1 here and will have been low carb for 9 years next month!!!!
    It took me quite few months slowly reducing my carbs and my insulin to match. I didn't really know what else to do at the time, never having heard of Bernstein, Clark, Lutz, Eades etc. etc., and no brilliant forum like this one to ask the questions.
    It was the only option for me, but I'm glad I did it that way because I learned a helluva lot on the way. Like you, with all the information available here and elsewhere, I'd be tempted to go for it straight away, but there are definite advantages in taking your time.
    There's nothing would persuade me to touch a starchy carb these days!

    fergus
     
  15. Spiral

    Spiral · Well-Known Member

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    I'm T2 and I made gradual changes in my diet, first by cutting out added sugar to anything and by adding fresh and raw. Then I started to drop the startchy carbs and adopted a low GI approach to the carbs I did eat.

    Then I started cutting out bread, pasta, anything with flour, rice and potato. That made a massive change to my blood sugar. I made this switch at about the time I got my meter.

    I think my approach to removing something is "what are you actually going to replace it with?" The thing you are removing may not be nutritionally essential, but it is a habit and I think we have to take that in to account, over and above what might be going on in our bodies. I don't think massive sudden changes are sustainable in the longer term, especially if we have not checked out some of the alternatives before we make the change. I looked at what kind of food I was going to eat instead (I'm a vegetarian), so I bought some receipe books to get some ideas and started experiementing before I went low carb.

    Since I worked out what were helpful low carb snacks and made sure I had them on me, especially out of the house, it has been a lot easier. I usually have some nuts or bits of cheese on me if I'm travelling.

    I have also found that I'm not so hungry all the time, which makes it easier, but if I go too long without eating my blood sugar goes astray, so I try to have snacks available. I have found it isn't just what I'm eating, but when. I have to manage that carefully at work because if I'm out of the office or in a long meeting it can completely throw my blood sugar.

    I have found planning is really important and I have had to get a lot more organised around eating, and I'm a diet only T2!
     
  16. emma_jo

    emma_jo · Member

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    Thanks for all your help!

    My plan for the weekend is to suss out some low carb recipes I fancy :) and stock up on some snacks! (in between trying to sort out moving house :? )

    I'm not very good at breaking habits, so I'm going to gradually try and substitute out things... when I'm planning my dinner, I immediately think "Meat, veg, something starchy"! oh dear...

    Em
     
  17. Patch

    Patch Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I hear ya... You'll soon find that the Meat and veg is enough. When you go lo-carb you don't need to replace the carbs that you normally would eat with something else. You'll find that the smaller meals are enough, and that you'll get hungry less.
     
  18. twhincup

    twhincup · Member

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    (T2 since february 09, Metformin 2 x 500mg daily)
    i initially went cold turkey, got headaches and lethargic, eat some carbs and felt better. so re-aligned my approach, cut down to 200 for a week, 100 for a week or so then 50 and found it a lot easier

    I go to the gym 3 times a week and rarely get too hungry, haviong said that I do have an issue still with portion control :mrgreen:
     
  19. the_anticarb

    the_anticarb · Well-Known Member

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    Agree planning is really important, have had some frustrating moments when out and hungry, trying to find low carb food/snacks. My fall back is a shish kebab without the pitta, pret-a-manger are really good for their no bread sarnies (really just the fillings in a box!) and if all else fails, will scoop out the inside of an egg mayo sandwich. But better to go with some nuts or cheese in your bag if you can! :D
     
  20. Vikingepigen

    Vikingepigen · Well-Known Member

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    I have found that going to a sandwich shop and ask if you may have the sandwich filling with a little salat instead of the bread, they are usually very happy to oblige - and don't charge me extra. Had a wonderful chicken mayo with a nice bit of side salat for £3.00 and in central london too!! They had a few tables and chairs outside in a courtyard and we had a great lunch.

    Otherwise, cafes within department stores often have pre-prepared tuna or prawn salat with the dressing seperately on the side.

    Another experience in a restaurant, was a Chicken cesear salat, where I asked for the crutons to be replaced with a bit of bacon and to have the dressing on the side. No problem at all.

    Either I have been lucky or it might not be so difficult - certainly I have found if you are polite, explain the situation, most places will be happy to help.


    Alice
     
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