Low Carb vs. Low Fat Diets

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Low Carb vs. Low Fat Diets


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Old 05-19-2010, 17:18   #1
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Default Low Carb vs. Low Fat Diets

I am a new Type 2 member who has pored over both Dr. Barnard's (lowfat) and Dr.Bernstein's (low carb) websites and countless reviews of their books and am still confused.
When first diagnosed, I was told to limit my carbs to 165 grams per day. I am able to keep my carbs at or under that number. But I do not think I can reduce them to the level recommended by Dr. Bernstein.
I think Dr. Barnard is onto something regarding his finding that fat within the cells prevents insulin from opening the cell membranes so that the cells can absorb and process glucose. I am going to ask my doctor next week about this. I might be able to reduce my animal protein intake, but it will be hard to completely eliminate it.
I would really appreciate some input from any members who have more experience in this. Do any of you recommend low fat or low carb, or, is a compromise diet feasible?

Thank you !

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Old 05-19-2010, 18:17   #2
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I have not read either of these docs, but I can say without hesitation that, based on my own experience, I do not subscribe to any low-fat agenda in managing my diabetes.

You'll have to find the path that works best for you, but I find it is the protein & fat in my diet which enables me to keep blood sugar levels low, and still lose weight to reduce insulin resistance.

There is no magic method - no one author has all the answers. What often works best is to take some ideas from one camp and some from others - combining all the things that work best for you personally.

There is no one-size-fits-all answer for diabetics - we all have to take our meters in hand and, using the meds prescribed by our doctors, find which foods we can tolerate and which we need to avoid. It's time consuming and tedious at first, but as you discover what works best for you, it can become second nature, and you feel so much better for controlling your blood sugars.

I keep my carbs to 50g-60g per day, and I wound up at that level by testing, testing, testing. By the time I had checked out most of the components of my regular diet and restricted the ones which caused too much spike in glucose, I was left with this amount of carbs, so here is where I stay.




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Old 05-19-2010, 18:34   #3
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I do not concern myself *too* much with fat content. Some fat helps you stabilize your blood sugar a bit by slowing down digestion of carbs. Bernstien makes some good points...but I think his recommendations are so far to the extreme that it would be difficult to maintain for life in my opinion. I do subcribe to lo carb way of eating, it is best to manage my blood sugar. But his way is practically no carb. Which might be effective, but personally I am just not willing to live that way forever. I have been able to manage mine keeping my carb intake to about 35-50 carbs per meal, with a couple of 15-20 g snacks tossed in. Of course, that is me. Not all diabetics can handle that many carbs, and some can handle more. We are all pretty individual in this respect. The only way to tell how many carbs *you* can tolerate is to test around meals until you get a good feel for how your body handles different carbs.

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Old 05-19-2010, 18:35   #4
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Since being diagnosed a little over 1 year ago.
I've done a fair amount of reading.
And what I've noticed is that the people who are advocating low fat diets. Do not differentiate between saturated from animal products and mono + poly fats from plant sources.
Where as the people who do differentiate between those types of fats. They advocate staying away from the saturated fat from animal sources; but is ok to eat large amounts mono + poly fats from plant sources.

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Old 06-07-2010, 02:01   #5
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Default Re: input

Quote:
Originally Posted by HiThere View Post
I am a new Type 2 member who has pored over both Dr. Barnard's (lowfat) and Dr.Bernstein's (low carb) websites and countless reviews of their books and am still confused.
When first diagnosed, I was told to limit my carbs to 165 grams per day. I am able to keep my carbs at or under that number. But I do not think I can reduce them to the level recommended by Dr. Bernstein.
I think Dr. Barnard is onto something regarding his finding that fat within the cells prevents insulin from opening the cell membranes so that the cells can absorb and process glucose. I am going to ask my doctor next week about this. I might be able to reduce my animal protein intake, but it will be hard to completely eliminate it.
I would really appreciate some input from any members who have more experience in this. Do any of you recommend low fat or low carb, or, is a compromise diet feasible?

Thank you !
I have had type 2 since 1984, and the only diet that worked for me
is the low fat moderate protein, vegan diet. It brought my A1C
from 10.2 to 5.9 in only a few months without any drugs whatsoever. Research on mice shows that type 2 diabetes can be completely
reversed by lowering the fat drastically, as Dr. Barbard has also
showed with people. The study on mice was done at Duke
University in 1998, and was an eye opener for me before even
reading about Dr. Barnard's diet. Do a google search on
"Low-Fat Diet Alone Reversed Type 2 Diabetes In Mice" and
it will be found on the science blog site.

Veganism adds many health benefits as detailed in Dr. Campbell's book "The China Study", as a whole foods plant based diet, and in this case
also low fat helps lower cholesterol, lowers the chances of many
chronic diseases, including cancer, heart disease, stroke, etc.

I hope this info helps.

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Old 06-07-2010, 04:14   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiThere View Post
I am a new Type 2 member who has pored over both Dr. Barnard's (lowfat) and Dr.Bernstein's (low carb) websites and countless reviews of their books and am still confused.
When first diagnosed, I was told to limit my carbs to 165 grams per day. I am able to keep my carbs at or under that number. But I do not think I can reduce them to the level recommended by Dr. Bernstein.
I think Dr. Barnard is onto something regarding his finding that fat within the cells prevents insulin from opening the cell membranes so that the cells can absorb and process glucose. I am going to ask my doctor next week about this. I might be able to reduce my animal protein intake, but it will be hard to completely eliminate it.
I would really appreciate some input from any members who have more experience in this. Do any of you recommend low fat or low carb, or, is a compromise diet feasible?

Thank you !
If you have any cholesterol problems, then you might want to try to stick to low carb and low fat. This is a hard task, but it can be done. You just need to know how your body responds to carbs and fat. You need your blood glucose meter to help you figure out what carbs you can handle and some lab tests to determine your cholesterol.

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Old 06-08-2010, 15:20   #7
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I'm on a low cholesterol for gallstones, low carb diet. Keep in mind I haven't yet met with a dietician, this is all my own choices based on lab results. My BG has dropped dramatically to regular safe flux and I'm regularly losing a pound a week with exercise.

As far as I'm concerned, this is the worst place to be in for an enjoyable diet. Carbs and fat are what makes food tasty and filling, and when you have to limit both, or eliminate carbs for certain feedings, it's a terrible decision. We walk the ultimate tightrope between health and flavour. I envy people here who can pile on meat and fish at the sacrifice of starches and sweets. When you reduce fat, starch, carb, and sugar, there's very little for your brain and stomach to enjoy besides roughage and fruit, herbs and spices, food that takes higher quantities than others to fill you up. Grilled chicken, trimmed steak, and tuna get old. I had a tremendous sweet tooth before D-day, and now my biggest willpower is refraining from eating more than 4 servings of fruit a day.

But, I find, all isn't lost. What diet books don't emphasize to you is that you need to EXERCISE to maintain the effects of any diet. A sedentary North American lifestyle and weight gain is likely what led most people to develop diabetes in the first place. Combined with a good diet, exercising helps to burn off fat and carbs, aids digestion, and lowers BS faster than just a good diet. Hell, it's what doctors have been preaching to the masses for decades, diabetic and non.

WATER is also key, especially with low-fat where you might risk consuming extra sugar. Lots of water and peeing regularly flushes out your system and helps rid of excess glucose. My Achilles heel right now is overconsumption of diet soft drinks where before it was regular soft drinks and fruit juice. Lemon water is reducing my desire for soda. Best of all it's free! None of that crap vitaminwater or enhaced flavoured waters that contain cane syrup as if to pass the word "cane" off as something better than refined.

Exercise, water, exercise, water, exercise, water. If you eat 5 times a day and have a glass with each, you only need a couple more to round out most suggested intakes. More so when exercising, of course.

If you also eat out a lot like I do, here are tips I've found to work in my favour:

Have your higher-fat/cholesterol higher-carb meal at breakfast. Whole wheat toast, eggs, bacon, turkey, whatever. Your most "unsafe" diabetic meal is your first meal of the day, gives you the most energy to burn, and will be burned off through more hours of work and exercise than any other meal because it's at the start.

Lunch is your other chance to have starches if you didn't have them at breakfast. This is my vegetable feast where I pile on colourful veggies in a salad with some nuts, grilled chicken or fish, etc. Whole wheat pasta or whole wheat sandwich if I want starches.

At fast food places, order a different side than fries, onion rings, or mashed potatoes. Salad, corn on the cob, coleslaw, etc., are lower fat/chol than the others.

McDonalds: side salad, apple slices
Wendys: salad, yogurt (beware sugar/eat less)
Popeyes: corn, beans n rice, coleslaw
Burger King: salad

If you can't resist a baked potato, order it naked and add a small bit of ketchup and some pepper, avoiding butter and sour cream, and eat half. This is my "french fries" when eating out. You may also be standing in line longer when a place like KFC is heaped with fried chicken pieces ready for customers and don't expect a grilled wrap order.

If eating out for dinner, try avoiding all carbs for that one meal. The reason is if you exercised during the day you'll put on less carb that will sit in you overnight and potentially raise BG. If you work out after dinner, you'll have less immediate heavier food to burn.

Carbs and fat are only ever problems if you don't burn them off regularly. It's only been a month since D-day and I've shown great improvement to my doctor just by exercising and water, taking diabetic diet thirdly into account.

Oh and my advice that doesn't work for everyone: Control your indulgence. If you can't resist a bagel, a doughnut, sugar in your coffee, or a small slice of cheesecake when eating out, don't. You'll be less inclined to crave it again later if you have it now. Just be sure to:

-expect a higher BG that day
-exercise that day to start getting it off sooner and BG down
-split it with a friend or only have half.
-have water with it
-remember when you had it so you can track your levels between treats and act accordingly
-save your treats for when you go out, don't buy them at the grocery. Home should be your diabetic health haven.

In summary, I suggest a compromise diet, with the occasional treat. I'll assume you're on meds, which will help lower BG too.

But above else: EXERCISE and WATER. They lower your hunger levels and keep you healthy. It's near summer so get out and enjoy the sun!

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Old 09-25-2010, 09:43   #8
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hi,

low carb for sure 100%...

I have been on the Dr Bernstein way of eating for 5mths now - and despite what people think i dont think its difficult...

i only consume 30gms of carb per day and eat fat for energy....

the results speak for them selves when u chack your blood sugar readings...

eating fat is completely fine as long as you dont consume carbs with it - this way the fat is metabolised (not stored)...

take care

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Old 09-25-2010, 11:03   #9
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Default Diabrarian - bad stuff in salad bar

bad stuff in salad bar

in my younger days when i belonged to a local "Diner Club" and we use to go to some of the better restaurants once a week where they had a salad bar, i used to get the runs just as we were about to leave. many said that this was caused by something they put in salads to make them appear to be fresh and some people like me are allergic to. i don't know if that is still the case and i have not eaten in a better restaurant for many years.

ColaJim

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Old 09-25-2010, 12:40   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HiThere View Post
..............I would really appreciate some input from any members who have more experience in this. Do any of you recommend low fat or low carb, or, is a compromise diet feasible?...........
I have read and followed to some degree both the approach of Dr Barnard and Dr Bernstein but never followed either absolutely. Like you, I too think that both approaches have some influence on our diabetic control - especially Dr Bernstein's approach.

I consider that I eat a compromise diet of very low starchy carbohydrate (i.e. cereals, bread, potatoes, pasta, rice, pizza etc) but still quite a lot of carbohydrate (around 100g to sometimes 200g per day) in the form of fruit and vegetables.

I try to eat low-fat too but I do eat lean meat and fish on a regular basis but try to keep the amounts down to reasonable levels and I also eat some small amounts of cheese and eat low-fat yoghurts daily. However, I rarely use butter or margarine or anything like that and don't drink much milk - taking most of my drinks black - if I do use milk it is the 0.75% or 1% fat varieties. I am gradually increasing the monounsaturated fats that I eat by increasing my intake of a variety of nuts - and also a small amount of peanut butter. I avoid trans fats like the plague.

Mainly for different reasons, I drink very little alcohol these days - around 5 to 10 units per week - it wasn't always like that! When I do drink then I usually choose red wine but very occasionally a beer or lager instead.

If you are interested you can take a look at my diet in more detail posted elsewhere on this forum:

http://www.diabetesforum.com/diabete...-diabetes.html

Good luck and best wishes - John

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