Do type 1's really need to follow a diet?


(bradvido) #1

I have only  been diabetic for three years, but from what I've encountered, the idea that Type 1 diabetics have to follow a strict diet in order to stay healthy seems like a myth.  It is most likely that the idea comes from the fact that when people think "diabetes" they think Type II (since they account for 90+%), and yes Type II's have to follow a strict diet.

But I have remained on the same diet since being diagnosed at 20 years old, which includes pizza, hamburgers, ramen, pasta, soda, etc. (the typical college diet).  From what I've found is that if you count carbs correctly and really fine tune your insulin pump, your bloodsugar stays in the non-diabetic range.  My last A1C was 5.7 and I've never had one above 7.5 (except when I was first diagnosed, it was 15 =) ). I don't even try to limit carbs, if I drink a soda with 50 carbs, and take the appropriate amount of insulin, my CGMS barely shows a bump in bloodsugar level.

Of course, a poor diet is bad for anyone, but i'm only talking in terms of bloodsugar, not cholestoral etc.

Anyway, I wanted to get a feeling from other type 1's as to whether they follow a strict diet, or even a low-carb diet at all.

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(system) #2

i've never followed a diet. doesn't work for my lifestyle personally. i've gone to nutritionists to find out if i'm getting what i actually need in my diet, and as long as i'm getting that, i don't really pay attention to what i eat. i limit my junk food intake obviously, but i just try and balance whatever i eat with insulin. *shrug* wasn't even put on a diet when i was diagnosed 15years old..just told i should have this much of this or that for each meal at least a few times a week.


(El Monito) #3

What i heard is that eating anything you want and countering the carbs and stuff with insulin is not bad..but you are most likely to gain weight and with that fat you become more resistant to insulin so you might need to start taking more..but that what i heard


(Maarten van de Steeg) #4

i dont eat diffrent because of diabetes, but i do eat healthy cuz i pay attention to my health i also excercise a lot, but thats just a lifestyle, diabetes hasnt changed my way of life.

i dont count carbs, i give as much insuline as i think i need and most of the time my BS is always good and i have good average a1c.


(Brittany) #5

I have never been on a diet. Some people don't need to be on one. I think it depends though. I'm not really sure.

~Brittany~


(poodlebone) #6

I didn't pay attention to my diet at all for the first 10 years or so.  After that I fell off the wagon a few times but for the past 4-5 years I've done so much better.  I gave up fast food (it wasn't hard!) and don't eat stuff like pizza, Chinese food, processed frozen food etc. much anymore.  I do still eat junk food, probably on a daily basis, but it's one thing and not snacking on candy bars and cookies all day.

I gained a ton of weight while on injections and managed to lose a lot of when I started pumping.  Still hoping to lose 20 pounds, so I do try to watch what I eat.  When I splurge I cover it with insulin and don't feel guilty about it.


(figure skater girl) #7

i have never had to follow strict diet plans exept for when i was first diagnosed and all that was was eating a certain amount of carbs at certain times of day.

like this morning i had a 90 carb cinamon bun with icing and i went for swimming lessons after and it probably saved me from  a visit to the hospital. my blood sugar dropped 5 mmols even without giving a correction bolus for my high blood sugar.


(dietpepsiislove) #8

I take care of my diabetes how you do - I eat what I want and bolus for it.  Right now I'm limiting carbs/calories/food, but that's because I'm a tad overweight and trying to fix that.

Before I got my pump I was on NPH (this was before Lantus, and the stuff sucked) and humalog.  Because of how the long acting insulin spiked during the day and my humalog doses I ate the same amount of carbs at predetermined times every day because it was the best way to keep my numbers in range with the way my insulin regimine worked.  It pretty much sucked, and that's why I started the pump about 8 years ago.  I don't know how the up to date Lantus and multiple daily injection regimines work though.


(bradvido) #9

Yeah, it seems to me that as long as you know when to take your insulin and how much to take, you can really eat like a non-diabetic.  You are of course, no less subject to the health issues that affect anyone on a poor diet.


(sarahslp) #10

B/c of our higher risk of heart disease, I try to eat well. But, I'd say my diet is pretty typical to my non-d. friends too!


(ShortCake) #11

the only thing i dont have any more is reg. soda but other then that you really can eat anything


(Anonymous) #12

[quote user="Maarten"]

i dont eat diffrent because of diabetes, but i do eat healthy cuz i pay attention to my health i also excercise a lot, but thats just a lifestyle, diabetes hasnt changed my way of life.

i dont count carbs, i give as much insuline as i think i need and most of the time my BS is always good and i have good average a1c.

[/quote]

I agree with you Maarteen. I do not count carbs either, and I exercise often, and have a good average.  I often get asked if I am vegan because I am a diabetic, and I have to say no, it is  because of my Philosophical beliefs that I am a vegan, it's my life style.

 


(Anonymous) #13

Not counting carbs? How does that work?

Sorry, I've just always counted carbs myself so its interesting to me.


(Kateski) #14

I am probably the only person to say this.  But I follow Dr. Bernstein's, The Diabetes Diet.    When I am being good and I am on track, I try to eat no more than 15 grams of carbs per meal.  This is what my endo wants me to do.  This also keeps me from gaining weight... When I stray and start taking more insulin, I always start to pack on the pounds.  My diet consists mostly of vegetables, meats, cheese and eggs.  Actually before I was diagnosed I had been a vegetarian for 13 years.  When I started eating meat, I finally felt nourished and actually could put on muscle when I worked out.  I am so strict, that the only fruit that I eat is avacados because the sugar is too high in most other fruits...
 


(Anonymous) #15

[quote user="Alyssa"]

Not counting carbs? How does that work?

Sorry, I've just always counted carbs myself so its interesting to me.

[/quote]

Hi Alyssa,

I do not count because I am vegan, and a very picky one at that. I do not eat processed food, I do not dine out, all food is made at my house from scratch. Over the years I have worked out a scale of what to give depending on what I eat. I am not suggesting anyone else not count carbs, this is just how it works for me :)

 


(Anonymous) #16

That is cool!

 

LOL its kind of a kid-Santa-Claus-reaction-awe thing here lol I just think that rocks. Its neat to hear the different ways people treat.


(tombeatson) #17

I have been on both sides of this issue. When I was diagnosed in 1942 there were no pumps, and most of the MDs prescribed one or two injections of long acting insulin - PZI (before NPH) per day. You had to follow a strict diet in order to try and match the activity curve of the insulin. So I'm sure that's where the idea that type 1s need to follow a strict diet came from. But now that we have pumps, it's no longer true, at least for those who use pumps. Now, anyone who claims that T1s need to follow a strict diet is just showing that they are using old fashioned techniques to manage their condition.

Tom


(paulg765) #18

I'm with Kate above in that I also follow the diet prescribed by Dr. Richard Bernstein in his book.  I eat fish as much as possible, meat, chichken, vegetables, cheese, eggs, WASA rye crackers (instead of bread).  But I eat no fruit, no bread, no pasta, no milk, no packaged frozen foods.  I'm relatively new to it and it takes some getting used to.  Already, I have reduced the amount of insulin I take by almost a half and am getting off the "blood sugar roller coaster." Along with working out at the gym six days a week I have also been able to shed some fat and build some muscle.  By doing this you increase your resting (basal) metabolism, which is the key to staying slim as you get older and less active.


(Anonymous) #19

[quote user="Tom"]

I have been on both sides of this issue. When I was diagnosed in 1942 there were no pumps, and most of the MDs prescribed one or two injections of long acting insulin - PZI (before NPH) per day. You had to follow a strict diet in order to try and match the activity curve of the insulin. So I'm sure that's where the idea that type 1s need to follow a strict diet came from. But now that we have pumps, it's no longer true, at least for those who use pumps. Now, anyone who claims that T1s need to follow a strict diet is just showing that they are using old fashioned techniques to manage their condition.

Tom

[/quote]

I agree with you Tom. Before there was insulin diabetics were basically starved, and with insulin they were given a little more slack, but nothing compared to what we have now with all the technology of today.

 


(Monique H) #20

When our son was diagnosed in May the hospital endo put him on the R/N combo with Humalog for corrections.  He was basically having to eat (times and carbs) to conform to the insulin treatment.  When our new endo switched him to Humalog/Lantus he basically had the flexibility to go back to eating "normally" for him, although we've all cut back a bit on carbs.  He is still on injections, and we've got good control over his BS at this point.

Mo