I am new here today. I am a 43-year-old type 1, have had it for 22 years. I am on an insulin pump and have great control. But my problem is like many other type 1s, I cannot lose any weight no matter how hard I try. I know this is long,please bear with me.
My entire life before and after diagnosis I was thin, very thin. Back then in 1990 when dx'd, I was taught exchanges for my meal plan and have honestly always done that and eaten pretty much what I wanted with no problems with weight gain or blood sugars - I've always maintained excellent control. I did not start the pump until I got pregnant at 36 yrs old and I was never taught carb counting. I was thin until I went on Lantus at about age 32 and then gained about 12 lbs but still was slim around 137 lbs at 5'6" (which I thought that was fat! ha!). During pregnancy, I gained a TON of weight and have never been able to shed it all, 6 years later. I need to lose about 16 lbs. to get back to 137 lbs. just to feel Ok about myself. For 6 years since having my only child, I've tried everything to lose weight - Nutrisystem, Weight Watchers, boot camps, counting calories, etc. etc. The most I've lost is about 6 lbs on Nutrisystem in 1 month and then it came right back after I stopped that program and ate normal food. I am frustrated and depressed and feel very badly about myself. I don't want to be super skinny, I am realistic, I just want to be a good healthy weight for my height and at 155 lbs now I am not. I sure can maintain a weight though, I stay about the same.
I have talked over and over with my endo about this and he's not really much help - just tells me it's "calories in/calories burned" to lose, but I've done that and it does not work for me. I've researched some about doing low-carb and am ready to try it but I wanted to hear others' experiences about it. I have a call into the endo to get set up with a nutritionist to help me, but in the meantime, I'd like to get started ASAP as it's summer and again, I am still too big. I want to lose even just 5 lbs and I'd be happy at this point but need to lose 16 eventually.
How many grams of carbs a day should I stick to to lose weight? I can't go no-carb, I love carbs and I get really hungry without them - I tried Atkins and last about 2 days. Something has to work at some point right? I want to know the best formula for losing with what other type 1s have had success with - how many carbs per day, what types, how much protein,etc? If I do this, what can I expect to lose per week and how long should it take? What have been others' experiences?
I have recently started exercising again doing Zumba 2x per week and walking 3 other days.
I am motivated, I just want something that will finally work for me.I refuse to believe type 1s cannot ever lose weight and I have to be this way forever! I am sorry this is so long, I am just sad and frustrated. Any help and advice would be very appreciated!
Last November I moved back to a small town I left just after my diagnosis. After my diagnosis I lost 40 pounds (I've gained back 10), so everyone comments on my weight loss. I say the same thing as you, "I got Type 1 diabetes, not a weight loss method I'd recommend!"
Anything I say will be discounted by a nutritionist. So be prepared. If you want to go low carb, a nutritionist will not WILL NOT help you.
The way I have personally had success and continue to have success coaching real live not-online people is by lowering carbohydrates. Only carbs. I suggest, too, reading Bernstein first. One starts by writing up what you are eating now in carbs. Sum every day for a week. Have it for looking at to remind yourself. Since I never know anyone's cardiac status, I do not want to hear of someone exercising at the same time as losing weight this way.
Get rid of fast carbs that spike and leave you depleted an hour later. Get rid of all munchie items that are carbs. Get in a meat or fish for every supper; throw out any cereal above 5-8 grams. Get in protein bars for the first few days in case of hunger. Get in a reduced calorie bread if they sell it in your area, and ham/cheese/lettuce for sandwiches. Get in eggbeaters, veggie sausages to mix up breakfast. Get in slow veggies OR salad fixings and a dessert of not more than 5 gm. to add to your meat/fish for suppers.
Now add up a nice breakfast of 10 grams, a lunch of 15 grams, and a supper of 15 grams. Give yourself appropriate amounts of insulin at your I:C level for this amount of grams and you will lose weight. And frankly, you won't be hungry in between if you incorporate a little protein at each meal. There is no one who does not lose weight. This is not something you stay on for 6 months, but maybe you'll like it and your blood sugar will be so fantastic, you just might. The body stabilizes.
You can google low carb and you'll find recipes, but just keep counting your grams.
Loving carbs and losing weight does not work. Say goodbye to all that fruit. The more carb munchies, the more addicting they are. So they have to be out of the house first. I use splashes of tea in water when hungry. I use anything but fruit when I want to really lose weight. I like carb smart bars, Atkins bars, anything below 11 grams will perform well in place of carb items. You can expect to lose 1 lb per week. If you don't already know your I:C for each meal, don't do this.
And do stop the whole business when you are at the weight you want. Then you can go up to whatever you want and choose to diet as you want. And since my grandson says there should be a disclaimer, the disclaimer is that I am not trained in the food industry. No nutritionist here, never have been, never will be.
I'd say too that "carb ratios" are sort of malleable in that if you eat less carbs, it may be more apparent where adjustments can yield smoother results? To me, that's the best thing about eating less carbs and probably where I "cheat" the most. I probably eat about 2/3 of my carbs after 5:00 PM and I'm sure I could drop a few lbs if I worked harder on cutting that out. I'm still not "low carb" but, when I cut out a lot of my daytime carbs, I'm only bolusing for 15G of carbs@ lunch (8G of carb bread, 7G of carb peanut butter...) so, if my ratio is off, the post prandial number will be off, either high or low? I take that ratio and translate it into the evening and morning although I give the AM a bump for DP. It's sort of shamanistic but it seems to work and I can maintain an "ok" weight while eating some carbs. More than 40/ day.
can i just say carbs arent evil, and i dont agree they are 'addictive'. As soon as you start excluding foods, you start to crave. See your atkins attempt. Its only natural. By cutting things like fruit, your also missing out on alot of vitamins etc..
While i agree many overdo the carb thing, i believe going the other way and excluding them altogether is not only hard to stick to, it makes getting nutrients from other sources more challenging.
Weight loss is the same for any type 1 as it is with a non-d. You need to consume less calories to drop weight. As for insulin, if your matching your carb input correctly and arent chasing lows with food all the time, then insulin wont be a problem. I think AR is a good example. He lost weight as a T1 and a hell of alot too. He is a runner so no doubt cleaned up his diet and exercised. He is still on insulin, but managed to drop weight. And he is eating carbs.
Sorry but the whole bernstein thing annoys me when weight loss can and does happen with carbs on board. They arent evil.
I'm surprised how opinionated everyone seems to be about carbohydrates. I'm trying to be as methodical and unbiased about my own diet as possible.
I do admire Dr. Bernstein, as I admire anyone living with T1 for 65 years. Also, I admire any T1 diabetic that can achieve and maintain nondiabetic A1Cs.
Sure his advice can be heavy-handed at times, But I think that is to be expected when taking advice from an 85 year old.
I cannot attest to carbs being evil, but in my experience, they are addictive. I have read and seen things making a damning argument against Fructose, but I cannot personally confirm them. I've tried unsuccessfully many times to limit, cut, and count carbs. My swag is that the body has a hard time switching fuel sources, so it craves carbs. I exercise, and have never been overweight.
I plan to stick to this diet for the rest of my life. Now that I have quit carbs, I don't miss them. Will there be negative long-term consequences? I hope not, but I have no idea. I am relatively sure that there will be long-term consequences of elevated BG, though. My own experience, so far, would probably be discouraging to anyone trying to lose weight, though. I have cut back on carb intake 70% and calories by at least 50%, but have lost very little weight.
I notice many people making contradictory claims about diet. Usually they have some sort of agenda. As with diabetes research, there always seem to be a lot of extenuating circumstances, so it is very difficult to prove or disprove anything. Try to be honest with yourselves and always remain skeptical. Good luck!
Thanks for that post Sam.I really enjoy my low carb to no carb diet, so does my diabetes.
Actually, I did end up losing about 6lbs this month. I feel fine, and not hungry, though. If I drop another 10, I'll need to figure out how to add some calories. Also, found this very interesting:
Loved that lecture! It's great to see a nutritionist willing to admit he had an expectation that was turned upside down by his own research study.
Correction, then. They aren't evil for everyone. Those of us who need to stay away from them know who we are. I'm reading Jenny Ruhl's new book, Diet 101: The Truth About Low Carb Diets, and it covers the problems as well as the benefits in a very straightforward manner.
That's more of a philosophical question. I would say that they can be pretty bad for us T1's, because:
It's very easy to eat a lot of them. (most of my favorite dishes are about 50 - 100g)
They drive up your BG very high, very fast.
It is very difficult to cover the time or amount of carbs with a large bolus.
Personally, I find life easier without them. I don't know how they affect your weight or health, overall. I'm very curious about Jenny Ruhl's book. Probably won't have the chance to read it, though. Anything surprising?
She does a good job of covering both sides of the issues about low carb. I enjoy her straight-forward writing. She goes into a lot of detail about why we hit plateaus on low carb, and all diets really, and why one size does not fit all. I got the book for my Kindle on Amazon, it was very reasonable.
The biggest thing I miss about carbs is the convenience. Making a sandwich is quick and easy. I can put the innards in a bowl and just eliminate the bread, but then it's hard to eat. If you don't eat French bread, you have nothing to suck up stew juice, you have to just drink it out of the bowl. I can get along without carbs, I just can't be as lazy about cooking.
I totally agree! Carbs are not evil, I love them. But at the price I pay for how they affect my blood sugar is not worth it chasing the highs and lows anymore. And that's just me and how my body responds to them. Being able to flatline through a meal really makes me happy.
From everything I've read, yes your body goes through a craving period once you stop eating the carbs but then after that initial 10 days or so, in my experience, it really seems to stick.
And weight loss may be the same for D and nonD but as you know each D is different. 7 years ago I was able to lose 30 pounds in 5 months with the usual diet and exercise. And this time nothing.
From what i've read, cycling is supposed to be a great exercise for weight reduction and I started in the fall, spent all winter with bike on the indoor trainer and now outside and from the fall to now I've dropped 9 pounds. The plus side is, I really enjoy riding now.
My best "diet" was when my thyroid was overactive, I was losing a pound a day without trying and even eating whatever I wanted. Of course I was sick as a dog.