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LOW CARB SUCCESS STORIES

Discussion in 'Low-carb Diet Forum' started by fergus, Aug 27, 2008.

  1. fergus

    fergus Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    We have endless debates and arguments about what constitutes a healthy diet. It seems one man's carb is another man's poision.
    One common concern, however, is that newly diagnosed visitors will get mixed messages from the conflicting opinions. I have therefore decided that it's time for a wee census. I know of many members who have gained control of their condition by adopting a low(er) carb diet, but then found no further use for the forum, taken their normal blood sugars and disappeared. I would like us to gather statements from diabetics who have found success by restricting their carbohydrate intake, by whatever amount.
    So please let us know if you have succeeded in managing your diabetes by restricting your carbs.
    If you can supply before and after figures for diet, blood sugar readings, HbA1c, weight, weight or lipids it will all help to build a picture of how real people are getting on.
    Oh, and the arguments won't be tolerated here but can be continued elsewhere!

    All the best,

    fergus
     
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  2. fergus

    fergus Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Re: Success stories

    Well, since I suggested this thread, I suppose I had better go first. Apologies to those of you who have heard it before.

    I have had type 1 diabetes for 27 years. For the first 20 of those I had gradually worsening health - increasing blood glucose, insulin use, hypoglycemia attacks and weight. I followed an approved diet based around starchy carbohydrates and low in fat.
    In 2000 I began trying to reverse my decline by restricting carbohyrates in my diet and replacing them with more meat, fish, vegetables, eggs, dairy foods and nuts, although I received no encouragement from my doctors in using this approach. The results have been remarkable.

    2000: HbA1c 7.6%, BMI 29, HDL 1.7, LDL 2.4, triglyceride 0.7, daily insulin use ~80 units

    2008: HbA1c 4.7%, BMI 22, HDL 3.1, LDL 1.8, triglyceride 0.5, daily insulin use ~ 20 units

    I have always tried to look after myself, staying physically active and working hard. I have never consciously reduced my calorie intake. I believe all diabetics should be made aware of the potential benefits of such a diet before deciding how to deal with their condition.

    fergus
     
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  3. hanadr

    hanadr · Expert

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    Re: Success stories

    Started on lower carbs in June 2007 since when I have lost 18kg( from 107 to 89; 3 dress sizes down too) and stopped taking gliclazide. I still have an occasional Starlix 60, if I do a Bg and find I'm over 6 and it's earlier than bed time. At bedtime, I'll accept a 6 and know it's likely to go down to target of 5.5 by morning. Still taking metformin.
    Find that any more than a few grams of carbs puts me over target. eg. Had 2 matzo crakers with butter!! with a boiled egg for lunch 5.4g of carbs. Won't test, because being mean with my store of strips. Will find out at bedtime. I'm testing once daily,
    Despite knowing i am seriously overweight, Couldn't stick to the low fat/ highcarb Healthy Eating plan for more than a week or so at a time. Have kept up low carb for 14 months.
    Last Hb A1c was 6.1% HDL 1.6 LDL1.4. That was Feb. they say i need to be done only once a year, because I'm stable. Retinopahy is stable too, slight and hasn't changed. In fact my appointments are what keeps changing.
    forgot to put
    Diagnosed T2 in July 2003 following a stroke. Followed what little dietary advice I got from the hospital dietician for the first 4 years.
     
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  4. sixfoot

    sixfoot · Well-Known Member

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    Re: Success stories

    Sorry Fergus no previous readings as i was never told what they were or that they were even important, simply that this is up or down and take this pill.

    That is one thing that has now changed.

    Diagnosed in 2000, T2 and until April this year faithfull disciple of the standard mantra. The GP wanted to put me on insulin. I drive for a living and realised it would have an impact so something had to change.
    So i got onto the Internet and started looking, Found out about Byetta and asked the questions. Well i was getting very close to 20st and knew it. Weight loss was part of the Package so the GP sent me to Consultant who agreed. So in April this year i started Byetta and the numbers did start to fall as did the weight. So i looked around some more and found this site and all the advice on reducing carbs etc. I have no regrets or looked back.

    7th August this year had my Annual review with a difference, i was asking the questions. My GP looked a little surprised when i asked what all the readings were. I simply said that i think i should know.

    My weight has gone from 19st 12 to 18st 3 since April but static at present
    Self test BS 5-6
    Review results cholestrol 3.2
    Triglycerides 1.5
    Ldl 1.5
    Hdl 1.0
    HbA1c 6.1
    in my humble opinion certainly for T2`s, carb restriction is a no brainer.
    i cant say ive been hungry or tired since i started and still waiting for the scurvy and mange to show up. Has anyone got some they could lend me ????????

    Thank you all
    Dave P
     
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  5. Katharine

    Katharine · Well-Known Member

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    Re: Success stories

    This is Steven's experience:

    Diagnosed type one age 12. Also diagnosed with hypothyroidism. Hbaic 6.0% Never had ketoacidosis. Mixtard twice daily in different potencies for 18 months. Low carb (max 100g)diet daily during this time with one or two "weekly treats" eg cake / bowl of frosties outwith this. Hbaic 4.8% -5.3%on this regime.

    Then growth spurt and indications of waning of honeymoon period. Added novorapid at lunch times and for correction doses. After six months no gain in weight. Hbaics 5.8-6.2% BMI 16. Eating as much meat and fat as I could stuff into him.

    Started levemir, novorapid ( for carbs and correction doses), actrapid (for protein and high fat meals). Adopted and perfected highly advanced insulin regime to cope with higher carbohydrate diet while still maintaining maximal protein and fat intake. After a very intensive three month period of measuring everything eaten, monitoring after meals and at night and adjusting the insulin regime we got it all sorted out to a standard I am happy with and he can cope with.

    Steven is now a 16 year old skinny teenager and he is still growing but his BMI is a normal 18.5 (children and teenagers have BMIs lower than adults). His hbaic varies between 5.3-6.0% on this regime. He has blood sugars below 3.5 several times a week and has had no serious hypos. He has blood sugars in the 10-15 range about once or twice a week. His blood pressure is 90/60 and his lipid pattern is normal. He has no complications and I am hopeful that he won't get any.

    The key to his good control is his willingness to undertake high maintenance routines and make appropriate and timely modifications. If he was a model he would be a supermodel. If he was an athlete he would be an Olympian. You can be a gold medal superdiabetic too.
     
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  6. graham64

    graham64 · Well-Known Member

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    Re: Success stories

    Hi Fergus,
    I was diagnosed T2 april this year,no family history not overweight, I had no symptoms but through routine blood tests I was told that I was borderline diabetic and was sent for a glucose tolerance test which obviously came back positive.My doc said that it could have been brought on by stress and depression, I had been through a very traumatic 12 months.I was given the usual diabetic diet which I tried to follow as best I could,and all the checks eyes feet etc, all ok. I went on the Desmonds course which was ok up to a point diet :!: I had been losing weight and had fallen from 11st 5lb to 10st 9lb,to me the diet was aimed solely at overweight diabetics which in my case was useless. To redress the balance I started to increase my carb intake gained some weight but BS was not stable. Then I found this Forum after going through the posts I went to see nurse and asked to see a dietitian, result a completely different diet alot higher in fats so I reduced my carb intake BS settled down again and managed to gain weight also felt much better in myself.

    Statistics: Age 64 height 6ft weight 11st 3lb. HbA1c 7%. Chol 4. trigls 0.79 HDL 1.65 LDL 1.99 Ratio 2.4: BP 135/78 on meds. BS average over last 3 week 5.9 on reduced carb, prior to low carb 6.2.

    After seeing all the other BS results on this forum I realise that I am very fortunate to have been diagnosed early, my highest ever reading 10.2 is nothing to some that you guys get, on reduced carbs an 8.0 is my highest and that was down to my over indulgence.I feel in control now an odd lapse maybe but in the end its me that decides what I eat.My occasional bouts of depression also seem to have a bad effect on my BS but if I keep my self in check I'll be ok.
    My Cholesterol results were done when I was on statins :twisted: Off statins now after bad side effects, trying plant sterols hoping for a good result on my 3 monthly coming soon will keep you informed.
    All the best to everyone Graham

    Ps Whats wrong with Diabetic cats Fergus :?:
     
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  7. loopy-loo

    loopy-loo · Member

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    Re: Success stories

    Hi all,

    Changed to the low carb way after failing to control my Type 1 diabetes (levemir and novorapid, MDI) following the recommended diet with dramatic results.

    pre low carb:- hbaic 7.6
    post low carb (4months) hbaic 5.3

    the pre hbaic of 7.6 was the lowest I had managed, this was by having no life and continually riding the rollercoaster of high and lows - being too afraid to go far from home on my own incase I had a hypo and just a general loss of vitality.

    I am a completely different person now, going to concerts, entering 'race for life' and just enjoying myself again with generally pretty stable bg's readings of 4 to 5.5.

    lindsey x
     
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  8. Grainless

    Grainless · Newbie

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    Re: Success stories

    Hi All,

    This is my first post; I have been lurking here since April, decided to register yesterday to make this post. My name is Alan and I am 46 yrs old.

    I went for one of these glucose tolerance test thingys last December, the doc said in a very nonchalant way that I had just failed the test and was now diagnosed type 2 diabetic. He gave me the results: 7.2 fasting and 12.1 after 2 hours. Then he explained what the numbers meant and that I had only just failed. This meant to me that I will just take another one in 6 months and then I would pass. Of course he said it doesn’t work like that. I nearly fell of my chair :eek: ; I couldn’t believe it (I was obviously suffering from cretinopathy :) ). Anyway after 5 minutes of him waffling on about government guidelines and what not, he sent me away with a small piece of paper detailing the usual exercise more, lose weight, eat less fat, more fruit veg and whole grains blah, blah, blah (No mention of self testing). I was already eating half a loaf of wholegrain bread a day plus a shed load of cereals, an equivalent 8 portions of fruit and juices, and hardly any meat. On diagnoses, my weight was 150Kg, with a morbidly obese BMI of 43. I never suspected carbohydrates were all that fattening. Naïve, idiotic, foolish me :oops: .

    A week later I made an appointment with the DN. She said the same as that tiny slither of paper. (No mention of self testing). Tests for kidney and liver function were sound.

    I cut back on total calories to about 2000. Started walking about 2 miles a day.

    April came and I felt like I was dying. As well as starving, I was tired all the time, stomach cramps, going toilet more than 3 times a day (IBS maybe). I felt very weak, light headed, blurred vision and burning sole on my right foot. Also I was suffering from Acid reflux. I had lost 10 Kilos in weight though which was not bad. April was the date of my first blood tests and my first HBA1c (6.4). I asked the DN is there anything that she could suggest to remedy the above problems. She told me that I probably am not eating enough, my jaw nearly dropped to the floor :eek: . I said 2000Kcals are enough surely (I still want to lose weight). She checked my foot for neuropathy, and said it was ok. She then went on to mention statins and metformin. When I refused to entertain either of these she went on to say that eventually I would have to go on drugs and then finally insulin, because diabetes is a progressive disease (she was very insistent, almost like she was trying to punish me :twisted: ). I said like hell am I going on insulin. She basically scared the hell out of me. I hate drugs and needles. I trust drug companies about as much as I trust capt Darling with the economy. I decided I have got to do some of my own research.

    I got myself a meter and some test strips. My fasting BS was up to 7.5-8, my after meal (2hrs) reading was anything from 10-15. I researched diabetes on the internet. That is when I first came across this excellent website. I read all the threads especially the ones on carbs and “the cure”. After researching low-carb all over the web, I got a copy of Atkins New Diet Revolution. Before I would try to low-carb though, due to my paranoia I thought I would try to find the evidence against eating “artery clogging saturated fat”. I could not find any real proof that saturated fat was evil.

    So I decided to cut right back on carbs (Atkins induction 20g/day). At that time I was more paranoid of drugs, than any negative effects of low-carb and the thought of sticking insulin needles in me, I was bordering on psychosis. Within 3 days my Acid reflux had disappeared and never had it since. My stomach cramps had gone. Fasting blood sugars of around 5. The downside was to come one week later when I got “Atkins flu”, only lasted for one week. After that my energy levels just exploded and so did my bowels, diarrhea like I had never known before. I just persevered with Atkins, this just had to work if I didn’t want to inject (is my paranoia showing? :) ). It took nearly three weeks to get back to normal. I decided to put all that energy to use by doing jobs around the house/garden (the Mrs. is very happy :) ). I was never tired after a meal, unlike when I use to eat a high-carb meal I use to collapse in my armchair after dinner. I also started walking everywhere I could, plus more for pleasure, about 35 miles a week. NOTE: I only started Atkins due to my properly functioning kidneys. It is also worth noting that I started to drink a lot more water than normal, in fact about 3 litres a day. This is to flush out the nitrogen and other toxins caused by the increased gluconeogenesis that is required to fuel the parts of the body that can not use ketones or free fatty acids.

    Now nearly 5 months I have been getting lower and lower fasting readings of between 4.2 and 4.7, no meter reading is greater than 5.3, at ANY time; in fact it generally is less than 5. Vision is normal and no burning foot. In fact I swear I have a lot more feeling in the soles of my feet now. I sleep much sounder now than since I was in my teens. I only need about 6-7 hours of continual sleep, whereas I used to need 8-9 hours of intermittent sleep. I have now lost a total of more than 30 kilos (BMI 33, yippee, getting there) eating 70% fat, 125g protein and approx 60g carbs daily (~2500Kcal). All cravings for carbs/sugar have gone the way of the dodo :D . I never feel hungry between meals anymore, I don’t even think of food anymore. Steadily losing about a kilo a week walking the 35 miles a week and I am now doing half an hour 4 days a week of yoga. I am going to start weight training when I have finished converting my garage into a gym. I don’t like exercising, I LOVE it.

    I do supplement with a multivitamin, chromium, Omega 3 (EPA, DHA, ALA) and extra vitamin D and E. I have stopped eating all vegetable oils that are high in Omega 6 (Linoleic acid). The only oil I use is Extra Virgin Olive Oil for salads and light frying (mostly lard for frying). Very few nuts except for walnuts (better Omega 3/6 ratio). I try to get as close to a 1-1 ratio of the Omegas. No fast food, ready meals or any thing with artificial trans-fats at all. I eat cheese, butter and bacon along with all the fresh foods that there are, except high fructose and starchy fruits. I have not eaten so well in my life; I am fully satisfied at every meal. I do not eat any grains or starchy veg at all including legumes (a small portion of freshly picked garden peas are the exception). I tend to eat all cuts of meat, chicken and fish. Fresh veggys cooked in garlic butter or some other delicious low-carb sauce. Eggs are eaten daily. I am doing the dreaded Atkins (against the advice of my care team), but without any of his products or any other low-carb packaged pap. I like to think of it as a more natural way of eating. I cannot for the life of me know what all the negative press about Atkins or low-carb in general is all about. Is it the “BUT YOU NEED CARBOHYDRATES FOR ENERGY” nonsense? Or the “DIE OF A HEART ATTACK IF YOU JUST LOOK AT BUTTER” mentality?

    I cannot describe how I feel now; all I will say is that it feels like I have at last found a healthy way to eat and live for the rest of my life. As corny as it sounds, I feel reborn, much younger and healthier. I have been on what must be at least a dozen different diets and lost weight, sometimes even more than what I have lost so far doing this. The difference this time is that I am NOT hungry doing this. The first month or so was hard what with “Atkins flu” and the exploding bowels, but persistence pays. I feel as I have reversed some of the insulin resistance due in part to the weight loss, but also I think the balance of the essential fatty acids and removal of all processed food/grains has gone a long way.

    My last/first HBA1C in April was 6.4. Blood lipids: HDL 1.0, LDL 4.4, Trig 1.5. BP 140/80 and resting heartbeat 88. Now my BP is 105/65 and resting heart beat 60. I am due my next blood test in Oct/Nov. This hopefully will show an improvement, fingers crossed.

    My ultimate goal is to get my weight down to 80 Kilos (BMI 23 - 6ft 2, I haven’t been 80Kg since I was 21), be active and build more muscle (at least retain as much as possible) so I can reverse as much of the insulin resistance as I can.

    One final note: I know when people make their first post; it is usually to ask for help. The reason I have made this post is not to ask for any help but it is to thank you all for the helpful information that you have posted, because without this website and obviously caring people I would not have the control that I have, and I want you to know that you are very much appreciated not just by me but probably by lots of other “lurkers out there”.

    Kind regards,

    Alan

    Hey, I might be Grainless, but at least I am happy!

    Insulin, hmm the aging hormone? Please DO NOT ABUSE! Your life depends on it!
     
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  9. shadwell

    shadwell · Member

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    Re: Success stories

    I was diagnosed with Type 2 just over 2 years ago at a routine new patient check up with the doctor. Overall, my surgery is great with a very proactive diabetes care team and a brilliant and open-minded diabetic nurse who I cannot praise highly enough. However, the GP I have to see who is the only diabetes specialist is not so good, very traditional and old-fashioned. On the day I was diagnosed, the diabetic nurse was on holiday and so I saw the doctor who told me that I had to eat 14 portions of carbs a day. My stats at diagnosis were BG 23, cholesterol 9.4, triglycerides 5.9 and weight 107 kgs. Prescribed 1000mg Metformin, 2mg Glimepiride and 40mg Simvastatin. I duly went away and followed the GP's advice and spent 3 months feeling iller and iller. I put on another 8kgs and at my follow up 3 months later my HbA1C was 9.7, cholesterol 9.1, triglycerides 5.9 and weight 115kgs. I also suffered crippling pains in my hands so bad that I had to soak them in hot water several times a day to stop them cramping completely. As I was doing so badly, I again had to see the GP who told me off for gaining weight, told me to eat more carbs and increased my medication to 2000mg Metformin, 6mg Glimepiride and 60mg Simvastatins. Went home feeling completely depressed and feeling like death. At this point I decided to do some research and found out about low carbing and the side effects that statins can have. I made an appointment to see the diabetic nurse who encouraged me to take up a low carb diet and took me off the statins. Within a few weeks, I was feeling much better and had stopped having the hand cramps. I have low carbed ever since with the support of my diabetic nurse and have never felt better. I have gone from a dress size 28 to a size 14 and my last stats were HbA1C 5.2, cholesterol 4.8, triglycerides 1.2. My nurse has told me off the record that she believes whole-heartedly in low carbing having seen positive results in many patients but is constricted by the NHS guidelines. I would not hesitate to recommend giving low carb a try.
     
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  10. IanD

    IanD Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Re: Success stories

    I followed the standard advice until April this year. Retina screening showed the beginning of damage, & I developed painful leg muscles. I felt that my active life was over - I was playing tennis at club standard. I started reduced carb during April & my muscle pain has gone. I played 3 sets of tennis this evening, 2 of them singles without pain.

    My blood test results, particularly lipids have greatly improved, & my weight is down from 13 to 12 st. I am also much less sleepy. My BS overnight readings are down from 7 to 5.5, though surprisingly my HBA is 6.9, up from 6.8 in January. The most likely reason for that is, I think, the body utilising the body weight to maintain the cell sugar.
     
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  11. JAD337

    JAD337 · Member

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    Re: Success stories

    Hi, what an interesting topic. I'm not sure if my input would be regarded as a success story but I hope it adds a bit more information to the subject.
    First of all, I think I am correct in thinking that the approach to diabetes treatment in the USA is different from the UK in that they actively encourage a low carb diet?

    In my own case I was diagnosed in Jan 2004 as Type 2, at the age of 54. The "cause" of my diabetes was considered to be hereditary. There is a history of the condition in my family. I certainly was not overweight at 12st and 6ft tall. I am fairly fit and active - I play golf and badminton and do a fair amount of walking. Anyway, one gliclazide per day later I was back under control but my weight had dropped during the intervening period to just over 11st. As per normal, I was encouraged to eat plenty of starchy foods.

    I stayed under control until 2006 when my sugar levels went skyward. After several visits to the local Diabetes Clinic I regained control via 4 gliclazide and 2 metformin / day - quite an increase. At this point I had lost more weight and was just under 11st. I battled on with my sugar levels for the next year or so. My sugar levels would creep up and my only means of bringing them back under control was to reduce the amount I ate, effectively reducing my carb intake. However, whilst this regained sugar level control it also lost me a bit more weight. The weight loss was probably exacerbated by my exercise levels. As my weight drifted down to 10st I was urged by my Diabetes Nurse to ensure that there was nothing sinister causing the weight loss - subsequent tests showed nothing amiss. I decided that losing more weight was not an attractive proposition, so I played around with my diet, generally eating more of everything (except battenburg cake, I still miss it!) and managed to stop the weight loss, but at the cost of a higher blood sugar count. My conclusion was that the drugs were simply not working any more, my body was unable to convert enough of my carb intake to support my needs and my body was "topping up" on body fat.

    I was again referred to the Diabetes Clinic where the Specialist Nurse concluded (as I had) that I needed to go on to insulin. I received my first insulin pen today, injected myself this evening AND lived to tell the tale. How I will get on regarding body weight in the future, only time will tell. However, the purpose of telling you all that is that a low carb approach would probably not always be suitable for us underweight diabetics out there. Hope that adds a bit to the discussion.
     
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  12. janabelle

    janabelle · Well-Known Member

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    Re: Success stories

    Hi Fergus, for 19 years I've had crap diabetic control-diagnosed type-1 at age of 19. I remember asking my consultant bout 12 years ago, would I ever have good control and stability-she told me my diabetes would prob always be erratic. Stupidly I trusted her, and trusted her again when I was changes from Human Insulatard to Lantus 4 years ago. Things got worse, no control, no explanation why, and obviously losing weight was very difficult. How I wish 4 years ago I was offered animal long acting insulin instead of Lantus-would have saved me a lot of grief, and prob given me better life expectancy. Since I've been on Porcine Isophane, I have perfect control, every day is like the next(as far as BS control I mean, otherwise my life would sound really dull!!). For the first time since I was diagnosed I am in conrol of my condition, and am able to make choices about my diet.
    In my effort to lose some weight, I have been cutting carbs this week. I am amazed that I don't feel hungry, and still feel energetic, but most of all it's shown me how well the pork insulin is working. I take no short acting during the day, only with my evening meal, and I do have carbs then. I do give in to the occasional Nairns oatcake I must admit.
    A good low GI sweet biccy option is Nairns Oatcakes with stem ginger-got them in Sainsburys last week to try, they taste like a normal ginger biscuit, don't affect my blood sugar much.
    My blood sugars stayed between 6-8 all day today, I was really pleased!
    Obviously carbs and insulin are a battle for us type-1s, but minimising the amount of short-acting insulin I take, is also preventing hypos. I'm only doing this as a short term measure till I can lose bit of weight.
    Jus
     
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  13. gefmayhem

    gefmayhem · Well-Known Member

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    Re: Success stories

    Hi
    I joined this forum back in early July as I was having problems with my control.
    I was advised to try lo-carb, I did this and last Friday I went to my first clinic in a year.
    My weight had dropped from 95 kg to 90kg, according to my scales this loss happened in the last 3 months or so.
    my blood pressure went from 147/80 to 144/82.
    Kidneys test from 28 to negative.
    HbA1c from 9.7 to 6.6
    These are the only figures I was given.
    I was told to keep doing whatever it was I was doing to get the improvement.
    I said I was low carbing and was told 'Fair enough, keep an eye out for hypos'.
    This was from a young oriental lady (young to me anyway) and she seemed happy enough with the results to not worry about the low carbs.
    Not the reaction I was expecting, the last time I told them I was low carbing I was told not to do that as its dangerous and medically unsound.

    I'm type 2 and have been for about 18 years, on metformin 2000mg, Minodiab 20mg, Ramipril 2.5 mg, Simvastatin 40 mg and Avandia 8 mg all per day.

    Thanks from a happy bunny

    Having posted the above in its own topic it was suggested I repost it here.
    So having read all the posts, I've a couple more things to add.
    My diet consists of a lot of salami, nuts, other meat, veg and cheese, I love veggie omlettes.
    I have not cut down the quantities of meat and veg I eat but am not longer eating pasta, rice, potatos or bread.
    I changed my drinking habits from beer to vodka and diet coke and have still been known to get puggled from time to time - tonight for one :D .
    I make sure I have some salami around for when I get back from the pub and it seems to stableise me BS overnight.
    I try to fit my eating habits around what the canteen at work offer, it annoys me a bit that I don't get a reduced price for buying curry and rice but without the rice, but then the lady who serves me tends to top up my plate as I'm not having the rice.
    I'm sure that once I finish working in Southampton and get a job back home that my diet will improve further.
    I'm actually looking forward to my next clinic in 6 months time to see if I can improve my figures again, even if its just a wee bit.
     
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  14. crafteclaire

    crafteclaire · Well-Known Member

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    Re: Success stories

    Hi everyone.

    I now have my latest HbA1c results so am posting my success story on this thread.

    I have been a very naughty girl for a good few months, not looking after myself and saying 'sod it, I'll eat what I want. Nothing I do helps anyway'. That was, of course, until I found your forum and discovered the consensus of opinion on low carbing.

    From 3rd September - yes, just 3 weeks ago - I have stuck to a very low carb diet (daily average intake 47g carbs, excluding the bits you get in veggies) and been working out at the gym. HbA1c was 8.2 about 7 months ago, and for 6 months after that I've been ignoring the IDDM and living in denial. 3 weeks after starting the new plan, I just got my latest results .....

    7.6 !!!!!

    ok, now I hear you all saying that isn't a massive improvement, but to me it's tremendous. I've also lost half a stone in the last 3 weeks and reduced my body fat % from 31.8% down to 28.4%. This new result has really spurred me on to strive for something in the 5%s next time!

    I'm at the hospital tomorrow morning, where I will get the rest of my results, but unfortunately do not have and previous results to compare them with. I'm sure, however, that the results alone will give a good idea of the state of my body now and I'm going to request a form to repeat all the blood tests again in 3 months time.

    Thanks to everyone who has put up with my incessant questions and moaning over the past few weeks - you're all an inspiration!

    I'll post the rest of the results on here tomorrow when I get them.

    Right - swim time now - see y'all soon!! :mrgreen:
     
  15. crafteclaire

    crafteclaire · Well-Known Member

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    Re: Success stories

    Got to keep this one short and sweet - supposed to have gone straight to college!!

    Results are as follows:

    Total cholesterol = 4.4
    HDL = 1.3
    LDL = 2.4
    HbA1c = 7.6%
    Creatinine = 61
    Throid = well within normal
    Microalbumin = not done yet!!!

    Specialist was extremely supportive over the low carbing and says if I can stick to it, keep it up. He was pleased with the efforts I'm putting in - absolutely no negative comments at all.

    I passed a copy of that magazine articly on you, Fergus, to show him where I got my inspiration from!!!

    Cheers guys ..... see you soon.
     
  16. Trinkwasser

    Trinkwasser · Well-Known Member

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    Re: Success stories

    I only recently discovered this place, from the title I'd sort of assumed it was a DUK Eat More Starch! site. Glad to see I was wrong!

    I put my story about because it's important that us oddballs are heard from.

    In retrospect I've had glucose metabolism problems all my life, reactive hypoglycemia and impaired glucose tolerance going back to childhood, but probably because I am not and almost never have been overweight I have been assured on numerous occasions that I "am not diabetic". What makes it worse is that my FBG is still normal, and my 2 hour postprandials not far off, which conceals the fact of high 1 hour numbers and reactive lows at 3 - 4 hours out. Living in an area where they do not use GTTs and where the pharmacist refused to sell me a meter because "if I needed one it would be prescribed for me" didn't help much either.

    Way back in my twenties I had numerous symptoms which I was similarly assured were not gallstones. This went on for five years before the gallstones were finally removed. By then I was well underweight.

    In my thirties my blood pressure started to go up. My lipids were not done again until I was in my forties, my GP described them as "weird"

    total 6.8 HDL 0.63 LDL 4.22 trigs 4.29 trigs/HDL ratio 6.8

    Naturally the dietician accused me of "eating too much fat" and put me on the Healthy High Carb Low Fat diet (she also mentioned that I should cut down on my sugar).

    As an elderly ex-hippie <G> I was brought up to believe in Healthy Whole Grains as the basis of every meal and made sure I ate plenty of muesli, brown rice and whoelmeal bread and washed it down with healthy orange and cranberry juice. I did also eat a fair bit of fat. And masses of vegetables and salad. Not much sugar though.

    Disaster! Cutting out the fat and replacing it with more carbs caused my LDL to rocket without affecting the other lipids much. So I was accused of "not being compliant".

    At least I got a statin, the result was

    total 3.7 HDL 0.85 LDL 1.9 trigs 2.09 ratio 2.46

    Around this point I started gaining weight for the first time in my life. Also my BP rocketed up to around 150/95 and my medication was doubled. I would run out of energy at every opportunity. My feet and hands started to go numb and tingle and I would find it impossible to stay awake after eating. I had chronic skin infections from spots and boils to thrush and crotch rot.

    This was all blamed on "depression", then "side effects of antidepressants" and later "personality disorder". The psychiatrist also noted my "strange blinking behaviour"

    All came to a head after we moved, after a day of hardly eating (I blinked and the removal guys packed all the cutlery) then stuffing myself with an indian meal, I was up half the night pissing.

    Fortunately we'd bought the new house off a pharmacist

    "You sound like you're diabetic, come in and I'll sell you a meter!"

    Searching the internet I had an ongoing series of AHA! moments, and I found this

    http://www.alt-support-diabetes.org/NewlyDiagnosed.htm

    and put it into effect, so by the time I'd sorted out a new doctor I had a bunch of numbers neatly graphed for her.

    She gave me a GTT, and strangely despite all the symptoms I aced it, scored only 10.7 instead of 11.1, so technically I was still "not diabetic".

    But I treated myself as if I was, and binned the Eat More Starch! leaflet.

    The results were little short of astonishing.

    I discovered that by limiting my carbs to around 15g at breakfast and 30g in the evening and a sliding scale in between, with a total daily input of around 60 - 100g, nearly all my symptoms resolved (although some took a while). My BG dropped into a normal range, my BP came back down to around 120/80, the skin infections and sleep attacks cleared up, my eyes stopped itching probably because they were no longer brimful of sorbitol, and I was able to sleep for 6 - 8 hours without needing to piss. I regained most of the missing energy and my lipids turned round from being a heart attack on legs to little short of spectacular

    total 4 HDL 1.4 LDL 2.4 trigs 0.7 ratio 0.5

    Since then I've done a lot of tinkering with my diet and balancing carbs against exertion and trialled various dietary supplements, I discovered that alpha-lipoic acid has beneficial effects on my BG probably through improving insulin resistance, and has reduced my tendency to morning liver dumps (I still have to be a bit careful about exerting myself in the morning, and I can drop into non-reactive hypoglycemia in the afternoons if I over-exert myself without using small boluses of carbs and that deadly FAT to keep my BG level.)

    The latest experiment suggests that in the absence of high BG and the ensuing trigs I convert even saturated fat into HDL rather than LDL.

    I do best keeping my BG in the 4 - 5 range and try to limit postprandials to 6, which I manage to do most but not all of the time. Curiously my energy seems to drop off rapidly at BG around 3.5 but returns rapidly. OK that's not the curious bit, it also starts to drop off on a curve from around 7, and 8 is the number I try to avoid at all costs, that's when my feet and hands wake up and start to smart again (it feels like wearing velcro socks and marigold gloves) and I get to do an extra noctural pee. Much above that and the symptoms come back in spades, by 10 I get pins and needles and "feet going to sleep", I itch especially my eyeballs, I become pole-axed and have to get up every couple of hours through the night: these symptoms continue for several hours after a single postprandial spike.

    I saw a lot of my late aunt who lived near here and had done a lot of genealogical research, and learned there is some weird genetics in the family: over the years there have been several actual diabetics, all male, mostly skinny and poorly controlled, losing body parts even on insulin.

    Most everyone else dies of cardiovascular stuff though often at a great age. Everyone gets some but not all symptoms of "metabolic syndrome"/syndrome X/insulin resistance, and curiously some of the fatter people have better BP and lipids than some of the skinny active ones. At 80 one plump aunt was told she had "the blood pressure of a 30 year old" (whereas I was the exact opposite!) My skinny walking running swimming cousin in his sixties now has BG, lipids and BP going south and the latter are being medicated. One of his daughters is an actual real athlete and is starting to show BG issues in her thirties - and like me she seems to have a serious overglycemic reaction to wheat. I suspect we mostly all have the "thrifty" gene set which converts excess carbs to lipids, but some of us miss out on the genes which stash the lipids as body fat, so they rattle around in the blood causing mayhem.

    On a couple of occasions I've actually exceeded the 11.1 on spot readings (do NOT panic-eat on top of a liver dump!) but because of my generally excellent control and improvements my GP has decided not to rediagnose me with actual diabetes yet. The doctors and nurses here are an order of magnitude better than the eejits where I used to live, the only downside is that my GP has told me she is "not permitted" to prescribe strips, and "not supposed" to recommend other than the Healthy High Carb Low Fat Disaster Diet. But I'm trying to educate her <G>

    Strangely the nurses don't seem to have the same constraints on what they are and are not permitted to say, I've had some pretty good chats about things like the Glycemic Index, and I always push the concept of testing to find your OWN responses to diet and exercise. The local diabetics vary hugely from the proactive to the don't want to know.

    I have been put onto annual monitoring only, as I can provide graphs of my BG and BP on demand. The accountants are fond of pulling stuff like denying me an A1c and only permitting total lipids rather than the crucial full lipid panel but I've educated the vampire into writing them back in! I've asked about CRP and homocysteine but been refused. They do thyroid here - and would treat it if I had problems, another thing which is problematic in other places. NICE and the PCTs have a lot to answer for in terms of causing themselves (let alone the patients) major problems in the future by saving pennies today.

    Living here it's easy to see why the emphasis on carbs all the time: looking out my back window I see a sea of carbs (wheat, barley, sugar beet) and rape and peas. These are all buy cheap and sell expensive stocks for the Food Industry (and in bad years the farmers may even make a loss, unlike Tescos or any of the companies who donate to DUK and the ADA).

    Fortunately, there are also good local sources of fish, proper meat which runs around in the open air eating grass, vegetables and fruit (I have to be extra careful with fruit, like grains, though berries are usually OK) if anything dropping the carbs has given me the opportunity to expand what was actually not a bad diet originally by swapping them out for things which have more nutritional content - and FLAVOUR!

    Over time I've read in no end of diabetes newsgroups and forums, though I mainly only post in one or two. There's so much material out there I could really do with someone to read it all for me!

    But one thing stands out everywhere and that's the fundamental split between what people actually DO to gain control over "this thing of ours" and what the Authorities proclaim. You'd almost think they wre deliberately trying to kill us off . . .
     
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  17. peterp

    peterp · Newbie

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    Hi all,

    I was diagnosed as type 2 last May (after some pre-op tests for an unrelated condition) with an HbA1c of 7.8%, high blood pressure (can't remember what it was but the lower number was over 100), cholesterol 'elevated', fasting BG of 13ish and overweight at 19st something. I am 51 years old and 6ft tall.

    Done the low-carb thingy after reading Bernstein's book and this and other forums. Started testing BG 5 times a day and got them down to the 5-6 range in a short space of time. Got some tests back last week; HbA1c of 5.6%, blood pressure 128/78, cholesterol 'normal', weight 14st 4. Have never felt better in my life.

    Now I only test my BG first thing in the morning and am upset if its over 5.

    DN and GP are very supportive of the low-carb approach as they have "seen the results in other patients".

    Low-carb has been very successful for me only drawback is I now have a wardrobe full of clothes that no longer fit.

    Cheers

    Pete
     
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  18. lowcarbfan

    lowcarbfan · Member

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    Hi Fergus and all you low-carbers out there.
    Been a long time since I posted as new job and other stuff got in the way.
    My partner has been a type 2 for 3 years now. We found the low-carb diet quite by accident when I was trying to lose weight and low-carbing talked about keping blood sugars steady so you wouldn't feel hungry. So I couldn't see why it wouldn't work for a diabetic.
    Did some investigating on the net and used a shed load of testing strips to monitor the results - which were astonishing. Despite the clinic advice, low-carbing works. My partner does not take ANY medication yet his levels are rarely above 8. Blood lipids are also very low. He has lost weight and gained so much energy.
    It has become a way of life, which I wish more people could benefit from. However, I am still regarded as a 'crazy' because we have adopted a diet which doesn't fit the accepted way. People will insist that it is ok to eat the chips/rice/pasta on offer and seem really offended when we decline.
    I try to explain it as an 'intolerance' to carbohydrate - this sometimes helps.
    There are some great cookbooks out there too.
    Keep going with the forum - I can see the growing support for low-carbing even in the short time I have been a member.
     
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  19. csf1s

    csf1s · Member

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    Just a brief contribution to the low carb subject. I was diagnosed in March 2008 with type 2. My bg was 14.9. My immediate reaction since I read on your site that carbs are the key was to seriously cut down to what my dietician has speculated at about 40-50 grams per day. (She says that this is the minimum level that will enable cell growth i.e. I won't whither and die!). I went on the one day 'how to be a good diabetic' course and learned that a balanced diet is the recommended way to manage diabetes. However, after my first HBA1C at 6.9 I could not bring myself to raise my bg i.e. actually damage my body by eating a 'healthy diet' i.e. normal carbs. I was, obviously not put on any medication but, of course would have been if I had re-started eating a balanced amount of carbs. I didn't -- I eat half a slice of wholegrain bread/toast for breakfast. maybe one small new potato (or not) with dinner. The rest of my carbs I get from fruit and veg. My second HBA1C a month ago was 6.3. I was 15 and half stone when diagnosed. I quickly lost 2 stones because of the diet and am now just dipping below 13 stone. I intend exercising after Xmas (don't want to rush it) in order to get rid of the fat around my stomach. Weight dropping much more slowly now. Feel fine!
    Am amazed to find this controversy 'raging'. If carbs result in high glucose levels in the blood and you have a dodgy panchreas why eat any more than the minimum necessary of carbs? Anybody out there who thinks that I am doing my body damage by eating this very low carb diet please tell me how. I drink red wine in moderate amounts when socialising which allows me to indulge in a packet of crisps at the pub. If I go out for a restaurant meal over which I have, by definition, much less control I find that red wine entirely neutralises the effect of having increased my carb intake. Tested this many many times. I use it as a tool to allow me greater freedom (and have a good time!) I don't drink more than the government weekly recommendation. I'm well known for not knowing what I'm talking about but am I missing something??
     
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  20. Bubsy Malone

    Bubsy Malone · Well-Known Member

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    I thought I'd let everyone know about my success. I'm not actually diabetic but my mum has and my gran had type 2. Mum's only been diagnosed 4 years but is practically blind already due to cataracts, but she's waiting for an appointment with the opthalmologist to arrange an operation on them. Last year my vision started going blurry so I went to the optician who said that my eyes were fine. But then in June this year I did one of those one-off fingerprick tests and both times it came in at over 8 (fasting) So I told the doctor and was advised to lose a bit of weight. (my BMI was 30 then) I started seeing the practice nurse every fortnight and she has been monitoring my weight and blood pressure each time I go. My highest blood pressure was 148/92 and my trigs were high. I started having a look round on the internet and a google search came up with this site. I logged on and when I started to read all the posts by Fergus, etc. it struck a chord with me. I started reducing my carbs and I am now down to a comfortable (for me) level of 100 a day. Believe me, I felt the difference! Since then, I have been walking for at least 30 mins a day and using my exercise bike for 10 -20 minutes a day as well. I got a meter last week and was delighted to find that my first reading (2hr pp) was 4.6!!! I've since done 2 fasting tests (pre breki) and they were 5.2 and 5.4!! I have lost 1st 3 and I have gone from a size 16 to a size 12 in jeans, and I have lost 7% of my body fat. I would like to say a big THANK YOU to everyone on this site, who have been my friends through thick and thin, especially when my dad died suddenly from a blood clot on his brain in September. I consider it a great privilege to be able to use this site every day, and I always take a printout to my mum when I visit her. Again thank you everyone, lots of love

    Bubsy
     
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