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  1. #1

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    diet for borderline diabetic

    My husband's blood sugar has risen this past year and now is at the level where the doctor wants him to watch his intake of anything that will raise his blood sugar, Problem is we do not know what foods to avoid, outside the obvious ones of cakes and cookies. Would appreciate some advice.

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    I was really surprised to find out which foods were ones to avoid. If you Google Glycemic index - it is really easy to find reliable information on the Internet.

    The biggest surprise for me was that some of the foods that are really high are fruits and some vegetables.(What can I say? I was never very good at science)
    I guess with all the sources telling you fruits and vegetables are healthy - it never occurred to me. Fruit juices are generally very high.

    Some vegetables that are high on the GI are carrots and peppers.

    And next - many carbs - especially white flour type carbs - are high too.

    http://www.glycemicindex.com/

    Try that link for a start.

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    Quote Originally Posted by judiz View Post
    My husband's blood sugar has risen this past year and now is at the level where the doctor wants him to watch his intake of anything that will raise his blood sugar, Problem is we do not know what foods to avoid, outside the obvious ones of cakes and cookies. Would appreciate some advice.
    Try eating foods that have a low glycemic load. The less processed food is, the lower its GL is likely to be.

    Here's a link to a page about the glycemic index, which is similar to the glycemic load except that it doesn't take into account the amount of carbs being consumed (the GI is actually used in the calculation of the GL).
    Roll Tide, y'all!

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    Get rid of all white flours. Only eat whole wheat bread, whole wheat pasta, etc.

    Avoid hidden fake sugars in things you hadn't imagined. High fructose corn syrup can turn up in the weirdest places. I would just avoid HFCS in general.

    I would also schedule a meeting with a diabetic dietician. Call you doctor to see if he knows one.

    If you eat out a lot, get one of those guides that shows nutritional facts for restaurants, and try to avoid high-carbohydrate meals. In general, try not to eat anything that is processed. Whole, real food only.

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    My mom has become a borderline diabetic due to the wonders of genetics and she basically eats lean proteins (chicken, fish, etc), vegetables (mostly dark greens), and whole grains. She avoids white bread, potatoes, any kind of dessert, saturated fats like butter and bacon, corn, etc. She also limits her fruit intake.

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    I have heard that it is better to eat a fruit or berries as a snack between the meals and not directly after a meal. Also it is better to eat less and eat several times per day. The goal is to keep the blood sugar level even.

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    Quote Originally Posted by michiruwater View Post
    I would also schedule a meeting with a diabetic dietician. Call you doctor to see if he knows one.
    ^^This. A dietician will give you a target/max carbs to hit at each meal and a limit for the day.

    You should actually be looking more at total carb count as opposed to just the sugar content. Fiber is very important- it factors into the carb counting. If something has 25g carbs, and 0g fiber, it is counted as 25g of carbs toward your daily total. If, however, you eat something with 25g carbs and 5g fiber, it counts as only 20g carbs.

    Essentially, you subtract the number of fiber grams from the carbs to calculate.

    Agree that you need to switch to whole grain products and significantly limit (or eliminate) white flour products.

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    Your doctor didn't discuss this with you or recommend a nutritionist? There is plenty of advice online but plenty of that advice is wrong, as well. I would go speak to a nutritionist if your insurance will cover it.
    -Brian
    "Michelle would never be caught with sausage grease staining her Vera Wang." - rfisher

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    I agree that your husband should see a nutritionist or doctor. (Also ask them to recommend a good book.)

    Most vegetables and even a lot of fruits are fine in moderation because of the fiber. (Juices are a different story.) Under doctor's orders, my sister got her diabetes under control with diet. She was eating more fruit and vegetables than she was before, though she basically hadn't been eating any fruit or vegetables before. She had been a junk food junkie -- lots of bad carbs.

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    Another thing to do is not eat a snack or meal that is mostly or all carbs but to make sure you always have protein, carbs and fat in every meal/snack.

    That's what Mr. Mac's dietician told him when he was diagnosed with diabetes last month.
    "Cupcakes are bullshit. And everyone knows it. A cupcake is just a muffin with clown puke topping." -Charlie Brooker

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    My husband was diagnosed at a type II diabetic about 18 months ago. Our family doctor arranged for him to attend a clinic with dieticians (etc) who are diabetic savvy. I attended the first meeting where they explained what a type II diabetic is, about counting carbs, being on meds, what to watch for when eating, etc. etc. etc. Now my mom had been diagnosed as "borderline" diabetic so I asked these experts what that meant. I was told that there is no such thing as an actual borderline diabetic but what is usually meant is that the readings are on the high side of normal.

    My best advice, find a nutritionist who is diabetes savvy and make an initial appointment to see where you need to go from there. With my husband, he can eat pretty much anything but we are both trying to each a bit healthier for both our sakes. He's on the low end of meds and as long as he exercises for at least 20 minutes a day (usually in the evening after we have supper), his numbers are good. In fact, the aviation people think his morning numbers are a bit low and were concerned he might pose a problem so ... he took readings after he ate and showed those to the same people.
    Crazy about sports!

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    Quote Originally Posted by professordeb View Post
    Now my mom had been diagnosed as "borderline" diabetic so I asked these experts what that meant. I was told that there is no such thing as an actual borderline diabetic but what is usually meant is that the readings are on the high side of normal.
    Except if you are "pre" diabetic or "borderline" diabetic, your liver is already getting its beta cells killed off. By the time you get diagnosed as Type II diabetic, you've lost around 50% of your beta cells. And they can't grow back.

    Really what it means to be pre-diabetic or borderline diabetic is that you have diabetes but the medical community isn't willing to treat you for it yet.

    There is actually a move to change the criteria and what is considered a normal range so that pre-diabetics are diagnosed as diabetics and get treatment earlier. I'm all for that as I was somewhat appalled to find out that Mr. Mac had spent years losing beta cells just because no one was willing to call him a diabetic.
    "Cupcakes are bullshit. And everyone knows it. A cupcake is just a muffin with clown puke topping." -Charlie Brooker

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    I'm Type 2 and other than the excellent advice given above, perhaps invest in Better Homes and Gardens Diabetic Living magazine. It's the only magazine out there for Diabetics on the news stands and it's got excellent tips in it for both Types 1 and 2. Also awesome recipes and because it's Better Homes and Gardens, you *know* they've been tested w/in an inch of their life.

    It's been a great asset to me and I can't reccomend it enough to those who are newly diagnoised. Good luck to you and your husband.

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    Thank you for all your advice, my husband is also going to make an appointment with an endocrinologist.

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    My husband is borderline diabetic. His brother was Type I, his mother type II, and there are other type II's in the family.

    Basically we follow a diabetic diet, which is good for both of us at this stage of our lives.

    There are lots of cookbooks available for diabetics. Most of them give a lot of information about food choices and eating habits.

    Seeing an endocrinologist is great. I hope your husband is referred to a diabetic clinic.

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    Here's a tip for you, if your husband likes potatoes. Hot, baked (dry) potatoes do have a high glycemic load. The wetter, boiling kinds (usually reds) have a MUCH lower glycemic index, and if you let them cool, the starch actually changes form to a resistant starch, which is a form of soluble fibre, which is very very good for you, and the potato has a much lower glycemic index. We are doing a lot of research on Potato starch qualities at my workplace and it is really interesting.

    It's also true for other starchy foods like rice, that some of the starch becomes resistant starch when cooled.

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    What should I be looking for, foods that are low in carbs or low in sugar? All the whole wheat pastas I saw had the same number of carbs as regular pasta.

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    Whole wheat or refined, they both have the same amount of sugars and starches. Carbs and sugar are both what you are trying to limit. They both increase the glycemic index of food (actually, sugar is a kind of carb, that's why it might be confusing you).

    By the way- cold pasta is like potatoes, it has some of it's carbs cool into resistant starch.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by judiz View Post
    What should I be looking for, foods that are low in carbs or low in sugar? All the whole wheat pastas I saw had the same number of carbs as regular pasta.
    You should focus on the carb content as well as the fiber. Look at the grams of fiber and subtract that nuymber from the amount of carbs per serving. This will give you your net carbs for a particular food.

    My father was given the following target numbers for each meal:
    40 carbs for breakfast
    40-60 carbs for lunch
    40-60 carbs for dinner
    Two snacks- each with no more than 20 carbs

    He switched to Pepperidge Farm "Carb Style" wheat bread, and generally uses whole grain products. Lots of veggies. The trick is finding food that fills him up. Yes, he can eat pizza, for example, but generally only a slice or so before he goes over his limit for the meal. Not really filling.

    I want to stress that THESE ARE HIS NUMBERS!!! Your husband needs to see a specialist to be put on a program that works for him. I hope with diet and exercise he can turn this around. Good luck!!

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    Lots of info about Type 2 diabetes and recipes here: http://robin-ellis.net/

    For those who remember the BBC series "Poldark", it's the website of Robin Ellis who played Ross Poldark. He's published a book of recipes for diabetic and posts lots of interesting snippets about his current life in the French countryside.

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