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What is the LCHF diet and how to I find out more?

Discussion in 'Success Stories and Testimonials' started by One-Foot-Eight, Oct 16, 2018.

  1. One-Foot-Eight

    One-Foot-Eight · Member

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    I'm new to this forum. I have been diagnosed a while but yesterday had my first appointment with a specialist at the hospital. I've been given so many drugs I feel like opening my own pharmacy :-(

    I've been given 2 drugs for diabetes; (metformin and one beginning with G) 1 for blood pressure and 1 for cholestrol.

    I'd prefer to have a go at the diet first. I've got another appointment in 8 weeks. My sugars were 107.

    Where can I find out more. I've also heard of a Keto diet - is this the same as LCHF or how does it differ.

    Got to do this, but feel a bit scared / overwhelmed.
     
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  2. Lazybones

    Lazybones Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Firstly welcome o the Diabetes Forum, it's an excllent place to start from.

    I assume from your medications that you are what we would generally consider as being a Type 2 diabetic.

    One of the best Web Sites to look at in regard to controlling you diabetes through diet (The Low Carb High Fat - LCHF) diet is particularly of benifit to us Type 2's in controlling your own diabetes, which you should use ideally together with your own Blood/Glucose meter to check the effect that what your eating and/or drinking is having both before and 2 hours after eating and/or drinking. Many on here use the 'Codefree' Blood/Glucose meter as the Test Strips are relatively inexpensive compared to some other Blood/Glucose meters.

    The Web site that you would get more information on the LCHF diet, what it is, how best to control it, and numerous FREE recipies is - www.dietdoctor.com

    If you sign up they will send you a weekly newsletter - That's also Free.

    Hope that this helps - Good Luck -Lazybones
     
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    #2 Lazybones, Oct 16, 2018 at 11:32 AM
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2018
  3. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 (in remission!) · Guru

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    Hi and welcome,

    I assume your second diabetes drug is Gliclazide?

    Metformin is a mild drug that doesn't do much to lower blood sugars, it is an appetite suppressant though so maybe helpful if you need to lose weight. It does help overall blood sugars, but only to a limited extent and won't stop any post meal spikes.

    Gliclazide is different. This works on the pancreas, forcing it to produce additional insulin. It has its drawbacks in that it can cause you to go too low and hypo if your carb intake is very low. It is also not a brilliant drug if your pancreas is already producing too much insulin, as the more insulin you have floating about, the worse any insulin resistance will become. Sadly, in the UK Type 2 diabetics are rarely routinely tested to see how much natural insulin we are producing, so we have no idea if we have too much or too little. As a T2 it is more likely you have too much, although not in every case.

    As for a low carb or keto diet, you can't go wrong with the dietdoctor website recommended by @Lazybones above. On that site there is a list of good food choices and a list of poor food choices. That page is here - https://www.dietdoctor.com/low-carb/foods#foodlist The only difference between low carb and keto is the amount of carbs you choose to eat. Keto is generally regarded as 20g a day or maybe up to 30g.

    Has your GP prescribed a meter and strips for you? If you drive or operate dangerous machinery, he should have done. If he hasn't, then the best advice is to buy your own meter. With this you can test before and after eating to see how you have reacted to that meal and whether there were too many carbs in it. I won't go into details here as I don't want to overwhelm you with information.

    Have a good read round all the threads, arm yourself with knowledge, and ask as many questions as you like. Good luck. :)
     
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  4. One-Foot-Eight

    One-Foot-Eight · Member

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    Thanks very much. I'll have a look at Diet Doctor. Yes it is Gliclazide. I haven't started taking them yet. Would prefer to change my diet from right now and see if that helps.
     
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  5. Antje77

    Antje77 LADA · Moderator
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    Hello, @One-Foot-Eight , and welcome to the forum!

    Let me first tag @daisy1 for you, she'll post a bunch of usuful information about diabetes in general on this thread.

    LCHF in a nutshell is: You eat less carbs and make up for them with more fat in your diet so you won't go hungry and get enough food to sustain you.

    (Carbs are the stuff that convert to sugar in your blood. They are found in anything sugary, including fruit and fruit juice, in bread, potatoes, rice, pasta and in some more foods. If you turn the packages around and read the small print you'll find 'carbs per 100 gram' and you'll have an idea what foods have a lot of them and what foods none or only a little.)

    Good luck!
     
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  6. bulkbiker

    bulkbiker Type 2 · Oracle

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    I'll second what @Lazybones and @Bluetit1802 have said.
    Dietary changes can have a far greater impact on blood sugar levels than meds for some people. Do you have a meter so you can test. That will be a great tool to use and understand.

    I'll also point you here if you want to get to the bottom of what is happening to your body when you have Type 2.

    https://idmprogram.com/videos/
     
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  7. JoKalsbeek

    JoKalsbeek Type 2 (in remission!) · Well-Known Member

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    I could drop the meds (metformin, gliclazide and statin... Already have low bloodpressure so no meds for that) 3 months into the LCHF diet. Could have done it sooner, but I made some mistakes along the way that slowed me down a little. Diet can make a bigger difference in these matters than meds, for the bulk of us. As others stated, LCHF is carb reduction. (100, 80, 60 grams a day) Keto is going to 20 grams of carbs or less a day. A meter will help you figure out what diet is right for you. If you test before a meal and 2 hours after first bite, and you don't go up more than 2 mmol/l, then that meal was perfect. And dietdoctor.com is a go-to for recipies. :)

    You'll be okay.
    Jo
     
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  8. daisy1

    daisy1 Type 2 · Legend
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    @One-Foot-Eight

    Hello and welcome to the Forum :) Here is the Basic Information we give to new members and I hope this will be useful to you. Ask as many questions as you need to and someone will try to help.

    BASIC INFORMATION FOR NEW MEMBERS

    Diabetes is the general term to describe people who have blood that is sweeter than normal. A number of different types of diabetes exist.

    A diagnosis of diabetes tends to be a big shock for most of us. It’s far from the end of the world though and on this forum you'll find well over 235,000 people who are demonstrating this.

    On the forum we have found that with the number of new people being diagnosed with diabetes each day, sometimes the NHS is not being able to give all the advice it would perhaps like to deliver - particularly with regards to people with type 2 diabetes.

    The role of carbohydrate

    Carbohydrates are a factor in diabetes because they ultimately break down into sugar (glucose) within our blood. We then need enough insulin to either convert the blood sugar into energy for our body, or to store the blood sugar as body fat.

    If the amount of carbohydrate we take in is more than our body’s own (or injected) insulin can cope with, then our blood sugar will rise.

    The bad news

    Research indicates that raised blood sugar levels over a period of years can lead to organ damage, commonly referred to as diabetic complications.

    The good news

    People on the forum here have shown that there is plenty of opportunity to keep blood sugar levels from going too high. It’s a daily task but it’s within our reach and it’s well worth the effort.

    Controlling your carbs

    The info below is primarily aimed at people with type 2 diabetes, however, it may also be of benefit for other types of diabetes as well.

    There are two approaches to controlling your carbs:
    • Reduce your carbohydrate intake
    • Choose ‘better’ carbohydrates
    Reduce your carbohydrates

    A large number of people on this forum have chosen to reduce the amount of carbohydrates they eat as they have found this to be an effective way of improving (lowering) their blood sugar levels.

    The carbohydrates which tend to have the most pronounced effect on blood sugar levels tend to be starchy carbohydrates such as rice, pasta, bread, potatoes and similar root vegetables, flour based products (pastry, cakes, biscuits, battered food etc) and certain fruits.

    Choosing better carbohydrates

    The low glycaemic index diet is often favoured by healthcare professionals but some people with diabetes find that low GI does not help their blood sugar enough and may wish to cut out these foods altogether.

    Read more on carbohydrates and diabetes.

    Over 145,000 people have taken part in the Low Carb Program - a 10 week structured education course that is helping people lose weight and reduce medication dependency by explaining the science behind carbs, insulin and GI.

    Eating what works for you

    Different people respond differently to different types of food. What works for one person may not work so well for another. The best way to see which foods are working for you is to test your blood sugar with a glucose meter.

    To be able to see what effect a particular type of food or meal has on your blood sugar is to do a test before the meal and then test after the meal. A test 2 hours after the meal gives a good idea of how your body has reacted to the meal.

    The blood sugar ranges recommended by NICE are as follows:

    Blood glucose ranges for type 2 diabetes
    • Before meals: 4 to 7 mmol/l
    • 2 hours after meals: under 8.5 mmol/l
    Blood glucose ranges for type 1 diabetes (adults)
    • Before meals: 4 to 7 mmol/l
    • 2 hours after meals: under 9 mmol/l
    Blood glucose ranges for type 1 diabetes (children)
    • Before meals: 4 to 8 mmol/l
    • 2 hours after meals: under 10 mmol/l
    However, those that are able to, may wish to keep blood sugar levels below the NICE after meal targets.

    Access to blood glucose test strips

    The NICE guidelines suggest that people newly diagnosed with type 2 diabetes should be offered:
    • structured education to every person and/or their carer at and around the time of diagnosis, with annual reinforcement and review
    • self-monitoring of plasma glucose to a person newly diagnosed with type 2 diabetes only as an integral part of his or her self-management education

    Therefore both structured education and self-monitoring of blood glucose should be offered to people with type 2 diabetes. Read more on getting access to blood glucose testing supplies.

    You may also be interested to read questions to ask at a diabetic clinic.

    Note: This post has been edited from Sue/Ken's post to include up to date information.
    Take part in Diabetes.co.uk digital education programs and improve your understanding. Most of these are free.

    • Low Carb Program - it's made front-page news of the New Scientist and The Times. Developed with 20,000 people with type 2 diabetes; 96% of people who take part recommend it... find out why

    • Hypo Program - improve your understanding of hypos. There's a version for people with diabetes, parents/guardians of children with type 1, children with type 1 diabetes, teachers and HCPs.
     
  9. anna.chalk

    anna.chalk Type 2 · Member

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    Hello
    I have been on Metformin slow release for about 2 years now and do not like it at all. However, initially I was on the normal one but it gave me such horrendous stomach cramps I had to stop it. The doctor insisted I had to stay on Metformin and then changed it to slow release. I still get quite a lot of wind, some days very badly. It is a bit difficult for me to go on low carbs as I live with my son & family. They cook all my meals as I am disabled with arthritis etc. The meals are very sensible, lots of veg and they are also very strict with me so that I do not get cakes etc. I have lost weight, my diabetic nurse is very happy with me. So I think to go on a low carbs diet will be a bit difficult anyway. But - I do not like Metformin!!! Anna
     
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  10. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 (in remission!) · Guru

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    @anna.chalk There are many, many other diabetes drugs. It doesn't make sense to keep taking a drug that makes you feel ill and miserable when there are others your doctor could prescribe for you. If I were you I would have a discussion with him. He cannot insist you take any drug. All he can do is advise, and he has many options you could try. Do have a word with him. Tablets are supposed to help, not make you ill.
     
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  11. Prem51

    Prem51 Type 2 · Expert

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    Welcome to the forum @One-Foot-Eight. Have you been told you are Type 2 diabetic? It's unusual for a T2 to be referred to a hospital specialist, so I'm guessing that it might not be clear whether you are Type 1 or Type 2.
    T2s can control their blood glucose by lchf. T1s control their bgs with insulin, though lchf can help.

    Have a read round the threads and ask any questions you want. The people on here are friendly and supportive.
     
  12. JoKalsbeek

    JoKalsbeek Type 2 (in remission!) · Well-Known Member

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    I cook at our home, and my husband doesn't low carb with me. (He's thin as a rail and has a very high metabolism). The only real difference at dinner is that he'll have potatoes, and I won't. I just have a double portion of veggies. It doesn't require a change in cooking, just proportions are different. Breakfast, if I have it at all, is eggs with bacon (your family may have toast, you could skip it?) or just tea or coffee, lunch usually a salad... Skip the croutons. During a rheumatism flare-up I had to ask my husband to cut my food on the plate for me because I couldn't, so I know being dependant on others for food isn't all that great, but sometimes we have no choice. But maybe you could discuss little alterations with them? Where they have potatoes and you have more veggies instead for instance... It doesn't require anything huge or an extra meal seperately cooked. it could be the road to ditching the metformin. (And there are other meds, should you require them after all. If your GP or nurse can't discuss them, ask for a referral to a specialist. No need to suffer!!!).

    Good luck!
     
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  13. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 (in remission!) · Guru

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    @anna.chalk I have a similar routine to @JoKalsbeek except my husband does all the evening meal cooking. We have the same meal in the evenings, but he has a lot of potatoes whereas I have one or two small ones with butter on. He may have bread, and I don't. I just have a soft boiled egg with a cup of tea for breakfast, or skip food and have a coffee with cream. He will have cereal or toast most days. Lunch times I have a cold meal, salad with protein of some description. He has what he likes. We do have a couple of fry ups at lunch times - bacon, eggs, mushrooms, tomatoes, which is a perfect low carb meal. It isn't at all necessary to cook different meals, you can just adapt the same meal to have less carbs and more veggies, protein or fats. It works well in our house.
     
  14. bulkbiker

    bulkbiker Type 2 · Oracle

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    Could you maybe ask them to take a look at some of the meal suggestions on www.dietdoctor.com and see if they like the look of those?
    They may even experience health benefits themselves as well as helping you reduce your need for the medications that upset you.
    I"m sure they'd be happy to help?
     
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  15. mike@work

    [email protected] Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    And just to underline some of the good points with LCHF - also Type 1s can benefit from it, so just go ahead and try!
    I don't think you will regret it...
     
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  16. Resurgam

    Resurgam Type 2 (in remission!) · Expert

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    I ate low carb all the time I was bringing up a family, and still provide meals for my husband.
    I have cauliflower - packs of frozen in the freezer all the time - rather than potatoes - cream in coffee rather than milk - a spoonful mixed up with water in the mug before pouring in the coffee, the same cream on frozen berries as a dessert. I have a lot of salad, bought in packs ready made or just needing a rinse under the tap.
    I could not handle the effects of a statin and Metformin but a low carb diet sorted it out so I don't need them.
     
  17. One-Foot-Eight

    One-Foot-Eight · Member

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    Thanks for all your replies. Sorry I haven't been back sooner. Had a really bad headache. Have started trying to cut out carbs and sugar. I was referred to a consultant because I'm getting problems with my eyes. I'm going to have laser treatment next month as water has started building up in one of my eyes. The GP always just laughs that my diabetes is not under control I see a nurse who is lovely but I'm not getting anywhere. The consultant has decided to keep me for the moment because he feels the support from the GP is not working (and I didn't even tell him about the GP laughing).

    So much research to do, but I have to do this. The thought of losing my eyesight is a great incentive :-(
     
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