Lose Weight With Type 1 Diabetes
WRITTEN BY: Cliff Scherb Editor’s Note: Cliff Scherb, Founder of Glucose Advisors and TriStar Athletes LLC, is a nutrition and fitness expert. He consults through virtually teaching his decision support system – Engine1 the app and its methodologies to aspiring T1 individuals and athletes. Cliff also creates custom training programs and insulin plans for endurance athletes, using Training Stress Modeling and real-time coaching. To inquire about coaching openings, FB LIVE sessions, and general questions please email [email protected]. Losing weight can be difficult — add Type 1 diabetes to the mix with its daily management demands — and it’s even more of a challenge. I know, because I’ve been a Type 1 diabetic for 29 years and I’m also an endurance athlete. The internet is saturated in advice on how to lose weight with or without Type 1, so it’s hard to know what is worth while and what will just waste your time — or worse, can negatively impact your health. I’m not going to declare all out war on carbohydrates, or tell you can or can’t drink your calories in the form of olive oil, or feast and fast with cayenne peppers and maple syrup. No, the real distilled learning from my years of consulting and data analysis shows that a balanced, low-insulin diet with nutrient timing and activity is the best way to lose weight with Type 1 diabetes. It also helps you maintain brain and body function as well as energy levels. If you are reading this you’ve probably already given this some thought and know why it’s important to lose weight and/or lean out, but I maintain it’s all about performance! Performing means living a longer or healthier life or if you’re an athlete, it can also translate to beating out your competition. Things that Impact w Continue reading >>
Low Carb Vs. High Carb - My Surprising 24-day Diabetes Diet Battle
Twitter summary: What I learned from doubling my carb intake: the same average blood sugar, but four times as much hypoglycemia, more work, stress, & danger. As a teenager, I ate a high carb diet that included lots of Goldfish crackers, white sandwich bread, pasta, and white potatoes. It was tasty, but it put my blood sugars on a wild roller coaster every single day. Things turned around in college when I learned about nutrition, got on CGM, and spent time with health conscious friends. I soon realized that eating less than 30 grams of carbs at one time was a complete gamechanger. I’ve stuck with that approach ever since. But is this lower carb method actually better for my blood sugars, or have I just been fooling myself? To find out, I took on a somewhat terrifying self-tracking experiment: 12 days of my usual, lower-carb diet, which averaged 146 grams of carbs per day (21% of daily calories). My carbs were primarily from nuts, seeds, vegetables, and a bit of fruit. 12 days of a higher-carb, high whole-grain diet, which averaged 313 grams of carbs per day (43% of my daily calories). My sources of carbs were NOT junk food: plain oatmeal, whole wheat bread, quinoa, wild rice, and fruit. Neither of these was unrealistic. My lower-carb diet was nowhere near Atkins level (20 grams per day), and the higher-carb diet was consistent with the “average” 45% carb diet in people with diabetes (according to ADA). Even though this was a one-person (n=1) experiment, I wanted to be as scientific and fair as possible: eating whole, unprocessed foods in both periods; counting and tracking every single gram of carbohydrate (LoseIt! app); wearing CGM 24/7 and downloading the glucose data to document what happened (Dexcom G5 and Clarity); taking insulin before meals (5-15 minutes pr Continue reading >>
Type 1 Diabetes – Know Your Carbs
It’s been a busy week for 17-year-old Lauren Stanford. She had powder puff practice, a Model United Nations meeting, soccer practice, and a dinner date with her dad. In between all these activities she still managed to go to the gym four times and work a few shifts at her part-time job. On top of all that, Lauren took time each day (as she does every day) to manage the carbohydrates in her diet. This is a major priority for Lauren because, since being diagnosed at age 6, she has been living with type 1 diabetes. Actively involved in JDRF’s Children’s Congress, Lauren is an advocate for diabetes awareness and a strong proponent for diabetes research. Diabetes: Know Your Carbs It’s important for people with type 1 diabetes to know how many carbs they eat. That way they can match their insulin dose with what they eat and ultimately have better control over blood sugar levels. Foods that are highest in carbohydrates are starches, fruits, and dairy, as well as combination-type foods like beans and rice, lasagna, and pizza. Non-starchy vegetables like carrots also contain carbs, but in smaller amounts (5 grams per serving). Each serving of starch, fruit, and milk contain 15 grams of carbs. A serving size can be one slice of bread, a small container of unsweetened yogurt or a 1/2 cup of strawberries. Protein and fat do not contain carbs. Lauren says she often overhears her friends talking about how many carbs are in different foods. “I want to interrupt and say there are way more carbs in them than you think!” she says. Lauren has had plenty of practice reading labels and watching portion sizes. Even though she now uses an insulin pump, which gives her a lot of flexibility with food, carb counting has stuck with her. She’s comfortable calling herself “a label r Continue reading >>
Guest Blog Post: Paleo And Type 1 Diabetes
Guest post by Lindsay Swanson. This Guest Post includes information that does not conform to the Joslin nutritional guidelines. We have received a number of inquiries about the Paleo diet, and requests for examples of people who follow this diet, so we asked Lindsay to share her experiences. Her opinions are her own and not those of the Joslin Clinic. I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes when I was 25 years old – a challenging and life changing experience. Looking back, I’m just thankful I survived the diagnosis. Now, I’m thriving with diabetes, and more so in recent years, as a result of transitioning to a paleo lifestyle. In addition to the technology and medical devices I use to manage my diabetes, I’ve worked diligently over the last three years to overhaul my lifestyle. Through an introduction from a close friend, I decided to try the paleo lifestyle not because of type 1 diabetes, but because of years of undiagnosed chronic GI issues. I didn’t know a lot about it, so the journey began with a lot of reading and research, and the more I read, the more that I realized I firmly believed in the foundation of what paleo is; nourishing my body and mind by eating the foods and nutrients I was intended to. Step-by-step, I started eliminating different groups of foods, a slow transition over time and I continued to feel increasingly better. I removed grains, then soy, then legumes, then corn, then rice, etc. I started trying different kinds of foods, experimenting in the kitchen, cooking with different methods, and became increasingly passionate about food. I admit, when I first decided to make this transition living with type 1 diabetes, I was terrified. I had long believed that I had to take at least a minimum amount of insulin to survive and not become ill, via Continue reading >>
How Many Carbs Should A Diabetic Eat In A Day?
Diabetes affects the way the body metabolizes sugar. Whether you have type 1, type 2 or gestational diabetes, paying close attention to the amount of carbohydrates you're eating is critical. With proper planning and education, a healthy diabetic diet -- which includes carbohydrates in moderation -- is just as satisfying as a regular one. Video of the Day How Many Carbs Can Diabetics Eat? All foods that have carbohydrates raise blood sugar levels. But some carbohydrates raise blood sugar levels more than others. By keeping track of how many carbohydrates are in foods, diabetics are better able to control their blood sugar levels and subsequently manage their diabetes. The American Diabetes Association recommends that adults with diabetes consume about 45 to 60 grams of carbohydrate per meal, which adds up to 135 to 180 grams of carbohydrates per day. Note that some individuals may need more or fewer carbohydrates. Consult a registered dietitian for an individualized recommendation. The three main type of carbohydrates include starches, sugars and fiber. Starchy foods, also known as complex carbohydrates, include peas, corn, beans, grains, whole wheat pasta, oats, barley and rice. Sugars can occur naturally -- in milk and fruit, for example -- or be added during processing. Common names for sugar include table sugar, brown sugar, honey, beet sugar and high fructose corn syrup. Fiber is the indigestible part of plant foods that passes through the intestine when you consume fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts and legumes. The general recommendation is that adults consume 25 to 30 grams of fiber per day. Fiber offers an added benefit for diabetics, because it helps control blood sugar levels by slowing the release of sugar into the bloodstream after a meal. Carbohydrate C Continue reading >>
Carb Counting For Diabetes: Meal Planning To Manage Blood Sugar
Carb counting is one form of meal planning that can help people with diabetes manage their blood sugar levels. Diabetes is an incurable, yet manageable, medical condition where the body's blood sugar levels are too high. This happens when there is not enough insulin in the body, or the insulin does not work properly. Insulin is a hormone that is made by the pancreas. It helps the body to process glucose (the simplest form of sugar), which is used by the cells to create energy. When this doesn't happen, sugar stays in the bloodstream. This can lead to serious health problems. This article explores carb counting as a meal planning method that can help people with any form of diabetes manage their blood sugar levels. Diabetes and the role of carbohydrates In the United States in 2014, approximately 9 percent of Americans, totaling nearly 29 million people, were found to have diabetes. Diabetes is classified into different types and includes: Type 1 diabetes: In this type, the body does not produce insulin. This is due to the body attacking its own insulin producing cells within the pancreas. It is most commonly diagnosed in children and young adults. Type 2 diabetes: In this type, insulin is either not made in high enough quantities or not used efficiently. This form of diabetes affects people of all ages and is the most common type. Gestational diabetes: Some pregnant women will develop a typically temporary form of diabetes called gestational diabetes. This raises their risk of developing type 2 diabetes later in life. Most times, once the baby is born, this form of diabetes disappears. What happens after carbohydrates are eaten? The digestive system breaks down the carbohydrates into sugar. This enters the bloodstream and is used by the body's cells for energy. Typicall Continue reading >>
Meal Planning For Children With Type 1 Diabetes
When you have a child with type 1 diabetes, it's easy to get carried away with the notion of a diabetic diet. But in reality, your child's dietary needs are no different from a child who doesn't have diabetes. Of course, there are certain considerations you need to be aware of, and understanding the carbohydrate content in food is arguably the most important. In this article, you will learn about the importance of carb counting, with a special emphasis on how fiber and sugar alcohols may also affect your child's blood glucose (blood sugar) levels. Nutrition Basics There's really no such thing as a diabetic diet. That's why you should focus instead on providing your child with balanced nutrition. A good nutritional resource to consult is the Food Pyramid. In recent years, the United States Department of Agriculture has made some updates to the standard Food Pyramid that most of us grew up knowing. Instead of being a set-in-stone guideline, now you can create personalized eating plans that are flexible and balanced. To refresh your memory on healthy eating, visit ChooseMyPlate.gov. There are 3 main nutrients in foods—fats, proteins, and carbohydrates. These essential nutrients affect blood glucose in different ways. Fats: Fat typically doesn't break down into sugar in your blood, and in small amounts, it doesn't affect your blood glucose levels. But fat does slow down digestion, and this can cause your blood glucose to rise slower than it normally would. After a high-fat meal, your child's blood glucose may be elevated up to 12 hours after the meal. Proteins: Protein doesn't affect blood glucose unless you eat more than your body needs. In most cases, you need only about 6 ounces or less (which is about the size of 2 decks of cards) at each meal. Carbohydrates: Carbohyd Continue reading >>
How To Count Carbs For Better Blood Sugar Control
Your doctor may have told you to “count carbs” or use something called the glycemic index to plan your meals. A healthy diet consists of a balance of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. However, people with type 2 diabetes need to watch carbohydrates carefully. Why? Because when any food that contains carbohydrates is digested, it turns into sugar, which increases your blood-glucose level. It’s pretty basic: Eating too many carbs can raise the amount of sugar in your bloodstream and lead to complications. The key for people like you with type 2 diabetes is to eat carbs in limited amounts at each meal and when you snack. Total carbs should make up about 45 to 60 percent of your daily diet (and be spaced out throughout the day) if you have type 2 diabetes. There’s no one diet that works for everyone with type 2 diabetes — there are just too many variables: Age, weight, level of physical activity, medications, as well as daily routine and personal preference need to be taken into account. So here’s where your diabetes care team comes in: Talk to your dietitian or diabetes educator to determine the right carb-counting number for you so you’ll be able to provide your body with a steady flow of energy throughout the day, maintain a healthy weight, and manage your blood sugar. The Basics of Counting Carbs Counting carbs is an effective way to monitor your carb intake and keep sugar from building up in the blood. You can use these basic tips to help manage your carb consumption: Foods that contain carbohydrates include starches, fruits, vegetables, dairy products, beans, and sweets. Most people with type 2 diabetes should stick to eating around 45 to 60 grams of carbohydrates per meal. For foods that have nutrition labels, add up the grams of carbohydrates per serv Continue reading >>
Diabetes & Ketogenic Diet: Can You Manage Your Diabetes On A Ketogenic Diet?
In this article we will cover what a Ketogenic diet is and if you can manage your diabetes while on this diet. Ketogenic diet for diabetics is a highly controversial topic, but we will break down everything here for you! As a Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE), I have to tell you from the start I will have a biased view here. Sorry, but I feel that I need to be completely honest right up front! I will however, present all the evidence that is available currently on the subject. As a CDE, I have been taught to follow the American Diabetes Association Dietary Guidelines for Americans which is low in carbohydrates, high in fiber, with fresh vegetables, fruits and whole grains. The Ketogenic Diet this article will be discussing is much lower in carbohydrates, in order to promote the state of nutritional ketosis, or the fat burning state for weight loss. What is a Ketogenic Diet? The Ketogenic Diet is a low carbohydrate diet, consisting initially of less than 20 carbohydrates per day. Not per meal, yes, you heard me correctly, per day. It is not for the faint of heart and yes I am writing from experience. Of course I have tried it! Hasn’t everybody in America at some point who has wanted to lose weight? Does it work you ask? Of course it does! The problem is how long can you keep it up? Your body uses the carbohydrates you eat for energy, so if we restrict how many carbohydrates we eat, the body has to get its fuel source from fat. A byproduct of this fat burning state are ketones which are produced; this is called nutritional ketosis. You can determine if you are in this fat burning state by purchasing urine ketone testing strips from your local pharmacy. The Ketogenic Diet with Diabetes Some precautions must be made clear; this diet is not appropriate for people with any Continue reading >>
Carbohydrate Counting & Diabetes
What is carbohydrate counting? Carbohydrate counting, also called carb counting, is a meal planning tool for people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes. Carbohydrate counting involves keeping track of the amount of carbohydrate in the foods you eat each day. Carbohydrates are one of the main nutrients found in food and drinks. Protein and fat are the other main nutrients. Carbohydrates include sugars, starches, and fiber. Carbohydrate counting can help you control your blood glucose, also called blood sugar, levels because carbohydrates affect your blood glucose more than other nutrients. Healthy carbohydrates, such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, are an important part of a healthy eating plan because they can provide both energy and nutrients, such as vitamins and minerals, and fiber. Fiber can help you prevent constipation, lower your cholesterol levels, and control your weight. Unhealthy carbohydrates are often food and drinks with added sugars. Although unhealthy carbohydrates can also provide energy, they have little to no nutrients. More information about which carbohydrates provide nutrients for good health and which carbohydrates do not is provided in the NIDDK health topic, Diabetes Diet and Eating. The amount of carbohydrate in foods is measured in grams. To count grams of carbohydrate in foods you eat, you’ll need to know which foods contain carbohydrates learn to estimate the number of grams of carbohydrate in the foods you eat add up the number of grams of carbohydrate from each food you eat to get your total for the day Your doctor can refer you to a dietitian or diabetes educator who can help you develop a healthy eating plan based on carbohydrate counting. Which foods contain carbohydrates? Foods that contain carbohydrates include grains, such as b Continue reading >>
How Low Is Low Carb?
Many agree: People with diabetes should eat a low-carb diet. Last week we looked at what “carbs” are. But what is meant by “low?” How much carbohydrate should you eat? The Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010, (PDF) recommend that healthy people get 50–65% of their calories from carbohydrates. A study posted on the American Diabetes Association (ADA) Web site agrees. For a woman eating a below-average 2,000 calories a day, 50–65% would be 250–325 grams of carb a day. The Dietary Guidelines call for “a balanced diet that includes six one-ounce (28.3 g) servings of grain foods each day.” This would mean 170 grams of carbohydrate from grains alone each day. And the average American diet includes many other carb sources. Most men eat closer to 3,000 calories a day, so their numbers would be higher. Sixty percent of 3,000 would be 1,800 calories, equivalent to 450 grams of carbohydrate each day. Anything less than the recommended range is sometimes considered “low-carb.” Most popular low-carb diets, like Atkins, South Beach, Zone, and Protein Power, are much lower, from 45% of calories down to 5%. Many diabetes experts recommend somewhat lower carb intakes than ADA does. On our site, dietitian Jacquie Craig wrote, “Most people need between 30–75 grams of carbohydrate per meal and 15–30 grams for snacks.” So that sounds like between 120 and 300 grams a day. Dr. Richard Bernstein, an MD with Type 1 diabetes and a long-time advocate of the low-carb approach to diabetes, suggests much lower intakes. He says eat 6 grams of carbs at breakfast, and snacks, 12 grams each at lunch and dinner. So that would be about 40 grams of carbs per day. If 12 grams per meal sounds like a small amount, it is. It’s about the amount in an average slice of bread. An Continue reading >>
How Many Carbohydrates Should I Eat?
Wouldn’t it be nice if food was so heavily connected to our well-being in life with diabetes? How simple that would be. Unfortunately, the food we eat–especially when it comes to carbohydrates–definitely, absolutely, most certainly has an impact on our blood sugars and overall health (more and more research, believe it or not, actually ties carbohydrate consumption to high triglyceride levels–not dietary fat and cholesterol). But the big question remains: just how many carbohydrates should a person with diabetes eat? Unfortunately, there isn’t just ONE answer to this question, even in the medical word. There are severely low carb diets and there are doctor’s recommending at least 200 carbs per day which is actually quite high. In the end, you need to reflect on your own abilities, discipline, and goals. And then choose an approach that you can maintain. To clarify, carb “quantities,” here’s a generalized description: the average American consumes well over 300 grams of carbs per day. standard physician recommendation for people with type 2 diabetes = 200 grams per day. low-to-medium carb quantity = between 100 to 200 grams per day lower-carb diet = under 100 grams per day very low-carb diet (also known as ketogenic diet) = under 50 grams of carbs per day In today’s world you could probably find about 357 different answers to this question! And not only is it confusing, it’s overwhelming, which might lead you to giving up entirely or constantly bouncing between eating zero carbs (ah!) and all the carbs in sight. A diabetic’s ultimate version of some sort of frustrating yo-yo dieting cycle. If that yo-yoing frustration sounds like you, then you might find the following helpful: The right amount of carbs to eat is the amount that helps you achieve y Continue reading >>
How Many Carbs For Type 1 Diabetics?
If you have type 1 diabetes, you should be eating extremely low carb, right? This keeps your insulin requirements to a minimum and assures the best possible blood sugar control, according to intuition and the personal experience of many PWDs. But guess what? New research does not agree. Yesterday, diabetes nutrition expert Hope Warshaw sent me an email flagging a new study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition which concludes that — get this — "Among intensively treated patients with type 1 diabetes, diets higher in fat and saturated fat and lower in carbohydrate are associated with worse glycemic control, independent of exercise and BMI." The researchers, including Dr. David Nathan of DCCT fame, followed 532 subjects for five years in this study, the first to closely examine "the association of diet composition with subsequent HbA1c concentrations" in Type 1s who use insulin in various quantities throughout the day. The substitution of fat for carbohydrate was associated with higher A1c levels, about a full percentage point, if I'm reading the study correctly. Both Warshaw and the study authors seem to indicate that this data lends credence to the ADA recommendations that between 45% and 60% of a diabetic's diet should be carbohydrates. WtF?* * Excuse my language again, but can it really be that we're all totally misled in our knowledge (belief?) that low-carb=better BG control. I think not. I printed out the study and took a copy with me to my endo appointment yesterday. She looked the document over and chuckled. Research is so nebulous, we agreed. "You can find all sorts of associations supporting contradictory hypotheses," she said. Ain't it the truth! But here's the really smart thing she said: "The way that carbohydrates effect people with di Continue reading >>
A Beginnerâ€™s Guide To Carbohydrate Counting
Pia has a Bachelors Degree in Clinical Nutrition from Cornell University and a Masters of Science in Nutrition from New York University. She completed a dietetic internship at the Bronx Veterans Medical Center in order to become a registered dietitian. Prior to joining BD, Pia educated people with diabetes about medical nutrition therapy in a private physicians office, an outpatient clinic at a hospital and a nursing home where she counseled patients one-on-one and in group classes. This slide show explains: â€¢ What foods contain carbohydrates â€¢ How much of these foods you can eat â€¢ Where to look up the carb content of foods Next slide This is not true! Carbohydrates (carbs) have the greatest effect on your blood sugar. 90 to 100 percent of the carbs you eat appear in your bloodstream as blood glucose within minutes to hours after you have eaten. You may be asked to count the carbs that you eat. The carbs you will need to count are both: â€¢ starches that break down slowly into sugar â€¢ simple sugars that break down into blood glucose almost right away Many people believe that a diabetes meal plan means that you just have to cut back on sugar. Previous slide Next slide Products made from grains, such as pasta, bread, rolls, bagels, crackers, cereals and baked goods Starches include certain vegetables, all grains, and products made from grains All of these foods contain starches: Starchy Vegetables Regular and sweet potatoes, corn, fresh peas and lima beans Legumes Dried beans and peas Grains Grains like wheat, oats, barley, and rice Sugars include the natural sugars in fruit and milk, plus certain sweeteners added to prepared foods and drinks Fruit and fruit juices Foods that contain fruit or fruit juices such as jams, jellies, and fruit smooth Continue reading >>
How Many Carbs Should A Diabetic Take A Day?
Are you a diabetic patient? Not sure how many carbs should a diabetic have a day? Are you struggling to maintain your blood sugar level? Do you still need to lose weight? Well, read this article to find the answers. Let’s find what American Diabetes Association says about it. ADA suggests that a diabetic patient should take 45% of a day’s calories from carbohydrates. This means that a person should eat 45 – 60 grams per meal and total 135 – 230 grams per day. On the other hand, one intelligentsia of the diet says that 135 – 230 grams per day of carbs are too much for diabetic patients. They argue that diabetic patients should eat far fewer carbohydrates than the suggestion of ADA. There are two types of diabetic patients, Type 1 and Type 2. Remember that the number of carbohydrates are different for both types of patients. Let’s go deep into both types and analyze what amount of carbohydrates a diabetic patient should have per day. Type 1 Diabetes In type 1 diabetes, the human body does not produce insulin that is mandatory to regulate blood sugar level. Basically, insulin allows the sugar to enter into body cells and store excess sugar into fats in the body. How do carbohydrates affect the blood sugar level of type 1 patients? The body gets calories from carbs, proteins and fats. However, excess carbs intake affects blood sugar level badly. Unlike the proteins and fats, when carbs are digested by the body, that are converted into glucose (Sugar) and, eventually, it enters into the blood. Therefore, eating a high amount of carbs means that you are raising the blood sugar level and you need to inject more insulin to regularize the blood sugar level. Most catastrophic results come at that point when your body does not produce insulin and you inject. You are un Continue reading >>