Prediabetes newly

Outlier

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,658
Type of diabetes
Type 2
Treatment type
Diet only
None, nothing changed apart from my food choices.
I eat far more in calories now on my low-carb way of life than I ever did when trying to lose weight using calorie control. I've had to use calorie control all my life in order to lose weight, so I know about it. Low-carb there's no pain because if/when I'm hungry I can eat. I wish I'd known about it years ago.
 

MrsA2

Expert
Messages
5,829
Type of diabetes
Type 2
Treatment type
Diet only
I'm another who lost weight (nearly 3 stone) without counting calories but by going very low carb. I used to satisfy mid afternoon hunger pangs by eating Greek yoghurt that is 10% fat, or by sipping tablespoons full of double cream.
I'd have cheese instead of fruit as dessert...worked for me
 
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Roy Batty

Well-Known Member
Messages
65
Type of diabetes
Prediabetes
Treatment type
Other
I'm another who lost weight (nearly 3 stone) without counting calories but by going very low carb. I used to satisfy mid afternoon hunger pangs by eating Greek yoghurt that is 10% fat, or by sipping tablespoons full of double cream.
I'd have cheese instead of fruit as dessert...worked for me
That's great progress. I don't advocate calorie counting as a strategy, it's inaccurate, people generally under count what they have consumed while over counting what they have expended. As I stated reducing any macronutrient is frequently accompanied by a reduction in calories.
 

ianf0ster

Moderator
Staff Member
Messages
2,471
Type of diabetes
Treatment type
Diet only
Dislikes
exercise, phone calls
Frequently, but not when you replace carbs (at 4 calories per gram) by Fats at 9 calories per gram!
 
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Paul_

Well-Known Member
Messages
501
Type of diabetes
Type 2
Treatment type
Diet only
Did you reduce your weight to lower your blood sugar?

Reducing carb intake reduces blood sugar. Reducing body fat mass, specifically visceral fat, helps with reducing insulin resistance.

Very respectfully - it's my experience that we don't need to reduce calorie intake as long as we restrict carbs and sugars. I certainly got excellent results this way, and I'm by no means the only one here who found this happy fact.
This is one of those many rabbit holes for overweight T2 diabetics, especially when combined with the "we all have unique insulin resistances and metabolisms" angle. I'll apologise in advance, I'm going to blather on a bit here! :)

The following is less than scientific, it's just my personal experience since July last year. For anyone reading, if your experience is different then please don't take offence at anything I say here, we can all only comment based on our personal perspectives/experiences. This is also very much aimed at providing balance to the debate, rather than trying to persuade anyone with experience that works for them already, and it's definitely not a reply specifically addressed to @Outlier (I just picked this wonderful individual's response as a place to dive into the debate :)). Anyway, I'll stop covering my a**e and get on with it! :cool:

Upon diagnosis, I went keto, where I've basically stayed. Strict keto for 3 months, 20g carbs per day or less, where I lowered my hba1c from 83 to 32 in 3 months. From there, I've been 20-30g carbs per day (other than a small handful of days where I've eaten up to 60g carbs per day on rare occasions). In this time, I've lost a lot of weight since my T2 diabetes diagnosis in July 2023 - 9st 1lb (57.5kg), as of this morning. I've reduced my waist size by 13 inches (33cm). To hit my weight target, I've got 3st 5lbs (21 ish kg) left to lose. Throughout my new lifestyle approach (I don't consider it a "diet", it's a new, better and healthier way of living), I've had some ups and downs, but I've very much tried to view those as learning experiences rather than negatives. Now ok, I've hardly pushed the bounds of carb intake, so I can't comment on whether fewer carbs facilitates weight loss regardless of calorie intake - my highest carb intake has been 58g on Christmas day. However, while my carb intake may have consistently been between 20-30g, my calorie intake has been through highs, lows and everything in-between. Here's what my personal experience has shown me (note: your experience may differ):

1) Overweight diabetics have two, somewhat obvious challenges - controlling blood glucose (BG) levels AND losing weight. Just because you're losing weight, doesn't mean your BG is controlled. Equally, just because your BG is well controlled doesn't mean you'll lose weight. It's a balancing act in my experience so far.

2) Low carb, particularly keto levels of carb intake, can have drastic and spectacular effects in terms of reducing blood glucose levels and hba1c results. However, it doesn't guarantee weight loss. Low carb and/or keto may just make it more difficult to consume high calorie intakes due to higher fat/protein reducing hunger for some people - this is very much down to the individual though.

3) From my pedantic levels of food tracking, calories do matter, or whatever you may want to use to describe your food intake or energy sources. Low carb and/or keto aren't magic diets. Our bodies are more than capable of storing energy, in the form of fat, whether that's from consuming carbs, fat or protein, if any are consumed in excess of what your body's requirements are. Carbs, from my understanding, just provide the easiest way for the body to do this if they are consumed in excess. Make no mistake though, if you consume 6000 calories of zero carb cheese per day, while sitting on your behind watching TV all day, you will put weight on regardless of the fact you're not consuming carbs.

4) Calories In, Calories Out (CICO) does have merit in my opinion, but it's difficult to calculate with any accuracy. Most important here is that almost every online calculator you use for basal metabolic rate (BMR) will almost certainly be wrong, unless you're very lucky. When I started out on this path, online calculators gave me BMR results ranging from 2300 to 3100 calories per day. By these estimates, consuming 2000 calories per day should have resulted in weight loss - it didn't though. My BMR is actually around 2000-2100 calories and I only consistently lose weight if I consume 10%-20% fewer calories than that. It took 3 months of tracking intake and exercise to realise this to any "accurate" extent. Worse still, BMR is a moving target, where possibly contrary to expectations, it can be higher the heavier you are, if activity levels are consistent. Therefore, as you lose weight, your BMR likely reduces, meaning you'll need to shift your intake down too in order to continue consistent weight loss. In short, CICO has merit, but it's a nightmare to calculate effectively/accurately.

5) Good news - for most people, losing weight does help with insulin resistance and your ability to process carbs - plenty of scientific studies prove this. Bad news - it won't cure it, you'll still be T2 diabetic, and the improvement is somewhat small in the scheme of things. This brings us to the crux of the discussion here - T2 diabetes remission, even after significant weight loss, doesn't mean you can just go back to eating whatever you want again. Although I'm not officially in remission yet, barring any bad luck or unfortunate circumstances then I expect to be declared as such following my next blood tests at the beginning of May. In July last year, more than 30g carbs per day impacted my BG levels adversely. I can now consume 60g per day without any negative impact, possibly a bit higher than that, but that's a far cry from what most non-diabetics consume. So, what does remission mean, what does it change, and why bother? Well, nothing changes really. It just confirms that my approach to diet and lifestyle, without the intervention of pharmaceutical medication, is working. It doesn't mean I can change anything, or binge on carbs again, or gain back the weight I've lost. It does mean I get to live my life without the side effects of medication, without any diabetic symptoms/complications (at present), and the symptoms/side effects I was experiencing have completely resolved. The price of that is controlling my carb intake and keeping my weight under control. In short, remission means "good job, keep going with exactly what you're doing". Nothing more, nothing less.
 
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catinahat

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,446
Type of diabetes
Type 2
Treatment type
Diet only
Dislikes
Reality tv
I don't know how to lose weight without a calorie deficit and losing weight is the number one strategy for reducing blood sugar.
Calories are only important if they come from a food we can actually use. When we have pre or T2, our insulin is not as effective as it should be. Just how much it's broken is a very individual thing, which is why some can eat more carbohydrates than others.
Insulins job is to take glucose out of our blood and either feed it to our cells, or store it away as fat when our cells don't want It or can't use It because we are resistant to our insulin.
It also stops our bodies from using fat, It would be pointless to store fat and use It as the same time.
So back to calories, if we were to eat say 500 calories worth of carbohydrates, depending on how insulin resistant we are our cells are not going to get 500 calories worth of energy. Maybe we only get the benefit of 300 calories the other 200 getting stored away as fat , that means we are 200cals short of a full dinner and a little bit fatter.
Now let's imagine the same 500 calories from protein and fats. No rise in blood sugar so very little insulin for our bodies to be resistant to, the whole 500 calories can feed our cells , we get to use all of our dinner. And of course no insulin to turn off fat burning, so if our bodies need more than the 500cal it can just take a little fat out of storage.
For many of us weight gain is a symptom of insulin resistance, not the cause. So weight loss, however desirable is not the easy fix people often think.