Anyone go Low Carb in Honeymoon?

My teen son was diagnosed four months ago. Carb reduction will take him off insulin. My interests are to prolong his honeymoon and teach him to live the disease on less insulin.

Has anyone taken this approach?

I am also looking for Endo's in the Chicagoland area that will support this idea.

i was diagnaosed later (36) and so may be more LADA tan your son but i immediately reduced carbs to under 100. because of low carbing and a good deal of exercise i always take basal (to cover the livers production of glucose, independent of carb intake) but only use bolus once or twice a week.
i am now about19 months into it and there have been months where i have had to bolus all the time and my basal was higher and then it settled down again so i didnt have to use bolus. i dont think im honeymooning anymore but im still taking minimal amounts of insulin with low carbing, exercise and (maybe im lada-latent autoinmune diabetes in adults-t1 that develps more slowly. i take 8 units of levemir and when i use novorapid have an insulin:carb ratio of 1:30.

i hope your son is doing well!


I am reading Bernstein now. Understanding Ketosis. Incorporating and learning of what foods to replace with low carb substitutes, etc.

How old where you when diagnosed?

And what did you mean "take from him what is relevant"

What ratio of fats/carbs/proteins do you follow?

Thank you.

I think just about everyone goes on a lower carb diet after they are Dx. I was 34 and probably eating 600+ carbs a day before my Dx, I was skinny and on workout days loading 1000g before workouts. Now I try to stay below 100 and load up on protein before going to the GYM. I never worry about how much insulin it takes...I worry about what it takes to keep my blood sugar between 70 and 140mg/dL for most of the day...this is what gives me A1c's close to normal range <6.

My interest in low carb is to use it to control the type 1 instead of using insulin to control it. Finding the correct ratio of proteins/carbs/fats to keep him in the honeymoon state.

Realistically he is on only 1 unit of Lantus per day. That is all. So, it is the carbs that he is eating that are keeping him from going low. If I reduce his carb intake further he will be off Lantus.

I am reading Bernstein and sucking in all I can in the four short months since diagnosis.

Endocrinology focused the disease on insulin instead of on nutrition. If they did this, they would have a lot less business!

A drastic reduction of carbs, even to 0/day, will not necessarily mean he will have no need for basal insulin. The reason he's experiencing a honeymoon at all is because of supplemental insulin. It helps relieves the stress on the surviving beta cells, which allows them to recover for a while. It's a house of cards, of sorts. One really bad cold or bout of stomach flu can bring it crashing down.

During honeymoon, it's not unusual to see the body try to regulate BG on it's own. It isn't entirely the food keeping him from going low. His body is still quite efficient at BG counter-regulation.

Basal insulin has little to do with food/nutrition. It's needed for support of basic metabolic breathing.

Endocrinology focuses on the insulin because a T1's body will eventually stop producing enough to keep him/her alive. I agree that nutrition should be a larger focus, particularly for children, but I also understand the very high risk of psychological damage (these kids can burnout very quickly) & future eating disorders. Nutrition alone cannot change what's already set in motion. If so, the media would be filled with stories of all the T1s being cured.

How does your son feel about the dx? Is he agreeable to the changes you're seeking in his eating habits?

Yes, I did go low carb about 2-3 weeks after diagnosis. Carb reduction didn't take me off insulin though. I was at 0 insulin at my diagnosis in dka. My insulin reduced from that time and then a little with the low carb, but it increased as my body adjusted to low carb. The thing is with low carb you eventually need to bolus for protein and fat. At first if I did that I went hypo, but now I bolus more for that. I still have hypos though so I don't have it all completely figured out. Going low carb is great for a lot of other reasons, but don't expect it to necessarily lower or get you off insulin. I do believe it has helped preserve beta cells- the insulin treatment and the low carb diet- I was able to get my a1c down from 13% to the 5's 4 months or so after diagnosis.

I'm also late onset, so your son may have a different experience since early type 1 usually have a more aggressive immune reaction and more antibodies. It's all trial and error.
Just remember no matter what you eat, your body still needs insulin to function so you can't eliminate the basal.

Another thing which I think is helping me is taking ala and melatonin supplements.. I'm not sure yet, but I think they may be decreasing my insulin needs overall, evening primrose oil in combo with ala is supposed to make it work more effectively, I have added that in yet.

I went low carb during my honeymooon. I still low carb but I'm not a teenage boy. The beta cell destruction will continue, so if it's now or later, he'll still need insulin and there's no way you can control that, unfortunately...he has type 1 diabetes. Actually, it's the insulin itself which can help protect any remaining beta cells, allowing less stress on the already stressed and attacked pancreas. Low carbs won't control type 1, insulin won't control type 1, nothing controls type 1, we manage it and with insulin. A teenage boy needs to eat, his body is already in turmoil right now. Nearly everything will turn to glucose anyway. I would suggest you teach him to accept his disease and with that acceptance, allow him to learn how to manage his disease on insulin, not some false pretense that low carbing will make it any easier. This can lead to all types of 'wanting food' especially for a young boy. Why should he have to suffer on a low carb diet? As the honeymoon ends, and nobody can say when that will be, he will need more and more insulin, it's just the process, and when that time comes he'll need what he needs. less insulin more insulin, it doesn't matter, he needs what he needs and growing spurts, more then anything, will greatly effect his insulin needs as well.

I personally don't think there is anything wrong with him going on a low or moderate carb diet. It's not going to hurt him, contrary to what a lot of people think. He may feel deprived though if he has been used to eating higher carb which most people are- in the US and many other countries high carb diets with sugar and salt dumped into everything are the norm. You can't walk past a register in nearly any store without having sugar etc. pushed at you in the form of candy...

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i think there's a difference in eating a healthy diet, including all combination of carbs (which nearly all foods have), and eating junk food all day long, maybe there's a happy balance where a young teenage boy dosen't have to eat simple proteins and veggies to try and maintain a honeymoon state which is going to end anyway.

definitely true, he has to decide what is best for him.. just saying that it would be great if he can do it and feel ok and preserve beta cells since he most likely has the most aggressive form of type 1 and he is going to live with it longer... for me, for example, a potato was just as bad as candy... it didn't matter if it was junk food or not :)

IDK, we're all different I suppose. I can spike on anything, no carbs, protein and veggies only if I don't have the correct amount of insulin. our bodies will get overly sensitive to carbs too, if we cut back too much.

I think you can email Dr. Bernstein's assistant Steve, and he will give you the names of endos who understand low carb diets. 1 unit is a very low dose, but that is probably going to increase over time no matter what diet he eats, just be prepared for that.

It's not so much the low carbing that I see a problem. It's the idea of trying to maintain lower insulin amounts at a time when his body is growing. There are growth hormones that only release during the presence of high insulin circulation, which is one of the reasons puberty causes insulin resistance even in non-Ds.

According to bone scans, my 15 yr old dd has reached her full growth. We do moderate carb & are currently reducing even more, with advice/consent/blessings of a dietician. But she has a medical condition we're hoping to improve (it seems to be working), & we're not risking stunting/slowing her growth. And probably more important, she wasn't thrown into entirely new eating habits (we've always limited grain products) on the heels of her T1 dx. That's a lot for anyone to deal with, especially a teen.

Unfortunately, as Sarah (I think) has already mentioned, we now find ourselves in the situation of having to bolus for proteins & fats.

What do you mean by the most aggressive form of Type 1?

Do you know how to get a hold of Steve?

Just go the Dr. B's website and email..he will respond to you... here is the there was a free webinar tonight you can listen to also, you have to register for it usually.

I found out I spiked on any type of carbs(except low carb veggies probably) , even small amounts, even with large amounts of insulin, that was a big factor for me to go low carb. I had not cut back at all, but I generally ate a lower carb diet than many americans do until 2-3 years before all this happened when I was hanging with my x and his mom, who ate very high carb... he was literally drinking huge gulps constantly etc. and falling asleep from the sugar crash.

The amount of carbs is very important for me too, I can't eat over a certain amount in a meal, around 25 or so without huge spikes, at this time anyway.

I mean(from what I have read and talked with people about) that children who get type one usually have more antibodies and a more aggressive T cell reaction which kills off their beta cells more quickly- they usually go more quickly into dka and lose beta cell function and endogenous insulin production much more quickly than adults who have late onset type one. It can also be much harder to control and treat due to growth hormones and adolescence as well as the fact that they're going to live their whole life with the disease, hopefully not if we find a cure, so the sooner they adopt a health lifestyle the better imo.

If you visit the site, you might consider looking up Laura Plunkett. Her book is an excellent read, & details her management strategies for her son, including nutrition & acupuncture.