February 9, 2012

TAG – Is It Part of Your Diabetes Meal Plan?

Thanks to Joslin for bringing TAG (total-available-glucose) to my attention here. They may say it is out of vogue and not relevant for today's meal planning, but more are talking about it and blogging about it. Even TuDiabetes.org has a group called TAGers United.

Not listed as a TAG study, this 2006 study about protein, carbohydrate, and fat consumption for people with type 2 diabetes is very enlightening. The study is from 2006 and came from the University of Minnesota. While not praising or damning fat, this study was for determining the best diets for type 2 diabetes and using different ratios of protein, carbohydrates, and fat.

This study was funded by the American Diabetes Association (ADA), with some support from the Minnesota, Colorado, and Nebraska Beef Councils plus the Department of Veterans Affairs. Yet the ADA has moved very little from their low-fat mantra.

The same subjects were people with type 2 diabetes that was not treated. For 5 weeks, they were on a control diet with a protein carbohydrate fat ratio of 15:55:30. Then the same group spent 5-week periods on other ratios. The 30:40:30 ratio diet resulted in moderate decrease in 24-hour glucose area and % total glycohemoglobin (%tGHb). The 30:20:50 ratio diet resulted in a 38% decrease in 24-hour glucose area, a reduction in fasting glucose to near normal and a decrease in %tGHb from 9.8% to 7.6%. They obtained a similar result 30:30:40 ratio diet.

The long-term objective has been to develop a diet that does not require weight loss, oral medications, or insulin. The other requirement is that the diet controls blood glucose in people with type 2 diabetes. The spokesperson said, “Our studies indicate that a decrease in metabolically available dietary glucose, associated with an increase in protein and fat, over an extended period of time, can significantly lower the integrated blood glucose concentration. The decrease is comparable to that obtained using oral agents and occurs without weight loss.”

I found this information while doing research for another blog. TAG is referred to as total dietary glucose (TDG) in this study. They determined that the actual glucose from protein depends on the type of protein and it varies from 50 to 84 grams per 100 grams of protein eaten. Fat generally produces only 10 percent glucose.

Read the study for type 2 diabetes with increased fat as part of the diet.

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