November 26, 2014

Lessons for People New to Type 2 Diabetes, Part 8

If you have not read Part 4 of this series, please do so. This is also about food, but I will be discussing the type of medications and food plans with them. First please understand that I use insulin and this allows me to eat some foods that people on oral medications cannot eat with any regularity.

I am still maintaining less than 80 grams of carbohydrates per day, and I am slowly working my amount of fat up. I no longer have the problems I had early on of using the porcelain fixture in the bathroom more than I wanted. I continue to adjust my protein levels – some days more, but often downward. This depends how the protein is fixed and the number of eggs I consume.

I admit that my lipid panel test results are improving and I have hope in the near future that statins will come off the list of medications I take. This to me is exciting and one more goal I have hope of accomplishing.

The landscape and attitudes of doctors is changing, albeit slowly. My blog here discusses a few of the actions and a little of what is happening. This doctor did surprise me and garnered himself two patients and was more understanding than I have heard about many doctors. He is in a largely rural area and apparently understands diabetes better than many doctors.

I am hearing more about doctors advising a low carb, high fat, medium protein food plan for people with diabetes and this surprises me. Yes, I think this is right, but for doctors to suggest this is unusual when most are still following the low fat mantra.

I will again emphasize that there is not a one-size-fits-all food plan. The quicker you accept this, the easier it will be to build your own plan or adapt another food plan that fits your needs. Use your meter to help you adapt or build your food plan, as this will aid you in finding one that you can accept and use on a daily basis. Other people often build a week's worth of menus so that they can vary what they eat. Several members of our support group have done this and they exchange recipes and test to see how their body reacts to the recipe and then adapt it if they need to do this.

One of our new members has tried a few recipes that A. J and James have been eating and said he was having trouble feeling full. They explained that he needed to test and see what his blood glucose level was at about one hour and again at two hours. He reported that his blood glucose had only increased 15 mg/dl from before to after meal testing. A.J suggested that he eat 10 more grams of carbs with the meal and see what happened. He did and said his blood glucose had only risen 20 mg/dl from his premeal reading. He added that he felt better and less hungry. A.J told him that was what worked for him and he could try adding another 5 grams of carbohydrates and do the same. He reported that he felt full then and his blood glucose had only increased 3 mg/dl above what the 10 grams of carbohydrates had been.

He and A.J discussed this and he now understood what could be done with different recipes that were testing too high and if he did this regularly, he could adapt more for himself. A.J is presently off all medications and the new member is on metformin. James is on insulin and has been long enough that he has been able to reduce his insulin use and he is no longer hungry. He has lost the few pounds he needed to lose and then his weight loss stopped. 

A.J suggested that he eat more slowly and chew his food more thoroughly, as this could help him feel full sooner and this could help him cut his carbohydrates.  The new member said this worked well for him and he was now maintaining his carb level below 60 grams of carbohydrates with no problems.

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