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Prediabetic to Diabetic- what to do?

Didn't want to hear this, but my doctor said my recent blood tests (Ac1 went from 6.2 to 6.7) moved me from pre diabetic to diabetic. I am a 50 yr. old female, w/ high blood pressure, sleep apnea, & currently already on a bunch of meds. I really would like to counter this w/ an aggressive dietary approach, (low-carb, primal), & I hate to give up my beer, but I guess I have to. On the plus side, my cholesterol is fine (I think I should quit taking simvistatin), & she also thinks I need to quit taking hydrochlorothiazide. Any advice on what to do first?

I'm planning on increasing my physical activity, & have ordered a fit bit flex.

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  1. Welcome to a club no one wants to join! Since folks with HbA1c at 5% and above are diabetic, in terms of the effects and damage by diabetes, your doctor waited awfull long to diagnose. The treatment for each is the same.

    Here's the very best single guide for getting a handle on your personal optimal diet you're ever going to see: http://www.phlaunt.com/diabetes/22229... Once you have tight control, you may find you can have a beer in the evenings. A small bit of alchohol with a meal actually keeps blood sugar from spiking as much.

    Hydrochlorothiazide is known to cause diabetes, as do statins, beta blocking bp drugs.

    Use the guide in that link. Cut the starches, fruits and added sugars and google up the myriad good low carb recipes online.

    Check out this chowhound thread, too: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8442...

    26 Replies
    1. re: mcf

      Thanks, I'm going in tomorrow to pick up testing stuff, & they want to start me on Metformin. I'm still kind of in shock, & trying to figure things out. I've read your earlier posts & bookmarked that site. Guess I should just take it a day at a time...

      1. re: thistle5

        This is about the rest of your life, so yes, treat it like a marathon, not a sprint. I think you'll find that cutting carbs will make such dramatic changes that you will find your meds no longer necessary, or lower dosages at least.

        If not, you have to investigate other causes of diabetes, it's not just an insulin resistance disease.

        1. re: mcf

          It's just a little strange, to go from someone who thought she ate ok, to someone who has to pay attention to it, & that's some whining I won't be doing after tomorrow, I realize I've been skating by for awhile...& I'm also someone who hates to go to the doctor, & will let Rxs lapse-now I need a mammo/ pap, colonoscopy, & more labs in a month, need to quit my bitching, & try to man up....

          1. re: thistle5

            It took me years to adjust my diet to where it's ended up. One thing I can tell you is that if you make the changes, you're going to be amazed by how many things get better that you never suspected were diet related.

            That's what happened to me, anyway. Feeling so much better and less like a ticking health bomb is very reinforcing.

          2. re: mcf

            I recently passed from pre- to full-blown diabetic, too. I've been on Step One of the phlaunt pamphlet for about a week, "Eat whatever you've been eating and write it all down."

            I've been eating everything I like, including pasta and ice cream. My numbers have gone from a low of 161 to a high of 445 (after all-you-can-eat pasta @ Lidia's).

            Tomorrow or the next day, I intend to move to Step Two, "For the next few days cut back on your carbohydrates." We'll see what happens. I really hate having to give up eating food I like (no, sugar-free jello is not dessert).

            1. re: Jay F

              No sugar added flourless chocolate cake is, so is no sugar added mousse, flourless peanut butter cookies, no sugar added cheesecake... SO much better with the FAT!

              Oh, and baked rhubarb cobblers with nut crumb topping, too, and fresh whipped cream!

              1. re: mcf

                I'm not at the no-sugar "dessert" stage yet, mcf. I just want to get through today, using Step 2, "For the next few days, cut back on carbohydrates."

                Today I had 1/2 c. pistachios, in shell, salted, for breakfast.

                Lunch: 2 scrambled eggs (large) with mushrooms and parmigiano-reggiano.

                That's it so far.

                I had to reorder those strips the blood goes on, so I won't know my blood sugar for another few days.

                For dinner, I'm going to have two chicken tenders, sauteed in butter and EVOO, with a lemon-butter pan sauce. Plus broccoli/almonds/garlic/RWV & EVOO.

                I read a carbohydrate calculator page, on which I found this info:

                <you need 1670 Calories/day to lose 1 lb per week, you should take 178 (40%) - 334 (75%) grams of carbohydrate for your energy needs. (55% = 245 grams, 65% = 289 grams)>

                Do you know what it means, beginning at "you should take"?


                This is the page: http://www.calculator.net/carbohydrat...

                1. re: Jay F

                  Ignore that terrible advice! Your brain and body do not need dietary sugar, your body makes what you need from protein and slowly. Carbs get stored as fat ,because they all metabolize faster than you can utilize them at those levels, peak, then crash you.

                  It looks like you're not eating much in the way of vegetables. Even Atkins induction calls for several servings of salad and non starchy veggies per day.

                  Good luck with all your experimentation.

                  1. re: mcf

                    I don't know how to recognize terrible advice yet, so thanks for the info. I do get that carbohydrates metabolize as fat, but that's about it.

                    Today I've eaten mushrooms at two meals, and broccoli at one. That's pretty vegetable-y for me. I didn't buy salad yesterday as I was afraid of it going bad. I'll get some tomorrow.

                    I've never been a big vegetable eater, and most of the ones I like are contraindicated (potatoes, cooked carrots, beets).

                    EDIT: I just found this grilled asparagus recipe.


                    I can't grill, but I can roast it. I think I'll try this or the cauliflower tomorrow, plus salad, with the rest of the chicken.

                    And I'm going to make chili soon (ground turkey, ground ancho, garlic, onion, green pepper, canned tomatoes, canned kidney beans).

                    1. re: Jay F

                      Every gram of carb you eat metabolizes to glucose. The excess beyond your immediate needs gets converted to fatty acids for storage in fat cells.

                      Using your glucose meter and dietary changes, you'll become very expert on what's good or bad advice and won't need anyone to tell you anything.

                      You might find that grilling and high temp roasting veggies, or having them with butter, cheese, olive oil and spices or herbs makes them a big treat. But take such big changes at your own pace, you'll find your way.

                      1. re: Jay F

                        Try steaming cauilflower, puree it with shredded swiss, butter, S&P in the food processer. Better than mashed potatoes!

                        1. re: treb

                          I will try this. Thanks. I can't promise you I'll find it better than mashed potatoes, but I will try it. It sounds easy, at least, and I love swiss cheese.

                      2. re: mcf

                        As you are finding your way around in a new dietary world, an appointment with a registered dietitian is helpful even if insurance doesn't cover it and you have to pay for it. And, note well, a "nutritionist" can be anything and does not have to meet state standards, while a "registered dietitian" does.

                        1. re: Querencia

                          Bad advice. They tell diabetics to eat hundreds of starch and sugar grams of carbs per day. Food lobbies own the us dietetic association and its curriculum.

                          Thankfully, the invention of glucose meters allows us to find our own, individual healthiest way of eating.

                            1. re: Querencia

                              That's correct, and this advice is also given by the American Diabetes Association and the National Library of Medicine:


                              1. re: GH1618

                                It's terrible advice no matter where it comes from via corporate dollars.

                                Fortunately, we are empowered to reverse instead of progressing in the disease by the invention of meters that allow self monitoring. That demonstrates better than anything how damaging and corrupt those recommendations are.

                      3. re: Jay F

                        445! Darlin, you've been an undiagnosed diabetic for years, if not decades!

                        Most type 2 diabetics have lost 50% of their pancreatic insulin producing cells by the time of diagnosis because the screening methods used are failures. Fasting tests fail to diagnose 70% of women and 48% of male diabetics compared to 2 hour post meal testing. If they used 1 hour post meal, I guarantee you both would be 100% missed.

                        I would never have been diagnosed had I not bought a meter and used that testing regimen you're doing now. Yet I had diabetic kidney damage for over a decade and developed severe neuropathies. Ignored and undiagnosed by my doctors.

                        1. re: Jay F

                          Jay F...to add to what mcf said, and not to be an ass...but take this for what it's worth.

                          Big picture wise? You're ahead. My H had undiagnosed Type II D for years. His first sign of trouble? A stroke, albeit not a catastrophic one, but still.

                          We keep sugar free jello around for a sweet grab-and-go, but believe me, you can eat very well without the sugars. And your overall health will improve, too. I'm not diabetic, but I am glad that I too have been forced to think about what I eat.

                    2. re: mcf

                      mcf -

                      I respect your views on nutrition and your obvious wealth of knowledge about diabetes.

                      But I wouldn't even speculate or hint at whether it is a good idea for someone to stop taking a diuretic or a beta blocker over the internet. That is a job for a doctor with access to someone's full medical history, bloodwork, ejection fraction, etc. Way too many other factors involved.

                      Hope this doesn't sound harsh.

                      Statins... over dinner, I might share my thoughts with friends, etc, though I won't give any opinions on them here.

                      1. re: cowboyardee

                        Read my comment more closely. I didn't prescribe, I said that's a typical outcome. Studies have shown it over and again, even very recently, with low carb.

                        I mention it because a lot of folks see their bp drop like a rock at initiation of low carb and that can get dangerous with those meds.

                        And if a person doesn't know that, they don't know to discuss a different regimen to to more closely monitor bp after changing the diet.

                        My comment did not tell the OP to stop meds, my presumption is that is a discussion the OP will have with the prescriber.


                        "From baseline to three weeks, patients on the low-carb diet reduced their use of conventional oral antidiabetic medication by 86%. Those on the low-fat diet reduced them by only 6% by the end of three weeks, but intake went down another 57% by the end of their two-week low-glycemic diet phase. "And still they had improvements in glucose," von Bibra said. Medications other than oral ones for diabetes, such as antihypertensive drugs, were not changed in anyone during the study.

                        In the low-glycemic-diet group, mean systolic blood pressure declined from 127 mm Hg to 118 mm Hg (p<0.002) after three weeks; diastolic pressures also fell (p<0.04). Neither changed after three weeks for those initially on the low-fat diet, but both "improved in the same direction" as those in the low-glycemic group after two weeks on the low-glycemic diet, von Bibra said."

                        1. re: mcf

                          I read your comment. My thought is that even mentioning some of the known risks of diuretics and beta blockers without including a full disclaimer that we cannot accurately assess whether dropping those medications would be a good idea... is getting onto pretty shaky ground. I provide that disclaimer not just in response to you but also as a warning to the OP.

                          I can think of a few conditions in which dropping a beta blocker or a diuretic could very extremely dangerous (as well as other situations where discontinuing their usage is beneficial or necessary). Those two classes of drugs are given for more reasons than just BP control, and frankly IME, a lot of people don't even fully understand why they're taking the medications they're on, so discussions about the intersection of BP, diabetes, and medications could be very misleading.

                          1. re: cowboyardee

                            Those facts about certain drugs have been widely reported in the media, first of all.

                            Second of all, I'm not a parent to other posters, I'm a peer, sharing information they can use their adult judgment about without you or I sanitizing it for them.

                            1. re: mcf

                              I don't think I've sanitized anything.

                              I'm advising against putting much weight into tidbits of information about drugs that interact with your systems in very complex ways.

                              I'm not opposed to spreading information. I understand this will sound impolite, but please excuse my bluntness:

                              If another poster had mentioned the link between beta blockers, hctz, and diabetes, I probably wouldn't have posted. But you slid the mention into posts on a subject where you are obviously very well read. That has the potential to give the impression that you also know quite a bit about those drugs. And I don't get the impression that you do. Limiting the scope of a conversation about BBs or diuretics to diabetes and blood pressure is kinda dangerous if you give the impression that those factors are the only ones someone needs to understand or be concerned about.

                              One example (of many): if you consider stopping a beta blocker due to BP and diabetes concerns, you should be very sure that you aren't prescribed said BB for dysrhythmia control. I could go on and on, but even then I could not cover all the bases the OP would need to understand about these drugs in this kind of format.

                        2. re: cowboyardee

                          EXACTLY RIGHT. None of those drugs "cause diabetes".

                          1. re: sal_acid

                            Actually, YES, some of them do. Beta blockers, statins, diuretics. That's why, for instance, there is a change in the advice to use two of those as first line bp drugs.

                      2. Hi!

                        Listen---you can do this. My husband is 48 and living with Type II diabetes. He went from being insulin dependent to metformin, and like you, is managing BP and other issues (for him, atrial fib). Our goal is to get him on a MINIMUM of meds, and to use diet to improve both of our lives! Your meter is your friend...as Jay F noted, you gotta test test test....and colorful veggies are your friend too.

                        Instead of focusing on what you can't have, think of what you can have---luscious seafood, chicken, and beef dishes. Gorgeous summer salads. Cream in your coffee. Good butter and cheese. Nuts of yummy almonds. You can do it!

                        And thistle5...the folks on this board have good advice. I have found, in the words of Good Willing Hunting, they are wicked smart! I came to this board confused and with head swirling last July and mcf, Good Health Gourmet, sedimental, sueatmo and others rocked my world---in a good way. Don't bum out. It's not easy, but you can do it.

                        You can do it! You too, Jay F!

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: pinehurst

                          My head is swirling. But thanks, Pinehurst.

                        2. The number one best thing you can do is lose weight.

                          11 Replies
                          1. re: grampart

                            FALSE. Even with zero weight loss, the number one thing best to control diabetes is carb restriction. It works right away even without exercise and weight loss.

                            It's not the lbs lost that make you healthier, it's the healthy changes you make that lead to weight loss that are.

                            1. re: mcf

                              This might be true for the diabetic issue, but sleep apnea is mostly a weight issue (and a very serious one). Carb restriction alone wont help with that, although most low carb diets will usually help you lose weight unless you are calorie sensitive (like I am). Then you have to pay attention to both in order to lose weight.

                              I keep within my BMI ( which is thin) but I need to lose a mere 10 lbs right now (or before the end of July ) to have my wetsuit fit correctly. I keep all carbs to under 100 a day with most of those from veg...No weight loss. None. Add calorie restriction= weight loss. Everyone is different and it has been shown that if you are stalling in weight loss or remain overweight on carb restriction, then calories become important.

                              Sometimes people go a little crazy on low carb at first as they don't know exactly what to eat and they start compensating with large amounts of butter, mayo, bacon, etc. not always good for weight loss and not always good for other health conditions for everyone.

                              1. re: sedimental

                                My husband is skinny as a twig and has moderate to severe sleep apnea. Explain.

                                1. re: coll

                                  Central sleep apnea, brain/endocrine in origin. My skinny kid has it, with no obstruction, too.

                                  1. re: coll

                                    In the context of the OP, weight is likely a contributing factor, unless the OP just referenced that for no other reason.

                                    There can be many causes of sleep apnea.

                                    1. re: sedimental

                                      Sorry I missed the part where weight was mentioned?

                                      1. re: coll

                                        The OP did not mention it. I did, and grampart did.

                                        Weight is often an issue in the scenario the OP posted and keeping a healthy weight and fitness level (mentioned) is really important in taking charge of your health in general.

                                        If the OP is thin and fit, then obviously, the OP already knows all this and needs no advice from me :)

                                        Edit: when I said " referenced that for no other reason" I meant the sleep apnea.

                                  2. re: sedimental

                                    Actually, sleep apnea can be central, as in brain/endocrine related or weight related. In either case, low carb should help some, possibly. I'm only saying that overall health and wellness improve in unexpected ways.

                                    It's a health adjustment, not magic!

                                    People with certain unsuspected endocrine issues will often not have the miraculous results that others do. I never got the strong appetite suppression when I switched to low carb.

                                    But I did maintain my weight on 50% more calories than the 800 I had to eat on high carb/low fat, and I lose on more calories this way, too. Just as most comparison studies demonstrate. It's not all about calorie restriction and every BODY is different. :-) The test test test flyer helps folks find what works best for themselves.

                                    1. re: mcf

                                      I don't think we fundamentally disagree about any of that.

                                      I might put more emphasis on not being overweight and overall health and fitness level than you do too.

                                      But,(and I might be wrong)but the way the OP describes her health issues, it sounded as if weight was likely an issue too. I think when it is, then a weight loss approach is a good idea (not just carb restriction for blood sugar control).

                                      1. re: sedimental

                                        No, I doubt you put more emphasis on them as good things than I do. I just know that diabetes can be tightly controlled without them.

                                        Fitness, activity and weight control have all sorts of other benefits.

                                        Most folks on boatloads of meds have weight issues. Many will have them no matter how much they eat or exercise and rarely do doctors investigate the obvious endocrine factors because they are so trained as mere prescribers, sadly. Many of those drugs cause elevated blood sugar and weight and appetite.

                                        Honestly, the weight point is moot; if one switches to carb restriction, and tests glucose post meals, if not very ill with endocrine derangement, the weight loss will happen. For most, not all. Then more careful evalution is needed.

                                        Vicious cycle. :-/

                                        1. re: mcf

                                          I agree that losing weight will likely improve all of my health conditions, by the BMI chart, I am overweight, but not obese. However, since another medical condition that hit me last year (labyrinthitis for 4 months), my physical activity level has decreased sharply. This diagnosis is just the kick in the pants I needed to get back on track.

                                          My sleep apnea is mild & hypertension is congenital, I've been on meds for 10 years. I've also got a referral in to the cardiologist to followup on my sleep apnea, since it's been 5 years since I had a sleep study. I have excellent medical care, but I realize that I need to take the lead in improving my health, by educating myself & monitoring my progress.

                              2. Read up on whatever you can find on high intensity interval exercise--HIIT, HICT, Tabata. WRT diabetes, there is growing evidence that this style of exercise-- very brief periods of near max exertion--have a significant effect on insulin sensitivity, much moreso than longer workouts at lesser intensity.

                                There is a great video on PBS called "The Truth About Exercise with Michael Mosley". He uses himself as a guinea pig and the pre and post lab results are pretty compelling.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: splatgirl

                                  I agree, the exercise I was doing before my weird mystery illness set in, was the US Army's functional fitness program, which is similar to Crossfit-different exercises, no recovery time, I was probably the oldest person there, w/ some health issues, but the instructors were great, & I probably got into the best shape of my life- now my goal is to get back to these classes....

                                  1. re: thistle5

                                    I am a fan of Tabata training and I am in my 50's.

                                    If you are checking out Primal, this site is great:


                                    Mark is also in his 50's and this site is a great resource for healthy food choices, education and discussions about fitness and goals. This is not a "diabetic" site, but a Primal site. Easy enough to tweak anything there to meet your needs.

                                2. Follow your doctor's advice and don't rely on "alternative" approaches.

                                  13 Replies
                                  1. re: GH1618

                                    Doctor's advice is almost always wrong, written by drug and grain and sugar lobbyists in this case. Harvard researcher got it right: "Drug companies own medicine."

                                    If you eat crap, they profit.

                                    1. re: mcf

                                      I agree, doctors usually admit they are not qualified to give advice about diet. They give no advice about how to cook to meet your needs. They just give a few pat phrases and encourage you to look elsewhere for the info. The "elsewhere" they encourage are places with corporate stakeholders.

                                      I would encourage someone looking to create a specific eating and cooking plan for their own health issues to look at health and fitness sites/blogs/forums, University sites, herbal and alternative sites, and check out Primal diets(low carb, high veg and protein) no processed food and anti inflammatory diets. Try to develop an eating plan to help with specific problems.

                                      The really nice thing is that your body will tell you when your diet is working for you.

                                      1. re: sedimental

                                        I agree with all of that, but not that primal is necessary to achieve all the benefits, though it's certainly one very healthy approach.

                                        I have inflammation markers near zero despite having severe inflammatory causing health conditions in my body. I eat plenty of dairy, clean meats, fats and and low carb veggies. I don't aim for anti inflammatory, but any diet that stops hyperinsulinemia will reduce inflammation by allowing the body to make adequate enogenous steroids and their delivery transport proteins.

                                        High insulin levels inhibit them.

                                        1. re: mcf

                                          Yup. Inflammation is an undiagnosed and often ignored issue.

                                          I suppose the reason I tend to mention it in these types of discussions, is that so many "healthy diets" don't address really important food prep issues like oils, using herbs and spices, using things like flax, hemp, chia, specific nuts, turmeric, cinnamon, etc. Look up anti inflammatory foods and you will find them listed there.

                                          1. re: sedimental

                                            We're doing a lot of the same things, but with different process, I think. Because I care a great deal about the quality of our foods, I don't buy inflammatory type oils, or meats and dairy. I use a lot of the typically recommended spices and herbs, but that's because I love Indian and Moroccan foods and a lot of fresh herbs and spice flavors in general.

                                            So I eat for quality and also for tight carb and glucose control (and my husband does, too, with no health or weight issues, just for health and prevention) and that pretty naturally leads to lower inflammation status.

                                            1. re: mcf

                                              What are inflammatory oils, meats, and dairy, please?

                                              1. re: Jay F

                                                The fats from feedlot beef and dairy are higher in pro inflammatory fats and arachidonic acid and lower in anti inflammatory CLA and omega 3s. The fats in grass fed and finished beef (pastured chickens, eggs, wild fish) have more favorable ratios of omega 6- omega 3 fats. Some oils tend to be very high in omega 6s, so more pro inflammatory. Sunflower, corn, soy, mixed vegetable oil, for example. Mixing one with walnut oil or ollive oil can improve that, but I just cook with more favorable oils and avoid overheating them to their smoke points.

                                                Grass fed and finished milk products also have favorable fat profiles.

                                                Not surprisingly, all are associated with lower CVD risk even when high in saturated fats.

                                                1. re: mcf

                                                  I use olive oil for almost everything.

                                                  When I make my own mayonnaise, is canola oil bad?

                                                  I'll remember "grass fed and finished." When I buy eggs and cream, I buy the good stuff rather than the more processed. Is it enough just to buy cage free eggs? I have a feeling I'm going to be eating eggs fairly often now.

                                                  1. re: Jay F

                                                    Some say canola is okay, some say no. I just avoid it but will eat something made with it for me. Cage free is a sort of misleading description for what can be bad conditions and it won't tell you what the hens are eating.

                                                    Eggs are best from pastured hens, beef is grass fed and finished, or 100% grass fed. Dairy from grass fed cows will usually just say "grass fed" like Organic Valley, or local brands you can find in stores or your farmers' market.

                                                    It's up to you how expensive you want your eggs to be. Here's a guide to most of the big producers of eggs: http://www.cornucopia.org/organic-egg...


                                                    1. re: mcf

                                                      Thank you so much, mcf. You've been an enormous help.

                                                      1. re: Jay F

                                                        Good luck figuring out what works best for you. I hope you'll keep us in the loop as you work it all out and get results.

                                      2. re: mcf

                                        If your doctor is almost always wrong, you have the wrong doctor. Mine aren't, and they certainly aren't shills for grain and sugar companies.

                                        1. re: GH1618

                                          I make it a policy to avoid back and forth with folks who have opinions based upon their own personal beliefs.

                                          The ADA and the AHA promote starchy, low protein and fat diets for diabetics and heart disease and a lot of drugs to compensate for the inevitable bad results. The dietetic association pushes starches and sugar at diabetics like crazy.

                                          That's not because good science says that's healthy. I don't know your personal doctor, and you know nothing about how carefully I screen my own. I don't follow doctor's orders ever, I partner 50/50 with good docs and where we disagree, they respect my right to my decision making.

                                    2. Educate yourself. The website given by mcf is an excellent place to start. I would not blindly follow the advice of anyone. You have to take an active role in determining what is best for you. There is a wide range of how this is treated within the healthcare system.

                                      1. Keeping your weight within a healthy range is critical and luckily a Primal, low carb diet approach should help you with that.

                                        Everyone always worries that they can't imagine life without (or at least severely restricted) potatoes, pasta, bread, cookies, etc.
                                        ..........all I can say about that is this: eventually, as your education about food and health grows, and you see amazing results from reducing those foods, you will not look at a plate of pasta the same as you once did. I love white pasta. But, I look at the plate and think "that is a plate of sugar"...."should I have a heaping plate of sugar for dinner tonight?". The answer is a lot clearer to me now and my choices are waaaay easier.

                                        Don't get discouraged, eat and cook all the beautiful foods that are really good for you, think of all white food as sugar, all green food as clean...and a little butter doesn't hurt anyone ;)

                                        1. If you're not already tracking every food and beverage you consume then I suggest you start. Recording your intake and seeing how your glucose level responds gives you knowledge that you can use to make positive change.

                                          I like myfitnesspal, and your new fitbit can upload to it.

                                          1. The real key to controlling and reducing your risk is to get 'serious' with exercise, I mean real cardio exercise. Watch your sugar and carb intake, you will be able to have that occassional beer and a few other treats. Lastly, do not get off meds without your Doctor's approval. I went from being one step away from insulin to vitrually off all my diabetes meds, mostly from exercise. Today, I safely eat about 10 pounds of fruit a week and my A1C is 5.5 and average daily number is 80.

                                            4 Replies
                                            1. re: treb

                                              I'm feeling a little less stressed then yesterday, & don't worry folks, it was my doctor who told me to stop taking the hydrochlorothiazide (I'm on other bp meds) & I'll continue w/ the simvastatin & see what my numbers look like in a month.

                                              I'm hoping with more attention to my diet & increased exercise, I can improve my levels. My first reading today was 101, 2 hours after breakfast of a bagel w/ peanut butter (going to be switching that out), so the nurse said that wasn't too bad. It'll be interesting to see what it is tonight, I'm joining some friends for Korean BBQ. There'll probably be some sugar in some of the marinades, but the lettuce wraps, panchan, steamed egg & doenjang jigae should be ok, I'll just lose the rice....

                                              1. re: thistle5

                                                Track you before eating as well, it'll give you a view of how your body is reacting or spiking, 101 is so so, try to get below 100. Ditch the bagel, they're aprox 350 cals per, a total waste of calories.

                                                1. re: treb

                                                  Yes, that was my 'farewell to carbs' breakfast- tomorrow it'll be a hard-boiled egg, a couple of olives, & carrot slices

                                                2. re: thistle5

                                                  Two hours after eating is too late to catch your post meal peak.

                                                  Most folks bg peaks 45-70 minutes post meal. Did you take a look at the flyer at phlaunt.com/diabetes for how to test?

                                                  Glad your doctor knew to take you off that one drug. The statin could be causing you issues, too.

                                              2. Its not complex. Take your meds, lose some weight, limit carbs.

                                                You could also repeat the A1c and see if its down in a month.

                                                In a while you might be able to stop the meds.

                                                1. Folks, this is a food forum, not a medical forum. We know they sometimes overlap, but the point at which we're offering advice on drugs, sleep apnea whether or not to try alternate therapies, etc, it's getting too far from food. If you've got suggestions on recipes or foods that will fit with thistle5's new low-carb, primal approach to eating that's great, but please avoid the more medical aspects of this issue.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: The Chowhound Team

                                                    I guess that's my fault, although I realize it's a food forum & I'm interested in hearing about how dietary habits can affect my health, I threw in all the background info on other conditions & meds, so other posters would have more info. I am under the care of medical professionals, but I truly appreciate any tips & advice on how to research this condition & make my own informed decisions on my health.

                                                  2. I'm helping my dad through the same situation, and I find that having delicious low carb food consistently in the fridge helps because you can't ever say "there's nothing to eat."

                                                    Some of our favorites include: roasted cauliflower with olive oil, s&p, shrimp deviled eggs (add chopped cocktail shrimp and shallots to regular deviled eggs), ham and cheese frittata, and grilled fish with garlic butter. Add in a big tub of fresh greens with some herbs and garlic vinaigrette, and you'll always find something yummy to eat.

                                                    91 Replies
                                                    1. re: sarinaL

                                                      not "yummy":
                                                      - cauliflower
                                                      - deviled eggs

                                                      1. re: Jay F

                                                        I love high temp roasted cauli florets and whole shallots mixed with EVOO, s and fgbp. Roast at 400 til carmelized.

                                                        I love soft cooked, pureed cauli with lots of butter, s and fgbp.

                                                        1. re: mcf

                                                          I'm glad to know you like those things. I will take the roasting process under consideration. I've been eating broccoli recently, so I can't really say I'll *never* eat cauliflower. But I've never liked it before.

                                                          Also, what is "bg," which you mention frequently?

                                                          1. re: Jay F

                                                            Carmelization can be a very good friend to veggie avoiders. :-)

                                                            BG is blood glucose. What carbs turn into.

                                                            Have you tried your broccoli with sweet butter and lemon juice?

                                                            1. re: mcf

                                                              No, I haven't used butter or lemon juice with the broccoli, as they comprise the pan sauce for the chicken breasts I eat with the broccoli.

                                                              BG = blood glucose. Thanks.

                                                              1. re: Jay F

                                                                Try sharing a little pan juice love with your veggies. :-)

                                                                1. re: mcf

                                                                  It'd be easier, at least. I guess I feel I'm cheating the diner (myself) if I don't make a separate sauce for each menu item. But yeah, just one sauce. How easy. How sensible. Why have both lemon and vinegar in the first place?

                                                                  Oh, and I'm doing quite well today, after wanting to kill myself last night. I have to buy some more veg today at the store.

                                                                  1. re: Jay F

                                                                    "Oh, and I'm doing quite well today, after wanting to kill myself last night"

                                                                    Jeesh, I hope this is just hyperbole and not something I said about eating more vegetables!

                                                                    1. re: mcf

                                                                      To followup on my dinner last night (AYCE Korean BBQ), it was delicious, lots of protein, veggies, & I limited myself to about a tablespoon of rice (it wasn't that hard, it was a large meal). We had brisket (my favorite), regular, miso, & spicy pork belly (miso was best) & spicy chicken. 9-10 dishes of panchan- I really liked the sprouts, cabbage kimchi, spinach, spicy radish, & there was lettuce to wrap the meats in, steamed egg (I ate most of it) & the soup (only had a few spoonfuls).

                                                                      My numbers were 95 an hour before dinner, & 101 an hour after dinner. So, I'm continuing on my adventure in eating to my meter (fasting this morning was 108)....thanks for reassuring me that I can still eat lots of great food....

                                                                        1. re: thistle5

                                                                          I'm kind of surprised; I no longer go out for Korean bbq because it has so much sugar in it! Congrats on finding something you love works so well for you!

                                                                        2. re: mcf

                                                                          It's hyperbole, sort of. But how I'm feeling (profoundly depressed) is certainly not your fault. You've been nothing but helpful. I'm quite grateful for your having taken the time.

                                                                          I'm just sad that I can no longer eat what I consider food, namely pasta, cheese and bread, pizza, and anything with sugar in it (and please, please, please, I am not yet ready for sugarless versions of things which, by definition, have sugar in them).

                                                                          I like other foods, lots of other foods, actually, but the ones listed above are the ones I *really* like.

                                                                          Anyway, this is thistle's thread, so I shall turn it back over to her.

                                                                          I mean it, that I appreciate your help, mcf.

                                                                          1. re: Jay F

                                                                            We are in this together, I'm just a little luckier in that I don't crave pasta or pizza (you don't want to ask me about bread, I had a lettuce sandwich today-turkey, salami, cheese, mustard in romaine leaves), & I'm trying to keep some cheese...it's hard to get excited about eating lots of veg, but you do what you have to do, right?

                                                                            Having done a small stint of this way of eating before, the sugar cravings DO subside, if you eliminate it- hard to believe now, but it does happen-hang in there...

                                                                            1. re: thistle5

                                                                              Thank you, Thistle. I've eaten pistachios, eggs and cheese, and oatmeal (w/cinnamon) today. Tonight, I'll have chicken, broccoli, and a salad. I feel like crying.

                                                                              1. re: Jay F

                                                                                What's bothering you the most, that gets you feeling down about it?

                                                                                1. re: mcf

                                                                                  I feel as if I am being punished, and I didn't do anything wrong.

                                                                                  1. re: Jay F

                                                                                    You're not being punished, you're being challenged. And you may find that the results of the changes you make are so significant that you feel rewarded.

                                                                                    Just give it time, Jay, and explore your options and see how it goes. I know how hard it can be.

                                                                                2. re: Jay F

                                                                                  Something that has helped me is eating soup for 1 or more meals-today, along w/ that lettuce sandwich, I had Tom yum soup-pork/chicken broth, mushrooms, scallions, shrimp, scallops, & a spoonful of Tom yum paste (which has a trace of carbs in it)-it really fills you up. You can add any kind of veg or meat that you like to soup, tweak it w/ different seasonings...I finished off the Starbucks java chip ice cream I had in the house the first night after my diagnosis, now I'll just have to go to bed a little earlier.....I like pistachios, too, but it's not the same as ice cream....

                                                                                  1. re: thistle5

                                                                                    I made killer pistachio low carb ice cream in a little Braun ice cream maker a couple of years ago. You have to add a little vodka to it to keep it from getting icy and hard with low carb sweeteners in place of sugar.

                                                                                    1. re: mcf

                                                                                      That's my problem-I like my beer & wine, & if I'm taking the Metformin, I can't have them. It seems petty, but it's easier for me to give up sweets, rather than my alcohol (rice & noodles are hard, too), & now you guys know everything about my medical history & quirks-I guess I just need to look at the big picture, & what's best for my health....

                                                                                      1. re: thistle5

                                                                                        I am with you on that!

                                                                                        But, if your goal is to not be on meds.....maybe you can reach your goal and then you can have your wine :)

                                                                                        Like a carrot on a string!

                                                                                        1. re: thistle5

                                                                                          You can have some wine or beer with metformin, but not excess. Regular heavy drinking is definitely contraindicated. Red wine with meals really does help keep blood glucose lower.

                                                                                          You'll figure it out. :-)

                                                                                    2. re: Jay F

                                                                                      Don't cry :(

                                                                                      I am going home to make Taco salad.....who doesn't love taco salad???? Who????

                                                                                      Ground beef and taco spices, grated cheddar cheese, avocado, salsa, sour cream (or fage, or cottage cheese), maybe some pickled jalapeno....I bought some low carb chips...maybe I shall have some for crunch! Or make a LC tortilla with more cheese for a quesadilla? I dunno. I feel hungry,cheesy and lazy. It is Friday and there are very few carbs, calories or bad things in alcohol...so, heck... I am happy about that too! :D

                                                                                      You can do this, really. Don't get discouraged.

                                                                                      1. re: sedimental

                                                                                        I know I can do this- just like getting older, what's the alternative?

                                                                                    3. re: thistle5

                                                                                      Isn't it amazing how much sweeter things taste after your receptors get resensitized to sugars? Romaine lettuce has detectable sweetness for me now.

                                                                                      There's nothing like the experience and support of those who've been there, done that to get you over the hump.

                                                                                    4. re: Jay F

                                                                                      Believe it or not, I came to this way of eating leaving claw marks on my kitchen floor. I was the Pasta Prom Queen and learned I had to relinquish my tiara. Now I can't imagine ever wanting to eat all that stuff again. This feels better and it means I can reverse the damage and control a condition by myself, keep my kidneys, vision, nerve functions all intact, no meds.

                                                                                      But it was a long journey to here, and if I ever find out I'm terminal, I may have a hot slice of NY pizza with the crust for the first time in over a decade, with an everything bagel chaser. ;-)

                                                                                      But I never crave them any more. Took 8 years not to miss cigarettes at all, less for carby junk.

                                                                                      I think once you discover all the flavor you can find in foods you may not have been eating all this time, and realize how much better you feel, aches and pains gone, etc., you may find it more rewarding than depressing. That's my wish for you.

                                                                                      It took me a long time testing, documenting, retesting, learning new food ways, etc... you don't have to accomplish it all at one time. Figure out what you can eat while you're figuring out what you have to reduce and/or eliminate.

                                                                                      You'll get there. My healthy, slim, non diabetic husband has, just because he wants to stay that way and he feels better eating this way.

                                                                                      1. re: Jay F

                                                                                        Hi Jay,

                                                                                        I'm mostly Italian and French Canadian (with dashes of Russian Jewish and Cuban :-) ). I could consume bread and pasta for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. When my H was diagnosed with Type 2 D, I gave them up because I wanted to eat more healthily, too.

                                                                                        Anyway, I hear you about being bummed out on what you can't eat. I thought I would NOT be able to live without eating half a baguette of bread a day. I started really thinking about why I LOVED certain foods. For me, for example, bread was the preferred conduit to my mouth for butter and/or cheese or deli stuff. It was a nice way to get 'em there, but not the only one. I use lo carb pitas and Finn Crisps now, and happily eat my cheeses on them. Is it the same? No. Is it good? Yes!

                                                                                        I make parmesan frico crisps when I am dying for crackers...they pack so much more of a satisfying punch than the Cheezits I would eat by the box....because the Cheezits were a crunchy way to get cheese flavor to my mouth, know what I mean?

                                                                                        So it helps to get a handle on what you crave. What do you love about pizza, apart from the crust? For me, it's the anchovies, pepperoni and cheese, which I *can* eat. What's your fave part of chocolate cake? For me, it's the hit of chocolate I get from the icing. I found a 75% dark chocolate bar that gives me that hit. Likewise, pasta for me was really a vehicle for awesome sauce, chicken and broccoli (or tomatoes, meatballs, and sausage). I can still have all the awesome toppings.

                                                                                        I know it sounds like I'm messing with your head but you really can do it. There are awesome tips on this thread. For example, when I wanted ideas for Thanksgiving desserts that weren't sugarbombs, I came here!

                                                                                        Sorry for butting in, thistle.

                                                                                        Hang in there, guys--you are doing great!

                                                                                        This article was pretty interesting:

                                                                                        1. re: pinehurst

                                                                                          <I use lo carb pitas and Finn Crisps now, and happily eat my cheeses on them.>

                                                                                          Thanks, pinehurst. I'll try these the next time I see them.

                                                                                          1. re: Jay F

                                                                                            Joseph's Middle Eastern Bakery makes good low carb pitas, flat breads and sandwich thins. Toufayan makes passable ones. In addition to Finn crisps (my DH's fave) there are low carb varieties of Ryvita that I love. Weight Watcher's diet multi grain bread and Arnold Carb Style can be fit in, though usually only later in the day.

                                                                                            Carba Nada noodles don't spike me. Dreamfields does, hours and hours after eating, not until 3-5 hours after.

                                                                                            Rutabaga puree is delicious and doesn't spike me, potatoes are NFG at any size or portion or prep. So does any wheat, even pure bran.

                                                                                            Sugar free instant pudding beaten with heavy cream makes a cheap and easy low carb mousse (just use the pudding powder enough to flavor the cream).

                                                                                            1. re: mcf

                                                                                              I just recommended Josephs Lavash to a friend who's husband was just diagnosed with diabetes. I put it out at a party and it was the first thing to go. Yet it couldn't be healthier! I found it at BJs but also at our small local grocery.

                                                                                            2. re: Jay F

                                                                                              You can bake LC tortillas in the oven for chips to use with salsa or guac.....I like mine brushed with a tiny bit of olive oil and salted.

                                                                                              1. re: sedimental

                                                                                                Yep, and I use them on a pizza stone or pan or toaster oven rack at high heat to make pizzas.

                                                                                                1. re: mcf

                                                                                                  Oh, my. Making pizzas. Won't that just be wonderful.

                                                                                                2. re: sedimental

                                                                                                  That's a nice idea. I'm going to look for some of these. First for eating cheese. Then for guac.

                                                                                                  1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                    Pork rinds are very "old school" Atkins for adding crunch without the carb. They really do hit the spot for occasional chip substitutes though and they are hard not to like with a dip beside them!

                                                                                                    You don't need to be afraid of dips using cottage cheese, mayo, sour cream, yogurt, tahini, oils, etc and mixing these things together with lots of YOUR favorite ingredients ( bacon, avacado, garlic, red peppers, nuts, herbs, spices). Be creative.

                                                                                                    You might mix up a few nice dips to keep in the fridge and have some LC chips and pork rinds around. When you feel snarky and punished :) you can munch on something tasty and cheer yourself up!

                                                                                                    1. re: sedimental

                                                                                                      Plus, Costco has some really good dips. The artichoke/parmesan dip is delicious, microwaved. Then the feta, kalamata dip, the spinach, and the spicy red pepper dip.

                                                                                                      You can make French toast with SF syrup from pork rinds or from Arnold carb style, and have an egg on the side. Protein must be part of every meal and snack; it keeps you satisfied and also keeps bg lower after meals.

                                                                                                      I eat dinner leftovers for breakfast often, but that Greek yogurt makes a great base for additions for breakfast. And eggs and sausage keep me from feeling hungry until 6 hours later.

                                                                                                      Oh, and tuna, shrimp or crab salad in an avocado half is really good for lunch, with or without a salad of greens. Or sliced mozzarella and tomatoes. I use Kirkland pesto instead of tomato sauce for my low car pizzas, add tomato slices, red peppers, some uncured pepperoni...

                                                                                                        1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                          Sugar Free, Low Carb, Blood Glucose, SA = sugar alcohols or alternative. :-)

                                                                                                          1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                            You are being "jumped in" here...in the hood....pretty quickly :D

                                                                                                            1. re: sedimental

                                                                                                              Before too long, Jay will be the one able to be reassuring and advising the next sad, worried new diabetic in the 'hood. :-)

                                                                                                        2. re: sedimental

                                                                                                          LC? (It's always going to mean Le Creuset to me.)

                                                                                                          1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                            That gave me a good laugh!

                                                                                                            I am a Le Creuset junkie and I always think of that too!

                                                                                                            1. re: sedimental

                                                                                                              I've been low carb longer than I've had Le Creuset. And I made an affinity switch to Staub, anyway. ;-)

                                                                                                                1. re: sedimental

                                                                                                                  Hey, I may be easy, but at least I'm not cheap!

                                                                                                                  I fell for a prettier face and an already dark interior. :-)

                                                                                    5. re: Jay F

                                                                                      Well, I ate cauliflower yesterday, and I hated it, just as I always do. I was out, and I ordered meat loaf, green beans, and cauliflower au gratin. I eat a little bite of everything in each mouthful, but even that was not enough to mask the cauliflower's essential cauliflowerness.

                                                                                      1. re: Jay F

                                                                                        Okay, scratch that off your list! Next, try boiling up some rutabaga cubes, and mashing or pureeing with butter, s and p.

                                                                                        Great sub for mash.

                                                                                        Kudos to you for trying.

                                                                                        1. re: mcf

                                                                                          I'll try that, rutabaga. I'm not sure I've ever had it. Thanks.

                                                                                          1. re: Jay F

                                                                                            I had never had it til Thanksgiving with my husband's family. I'm an addict. I use it in place of mashed spuds all the time, or in place of potatoes in my favorite gratin recipe. Or as roasted chunks. I use it as a bed for pot roast and chicken tagine.

                                                                                            My next gratin experiment for carb reduction will be with jicama puree and gratin.

                                                                                            1. re: mcf

                                                                                              I hope I like it as much as you do. I'm still looking for a potato and/or pasta substitute. I ate some quinoa last week after reading about it on a list of "10 foods diabetics should be eating," but it raised my bg surprisingly high.

                                                                                              Do you know why, in the face of this, a diabetes website would be touting it as a must-eat?

                                                                                              1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                Not a surprise at all, it has an undeserved rep as healthy and a good source of protein. Starches will spike you. Starches before 4-6 p.m. will spike you higher.

                                                                                                Grain, soda and drug makers have very aggressive lobbyists and fund the AHA and ADA. Hence the lethal dietary recommendations from both.
                                                                                                : http://graphics8.nytimes.com/packages...


                                                                                                1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                  Jay, my husband (Type II like you), getting marching orders upon discharge from the hospital, was told steel cut oats were okay for him for breakfast. They're not. I came to this board with a "Duh, tell me about the rabbits, George" education about BG and keep learning every day.

                                                                                                  You are so much smarter than I was, and you're doing great!

                                                                                                  1. re: pinehurst

                                                                                                    I'm not having a problem with oatmeal. I don't eat them "steel cut," just Brand X. I don't like oatmeal enough to go fancy with it. I sometimes eat 1/4c. dry's worth, cooked. It's just my cinnamon delivery system.

                                                                                                    1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                      Try this: cut the amount of oats in half, add chopped nuts and some ground flax meal, pour hot water over it and add butter and cinnamon and the non caloric sweetener of choice.

                                                                                                      1. re: mcf

                                                                                                        I do not use non-caloric sweeteners.

                                                                                                      2. re: Jay F

                                                                                                        That's very cool. Any carb in the morning for my H and all hell breaks loose. He takes cinnamon in capsule form in the AM.
                                                                                                        Not as tasty! :-)

                                                                                                        1. re: pinehurst

                                                                                                          Am I to understand that some of you take cinnamon for blood sugar? I've heard of this but I've never known whether to trust it. Actually I put ground cinnamon in my coffee grounds every day. But I have to idea whether I'm getting a real dose or not.

                                                                                                          So if you are using cinnamon for your health, how much are you taking, and are you using cassia or true cinnamon?

                                                                                                          1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                            Cinnamon is food, not medicine. Although some studies have been done on its properties (see the science-based-medicine blogs), there is no evidence that it is an effective treatment for controlling blood sugar. Use it because you like the taste, not for its imagined medical benefits. You should be getting medical advice from your medical doctor, not from a food forum, in my opinion.

                                                                                                            1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                              A food forum is a much better place to get advice about the effects of food on one's diabetic results, especially in a "special diets" diabetic thread.

                                                                                                              1. re: GH1618

                                                                                                                Whoa. I do seek med advice from my doc. She and I discussed my latest excellent blood test just days ago. And by the way, I discovered that eating low carb was the best strategy for me, NOT through any rec by any doc. All I was told in 2010 was to lose weight. So--I guess I am taking a little umbrage at your latest post, which seems to imply that I want to treat high blood sugar in a major way with cinnamon.

                                                                                                                I do seem to remember that one study a number of years ago indicated that cinnamon would reduce cholesterol, not blood sugar. I am curious if people are using cinnamon, and I guess I am curious why.

                                                                                                                Why don't you let others who use it answer my query?

                                                                                                                1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                  I take cinnamon sups daily. I don't know for sure what they do, but some studies show that they help with BG in some ways. All these supplements are very inexpensive as a a gamble on insurances against illness. I figure...those of us that care enough about health and food, to research and read about new ideas to promote health...probably already have health handled!

                                                                                                              2. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                I don't know of anyone who's benefited from it, though many have tried.

                                                                                                                Many have benefited from other supps, me included, at times.

                                                                                                                Milk thistle, standardized, with meals has a distinct bg lowering effect in my experience, and alpha lipoic an insulin sensitizing effect.

                                                                                                                Cinnamon is just tasty.

                                                                                                                1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                  Yes, I love it brewed in coffee. It is crazy how much it improves the taste to me.

                                                                                                                  1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                    I do that occasionally. Especially with after dinner coffee.

                                                                                                                2. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                  I put ~1/4 t. cinnamon together with 1/2 c. dry oatmeal when I cook it. I read somewhere it lowers blood glucose (or keeps it from being higher than it might have been otherwise). I couldn't tell you now where I read it; I've read so much in the last couple of weeks, my head still spins.

                                                                                                                  I used to put it in my oatmeal pre-diabetes, too. The real change I've made is leaving out brown sugar or Mandeville.

                                                                                                                  1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                    What's your glucose reading 1 hour after eating that?

                                                                                                                    1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                      One day it went from 175 to 221. There's nothing else that's very clear, as I ate other things. Plus the oatmeal raises the number.

                                                                                                                      Are you trying to say there's something wrong with eating cinnamon?

                                                                                                                      1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                        Not the cinnamon, the oatmeal. Jay, most diabetics I know eat zero carb for breakfast. And zero carb at any meal when the pre meal test is 110 or higher. Safer that way. Protein and fat will bring it down, eating any carbs at all will guarantee it will be longer.

                                                                                                                        Oatmeal is not your friend. Try boiling water over flax meal with butter, cinnamon, sugar free sweetener, etc...

                                                                                                                        Or have eggs and sausage. That leaves my glucose at around 100 and keeps me from feeling hungry for about 4-6 hours.

                                                                                                                        1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                          I started going to the Joslin Diabetic Center on Friday. They told me I am "overly restricting" carbohydrates, and gave me a plan for incorporating them in my diet. I'm literally on the first day of trying to assemble an eating plan based on the literature they've given me.

                                                                                                                          Basically I'm supposed to eat 60g of carbohydrates for breakfast, 60g for lunch, 30g for snacks, 75g for dinner. Total 225 carbs per day.

                                                                                                                          Yesterday, I had 1/4 c. of dry oatmeal, cooked, 23 carbs; 1/2 c. pistachios, 5 carbs.

                                                                                                                          For lunch, I had only the amount of carbs there are in 3 T. butter, 0.03 carbs. I sauteed chicken and mushrooms.

                                                                                                                          For snacks, twice, pistachios, another 10 carbs.

                                                                                                                          I made Bolognese yesterday, no wine, and assessed it at 18 carbs per cup.

                                                                                                                          I had 1/2 c. of it and 1/2 c. dry quinoa, cooked, 52 carbs. So dinner was 9 carbs + 52 = 61.

                                                                                                                          Lower than 75, and all day, I only ate 99 carbs, not the 225 allotted.

                                                                                                                          1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                            Diabetic damage occurs from glucose, not protein or fat. It's like telling an AA member he's restricting beer too much.

                                                                                                                            1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                              Then why are they telling me to eat carbohydrates? I really don't understand. You're telling me one thing, they're telling me something very different. I am thoroughly confused.

                                                                                                                              Speaking of 12-step programs, your approach is a lot like the HOW distillation of the OA program. No carbohydrates ever.

                                                                                                                              1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                Use your meter to unconfuse you.

                                                                                                                                And follow the money if you want to know why their advice runs counter to peer reviewed, metabolic and endocrine science.

                                                                                                                                And read this again:


                                                                                                                                "From baseline to three weeks, patients on the low-carb diet reduced their use of conventional oral antidiabetic medication by 86%. Those on the low-fat diet reduced them by only 6% by the end of three weeks, but intake went down another 57% by the end of their two-week low-glycemic diet phase. "And still they had improvements in glucose," von Bibra said. Medications other than oral ones for diabetes, such as antihypertensive drugs, were not changed in anyone during the study."

                                                                                                                                Here's another.


                                                                                                                                What could possibly account for Joslin recommending a diet that causes crippling debilitation and a lot of drugs to be rx'ed from their sponsors?

                                                                                                                                The ADA sponsored the Gannon, Nuttall study. Then, in an unprecedented move, they posted it on their web site with a disclaimer, trying to diminish the impact. Shortly afterward, it disappeared from view, while they have kept on pushing 55-60% carbs on diabetics, causing progressive disease and suffering.

                                                                                                                                At the time, General Mills and Cadbury Schweppes were two of their very top donors, along with Abbott Labs.

                                                                                                                                1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                  I lack a scientific brain, which is the reason I went to the Joslin Clinic in the first place (I chose it because it's at the hospital closest to my house).

                                                                                                                                  I don't know whether I know what this means or not:

                                                                                                                                  "A diet that was short on carbohydrates and long on protein, given to diabetic patients engaged in a supervised exercise and weight-loss program, appeared not only to cut proinsulin levels and postprandial glucose and triglyceride levels, it seemed to improve LV diastolic function.

                                                                                                                                  In the study that compared the "low-carb" diet to a traditionally recommended low-fat diet, the one designed to flatten out resulting insulin and glucose curves also allowed them to take far fewer oral diabetes medications and apparently cut both systolic and diastolic pressures. The low-fat diet had no apparent effect on diastolic function or med use or on blood pressures."

                                                                                                                                  My blood pressure on Thursday was 124/80. I am not taking any medication for diabetes, FWIW.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                    This is what we're discussing here:

                                                                                                                                    "From baseline to three weeks, **patients on the low-carb diet reduced their use of conventional oral antidiabetic medication by 86%.*** Those on the low-fat diet reduced them by only 6% by the end of three weeks, but intake went down another 57% by the end of their two-week low-glycemic diet phase. "And still they had improvements in glucose," von Bibra said."

                                                                                                                                    And in the Gannon study: read this comment:

                                                                                                                                    "The mean 24-h integrated serum glucose at the end of the control and LoBAG diets was 198 and 126 mg/dl, respectively. The percentage of glycohemoglobin was 9.8 ± 0.5 and 7.6 ± 0.3, respectively. It was still decreasing at the end of the LoBAG diet. Thus, the final calculated glycohemoglobin was estimated to be ∼6.3–5.4%."

                                                                                                                                    And this from the large endocrine conference, Endo '99, years back:

                                                                                                                                    SAN DIEGO, CA -- June 15, 1999 -- A very high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet has been shown to have astounding effects in helping type 2 diabetics lose weight and improve their blood lipid profiles.

                                                                                                                                    The results of three studies involving such a diet, which is similar to, but has a few key differences from the famous "Dr. Atkins Diet", were presented today at the annual meeting of the Endocrine Society.

                                                                                                                                    Dr. James Hays, an endocrinologist and director of the Limestone Medical Center in Wilmington, DE, admitted that the concept of a high-fat diet in people who are already at higher risk of cardiovascular disease might seem incongruous. Nonetheless, this study of 157 men and women with type 2 diabetes showed an impressive benefit in body mass index (BMI) triglycerides, HDL, LDL and HbA1c.

                                                                                                                                    Most people are encouraged to reduce the amount of fat in their diets, particularly saturated fats, and diabetics in particular are advised to reduce their overall caloric intake, Dr. Hays explained in an interview in San Diego during the conference.

                                                                                                                                    Whereas a normal diet would be in the order of 1800 to 2100 calories, with 60 percent of calories coming from carbohydrates and 30 percent from fat, patients in this diet were restricted to 1800 calories per day and were encouraged to get 50 percent of their caloric intake from fat, and just 20 percent from carbohydrates. The balance of 30 percent would come from proteins.

                                                                                                                                    A whopping 90 percent of the fat content in their diets was saturated fat, compared with just 10 percent that was monounsaturated fat.

                                                                                                                                    "I think this is at least worth considering for any diabetic," Dr. Hays said in an interview. "The thing many diabetics coming into the office don’t realize is that other forms of carbohydrates will increase their sugars, too. Dieticians will point them toward complex carbohydrates ... oatmeal and whole wheat bread, but we have to deliver the message that these are carbohydrates that increase blood sugars, too."

                                                                                                                                    Higher-fat diets, on the other hand, seem to make the person feel full faster so they eat less; higher-fat diets also tend to reduce postprandial hypoglycemia so the patients feel better after eating.

                                                                                                                                    “Every diabetic comes home from the doctor with instructions as to what their diet should consist of, but they’re not getting the information from dieticians about what complex carbohydrates they should eat,” Dr. Hays said.

                                                                                                                                    “The important thing here is no ketosis. We absolutely don’t want people to become ketotic, and so we said they had to have so many exchanges of fresh fruits and vegetables and we specified the ones they could eat.”

                                                                                                                                    They were able to eat all the meat and cheese they wanted, but as for carbohydrates, they are restricted to eating unprocessed foods, mainly fresh fruit and vegetables, he added.

                                                                                                                                    Subjects recruited into the study (84 men, 73 women) were all type 2 diabetics and were required to undergo a standard American Diabetes Association modified diet for one full year before entry into the trial. Over the course of one year, the subjects achieved a mean decline in total cholesterol of between 231 and 190 mg/dl. Triglycerides declined from 229 to 182 mg/dl.

                                                                                                                                    Low-density lipoproteins (LDL cholesterol) fell from 133 to 105 mg/dl, while HDL increased from 44 to 47 mg/dl.

                                                                                                                                    HbA1c, which at the start of the study averaged 3.34 percent above normal, declined to the point that at one year, the mean was just 0.96 percent above normal.

                                                                                                                                    The average weight loss among subjects in the study was in the order of 40 pounds, Dr. Hays said.

                                                                                                                                    By the end of the one-year study, he added, 90 percent of the patients had achieved ADA (American Diabetes Association) targets for HbA1c, HDL, LDL and triglycerides.

                                                                                                                                    Even among juvenile diabetics, he said, they might not be overweight and they might have more or less normal lipid levels, but when they are on this kind of diet it is possible to treat them with lower doses of insulin and make their lives a little safer, he said.

                                                                                                                                    As for the response from cardiologists who see a high-fat diet as anathema to what they have been instructing their patients for years now, Dr. Hays said he has three cardiologist patients who are now on the diet.

                                                                                                                                    "If you have a diet that results in weight loss, lower cholesterol, and a better lipid profile, eventually, everybody will be eating that way. It’s going to come whether we like it or not."

                                                                                                                                    DG-DISPATCH - ENDO 99: Diabetics Improve Health With Very High-Fat, Low Carb Diet

                                                                                                                                    Edit to add: Jay, you don't have to have a science brain to understand what those scientists are saying. All you need is your food and a glucose meter to figure out what keeps you in healthy, non damaging numbers, food wise.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                      <<<And in the Gannon study: read this comment:

                                                                                                                                      "The mean 24-h integrated serum glucose at the end of the control and LoBAG diets was 198 and 126 mg/dl, respectively. The percentage of glycohemoglobin was 9.8 ± 0.5 and 7.6 ± 0.3, respectively. It was still decreasing at the end of the LoBAG diet. Thus, the final calculated glycohemoglobin was estimated to be ∼6.3–5.4%.">>>

                                                                                                                                      Something like this, I have no idea what it's talking about. I recognize the occasional word, but otherwise, it's incomprehensible.

                                                                                                                                      In any case, I've pretty much taken what I do grasp, and have decided to quit the Joslin program. I do have one more question, however, concerning this paragraph:

                                                                                                                                      <<<Those on the low-fat diet reduced them by only 6% by the end of three weeks, but intake went down another 57% by the end of their two-week low-glycemic diet phase. "And still they had improvements in glucose," von Bibra said.">>>

                                                                                                                                      Is the Joslin Diet low-fat? I wasn't asked to avoid fat at all, so I'm not sure it's a perfect comparison.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                        It means that the low carb diet results resulted in healthy, normal blood glucose averages over a 24 hour period. The Joslin diet resulted in damaging high blood glucose averages over a 24 hour period.

                                                                                                                                        It also means that HbA1c went down and kept going down more on low carb than a Joslin diet.

                                                                                                                                        Yes, the Joslin diet is low fat/very high carb. Jay, with the amount of carbohydrate (900 calories per day) they want you to eat, there's not that much room for calories from much fat or protein, the only two essential foods in human biology and, what coinkydink, the only ones that don't raise blood glucose.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                          You know, mc - As I was eating dinner last night (quinoa w/Bolognese), it occurred to me that this felt like an awful lot of food. I ended up eating it over the course of an hour and a half or two hours.

                                                                                                                                          Another interesting thing: while I was chez Joslin, the doctor really tried to sell me on the idea of using the Bydureon system, whereby I'd inject myself with something once a week which, presumably, would ameliorate the effect of eating all those carbs.

                                                                                                                                          It seemed peculiar at the time. Now I feel, like, how do they get away with it?

                                                                                                                                          1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                            It's called being told to "feed your meds." That drug is one of a class being called into question due to the pancreatic damage risk they pose. They're suspected of posing increased cancer risk, too. Here's an article about this class of drugs: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/31/bus...

                                                                                                                                            Why would anyone who's pledged to "do no harm" recommend the most expensive drug in the arsenal when you get normal or very near normal numbers when you restrict your carbs?

                                                                                                                                            This is why U.S. health care costs cannot be contained. It's all about drugs and procedures, and putting and keeping people in a condition to require them.

                                                                                                                                          2. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                            I was recently put on Metforin. Also had knee surgery, so exercise is restricted right now. Started keeping a food journal, and went to see a nutrionist after keeping the journal for three weeks. I have lost 15 pounds- and you are spot on- the weight loss is due to removal of most carbs. My nutritionist told me I could have 30-45 carb grams per meal (cannot roll them over, of course). She found I was eating far less than that- and right now that works for me. I am determined to get off the metformin- and once my knee is better the exercise will help. But, if I am not having a problem with a really low card diet, I am gong with it. Breakfast is my highest carb meal of the day- I like to have a yogurt and a few berries every morning. Lunch is easy, as I love salads, and sometimes I throw in a low carb pita for variety. Dinner tonight will be chicken, mushrooms and spinach. My dining companion will enjoy this served over egg noodles, but not me.

                                                                                                                              2. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                Did you test your results and pre meal numbers? Compare their meals to the ones that give you normal, non damaging numbers?

                                                                                                                        2. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                          Once you get your blood sugar where you need it, if you haven't already, you can check raw sugar. I t adds 4g of carb, if memory serves. Sometimes I add that 1 t along with Splenda to something for a nice sweet addition. The raw sugar adds flavor as well as sweetness. But you have to use an extremely light hand, and include the carbs in your overall calculation.

                                                                                                                          I use the raw sugar mixed with Splenda and cinnamon on low carb bread for the occasional treat of cinnamon toast. But its really pushing my carb limit when I do that.

                                                                                                                          1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                            If you have no issue with it, try granular xylitol instead. Closest to real sugar I've found among alternatives.

                                                                                                                            1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                              I don't think I've ever seen granular xylitol. I have tried stevia and I am not a true fan of that. I tolerat Splenda if I don't have to eat it often or in something too sweet. By "tolerate" I mean, I think it tastes OK.

                                                                                                                              Is the xylitol found at Netrition?

                                                                                                                              1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                                Now brands makes it, I find it on pretty much every store shelf lately. Yes, you can get it at netrition.com or your health food store, too.

                                                                                                                                I only ever use liquid sucralose, and i have to cut it 50% with xylitol or other, or I get a terrible after taste and mouth feel.

                                                                                                                                1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                  1 month in, & I'm still learning- saw my doctor today, & told her I took the Metformin for about a week, but I felt sick (nauseous the whole day), so I stopped taking it. The highest my bg has been is 115, so she said if I really wanted to try & control it w/ diet & exercise, I could drop the Metformin, & we'll test again in a month.

                                                                                                                                  I had appts w/ the diabetes nurse & the nutrition clinic, decided that restricting carbs as much as possible seemed best. I still slip up now & then, but I'm getting used to eating differently, & it's not that difficult. It's been a stressful month, I just got my fitbit flex 2 days ago (back ordered), & now that I see just exactly what my activity level is, I'm ready to ramp it up.

                                                                                                                                  My son graduates from HS this Friday, & I'm doing a big picnic for family & friends on Saturday, trying to fit stuff in for the pescetarians, primal, & people who"ll eat anything-lots of smoked meats, salads, fruit & poundcake for dessert-Monday will be the start of my new exercise program, wish me luck...

                                                                                                                                  1. re: thistle5

                                                                                                                                    You'll do great, you ARE doing great so far, good glycemic control! Metformin never lowered anything by my fasting, a little. And made me very very ill. Did nothing for post meal glucose, or very little.

                                                                                                                                    You GO!

                                                                                                                                    1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                      It's been a stressful weekend (my son graduated from HS & we had a big family party), I haven't been able to work in as much exercise as I'd like to, & I'm having carb cravings (had a pretzel roll today, w/ salami & cheese, & I wanted more).

                                                                                                                                      On the plus side, I've been having big salads, w/ leftover smoked meat (I fixed salads for the picnic, but it was ignored, in favor of other stuff), unfortunately that's the only plus I can think of- told you it was a rough week. I just need to keep looking forward, & trying to improve my diet...this won't be that easy...

                                                                                                                                      1. re: thistle5

                                                                                                                                        Just remember, it's a marathon, not a sprint. You're always just one meal or snack away from being right on plan. :-)

                                                                                                    2. re: mcf

                                                                                                      Add me to the list of "people who never liked cauliflower before". I just toss the darn thing (washed) in a hot oven, slathered in olive oil and then use the roasted florets in ~everything~. Smushed in a puree. Tossed in a salad. Added to a pasta(lo carb if you need it) dish. Love love love roasted cauliflower!

                                                                                                    3. re: Jay F

                                                                                                      If you can find it locally, I'll mention that the orange-colored cauliflower is sweeter and less strong-tasting. You may like it better than white. I also like the lime green-colored cauliflower. And the purple is nothing special.

                                                                                                      1. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                                        Thanks for sharing that. I've seen the yellow colored before, but never tried it.

                                                                                                  2. You may find the diabetes forums helpful, as well as chowhound.

                                                                                                    1. Oh, there are several of us on the WFD threads that are "low carbers". Not diabetics, but might give some daily inspiration of what and how to cook things (low carb) you might not have thought of.

                                                                                                      After a bit, you get pretty good at "adapting" recipes for LC, but if you are not used to it, it can feel overwhelming or tedious to always be thinking about it.
                                                                                                      Come on over! :)

                                                                                                      37 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: sedimental

                                                                                                        Do you think it would be helpful to have a special diets "what's for grub?" thread for a bit to get JayF and thistle5 on a roll (no pun intended)?

                                                                                                        1. re: mcf

                                                                                                          I thought about that before but there has not been a lot of participation on anything in special diets yet.

                                                                                                          We could try it. I would participate. I think they tried it in the vegatarian section and I am not sure it worked out really well.

                                                                                                          1. re: sedimental

                                                                                                            I'll certainly chime in, because I love to eat & I like to cook, & I have 2 teenage kids to feed- my youngest is a selective pescetarian (I worry about her diet) & my oldest eats most things (he's off to college in the fall). I live in an area w/ lots of good restaurants (I prefer Asian cuisine), & I want to adapt my new way of eating to things that I eat outside the home. I also have a small home garden, let's hope the weather cooperates...if any of the suggestions give other people ideas, it's a plus...I've tried short periods of adjusting my diet, but have never really gone in for the long haul....

                                                                                                            1. re: thistle5

                                                                                                              Okay, great, it sounds like you're starting out with JayF, and are more advanced on the WTF do I eat NOW cooking road.

                                                                                                              If you start, I'll make a good faith attempt to participate routinely.

                                                                                                              It's spring/summer edition, so an awful lot of my meals are going to involve the grill and a lot of salad, I don't think I use the stove much this time of year.

                                                                                                              1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                I'm in. I can't grill, as I live in an apartment, but I manage.

                                                                                                                As of 1:05 pm, I've had pistachios for breakfast, maybe 20 of them, then more pistachios a bit later, also maybe 20. I just had oatmeal with cinnamon, salt, and butter. I thoroughly miss the brown sugar or maple syrup that have been in every bowl of oatmeal I ate before yesterday.

                                                                                                                You asked how I feel. I feel as if I'm being punished, and I didn't do anything wrong.

                                                                                                                I'm going to make chili for dinner, with only sour cream as a garnish. That's not a big deal. That's how I always eat chili.

                                                                                                                I found a list this morning of "nine things you should eat to manage diabetes": http://www.joybauer.com/photo-gallery...

                                                                                                                1. beans - in chili today

                                                                                                                2. oatmeal - check

                                                                                                                3. fish - a favorite food of mine, but I will miss eating potatoes with it

                                                                                                                4. non-fat yogurt, esp. Greek - I'll use it w/Penzey's Green Goddess Mix for crudites; also, James Beard has lots of sour cream-based dip recipes in American Cookery, which will work w/yogurt.

                                                                                                                5. almonds - I put them in my broccoli, along w/raisins and garlic

                                                                                                                6. non-starchy veg, such as broccoli, spinach, mushrooms, peppers - I like all of these, either in dips or cooked. I'm sure cauliflower fits, but I am not ready for it yet.

                                                                                                                7. salmon - It gets a separate mention from fish. it's a favorite food of mine.

                                                                                                                8. egg whites - gross. no way, no day. The yolks are staying in.

                                                                                                                9. avocado - without corn chips? too depressing to think about.

                                                                                                                Well, that looks like enough to eat, and I've got it all in the house. I just want to get through today, and I think I can.

                                                                                                                1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                  Joy Bauer is wrong about beans, oatmeal and low fat yogurt. Fat is a diabetic's friend; it raises neither insulin nor glucagon (raises bg) and makes you feel full faster.

                                                                                                                  I don't know any diabetics who tolerate oatmeal. And only a few can eat beans other than black soybeans, but your meter will tell you.

                                                                                                                  Most type 2 diabetics must not eat carbs until afternoon and evening. Bg spikes highest in the early half of the day.

                                                                                                                  What does your meter say about oatmeal in the morning?

                                                                                                                  You can get through the day! I have sliced scallion, shredded jack or cheddar and sour cream on my chili. If you use black soybeans, you get the enjoyment with no added carbs, and more protein. I keep beans to a minimum in mine, sometimes kidney for the most fiber, but mostly meat.

                                                                                                                  1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                    Speaking of Eden black soybeans, here's the nutrition label. I make baked beans with them, use them in chili and sometimes eat a cup of them for lunch with vinaigrette.


                                                                                                                    Note that the carbs are almost entirely fiber, the rest is protein and fat. If you like beans in your chili, these mixed with kidney beans, or these alone are the lowest carb.

                                                                                                                    1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                      I use those a lot too.
                                                                                                                      I also just discovered one store in my area had the same but in white soy beans too. I used half the can of white ones for chicken chili and the other half for a Tuscan style white bean spread. I typically would use cannellini beans for those things, but these were an excellent-not just good- substitution.

                                                                                                                      1. re: sedimental

                                                                                                                        I have yet to see the white ones, may have to get those online.

                                                                                                                        Hey, look, they now make pasta out of them!

                                                                                                                        I haven't tried this one, so can't review it, but I used to regularly buy another, discontinued brand, of black soybean angel hair. I'm going to order some and report back.

                                                                                                                      2. re: mcf

                                                                                                                        I tried to pick some up today at the commissary, & they've stopped carrying them...I was so bummed, I'm going to have to put in a request. I was going to make chicken chili for dinner, now it'll be more soup, but that's ok, I love soup.

                                                                                                                    2. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                      Jay, some products for you that might help as you adjust. I get a lot of stuff at netrition.com when I can't find it in stores. They also have some decent tasting mixes from Big Train and Dixie Diner for muffins, brownies, etc.

                                                                                                                      I use CarbQuik bake mix from there. Maple Grove makes a decent low carb pancake mix. Buy some maple extract and add it to a supermarket sugar free maple syrup to bump up the richness, almost as good as real thing.

                                                                                                                      Diabetisweet Brown Sugar Substitute; the only brown sub I've found that tastes good.

                                                                                                                      Flax meal; don't cook, but pour some boiling water over it, add brown Diabetisweet, some butter and maybe chopped nuts for breakfast oatmeal replacement.

                                                                                                                      Joseph's Middle Eastern Bakery flat breads, pitas, tortillas

                                                                                                                      La Tortilla Factory whole grain tortillas; great for sandwich wraps, too.

                                                                                                                      Fage Total Greek yogurt, full fat or 2%. Very rich and high in protein. Add some nuts, syrup, sweetener, maybe some vanilla, it's a treat for me, especially the high fat one, super delicious and rich.

                                                                                                                      Eggs for breakfast, have an omelette with cheese, sausage, bacon, or a low carb slice of toast. Nuts for breakfast would make me feel punished, too!


                                                                                                                      Check with us before you buy the low carb stuff there... some of them suck really bad, despite the glowing reviews. Some are truly good and can get you through the early days, when you don't know what you can eat.

                                                                                                                      1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                        Jay and Thistle, check out the message boards here; lots of recipes, meal plans and discussions: http://www.lowcarbfriends.com/reciper...

                                                                                                              2. re: mcf

                                                                                                                Jay here.

                                                                                                                I've continued to eat diabetically today. Eggs w/chili and sour cream for breakfast. Numbers in 150s, due in part, I imagine, to Metformin, which gives me a headache, so I may stop taking it.

                                                                                                                Simple salad for lunch w/EVOO and vinegar.

                                                                                                                The rest of the chili, plus some sauteed mushrooms. I think that's it for the night.

                                                                                                                I'm bummed about the Metformin. I knew there was a reason I stopped taking it.

                                                                                                                1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                  I thought I was tolerating metformin just fine for about a year, as I got more and more depressed, spacy, fatigued, headachey, nausesated, with blurry vision.

                                                                                                                  Lots of folks get some or all that. I think if you keep testing your meals, you may find their what's lowering you.

                                                                                                                  Hope you're eating a bit less meagerly than it sounds!

                                                                                                                  I was on my own for dinner (DH on golf outing) so I made a sloppy dish of sliced leftover chicken, marinara, pesto and mozzarella cheese with salad. Lately, my post meal numbers haven't been higher than 111 at one hour, under 100 later on.

                                                                                                                  Oh, had two squares of dark chocolate with sea salt and almonds.

                                                                                                                  1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                    I hope you're right about the eating being what's lowering my bg. I'm not taking MF again until I have more of an idea about that.

                                                                                                                    Your dinner sounds quite delicious. I am not at the point yet where I can keep chocolate in the house.

                                                                                                                    Oh, and I went down to 124 an hour after dinner (without having taken the second dose of MF). That's the lowest ever.

                                                                                                                    1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                      Wow, great post meal number so fast! I hope you're taking some confidence from that and will open up your menus a bit.

                                                                                                                      Right now, I have a dry rubbed grass fed, ribeye steak dry aging in the fridge. Will grill it tonight, along with some veggies (you could use the sear and oven finish method to get a great result since you can't grill at your apt.) and serve with lime/garlic/chili butter and salad, too.

                                                                                                                      I hope you're keeping a log of your post meal results and what you ate to share with your care providers.

                                                                                                                      You're going to find that after several months of this, your insulin sensitivity is so improved that you tolerate more carbs (not pasta meals or regular sandwiches necessarily) than you do now, and can fit them in later in the day.

                                                                                                                      1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                        Just to give you confidence in the food changes you're making, this study compares the results of the standard diet recommended by the ADA dietitians for diabetes, and a high protein, low carb one. It should help you to plan your menus:

                                                                                                                        1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                          As a followup to my diagnosis, I've heard from a nutritionist (next class is a month from now) & went in today to talk to a diabetic nurse/educator. I did pick up some new info, but she said I could continue to eat the things I'm eating now, just in smaller portions, & that I need the right kind of carbs, whole wheat instead of white bread. She said I should be testing 2 hrs after meals, & not to try & make radical changes right away.

                                                                                                                          I'm going to keep taking the Metformin, but I'm going to really alter my diet & up my exercise (the fitbit flex is still back ordered on Amazon). I'm still hoping since my numbers are borderline (highest has been 115), if I focus & track my progress (everything-bp, bg, activity), I'll be be able to figure out what to do.

                                                                                                                          Right now (after a plain salad), I'm having chili made w/ leftover top round, smoked chicken thighs, rotel tomatoes & chiles, pinto beans (I love beans in chile, more than meat, & normally I'd use pintos & black beans, still haven't gotten the blk soybeans), scallions over a tbsp of rice (yes, I measured). I'd love some cornbread w/ this, but that will have to wait until later, when I'm more confident about my choices....

                                                                                                                          1. re: thistle5

                                                                                                                            Yeah, she's wrong about whole wheat. All wheat is a serious spike food, even bran, IME. And you have to eat thousands of calores of wheat to get a bit of the nutrition in veggies.

                                                                                                                            Your meter and how you feel after meals will let you decide.

                                                                                                                        2. re: mcf

                                                                                                                          Yes, I've been saving all the info.

                                                                                                                          Today's numbers so far:

                                                                                                                          124 @ 6:40 AM. Haven’t eaten. Went back to sleep w/o eating.

                                                                                                                          154 @ 9:10 AM. I haven’t eaten a single thing.

                                                                                                                          10:00 AM: eggs, mushrooms, butter, cream

                                                                                                                          163 @ 11:03

                                                                                                                          12:30 crab w/salad

                                                                                                                          131 @ 2:49 PM

                                                                                                                          Do you have an idea why I would go from 124 to 154 after sleeping for 2.5 hours, but not eating anything?

                                                                                                                          What kind of carbs do you mean, if not pasta?

                                                                                                                          1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                            Yes, A liver dump. When your body has been used to running on very high glucose levels, your liver will "dump" glucose into your blood stream to make up the deficit it thinks you're running.

                                                                                                                            That gets better over time. It's very common for those who run high numbers to go higher if they don't eat in the a.m. A.M. is also when cortisol is at its peak for the day, and it raises glucose. Late afternoon it drops a lot and your results should be better.

                                                                                                                            By carbs, I mean veggies and salads. By carbs, dietitians usually tell you to eat starches and sugar and fruits. Starches are high calorie, high carb and highly glycemic.

                                                                                                                            1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                              <By carbs, I mean veggies and salads.>

                                                                                                                              I'm already eating these things. I'm not sure what you mean, therefore, when you say:

                                                                                                                              <You're going to find that after several months of this, your insulin sensitivity is so improved that you tolerate more carbs (not pasta meals or regular sandwiches necessarily) than you do now, and can fit them in later in the day.>

                                                                                                                              1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                I mean that if you want to have some small servings once in a while, not regularly, they might not spike you. And if you have a dessert once in a while, or a piece of bread at dinner, especially with red wine, or any alchohol, that may not spike you later. But do it regularly or too big or both, and the bad results come back.

                                                                                                                                You may be able to have a cup of berries with whipped cream, though, maybe on a sugar free meringue.

                                                                                                                                I have a daily routine of eating non starch, non sugar meals. I do it so much and so tightly that when I veer off plan once in a while for a dessert or small piece of bread, or certain lower carb pastas, I don't get bad results. But I haven't had a slice of pizza with the crust in 15 years. One of two things I miss, but don't crave or think about often.

                                                                                                                                Right now, focus on seeing how low and even you can go, later you'll experiment with a broader array of foods with your meter and see how and when they fit in, and how often.

                                                                                                                                Some foods that you can't touch safely before 4 p.m. may not spike you at dinner, when cortisol is much lower, so lower glucose to start with.

                                                                                                                              2. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                <Yes, A liver dump. When your body has been used to running on very high glucose levels, your liver will "dump" glucose into your blood stream to make up the deficit it thinks you're running.

                                                                                                                                That gets better over time>

                                                                                                                                I can attest to this. Hang in there, Jay.

                                                                                                                              3. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                I'm curious, too- I would expect numbers to be lower before food, elevated after, then leveling out. My numbers seem to stay in a pretty narrow range, but never get really low.
                                                                                                                                I guess we just have to resign ourselves to doing lots of testing, at all times of the day, & (a bit difficult for me), I really have to do a lot more physically, to reset my metabolism.

                                                                                                                                1. re: thistle5

                                                                                                                                  I'm trying to deal w/ habits/cravings- I passed on my small bagel/peanut butter breakfast, & had a hb egg, carrot, & olives. & I really wanted to go get a cheese sub, after my appt. w/ the diabetes nurse, but decided to go home & have a salad & chili.

                                                                                                                                  Because since I know what I should be eating to improve my health (& I've known it, I've just been slacking), I'm trying really hard to avoid my trigger foods-s&vinegar chips, pretzels, & salted caramel biscotti (no more in the house). Arghhh, someone shoot me now.....

                                                                                                                                  1. re: thistle5

                                                                                                                                    Can you get some low carb tortillas or wraps and make it with everything you get on a cheese sub? That's what we take hiking or kayaking.

                                                                                                                                    Yeah, I keep those trigger foods out of the house. If there are samples at the store, that's when I get a bite of pastry, etc.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: thistle5

                                                                                                                                      Celery and (no sugar) peanut butter works for me in lieu of toast and PB.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: tcamp

                                                                                                                                        I eat the PB off a spoon, but celery works!

                                                                                                                                      2. re: thistle5

                                                                                                                                        thistle, there used to be Salt and vinegar almonds. A small handful of those is not the same as a bag of s&v chips, but they can hit the spot. I think they still make them.

                                                                                                                                        Also, I LOVE deli dill pickles, and at the very least keep a jar of baby dills in the fridge at all times.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: pinehurst

                                                                                                                                          I hear you on the pickles, my daughter & I always have a few jars in reserve-I'd like to say I use them for chicken salad, but sometimes, they're just pickles...

                                                                                                                                      3. re: thistle5

                                                                                                                                        You also have other health issues, and possibly meds, too, that affect things, from what you've said. One step at a time, gather the data, as you say.

                                                                                                                            2. re: mcf

                                                                                                                              I would love to see such a thread. My husband's 15-year old daughter is visiting us this summer and she has asked to LC with us - she has probably 100 lbs to lose, and has had very limited success with Weight Watchers and the like. She knows how well Atkins has worked for me and her father, but she's not as big a fan of meat, so we're going to try a more South Beach approach for her. I'd love some inspiration for meals, especially those that will appeal to teenagers!

                                                                                                                              1. re: biondanonima

                                                                                                                                Off the top of my head, I'd get the best low carb tortillas you can find (Joseph's or La Tortilla factory for me) and keep pesto, fresh tomatoes for slicing and sliced or shredded mozzarella for her to use to make quickie toaster oven pizzas.

                                                                                                                                I put them right on the rack at the highest heat setting so they crisp up. I use pesto with or wtihout tomato slices. She could use a light smear of sauce.

                                                                                                                                She can make sandwich wraps with whatever she likes.

                                                                                                                                Double or regular burgers or cheeseburgers (with whatever meat she'll eat) on Arnold Flax and grain sandwich thins (not super low carb, but much less than she's probably eating).

                                                                                                                                I made eggplant noodles using the julienne blade on my mandoline, sauteed with garlic, olive oil, torn basil, diced tomatoes, hot pepper flakes, added cream at the end.

                                                                                                                                Meatballs made with oat bran or low carb crumbs and 4 eggs per lb of meat for binding.

                                                                                                                                Maybe chicken breasts marinated in Brianna's Mandarin or less sweet dressing, grilled over low heat, sliced and served over a big salad with goat or other cheese, nuts, olives,etc.

                                                                                                                                For snacks, sugar snap peas and dip. I'm addicted to seaweed crisps as snacks when I want one.

                                                                                                                                I did a hot weather dinner the other night of egg salad, chicken salad and shrimp salad over the home grown lettuce I cannot pick fast enough (it grows back so fast!).

                                                                                                                                This is a GREAT recipe for low carbers if you swap Eden black soybeans for the black beans: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/in...

                                                                                                                                She might like rhubarb cobbler made with sweetener and an almond crumb and chopped nut topping; I just wing it, add a bit of xanthan gum for thickening the fruit. Great with heavy cream poured over it.

                                                                                                                                You could make skewered meats with veggies with an assortment of meats that are cubed and marinated and let her choose the ones she wants to eat. Use small onions or chunk, peppers (those bags of mini peppers at Costco are great for this), cherry tomatoes, etc... serve with tzatziki (Fairway has a good fresh one in the dairy dept).

                                                                                                                                Just off the top of my head.

                                                                                                                                1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                  Thanks for the ideas - things will definitely get a lot easier once we're done with Phase I of South Beach and we can reintroduce LC tortillas and the like, but for now those things are out. Dinner isn't a huge problem, since I will be there to cook it, but I need to find easy things to keep in the fridge for breakfasts and lunches. Unfortunately, she is lazy in terms of food prep and has no idea what she's doing in the kitchen, so she can't/won't really cook for herself, beyond throwing things in the microwave. We're planning to work on that a bit this summer - I'm hoping to hammer home the idea that the best way to control your own food intake and lose the weight is to learn to cook for yourself.

                                                                                                                                  On a related note, that rhubarb cobbler sounds great - I'd love to hear more about how you use xanthan gum. I've been experimenting with it lately but I haven't found a good way to get it to dissolve evenly - I try sprinkling it very lightly over the surface of whatever liquid I'm thickening, but even so it tends to clump. Also, a recommendation for your favorite brands of xylitol/erythritol would be very welcome!

                                                                                                                                  I think I'm going to go start a "What's for LC Dinner" thread - keep all the good ideas in one place!

                                                                                                                                  1. re: biondanonima

                                                                                                                                    Lazy is why I suggested the toaster oven pizzas and wraps. Fage yogurt with some sweetener and vanilla is delicious, add walnuts and I love it even more.

                                                                                                                                    As to xanthan gum, I haven't had luck adding it to liquids. I just sprinkle it onto the cut up rhubarb, a little goes a long way, add some lemon juice, cinnamon, a bit of salt and sweetener mix it up (I never measure) and make a topping with butter, almond meal, chopped nuts and maybe some carbalose flour, but mostly just nuts. I sweeten the topping with Diabetisweet brown sugar sub.

                                                                                                                                    I don't think brands matter with the sugar alcohols. I used to buy xylitolnow online, now I get Now Foods xylitol at Wild by Nature. I get basic generic erythritol at netrition.com, too.

                                                                                                                          2. Hi thistle5,

                                                                                                                            Wow, I just tried to read through this thread and my head is also spinning.

                                                                                                                            I would suggest that you utilize CH for low carb meal ideas but in the meantime find yourself a good registered dietician who can help you better understand carb counting, reading food labels, and simply how to make good choices based on what foods appeal to you. A Certified Diabetes Educator is another good resource. And a great online community of diabetics (type 1 & 2, LADA's, etc) is www.tudiabetes.org.

                                                                                                                            Good luck in your diabetes management and stay the course. :)

                                                                                                                            1. If you need to lose weight, I would recommend losing weight as the #1 thing you can do to control your diabetes (Type 2). It all has to do with insulin resistance.

                                                                                                                              As to the dietary approach, low carb will help you lose weight and control your blood sugar level. What you eat depends upon your preference. For example, I like meat and leafy greens.

                                                                                                                              After you've been eating low carb for a few weeks, if you want to add carbs, eat a small controlled amount (to control the craving) and let your glucometer guide you by taking after meal readings.

                                                                                                                              There's a lot of information on the web. There is no definitive answer. It boils down to your likes and dislikes to find a path for you.

                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                              1. re: dave_c

                                                                                                                                "If you need to lose weight, I would recommend losing weight as the #1 thing you can do to control your diabetes (Type 2). It all has to do with insulin resistance."

                                                                                                                                Not exactly the case. I'm extremely insulin sensitive, thanks to my diet, and quite a few diabetics have cortisol at the root of it, not IR.

                                                                                                                                Glucose comes under quick control with carb restriction whether or not one loses weight. The changes one makes to lose the weight are the key, not the lbs themselves.

                                                                                                                                I was at my worst insulin resistance when I was ideal weight, much less so now, heavier.

                                                                                                                              2. I'm a veteran Chowhounder (I post mostly on the New Jersey board) who just received the official diagnosis a few days ago, along with high cholesterol and high b/p--the trifecta! As one who has always lived to eat, this is a tough one, especially when I learned that no matter what I do, I will always be a diabetic. However, in addition to the meds, my MD wrote me a prescription to attend a class that was given by the diabetes clinic at one of the local hospitals (it was covered by my insurance). I learned a lot from the nurse-practitioner and the dietician, and one of the other people who attended that day told me about a smart-phone app called "loseit", which I downloaded and am using as a food diary--an essential component of a treatment plan. The good news is that the weight has begun to come off, and as the dietician told us, controlling portion size and eliminating the foods we should not be having in the first place will both lower our blood sugar and promote weight loss.

                                                                                                                                7 Replies
                                                                                                                                1. re: albinoni

                                                                                                                                  We may be diabetic for good, but some of us have completely arrested the progress of diabetes and reversed its effects using diet alone, or diet with minimal drug use. Here's the single most important, reliable and empowering tool you're ever going to have for managing your diabetes based upon what's right for you, not the damaging advice doled out by dietitians and diabetes groups funded by cereal, sugar and drug companies: http://www.phlaunt.com/diabetes/flyer...

                                                                                                                                  Welcome to a club no one wants to join. I've been managing my diabetes in low normal, non diabetic numbers for 16 years with diet and no meds. Reversed advanced kidney and nerve damage, labile hypertension and lipids ratios. There's nothing wrong with high cholesterol, but you want high HDL and low triglycerides, both of which respond extremely fast and well to carb restriction and increased fat and protein.

                                                                                                                                  Others here have used meters and experimentation with food choices to get tight control, too. I have never found portion size to be of importance so much as cutting out starches and sugars including fruit, and having no carbs before the afternoon, when they don't raise glucose as much due to diurnal hormone rhythm, and protein, protein, protein. It keeps you feeling satisfied and lowers glucose post meal. Protein and fat do not raise glucose, only carbs do, so if you spike that's what you need to cut back on.

                                                                                                                                  And always test at one hour post meal; almost everyone's glucose peak occurs 45-70 minutes after the first bite.

                                                                                                                                  Here's a great thread to help you out with ideas for meals: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/968106

                                                                                                                                  1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                    Just wanted to say thanks for all of your posts. I was diagnosed with prediabetes a few weeks ago and reading these threads has been a huge help.

                                                                                                                                    I've almost completely cut out carbs and sugars, except fruit which doesn't seem to majorly impact my glucose. For the most part my levels have been great.

                                                                                                                                    I've been feeling down the last couple days as my readings have been high and can't quite figure out why. But I came back here and to phlaunt.com, read some success stories and feel a little more hopeful.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: donovt

                                                                                                                                      Thanks for your post, it's so nice to know when someone is helped and can move from worry and progression to control and reversal.

                                                                                                                                      Use that flyer from phlaunt.com and you'll soon figure out what drives up your readings and how much of it you can have, if any. Fructose, the sugar in fruit, strongly induces insulin resistance, so until you get control, it might be helpful to cut it out.

                                                                                                                                      If you haven't come across this phenomenon, diabetics typically don't tolerate any or many carbs early in the day, but get less of a spike as daily cortisol production (raises bg) tapers down, sharply after about 3-5 p.m.

                                                                                                                                      This is a marathon, not a sprint, so don't get down, just "eat to your meter" and when you realize how many allergies improve, aches and pains go away, and how reversible the progress of type 2 DM is, you'll realize that this may have been the spur to the best health you've had in a long time.

                                                                                                                                      It's early days for you, and if any uncertainties or oddities pop up in your journey, just ask us and someone will have had the experience or have read something somewhere...

                                                                                                                                      Good on you for taking initiative and control!

                                                                                                                                      P.S. If your readings are inexplicably higher, use the ocntrol solution to test your meter and strips. Also make sure to rinse your testing finger with plain warm water; food residue shows up as elevated gliucose. If you're coming down with flu or having allergies from pollen, those can cause cortisol elevations leading to higher bg, too. Just a few possibilities.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                        It really *is* a marathon...a change in lifestyle that doesn't happen overnight.

                                                                                                                                        Upthread to donovt, keep your chin up!! And yes, watch the fruit. My H (full blown Type 2 w/ high cholesterol and high bp...and a minor stroke) has been doing a good job of subbing out veggies as snacks with his lunch instead of the usual apple n orange combo. It makes a difference! Also, he learned that he can tolerate some fruit (berries) but not all...anyway, your body/meter will tell you what's up.

                                                                                                                                        Also, my H used to experience a "liver dump" that caused high morning readings (pre breakfast) because he'd essentially fasted since 7pm the night before. That was scary....but it tapered off. Be patient. All will be well!

                                                                                                                                        1. re: pinehurst

                                                                                                                                          Thanks for the encouragement (you too MCF).

                                                                                                                                          I had relatively high readings after lunch and dinner yesterday. Then, today was the first day that my morning fasting level was at pre-diabetic levels since starting metformin and stopping carbs. So I was definitely feeling discouraged.

                                                                                                                                        2. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                          Thanks!! I need to get some control solution, and possibly be more diligent with the hand washing.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: donovt

                                                                                                                                            I can't tell you how many times I and other diabetics have gotten out of whack readings only to get lower ones after rinsing hands. Don't use alcohol, you don't even need soap unless there's something sticky on them. And warm water helps make the blood drop come easily.