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Lower carbohyrdate diet

Discussion in 'Type 1 Diabetes' started by Little Fonzy, May 16, 2018.

  1. Little Fonzy

    Little Fonzy Type 1 · Newbie

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    Hi all,

    I am a 33 year old male and was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes on 24 January 2017.

    I struggled initially with my hypers and my blood sugars were always quite high. Recently I have read a book entitled 'Brightspots and Landmines' and the author suggests a lower carbohydrate diet would benefit Type 1 diabetics.

    This is at odds with the advice given by the hospital. I am quite convinced though that the hospital are much more interested in making things 'easier' for me and ultimately making sure I don't die. I guess this reflects badly on them if I do...

    Anyway, I guess my question is what are the forum members thoughts about a lower carbohydrate diet. I have been following what the author of the book suggests for a couple of weeks and have been feeling much better. Plus, I am wearing a flash glucose monitor and have been having much flatter blood glucose levels.

    Any advice or guidance would be much appreciated.
     
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  2. Daibell

    Daibell LADA · Master

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    A low carb diet is a good approach for T1 or T2. When on insulin, having a high carb diet can cause weight gain due to the body's ability to make use of the glucose. Also lower carbs means lower BS swings as the injected insulin will be less. The idea that T1s can have a 'normal' (i.e. high-carb) diet is just rather silly. Lowering the carbs is good for most of us.
     
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  3. Engineer88

    Engineer88 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    As daibell says lower numbers both insulin and bg mean smaller mistakes
     
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  4. Guzzler

    Guzzler Type 2 · Master

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    Is there anything in particular you are struggling with?
    I can only tell you of the mistakes I made when I first started a lower carb lifestyle. First big mistake, I tried to do it too quickly and subsequently felt awful and was ready to abandon the whole idea. So, take it steady.
    My second mistake was not raising my fat intake enough to offset the carn drop. This left me feeling hungry and weak.
    Third mistake was ignoring my protein intake which I think I may just about have got right now.
     
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  5. Juicyj

    Juicyj Type 1 · Moderator
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    Hello @Little Fonzy

    Speaking from personal experience I struggled with eating carbs, like you when i was diagnosed my levels were high/low all the time and I found I was riding a roller coaster each day, I also became quite depressed from the yo yo effect and from being diagnosed, I found that when I ate less carbs that my glucose levels stabilised and it was easier to stay balanced throughout the day, less insulin is less margin for error also. I still eat carbs but smaller amounts, however I also pre-bolus by up to 20 minutes to counter the rise and also bolus for protein which turns to glucose so will also cause a rise. It's not the same for everyone, when I did DAFNE most of the men on the course ate a moderate to large amount of carbs and had good results, but it wasn't the same for me, each of us are different and it's finding what works best for you.
     
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  6. EllieM

    EllieM Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Just curious, how many carbs are you all having in your "lower carb" lifestyle? eg I'm much lower than I used to be but I'm still probbaly on 75g ish a day....
     
  7. Little Fonzy

    Little Fonzy Type 1 · Newbie

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    Thanks for all the replies. I was probably eating 180g or more of carbs a day! I think the issue I’m having is working out whether my slightly cloudy mind is down to anxiety/depression or having higher blood sugars. I have spoken to people about my mental state, but I have a complicated past and I guess I’ve just had a lot to work through. Thanks again for your replies, I think it’s helped say that I’ve made the right choice to try and make some changes to my diet!
     
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  8. Engineer88

    Engineer88 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Hey Fonzy! what I've tried to do is lower carbs in one meal at a time, I found breakfast was easy so I started there (I generally only eat breakfast Monday -Fri) so I have frozen berries with double cream some nuts/seeds and sweetner :) you can whip the cream and add vanilla if you have time/inclination but I cba.

    If my bgs are lower (3 or 4) I'll add a banana. I portion it up on a weekend and get it from the freezer the night before :)
     
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  9. Mel dCP

    Mel dCP Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Bright Spots and Landmines is a great read, I found it very helpful. There’s quite a few of us T1s on the forum who happily eat lower carb, despite the NHS guidelines, so you’ve come to the right place. I’d suggest doing a lot of reading up before you embark on such a big change. The www.dietdoctor.com site is a great place to start, with lots of recipes and great visuals. Some other books I’d recommend are:

    Dr Bernstein’s Diabetes Solution - he’s a T1 since the 1940s, and has reversed most of his complications through low carb.
    Ketogenic Diet for Type 1 Diabetes - also written by a Dr who is T1 himself.
    Sugar Surfing - another T1 doc! He really explains how to make the most of the data from the Libre, and keep your sugars happily in range - not specifically a low carb book, but incredibly enlightening, I found. His daughter is T1 too.
    And if you want some pretty hardcore biology, The Art & Science of Low Carbohydrate Living is the daddy.
     
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  10. bronisaurus

    bronisaurus Type 1 · Newbie

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    I've been a Type 1 for a lot of years and have gradually been getting in to the idea of low carb, or LCHF. It's a challenge because it still seems to be a bit under the radar for dieticians and health care teams to talk about freely here (Australia). They speak generally, but official advice is still based on the standard whole grains, etc. I've got Dr Bernstein's Diabetes Solution ebook and he is pretty definite about some things like tomatoes and milk, that I see might be difficult for me to avoid. I'm in the planning stages and although I often eat low carb meals, I certainly don't do it all the time. I do like his 'rule of small numbers' and think it makes a lot of sense (as in I've seen the results in myself) and am willing to put a lot of effort in.

    My question is, how closely do you follow his do and don't foods? Because LCHF is pretty popular in the mainstream, I'd like to use some generall books and websites for recipes but I'm worried they will break the rules too often. I know I will find out by checking my blood sugar, but anything people here can share would be great.

    I use Humalog for bolusing with a pen that won't adjust more than 1 unit at a time, something I'm slightly concerned about with very low carbs.
    I use a split dose of Levimer for basal dosing and it's pretty spot on, it's all the after meal spikes that I'm trying to cut down on.
     
  11. Engineer88

    Engineer88 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I believe you could get a 1/2 unit pen or some old school needles?

    I'm not hugely strict, but it shows in my bgs (I burn out really quickly)
     
  12. Mel dCP

    Mel dCP Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Ask your DN for a half unit pen - they’re designed for kids but many of us use them. They’re refillable, so you’ll need to switch to cartridges rather than disposable pens, but made of metal and very sturdy. Less plastic waste too :) I love mine, a whole unit will drop me by 3, but a half unit by just 1.5mmol, which allows me to correct levels that are getting a little high much sooner.
     
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  13. Little Fonzy

    Little Fonzy Type 1 · Newbie

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    Thank you for all the information and resources.

    I’ve been on this lower carb diet for probably about 3 weeks now and on the while feeling better.

    I have however lost about 4 kilos when I don’t really need to.

    Any easy tips to keeping the weight on? Maybe protein supplements? Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
     
  14. bronisaurus

    bronisaurus Type 1 · Newbie

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    Yes thanks for the replies and thanks Little Fonzy for letting me get in on this thread. I’m starting ‘proper’ low carb today. Libre FGM isn’t subsidised in Australia for adults and it’s been a long time since I’ve used one because the cost is too high for my current budget. I always test a lot, so I will keep doing that. I will try to buy a couple of sensors soon to get a better picture.
     
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  15. pollensa

    pollensa · Guest

    Nice to see someone from Australia, if read correctly? I am from Byron Bay Australia resident Mallorca. Although pre diabetes well, Diabetes 2 diagnosed here in Spain, but under New Zealand cut offs viewed Pre Diabetes, but thats another story in itself...
    currently which may help your contact, results finger blood tests and A1C of 5% results both spain and New Zealand, as being non diabetic range, now officially on my medical records.

    How did I manage to change reverse and turn it around, not Diabetes 1 like yourself, so each individuals situation is different of course, but re low carb.

    I stopped eating x 1 year now potatoes, rice pasta bread. I then started low carb Keto wonderful easy exciting dishes to try and explore, go to www.dietdoctor.com, following Dr. Jason Fung recommendation info on intermittent fasting 3 days a week, and exercising more over and above daily surf. This change of lifestyle has reversed and controlled all sugar levels, I only test fingers now 3 monthly intervals, and each time, the readings results for fasting, 2hr after eat and random are more or less one or two numbers either side consistently, plus the recent A1C level of 5% speaks volumes low carb eating has along with exercise in my own situation anyway, may not work for all, reversed controlled my numbers all areas. Dont know about the book your referring to, perhaps popping onto low carb eating website as within may prove of assistance, help regards all or any questions you may have.

    I follow low carb for past year, there is no going back, its for life, to ensure control of sugars and insulin issues, continues, as is now taking place, simply following this change of diet eating plan daily, since diagnosed, its for the long term, if I had a choice to go back to old style eating although I felt was healthy, I would not go back, love the low carb way of eating.

    Good luck hope all is well down under?
     
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  16. phdiabetic

    phdiabetic Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I don't like low carb for T1 because I was told if you don't have enough carbs you might not recover from hypos as effectively (glucagon might not work as well). My endo says at least 45g per day necessary. Some people online don't agree with this but I don't want to take the chance. I eat a moderate carb diet - about 100g per day. I actually cut back on carbs very slightly in order to increase the amount of protein in my diet, as it helps me feel fuller for longer and I wasn't getting much protein previously.
     
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  17. kokhongw

    kokhongw I reversed my Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Dr Keith Runyan's (T1D) highly detailed blog is always a good read...and his latest post is about hypoglycemia.
    https://ketogenicdiabeticathlete.wo...-diabetes-mechanisms-avoidance-and-treatment/

    Here is an extract...

    What Incidence Of Hypoglycemia Is Considered “Safe”?

    I do not have the answer to this question, but certainly the lower the better is the best bet. Regrettably, it only takes one severe hypoglycemic episode to die. The lesson here is to not let the zeal of perfection defeat the whole purpose of the pursuit. Personally, I have been striving to keep my BG between 61 and 110 mg/dl more than 70% of time and in addition spending less than 10% of time < 61 mg/dl. Although I am close to that goal every month, it has been difficult for me to actually achieve it. I am working to improve it. For those who do not take insulin for diabetes, it may be difficult to understand how variable the glycemic results of taking insulin can be. For me, this has been the most frustrating part of having T1DM. For example, one day I may wake up with a BG of 90 mg/dl and take 3 units of Humalog with breakfast and get a postprandial BG of 110 mg/dl. The very next day, I may wake up with a BG of 97 mg/dl and take 3 units of Humalog with breakfast and get a postprandial BG of 67 mg/dl having eaten the same breakfast, lunch, dinner, and done very similar exercise type, intensity, and duration. This has happened virtually every day for the past 20 years. Thus, for me anyway, each dose of insulin is a guess and the BG results are unpredictable.

    Have You Noticed A Reduction In Symptoms Of Hypoglycemia Since Starting The Ketogenic Diet?

    This was the first change that I became aware of after starting the ketogenic diet on Feb. 8, 2012. This started me down a path of investigation to try to understand it better. I personally have had BG values in the 30s mg/dl without symptoms. Please do not confuse this last statement as an indication that asymptomatic hypoglycemia is an acceptable or desirable condition. In fact, this is one of the reasons I decided to write this blog post on hypoglycemia. I am simply stating the fact that since starting my low carbohydrate ketogenic diet, and never before, I have had a significant reduction in the symptoms of hypoglycemia. However, I do not know how much of this reduction in symptoms is due to hypoglycemia unawareness and how much is due to the brain being able to use ketones as a fuel by following a ketogenic diet.
     
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    #17 kokhongw, May 28, 2018 at 9:59 AM
    Last edited: May 28, 2018
  18. SueJB

    SueJB Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    @kokhongw thanks for this link. It's very dense but extremely informative and great that it was written by a T1D doctor
     
  19. Engineer88

    Engineer88 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    On a scientific level I cant say that's accurate but I believe it not to be true from personal experience.

    What I can say is when eating higher carb I needed glucagon twice in about 8 months when I've probably only had it 2 or 3 times ever before that (27 years D) and 100% I would rather never need it.
     
  20. JoJoS

    JoJoS Type 1 · Member

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    I'm thinking of trying a low carb diet. Can you still loose weight whilst following it? I'm moving on to a pump next week, so I think I'll have wait a bit until everything settles down.
     
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