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Is A Low Carb Diet Good For A Diabetic?

Why A Low-carb Diet Should Be The First Approach In Diabetes Treatment

Why A Low-carb Diet Should Be The First Approach In Diabetes Treatment

A panel of medical experts, including our own Advisory Board member Dr. Richard K. Bernstein, presents the evidence for low-carbohydrate diets as initial therapy… Please note: the following summary was excerpted by Jennifer Piggot, LECOM PharmD candidate, from the original article which can be found here. We encourage all interested readers to look over the full article and supporting research. The current state of diabetes care in the United States health system shows the inability of existing recommendations to control the epidemic of diabetes, the failure of low-fat diets to improve obesity rates, cardiovascular risk or general health, and the continual reports of serious side effects of commonly prescribed diabetic medications. The success of low carbohydrate diets in the treatment of diabetes and metabolic syndrome without significant side effects point to the need for a reappraisal of dietary guidelines. The immediate benefits of carbohydrate restriction in diabetes patients include reduction of high blood glucose, less requirement for weight loss, fewer side effects than medication therapy and the reduction or elimination of medications. This article outlines the current evidence supporting the use of low-carbohydrate diets as the first approach to treating type 2 diabetes, and an effective adjunct to pharmacology in type 1. These results represent the best documented and least controversial studies. It is known that diabetics are defective in response to carbohydrates, which can lead to hyperglycemia. Hussain et al. compared a very low carbohydrate ketogenic diet (VLCKD) with a low calorie diet over a 24-week period in diabetics and non-diabetics. Blood glucose dropped more dramatically in the VLCKD group than in those given the low-calorie diet. Patients with Continue reading >>

How To Count Carbs In 10 Common Foods

How To Count Carbs In 10 Common Foods

What are carbohydrates? Carbohydrates are sugar-based molecules found in many foods, from cookies to cantaloupes. If you have diabetes, planning your carb intake—and sticking to the plan—is critical to keep blood sugar on an even keel and to cut your risk of diabetes-related problems like heart disease and stroke. Whether or not you have diabetes, you should aim to get about half your calories from complex carbohydrates (which are high in fiber), 20-25% from protein, and no more than 30% from fat, says Lalita Kaul, PhD, RD, a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. How to read a food label The Nutrition Facts label lists the total amount of carbohydrates per serving, including carbs from fiber, sugar, and sugar alcohols. (If you're counting carbs in your diet, be aware that 15 grams of carbohydrates count as one serving.) Sugar alcohols are often used in sugar-free foods, although they still deliver calories and carbs. Sugar alcohols and fiber don't affect blood sugar as much as other carbs, because they're not completely absorbed. If food contains sugar alcohol or 5 or more grams of fiber, you can subtract half of the grams of these ingredients from the number of total carbs. (See more details at the American Diabetes Association and University of California, San Francisco.) How many carbs per day? If you eat 2,000 calories a day, you should consume about 250 grams of complex carbohydrates per day. A good starting place for people with diabetes is to have roughly 45 to 60 grams of carbs per meal and 15 to 30 grams for snacks. While snacks are key for people with diabetes who use insulin or pills that increase insulin production (otherwise, they run the risk of low blood sugar), they aren’t essential for non-insulin users. The goal for anyone with diab Continue reading >>

A Guide To Healthy Low-carb Eating With Diabetes

A Guide To Healthy Low-carb Eating With Diabetes

Diabetes is a chronic disease that has reached epidemic proportions. It currently affects over 400 million people worldwide (1). Although diabetes is a complicated disease, maintaining good blood sugar control can greatly reduce the risk of complications (2, 3). One of the ways to achieve better blood sugar levels is to follow a low-carb diet. This article provides a detailed overview of low-carb diets for managing diabetes. If you have diabetes, your body cannot process carbohydrates effectively. Normally, when you eat carbs, they are broken down into small units of glucose, which end up as blood sugar. When blood sugar levels go up, the pancreas responds by producing the hormone insulin. This hormone allows the blood sugar to enter cells. In healthy people, blood sugar levels remain within a narrow range throughout the day. In diabetes, however, this system doesn't work the way it is supposed to. This is a big problem, because having both too high and too low blood sugar levels can cause severe harm. There are several types of diabetes, but the two most common ones are type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Both of these conditions can be diagnosed at any age. In type 1 diabetes, an autoimmune process destroys the insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas. Diabetics must inject insulin several times a day to ensure that glucose gets into the cells and stays at a healthy level in the bloodstream (4). In type 2 diabetes, the beta cells at first produce enough insulin, but the body's cells are resistant to its action, so blood sugar remains high. To compensate, the pancreas produces more insulin, attempting to bring blood sugar down. Over time, the beta cells lose their ability to produce enough insulin (5). Of the three nutrients -- protein, carbs and fat -- carbs have the grea Continue reading >>

How To Start A Low-carb Diabetes Diet

How To Start A Low-carb Diabetes Diet

There is strong evidence that eating fewer carbohydrates helps improve blood sugars. This makes sense intuitively: carbohydrates are broken down by the body into sugar, directly leading to high blood sugars. Eat fewer carbohydrates and you will typically end up with less sugar in your blood. For those with type 2 diabetes or are newly diagnosed with type 1, fewer carbohydrates mean that your body’s natural insulin production will have an easier time processing your blood sugars. If you take insulin, you will have a much easier time taking the appropriate amount of insulin. Before you start a low-carbohydrate diet, talk with your healthcare provider. If you are taking blood sugar-lowering medications, then eating fewer carbohydrates without lowering your medication dosage may cause dangerous low blood sugars. There are studies that show that people with diabetes can achieve success on both low-carbohydrate and high-carbohydrate diets. Those pursuing high-carb diets are often primarily eating more vegetarian or vegan diets that are high in complex carbohydrates and fiber. They are also frequently athletes who burn large amounts of sugar during exercise. We will look at other dietary approaches in a future article. If you would like to dive into the research on low-carb diets for diabetes, please skip to the last section in this article. Also, be sure to read Key Facts About Carbohydrates Everyone with Diabetes Should Know. What Is a Low-Carb Diet? There are many different ways to define and follow a low-carb diet. In this article, we are generally looking at people who wish to eat fewer carbohydrates than they are currently eating. There is no one way to follow a low-carb diet. Generally, people try different amounts of carbohydrates until they reach an amount per day t Continue reading >>

The Low-carb Diabetes Plan That Works

The Low-carb Diabetes Plan That Works

After hearing for years that a high-carb, low-fat diet is the only real road to weight loss, you might be wondering how a low-carb diabetes diet can help you finally drop the pounds and help you get control of your blood sugar. Let us explain. The high-carb, low-fat idea basically oversimplified how food works once it enters your body. It ignored the fact that not all carbs are good, and glossed over that not all fats are bad. Therefore, we loaded up on all the breads, pastas, and low-fat goodies, never realizing that it was making us fatter. Here's how it really works. All carbs are converted to glucose and raise your blood sugar, but they aren't all converted at the same rate. How fast they are absorbed--and how much--is what affects your weight. There are two general classes of carbs--refined and unrefined. Refined carbs (white breads, white flour, pastas) are essentially refined sugars, meaning once you eat them they are quickly turned into glucose in your system. Unrefined carbs are the kinds found in whole grains, beans, fruits, and many vegetables. The fiber in these foods helps to slow down your body's absorption of carbs, therefore slowing the process of turning carbs into glucose. The problem comes in when you eat too many carbs--especially too many refined carbs. If you eat excessive amounts of quickly absorbed carbs, you create a situation where more glucose becomes available than your body needs. That excess glucose gets turned into fat. What's the problem with eating lots of carbs if you have diabetes? If you eat excessive amounts of quickly absorbed carbs, you upset your body's precise balance of blood sugar. Simply put, eating too many carbohydrate grams may cause a situation where more glucose becomes available to the cells than the body needs. Obviousl Continue reading >>

7 Ways To Follow A Low-carb Diet The Right Way

7 Ways To Follow A Low-carb Diet The Right Way

Feeling "hangry," the combination of hungry and angry, is what I hear a lot from patients who believe all carbs are evil, and that if you want to control your blood sugar or lose weight, they all have to go. Strong studies point to carbohydrate restriction as a main treatment for type 2 diabetes, but it doesn't have to be all or nothing. Many of my patients on very low-carb diets can’t sustain them long term. Eventually, they re-gain their weight and their blood-sugar problems come back. Those angry months of deprivation weren’t worth it. There’s a better way, which involves keeping some of the foods you love, and as a result, maintaining your sanity. Any time you eat a carbohydrate, your body has to redirect the glucose from your bloodstream to your cells. It calls on your pancreas, where insulin lives, to get the job done. Insulin’s role is to take the glucose and distribute it to your muscle and fat cells, where it’s either used for energy or stored for fat. When everything goes right, insulin is your friend. Eat too much or consume the wrong things and insulin becomes your enemy. Excess insulin circulating in your body may cause you to gain weight. Here’s how to do low-carb right. 1. Plan your meals around lean proteins and healthy fats. The reason many people fail at low-carb diets is because they are buying foods like low-carb chips, bars and drinks. These options are not always nutrient dense. They can leave you with a lack of satisfaction, increased hunger and the dreaded rebound binge. Instead, opt for real food. Find options that make you less hungry and more satisfied. Focusing on foods that are good sources of protein and healthy fats will help. A 2011 study found increased protein in the diet helped to satisfy hunger and promote weight loss. Cho Continue reading >>

How To Reverse Type 2 Diabetes

How To Reverse Type 2 Diabetes

Do you have type 2 diabetes, or are you at risk for diabetes? Do you worry about your blood sugar? Then you’ve come to the right place. The disease diabetes (any type) means that you have too much sugar in your blood. This page will show you how to best check this. You can normalize your blood sugar naturally as needed – without pills, calorie counting or hunger. Many people have already done so. As a bonus, a normalized blood sugar usually makes you healthier and leaner. Table of contents: A disastrous epidemic Two types of diabetes Normalize your blood sugar Become your own evidence A disastrous epidemic What’s wrong? Why do more and more people become diabetic? In the past, before our modern Western diet, diabetes was extremely rare. The disease is now becoming more and more common. Around the world, more and more people are becoming diabetic: The number of people with diabetes is increasing incredibly rapidly and is heading towards 500 million. This is a world epidemic. Will someone in your family be affected next? Your mother, father, cousin, your child? Or you? Is perhaps your blood already too sweet? Those affected by the most common form of diabetes (type 2) normally never regain their health. Instead, we take for granted that they’ll become a little sicker for every year that goes by. With time they need more and more drugs. Yet, sooner or later complications emerge. Blindness. Dialysis due to faulty kidneys. Dementia. Amputations. Death. Diabetes epidemic causes inconceivable suffering. Fortunately, there’s something that can be done. We just need to see through the mistake that has led to the explosion of disease – and correct it. This can normalize your blood sugar. Many have already succeeded in doing this. If you already know that you are diabe Continue reading >>

The Low Carb Plan

The Low Carb Plan

Eating to control your weight and your blood sugar The Mediterranean-style low carb approach which we recommend in The Blood Sugar Diet, is low in starchy, easily digestible carbs, but packed full of disease-fighting vitamins and flavonoids. It is rich in olive oil, fish, nuts, fruit and vegetables, but also contains lots of lovely things that down the years we have been told not to eat, such as full fat yoghurt and eggs. Although it is derived from the eating habits of people living in Mediterranean countries, you can apply the principles of Med-style eating to a wide range of different cuisines, from Chinese or Indian through to Mexican or Scandanavian. There is extensive evidence for the benefit of the Mediterranean style low carbohydrate diet, including cutting your risk of heart disease and diabetes. It has even been found to reduce risk the risk of breast cancer, compared with those on a low-fat diet. Consuming extra virgin olive oil (the fresh squeezed juice of olives) seems to be particularly beneficial when it comes to cancer, perhaps because it contains compounds such as polyphenols which are known to be anti-inflammatory. “This is potentially a life changing book for people with raised blood sugar levels as well as those with type 2 diabetes” Dr Tim Spector, Professor of Genetics, Kings College, London Kick the Carbs: Low Carb Mediterranean Style Eating – The ‘M Plan’ Cut right down on sugar, sugary treats, drinks and desserts: No more than once or twice a week and preferably less. You can use sugar substitutes like stevia and xylitol, but try to wean yourself off your sweet tooth. Avoid sweet fruits: Berries, apples & pears are fine, but sweet tropical fruits such as mango, pineapple, melon and bananas are full of sugar. Minimise or avoid the starc Continue reading >>

8 Low-carb Veggies For A Diabetes-friendly Diet

8 Low-carb Veggies For A Diabetes-friendly Diet

1 / 9 Best Low-Carb Veggies for a Diabetes-Friendly Diet When you have type 2 diabetes, eating low-carb vegetables is a smart way to fill up without filling out your waistline — or spiking your blood sugar levels. Non-starchy or low-carbohydrate veggies are loaded with vitamins, minerals, and fiber while still being low in calories. It’s always smart to eat a rainbow-colored diet, but the following veggies are among the best. Continue reading >>

Low-carb Diet For Diabetes: Should You Try It?

Low-carb Diet For Diabetes: Should You Try It?

Many diet-related conditions rely on medication. But the primary treatment for type 2 diabetes is diet and lifestyle change. There is growing evidence a low-carb diet may be a useful alternative to conventional diet advice. In fact, it may even be better. This article provides a transparent look at the best evidence available, and whether you should consider it. What Is A Low-Carb Diet? A low carb diet is an eating pattern that limits carbohydrate foods, such as sugary foods, flour and bread. There are several different versions, but they are generally high in protein, fat and healthy vegetables. The standard American diet is at least 50% carbs, which is about 300 grams per day. Low-carb diets range from about 30% down to 5%. Given the amount of carbs in your diet is the main determinant of blood sugar levels, it makes sense that reducing carb intake could be beneficial for diabetes care (1). Low- Carb and Diabetes: What Do Controlled Trials Show? Randomised controlled trials are considered the “gold standard” of scientific evidence. In this case researchers would feed one group of diabetics a standard American diet (typically 50-60% carbs), and another a strict low-carb diet for several months or more. They can then compare which group does better. A 2015 study looked at 93 type 2 diabetic men and women for one year. Half were randomly put on a high-carb diet (53% carbs) and the others on a low-carb diet (14% carbs, less than 50 grams per day). Each subject’s diet plan was individualised to provide a 30% calorie reduction for weight loss, and all participated in a supervised physical activity program for the year. Both diets showed significant improvements in daily blood sugar stability, diabetes medication usage, weight loss, fat loss, insulin resistance, HDL-ch Continue reading >>

Diabetes And Your Diet: The Low-carb Debate

Diabetes And Your Diet: The Low-carb Debate

A few years ago, Richard Kahn, the now-retired chief scientific and medical officer of the American Diabetes Association, was charged with organizing a committee to prescribe a diet plan for people with diabetes. He began by looking at the evidence for different diets, asking which, if any, best controlled diabetes. “When you look at the literature, whoa is it weak. It is so weak,” Dr. Kahn said in a recent interview. Studies tended to be short term, diets unsustainable, differences among them clinically insignificant. The only thing that really seemed to help people with diabetes was weight loss — and for weight loss, there is no magic diet. But people want diet advice, Dr. Kahn reasoned, and the association really should say something about diets. So it, like the National Institutes of Health, went with the Department of Agriculture’s food pyramid. Why? “It’s a diet for all America,” Dr. Kahn said. “It has lots of fruits and vegetables and a reasonable amount of fat.” That advice, though, recently came under attack in a New York Times commentary written by Sarah Hallberg, an osteopath at a weight loss clinic in Indiana, and Osama Hamdy, the medical director of the obesity weight loss program at the Joslin Diabetes Center at Harvard Medical School. There is a diet that helps with diabetes, the two doctors said: one that restricts — or, according to Dr. Hallberg, severely restricts — carbohydrates. “If the goal is to get patients off their medications, including insulin, and resolve rather than just control their diabetes, significant carb restriction is by far the best nutrition plan,” Dr. Hallberg said in an email. “This would include elimination of grains, potatoes and sugars and all processed foods. There is a significant and ever growing Continue reading >>

Low Carb-high Fat Diet And Diabetes: A Detailed Guide For Beginners

Low Carb-high Fat Diet And Diabetes: A Detailed Guide For Beginners

If you are a regular reader of our site, you would already know that we highly endorse the Low Carb High Fat (LCHF) diet for reversing diabetes, losing weight and improving your overall health and well-being. The reason why a low carb diet for diabetes comes highly recommended by doctors and nutritionists alike is the fact that carbohydrates are the main culprit behind elevated blood sugar levels. Once you eat fewer carbs, it automatically becomes much easier for the body to attain stable blood sugar levels. Low Carb High Fat (LCHF) Diet for Diabetes: Why It Works? Carbohydrates are broken down into simple sugars during digestion. These sugars enter the blood stream and elevate blood sugar levels. As a diabetic, your body either doesn’t produce insulin at all, or doesn’t produce enough insulin to minimize this blood sugar spike before it causes irreplaceable damage to internal organs. This is the reason why your body’s dependence on insulin goes down when you eat lesser carbs. A UK study tried to understand the short-term effects of severe dietary carbohydrate-restriction advice in type 2 diabetes. It found that restricting carbohydrate intake is an effective method to lose weight as well as improve HDL ratios. This was a randomized controlled trial studying 102 patients over a course of 3 months, and the results were published in the Diabetic Medicine in September 2005. Another research group from Duke University Medical Center studying the effect of a low-carbohydrate, ketogenic diet versus a low-glycemic index diet on glycemic control in type 2 diabetes patients, found that 95.2% patients had managed to reduce or eliminate their glucose-lowering medication within 6 months of being on a LCHF diet. A low carb diet works very well in lowering blood sugar and insul Continue reading >>

Low Carb

Low Carb

Tweet Many people with diabetes are following a low-carb diet because of its benefits in terms of improving diabetes control, weight loss and being a diet that is satisfying and easy to stick to. Low-carb diets are flexible and can be followed by people with different types of diabetes. The diet has allowed many people with type 2 diabetes to resolve their diabetes, that is to get their blood sugar levels into a non-diabetic range without the help of medication. People with type 1 diabetes have also reported much more stable blood sugar levels, making the condition easier to predict and manage. The diet is a healthy way of eating as vegetables and natural, real foods are integral to the diet. Low-carb guidance and support The low-carb diet forum has been cited as a leading resource in providing support and encouragement for people that are looking to achieve lower HbA1c levels and sustain effective weight loss. [127] In 2015, Diabetes.co.uk launched the Low Carb Program which has helped thousands of people with type 2 diabetes to improve their diabetes control and reduce their dependency on diabetes medication. Why follow a low-carb diet? Carbohydrate is the nutrient which has the greatest effect in terms of raising blood sugar levels and requires the most insulin to be taken or be produced by the body. Lowering sugar levels is clearly a benefit for people with diabetes. Lower need for insulin is also particularly useful as lowering insulin in the body can reduce insulin resistance which can help towards reversing type 2 diabetes. Insulin is also the fat storage hormone in the body, so reducing insulin in the body with a low-carb diet can help with losing weight. Benefits of low-carb diets The benefits of a low-carb diet typically include: Lower HbA1c Improved weight lo Continue reading >>

Discover A Low Carb Diabetic Diet And Low Carb Recipes For Diabetics

Discover A Low Carb Diabetic Diet And Low Carb Recipes For Diabetics

Many people incorrectly believe that only sugar causes type 2 diabetes. In reality, the insulin resistance associated with type 2 diabetes can be thought of as carbohydrate intolerance; type 2 diabetes is a side effect of consuming too many carbohydrates relative to a person's carbohydrate tolerance, which can cause blood sugar to spike. While diabetics should be mindful of sugar intake, it's possible to manage type 2 diabetes by living a low carb lifestyle. Some people with type 2 diabetes have found low carb living to be so effective that they can manage their condition without medication. A low carb diabetic diet is a great way to manage your weight and blood sugar levels. If you have type 2 diabetes use the following tips to avoid eating more carbohydrates than your body can tolerate, help keep stabilize your blood sugar level and try these delicious low carb recipes for diabetics: Using a carb counter to monitor your carb intake is a great way to stay on track. Non-starchy vegetables such as colorful salad vegetables , broccoli, cauliflower, eggplant, and asparagus tend to have lower glycemic indexes, making them perfect to for a low carb diabetic diet. Make sure to get plenty of fiber—high-fiber foods like vegetables are a necessary component to a low carb diabetic diet. Avoid foods with added sugars and high fructose corn syrup. If you have a sweet tooth , try sugar-free desserts Don't skip breakfast! To keep your blood sugar levels steady, make sure to eat regularly throughout the day, starting in the morning. Try to fit in three meals and two snacks each day and pace yourself. Not all fats are bad for you. Healthy low carb recipes for diabetics often feature good natural fats like monounsaturated fats, such as the ones found in olive oil, which can help lower Continue reading >>

Is Low-carb Eating Really Better For Blood Sugar?

Is Low-carb Eating Really Better For Blood Sugar?

A review of popular low-carbohydrate diets finds that while restricting carbs can reduce blood sugar in the short run, evidence in support of long-term benefits is lacking. While very low carbohydrate diets (LCD) promise to cut blood sugars, a review of popular LCDs finds that while very low-carb eating can reduce blood sugar in the short run, little evidence exists to show long-term benefits. The study, published online in the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, reports that while LCDs may be “slightly better than low fat diets for weight and triglycerides management” they are “not superior for the management of blood glucose, blood pressure, or cholesterol levels.” However, researchers note that physicians should be aware that “available evidence for LCDs is limited because of variable definitions, lack of long-term studies, and lack of patient adherence.” Diets considered ranged from very low carb—less than 20 to 60 grams per day—to less restrictive diets that averaged about 130 grams per day. The American Diabetes Association says diets should be tailored to individual needs, but recommends starting at 45-60 grams of carbohydrates per meal. “Patients can likely follow a version of the low carbohydrate diet for longer than the studies suggest, but we don’t know the health effects of a very low carbohydrate ketogenic diet of less than 20 grams of carbs per day,” says Heather Fields, MD, an author of the study and a doctor of integrative medicine at the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix, Arizona. “With so few people adhering to a truly ketogenic diet long term [more than a year], we will likely never be able to study the health effects in a meaningful way.” Dr. Fields finds that if type 2 patients have not had success with a plant-based, who Continue reading >>

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