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It works fine for me...... Or carbs don't do me any harm.

Discussion in 'Low Calorie Diets' started by John J, Mar 1, 2010.

  1. John J

    John J · Active Member

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    I've never been that convinced by the "low carbers" arguments nor have I fully agreed with the official medical advice to "eat plenty" starchy etc food eg potatos, bread etc, etc.

    I do realise that everyone's circumstances are different but I'm lucky enough to be able to treat my condition by diet only and apart from one or two minor issues I'm in very good health otherwise. Also, I am able for the foreseeable future do as much exercise as I wish and I've already lost over three stone since my diagnosis although I've not quite reached my target weight yet. My blood pressure and blood sugar average are also back to normal.

    So, for me, carbs are fine in moderation and I don't see the need to deprive myself in this respect.
    Besides, I'd argue that you need to eat potatos, bread etc for roughage and you've got to take care of other aspects of your health as well as your diabetes.

    Does anyone else agree or am I "out on a limb"? :wink:
     
  2. noblehead

    noblehead Type 1 · Guru
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    I'm all for everything in moderation John!

    There's a active moderation group on this forum........................ :D

    Nigel
     
  3. cugila

    cugila · Master

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    I agree.

    I eat what I want but all in moderation.......no problems at all. Bg levels prior to my illness were all spot on, 98% on targets.

    I don't care if you low carb/high carb/low fat/high fat/low GI-GL/low life/high life......whatever is good for you and allows you to control your Diabetes has to be good.

    There is never going to be only one way, we are, as I think has been said before, all different and what works for one doesn't always work for everybody else.

    A dedicated but tolerant low GI/GL man ! Some of my best friends are low carbers....... :wink:

    Ken
     
  4. lovinglife

    lovinglife Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    You are not on your own John - I agree with you that everything in moderation is a fine - for me - I have around 100 - 130g carbs per day - I eat low GI and low fat and things are going great - last results were good - apart from my cholesterol has jumped up but with the help of my DN I am addressing that.

    blood pressure, weight all down (just hit the 6st loss today!! :D :D) so I have no intention of denying myself those things I love on occasion. I started out on insulin then full dose tabs now reduced by half and hoping soon to reduce them even further so for me what I am doing works for me.

    As Cugila said I accept that everyone is different and we all respond to different ways of treating our diabetes and I am happy for people to do it as it suits them - I know that if I tried to stick to low carb long term I would fall by the wayside big style and have to start all over again - and yo-yoing like that would be far more damaging than the lifestyle I have adopted now - the one I know that I can do for the rest of my life
     
  5. Dobbs

    Dobbs · Well-Known Member

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    I'm basically with you on that one John, as I think of myself as being a "reduced carbs" kind of guy rather than a strict low carber, and my latest HB1Ac was 5.8.
    Having said that, I think it's CRUCIALLY important that new diabetics be told about the fact that carbs generally will put their blood sugar levels up, quite substantially in some cases. NOT ONCE has a doctor ever told me that - I only know it from this forum and from reading Jenny Ruhl's wonderful book Blood Sugar 101. But greatly reducing carbs has been the single most important thing I've done to improve my health as a diabetic.
     
  6. noblehead

    noblehead Type 1 · Guru
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    Wow lovinglife! That mirrors my own diet...................................... :D

    Works for me as well, hoping for some even better results at my next diabetes check-up.

    Nigel
     
  7. Patch

    Patch Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    This is a very interesting point for me. Everyone does what works for them at this time - but Diabetes IS a progressive disease. So as long as you aware of all of the tools in your box, there's no reason not to try a different method, if what you are doing at this time starts to fail...
     
  8. IanD

    IanD Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    JJ, I agree that any diet is fine that allows you to maintain normal BG levels. (HbA1c below 6)

    Carbs in the region of 100-130 g daily that several are saying (including me) are much lower than can be achieved by following the DUK/NHS starchy carb diet. (I was following that diet carefully & my diabetes was progressing - as I was actually eating 300-400 g carb daily.) Carbs aren't poisonous, but over the years our control may deteriorate - they tell us diabetes is progressive, & the harder our pancreas has to work the faster the deterioration..

    I would submit that every diabetic with satisfactory control of BG DOES control carb intake one way or another. If you can eat carbs freely and maintain control, are you diabetic?
    ~~~~~~~~
    I've looked back at some of your posts, & see that you have improved your diet, so the thread title may not be strictly accurate.
     
  9. catherinecherub

    catherinecherub · Guest

    To be fair to JJ, he is saying that he is reaching his goals and not low carbing. There is a difference between reducing carbs and low carbing.

    Patch, could you please elaborate as to what you mean here?
     
  10. John J

    John J · Active Member

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    Catherine,

    You're right. I've been eating much more sensibly these days and, of course, my portions of bread, potatos, pasta, rice or whatever are obviously less than before. However, I don't feel that I have to go to the extremes that some members appear to advocate.

    I realise that I'm very fortunate in that I'm "temporarily" healthy and able bodied and, basically, as long as I keep my weight down, do enough exercise and don't over eat/eat a load of rubbish I should be be fine. Of course, I also realise that this probably won't always be possible although I'd hope to be active for quite a few years yet.

    I'm not sure about Diabetes being a progressive disease and it shouldn't really be if one is able to keep it under control by whatever means is required. However, I do agree that this might not always be possible due to various factors, eg other illnesses, unable to exercise to the same extent due to age and so on. So, the chances are that it will become progressive for these reasons but not necessarily because of the condition itself.
     
  11. catherinecherub

    catherinecherub · Guest

    Hi JJ,
    Everything in moderation is my motto and I couldn't care less if other people choose a different route. As long as newly diagnosed have all the information and know what works for people, including different approaches, that is fine by me.
    As for the progression, I think it may be the luck of the draw. I have a friend who really looked after herself, followed a healthy diet, exercised went for all her checkups and was told that everything was in order. Over the last 18 months her eyesight gave her cause for concern and although she was still looking after herself she is now registered as blind with very limited sight but her sugar levels and HBA1c's have always been within acceptable levels. Her consultant was as upset as she was because he knew of many diabetics who couldn't care less about their condition and were sailing close to the wind but had no complications.
    We only pass this way once and I don't want to be fretting about what I eat every day.

    Catherine.
     
  12. noblehead

    noblehead Type 1 · Guru
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    What, you telling me this isn't a dress rehearsal ! :shock: :roll:

    Nigel :D
     
  13. kegstore

    kegstore · Well-Known Member

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    Whether or not (or to what extent) you eat carbohydrate initially depends very much on which type of diabetes you have. Yes that old chestnut again. If I was T2 and trying to keep meds to a minimum or stay off them completely, reducing carb intake would be a bit of a no-brainer. But I'm T1 so need my external insulin regardless of what I eat. There are T1s who also low-carb, that is their choice, but there are other options too:

    I have recently changed insulin type and yesterday recorded my best ever day with diabetes. I woke up to a bg reading of 4.8, and despite eating nearly 190g of carbohydrate over the next 15 hours, over the 24 hour period to this morning my bg never rose above 5.7. I know this because I have CGM which takes a reading every 5 minutes. So it IS possible, but it's taken a lot of practice to get to this stage, and others will react differently to all varieties of food types.
     
  14. catherinecherub

    catherinecherub · Guest

    :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
    Edited to save confusion. This is a reply to Nigel's post.
     
  15. Patch

    Patch Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Sure.

    I'm just pointing out that it makes sense to research all avenues. Reducing carbs (but not down to lo-carb levels) will definitely help you maintain lower BG levels. In the future you may start to realise that your BGs are creeping up again, even though you have not increased your carb intake. At that time, you may need to reduce your carbs further in order to maintain a healthy BG level. if this happens progressively over the course of a few years, a "moderate" carber may become a lo-carber without realising. Just being fore armed with the info you need to maintain a healthy BG level BEFORE it gets out of hand MUST be a good thing, right?

    Remember the big push a few years back for maintaining a healthy Heart? It's just applying the same principles to the Pancreas. No point in over working it if you don't need to, eh? :wink:
     
  16. catherinecherub

    catherinecherub · Guest

    I understand what you mean Patch. As you yourself have said that this is a progressive disease, then what do the low carbers do when things go awry? :wink:
     
  17. IanD

    IanD Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    There is medication available. Carb control helps BG control, delays the onset of conplications & reduces the need for medication.
     
  18. John J

    John J · Active Member

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    "Carb control"

    The key word is control, I'd suggest, and my view is that the amount of control which is necessary varies according to the individual and his or her circumstances. Of course, this should be regularly reviewed too.

    As I said earlier, I do eat less of everything including carbs than before but I still have a healthy appetite. I was in the fortunate position of already eating all the good foods but sadly much of the rubbish too and both in large quantities. So, since diagnosis, I've successfully managed to cut out the latter and reduce my overall consumption. By rubbish, I mean the obvious..sweets, chocolate, pastries, fry ups, and so on.....although I might still have the occasional treat.

    As regards my carb intake, it is generally a bowl of cereal for breakfast, two or three potatoes for a meal, and maybe three or four slices/pieces of bread per day. Sometimes, a scone or a plainish biscuit too. Of course, these quantities might vary slightly and if I'm having rice, pasta, pizza etc, or extra bread, I won't be eating potatoes and so on. I don't eat a lot of chips but will have them if they are nicely cooked and not obviously greasy/fatty.

    However, I'd consider that my appetite is still bigger than that of many people here but that's always been the case. Since I retired early about eight years ago, my weight steadily increased.... not that I ever had a particularly physical job although there was a lot of walking involved.. and this was probably the main cause of my problems which led to the onset of my condition. So, I have obviously had to make the effort to counteract this my "cutting down" and increasing my exercise by quite a lot. Of course, diabetes also affects thin people too and I shouldn't be complacent about it. However, at the moment, my actions seem to have had the desired affect.

    As I say, I do have the occasional treat and I can confess to two very obvious misdemeanours.... Three helpings of Stovies at a Christmas Ceilidh and three helpings of Haggis, neeps and tatties at a Burns Supper. Mind you, I saved myself all day for this and I considered the portions to be on the small side. :lol:
    Occasionally too, I may exceed my recommended daily alcohol intake although not excessively. However, such activities really are "Once in a blue moon" these days and I don't see any real need to get too paranoid about them although I'll probably eat or drink less the following day to compensate.
    Yes, I know all about "the spikes" too but, rightly or wrongly, I'm not too worried at this stage re this while the general health is actually improving overall as opposed to deteriorating.
     
  19. noblehead

    noblehead Type 1 · Guru
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    John J,

    Haggis, neeps and tatties..........................now your talking! :D

    It doesn't have to be burns night in my house to enjoy this meal, although I am careful with the tatties. :wink: It would appear that you have adopted a sensible approach to diet, exercise and over consumption. long may it continue.

    I find looking about and reading posts, that by denying oneself of the foods you crave and were brought up on, is self-defeating. That is why you will find that people who low-carb often fall of the wagon and eat something 'carby', and the next day be full of regret, beating themselves up over it. That is why they long to find foods that are similar in taste and texture to the foods they have given up previously, i.e low-carb bread for example.

    It is all about moderation, someone like myself cannot live life without insulin. Even if I reduced my carbs to the bare minimum, I would still need insulin in my body, so I choose to reduce my carb content/insulin requirements to a level that sustains me, and most importantly keeps my diabetes control stable and within my set targets. So if you can obtain this by diet only, or need a little help from medication and insulin, it is not something to be ashamed of. Many diets come and go in our lifetime, and many reasons why they fail, is due to their restrictive doctrine, leaving people feeling dismayed when they fail to adhere.

    Regards

    Nigel
     
  20. nabser

    nabser · Active Member

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    As has been said everyone is different and what works for one does not work for the next person,i can only call on my own experience and the one thing i would say to people is to see your health professional be it gp, diabetic nurse or preferably your consultant endocrinoligist,too many people these days dont bother seeing there health professional and go straight to the web to get information,i have followed my consultant and dieticians advice and i eat a generally healthy diet some days i do break out and eat chocolate biscuits or a lovely cream cake but for me its generally everything in moderation.I lost 9stone after being diagnosed i was nearly 22stone and my last hba1c was 5.1 which is really good considering when i was diagnosed my blood sugars were off the scale.
     
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