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Low carb diet?

Discussion in 'Type 1 Diabetes' started by Lucyturner, Apr 12, 2014.

  1. Lucyturner

    Lucyturner · Well-Known Member

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    Hi everyone,

    I am really struggling to get my blood sugars under control. I was thinking of trying a low carb diet to see if that helps but I'm not sure where to start. Can anyone help please and do you know roughly how much carbohydrate I should be looking to have in a day and what alternatives I can have?

    Lucy


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  2. robert72

    robert72 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi Lucy

    If you want to try low carb, it might be worth trying to reduce your carbs slowly to see how you get on. I am currently on 30g carbs a day, but I started by simply cutting out carbs from my evening meal and having extra veg to compensate.

    I could see that it was helping my BGs so then I lowered my carb intake to around 150g per day and I have worked my way down from there.

    There are several other T1s here that low carb so there is plenty of support.
     
  3. borofergie

    borofergie Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Yes. Like @robert72 says you can either work your way down, or work your up.

    I took the "cold turkey" approach, but I'm sure some people find it easier to gradually reduce their carbs.

    50 to 150g is a typical range. Just use your meter to test your BG, and work out how much you can get away with.
     
  4. Spiker

    Spiker Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    If you're working your way down, keep your eye on your basal insulin and reduce that gradually as needed. If you are working up, have a "fasting and testing" day to confirm your basal is correct first.

    Once you get to around 100gch per day or less, the effects of protein become significant (normally you can ignore protein on a med/hi carb diet). Up to two thirds of protein can be converted to glucose when you are low carbing, but it's usually much lower than that. Test to see if you are getting a higher than expected blood sugar rise after a protein meal.

    Personally when low carbing I estimate half the protein gets converted to glucose, half gets used for repairs etc. That's about right for 75kg person eating 150g protein a day on a low carb diet. It means if I eat a 150g burger patty containing 30g of protein, I would inject for 10g of carbs (one third of the grams of protein), but ONLY if I was properly low carbing.

    Protein dosing is hit and miss so I would recommend emphasing more fat, less protein, as the replacement for the reduced carbs.

    Also, whatever you end up craving and eating all the time when low carbing, check those foods with your meter. You will often find they are causing a blood sugar rise, maybe one that is just individual to you. Eliminate those foods.

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  5. Juicyj

    Juicyj Type 1 · Expert
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    Hi Lucy,

    Before you embark on it try writing a food diary of what you are currently eating, and calculating how much carb you are having. It helps to really understand what carbs you currently have in your diet.

    I found that I needed some education on food first, so learning what food was being converted to sugar and how quickly it was absorbed into my system. The more you know about the food you eat then the easier it is to manage the carbs you eat.

    I learnt very quickly that eating pasta, baked or mashed potato and rice were like eating sweets in regards to the effects on my BG readings - so these got cut out very quickly, then I went on to cut out breads, pasta and anything containing refined sugar, which when you read labels you will see are in loads of things (very scary !).

    My simple way of managing low carb is to cook everything I eat from scratch so I know each component. If I need a boost then I eat nuts like almonds or peanuts but only small quantities or these can boost your BG, so just a handful. I eat alot of eggs and cheese, any cheese and only full fat. I avoid all yoghurts and eat full fat plain yoghurt or greek yoghurt and just a small handful of blueberries for something sweet.

    To be honest looking at this, before diabetes I would of been horrified to eat any of this as I happily ate pizza, pasta, any yoghurt, ice cream - but now it's just not worth it, I am trying to bring my HbA1c down and this is the only way I know how.

    Message me for any ideas, tips etc or even a boost, it's not as bad as it sounds and as long as i'm healthy, then that's it for me !!
     
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  6. Lucyturner

    Lucyturner · Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the advise everyone. I'm trying to slowly reduce my carbs and seen to be seeing a difference already. The only thing in struggling with is meal ideas. I'm having 2 small slices of sunflower and sesame seed bread for breakfast or granola and yogurt. Then a omelette for lunch with a small slice of toast made with the same bread. And tea I'm having whatever my husband wants and just not having any bread e.g garlic bread or naans, or a smaller amount of potatoes so having approx 130g carbs a day but I can see myself getting bored of these meals quickly. I know it's better for me and it will be worth it but really can't think of any means that don't contain pasta, rice or potatoes.

    Lucy
     
  7. Spiker

    Spiker Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    There is a type of rice or potato replacement you can make out of cauliflower. There's probably a recipe on the forum somewhere if you search for it.

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  8. zazoopits

    zazoopits Prediabetes · Well-Known Member

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    Hi Lucy, well done so far, for the cauliflower recipe, I boil until tender, drain, add butter or cream or plain if you like and blitz with a hand blender, add seasoning. It's surprisingly like mashed potatoes. Enjoy.

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  9. robert72

    robert72 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Had cauliflower mash for dinner tonight with sausages and spinach - as @zazoopits says, made with a dash of cream and blitzed with a hand blender :hungry:

    cauliflower mash.JPG
     
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  10. this is too difficult

    this is too difficult Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    there is a potato only available in Australia that has half the carbs of any other potato.
    Perhaps we should all email Tesco asking them to stock them
     
  11. zazoopits

    zazoopits Prediabetes · Well-Known Member

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    Robert after looking,(drooling!!!) at your post, I'm starving!! Thanks a million...now where to find a cauliflower at this hour!! Lol

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  12. Juicyj

    Juicyj Type 1 · Expert
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    Lucy - this is where you will have to get creative with food - try sweet potato chips instead of potato chips, you can get 0 carb noodles in Holland & Barrett. I don't eat bread so don't know any low carb alternatives except rye bread which you can pick up in Lidls or Aldis.

    You can eat a rich and varied diet with inspiration - also look at Paleo receipes - they follow the same rules as low carb.

    Once you start getting some ideas together it get's easier. Just be careful with curries as there are lots of hidden carbs like sugar !! I make a great spag bol with courgettes, carrots, celery and no pasta, very filling, very tasty.

    ;)
     
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  13. noblehead

    noblehead Type 1 · Guru
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    Carb wise sweet potato chips are on par with ordinary potatoes Juicy, just slightly lower on the glycemic index.
     
  14. Charles Robin

    Charles Robin Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    One of my favourite discoveries has been celeriac. It looks extremely wierd, but has very few carbs and can be used for anything you would use potato for. You just need a sharp knife as it's very hard raw, but softens when roasted. I make celeriac chips and now prefer them to potato ones.

    Also flax meal bread can be really tasty. Flax seed (also called linseed) is very low carb. You will need to make it yourself, but it is quite easy and does not need a bread maker.
    For more ideas check out http://www.lowcarbdiabetic.co.uk/Recipes.htm, it was a massive help to me.
     
  15. Lucyturner

    Lucyturner · Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the ideas. Does anyone have any problems with their keytones while doing this I went to the gym on Wednesday and my keytones have been very irratic since.

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  16. robert72

    robert72 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Mine are generally between 0.5 and 1.5 using my blood meter, ketostix can go up to 4 but I think that depends on fluid throughput. My BGs are always normal so it's not DKA
     
  17. Spiker

    Spiker Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    What level of ketones? A mild level is fine and just proves low carb is working.

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  18. Lucyturner

    Lucyturner · Well-Known Member

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    The highest they have been is 1.9 but my blood sugars have been alright so didn't know if I should worry or not.

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  19. Mrs Vimes

    Mrs Vimes Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I low carb and my ketones have been 2.2 with blood sugars within the non-diabetic range. My DSN told me they were starvation ketones as I definitely had no systems of DKA. I would be worried with blood sugars 16 and above but I haven't - tho diabetes is part black art so I test often to make sure and peace of mind.


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