Dolores, Now you've got my interest in just how you do this Dr. Mcdougall whole plant food diet. How did you discover that you were a diabetic and what were your numbers at first? Please tell us your story over those 23 years. Did you try other plans or lose a lot of weight?
I looked up Dr. Mcdougall up on the internet and read many of his articles. He did state that people who are insulin deficient will possibly need to have insulin injections. He particularly mentions those who are slim and have diabetes. He also includes a lot of exercise. In another link mentioned recently about a study of vegan diets as compared with the ADA standard diet, the vegan diet had more weight loss and they said that was accounted for the lower blood sugars. Weight loss will usually bring down blood sugars in most people.
The problem for me and some others on this site is that in being slim to begin with, and having insufficient insulin to handle even normal amounts of carbs, changing the diet to include many starchy carbs makes the blood sugar skyrocket. All we can do is to try to keep the number of carbs we eat to be equal to what our pancreas can handle if possible, exercise like crazy to have our muscles burn up the carbs we eat, and take increasing meds to handle the sugar still in our blood so it doesn't damage our organs.View Thread
I am able to test more because I bought an inexpensive TrueTrac meter from Walgreens. Walmart also has a house brand. My strips on Amazon.com are only 20 cents each, free shipping if you spend over $25, so I buy ahead and ignore whatever meter and amount of strips would be allowed on insurance and also all the paperwork involved. A person could use the insurance strips and have a different cheap meter and their own strips to use on the side. The accuracy will possibly be "ballpark", but that is better than none.
I might question a poster who says he can eat a lot of potatoes, etc. on a blog, because I would not know what his A1c is or if he is really a diabetic. Keep us posted on how your Vegan diet works. A lot of green and leafy and non starchy vegetables is good for most everyone, but I question leaving out all meat and good fats.
Note: I made a booboo on the amount of protein I eat -- my proportions are approximately 30% OF CALORIES from proteins, 40% low starch carbohydrates, and 30% good fats. On a plate this would look like most of the plate covered by salad or green beans, 2-3 oz. portion of lean meat (less than a deck of cards), and 1 tsp to 1 tablespoon of fats or a 1/4 cup of nuts. My calories for the day are about 1200 and I keep my total grams of carbs between 80 and 100. If I don't put in a mile of walking a day and extra strength and core exercise 3 times a week, my blood sugars still go up. I am 5'5" and 135 pounds, 75 yrs. old. This plan works for me and I realize we are all different.View Thread
Michelle, do you see a difference in your blood sugar numbers 1-2 hour after a meal with 50 % protein as compared with a meal heavy with potatoes or grains? For me, having even a cup of spaghetti, or other starchy carbs sends my sugars up. A normal meal for most people sends by blood sugar over 225. I do rely heavily on green and non starchy veggies balanced with low fat protein. My beef stew tonight was mostly green beans, celery, some onion and few baby carrots -- no potatoes. Good luck with finding what works best for you.View Thread
There have been recent questions about diets and eating plans. I'm starting a new post so as not to hijack a previous post. I never turn down an opportunity to learn new things about health, and therefore have read many book on low carb, low fat, low protein, Paleo, high complex carbs, etc. etc. etc. diets. Our site's expert, Dr. Dansinger has a series on different diets and as I remember came to the conclusion that whichever one you can faithfully follow is probably the best.
I, personally am a carb counter: so many per meal and per day, choosing mainly from the low glycemic (slow acting) ones. It works for me. My husband, however is a non diabetic and a runner, so he can eat healthy whole grain stuff, cereals, sweet potatoes, etc. He cannot cut down on proteins too much, however, because he needs to replace and rebuild his muscles.
One thing to remember when attempting to go vegan, is that diabetes is a disease/condition in which your body cannot process carbs normally. Every author I have read has somewhere in his book a disclaimer or warning to "of course follow your doctor's advise" or "be aware of the amount of carbs you ingest if you are a diabetic". Low animal protein diets may be good if one is careful not to replace the protein and fat with a bunch of high calorie and high glycemic foods like rice, wheat, cereal, breads, potatoes, etc. The protein in legumes and dried beans may sound like it would replace the protein in meats and eggs and fish, but the proportion of carbs in those beans is very high, and tends to spike blood sugar. Also, fat is the one food group that does not raise blood sugar-- even the bad fats may be preferable to high sugar foods. My point is just to be careful when reading different health and food plan authors to make sure that their plan is diabetic friendly.View Thread
The "pop psychology" answer to bad habits is that a person's "rewards" from continuing those bad habits seem to him/her to be greater than the anticipated "rewards" from changing those habits.
For me, personally, the rewards I am enjoying by keeping my blood sugar numbers in the pre diabetes range are: a longer, healthier life, more energy to go places (I love to travel), better eyesight, less nerve pain, less heart and brain disfunction, "cooler", slimmer clothes, and less money spent on doctors and meds.
For theses rewards I was willing to give up most breads, cereals, pastries, cakes, starchy veggies like potatoes & peas, pasta, pies, cookies, soft drinks, Starbuck's pumpkin spice frappecino, potato chips. One author I read said to eat like a gourmet, not a gluten -- flavorful low carb foods, rather than a lot of fillers. Ask yourself what you are gaining in your life by remaining ill. Your doctor should able able to refer you to a counselor to help figure this out and give you support. There are also meds to help with depression and anxiety.View Thread
Thanks, Lynn. I did find that the "Bayer NOW" A1c home testing kit is back on the market (Amazon.com has the best prices) under a different owner, but still the same product which worked very well for me. Similar kits have also been seen at Walmart. My A1c number with this home kit and just a finger prick and my Lab number in a vein blood draw taken on the same day are always very close. Therefore I can check on the effects of different meds, exercise plans, or large diet changes more often.View Thread
Dave, they always go with the cheapest first, so we'll see how this goes. It's too bad that the Bayer NOW A1C home testing kits are mostly off the market, having been sold out to a much more expensive company. That kit was a great way for me to keep track of my A1c more often. I'll check the internet for some that might be left over, and still not out of date.View Thread
After 4 years of successfully keeping my numbers in the pre diabetes range with limiting total grams of carbs per day to under 100 grams, and exercise consisting of walking 1 mi. each day plus some water aerobics, and balance and strength exercise at the gym, the doctor and I jointly decided to start me on a minimum dose of 500 mg. per day of Metformin. After my multiple abdominal surgeries this past July, I had not been able to keep up the same exercise schedule at first, and my A1c went up from 5.7 to 6.4. The fasting glucose had gone up from the mid 90s to 99-113. Although I am still counting carbs, and my exercise program is increasing, I am told that 6.0 and a history of diabetes in the family is the level at which my doctor would prefer to start meds to help. So I started taking Metformin 500 mg once a day on Oct. 17. (For me, the doctor usually prescribes only 1/2 a normal dose of any meds since I react strongly.)
I will just post occasionally what is happening with this new approach. My numbers stayed the same for the first week, and I had no symptoms from the meds. In the second week, the numbers started to drop and I developed a very slight throat nausea in the morning and felt a bit lethargic and also hungry! I actually chewed a half glucose tablet in church, Sunday and felt much better in 15 minutes. My energy stayed the same.
The last few days the numbers have really dropped. My last week's fasting glucose numbers were 93, 95, 89, 99, 90, and 81 today. And 2 hours after breakfast my BG was only 83. In the last 4 days I have had no blood glucose number over 115, even 2 hours after a meal. It remains to be seen if I can maintain the same weight now that I am hungry more often, and if I can plan my food to cover exercise sessions comfortably. I will keep you posted. It is also great to realize that Metformin protects me from breast cancers and some other cancers.View Thread
Please go back to your doctor and ask him/her to explain more to you about diabetes and your condition. It seems that you are well in your pregnancy and are not well informed. Your baby and you may need extra care. When you say you are doing everything you can to lower your levels, what would that include besides taking insulin shots and pills? You and your baby can be healthy enough for a fairly normal life, but only if you can get help in understanding and managing this disease.View Thread