Any ideas on how to combat food cravings while taking insulin?

Do these cravings happen all the time, or possibly only when on the low BG side?

They happen if I’ve had a low blood sugar several hours before or just late at night sometimes.

But really they can just happen anytime sometimes as well.

You might want to consider whether you have too much insulin in your system that is slowly driving down your blood sugar—that will always make me hungry, as will dropping blood sugars in general, even if I’m not low.

Otherwise, eating a low(er) carb high fat diet (with plenty of veggies for fiber) has helped me feel more satisfied more of the time.

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My problem has always been getting enough fiber with low carb. I usually do low carb but I’ve actually found it makes me not “hungrier” by any means, but have insaine cravings. Even after the initial sugar detox phase.

Don’t eat surgery things. I recently stopped eating Carby foods and now mostly eat veggies fruit meat chicken and fish. No more pantry and fridge raids. Also don’t keep junk food around

My blood sugar is so much better now and I have lost the weight I have wanted to lose

I started dieting December 12th and I’m just 2 lb away from my goal but I’m actually reducing my target weight because I want to see a bit more of my tummy disappear. LOL

Many meals I don’t take any insulin or I will take two units. That’s a far cry from taking 10, 15 units or more

This is a wonderful idea and goes along with several other successful low carb posters I’ve seen here, however I have five kids here so…not keeping junk food is a challenge especially when he wants to buy them their junk food because he’s the one paying for it. Grrr great response though.

Yes it makes it tough when you have kids around.

So how does one cope with the cravings if they have children with kid food around the house? This now is more of a parents in general question that I know many struggle with. I’m definately going to research it.

Now I’m curious as to what your go to low blood sugar foods are Dave44?

If I am home I often have a small amount of Hershey’s syrup in a very small amount of milk. That is super fast. otherwise Skittles. And if I’m just slightly low I’ll often have grapes

Since I started dieting I have not had a single Pop Tart which used to be one of my go-tos. Lol. There are three large boxes of Pop-Tarts languishing in the cupboard as I had bought them just before I went on diet

Clearly what I am doing to manage lows is working well because my blood sugars are doing better and my weight is coming down to where I want it. A lot of people don’t understand that Hershey’s chocolate is not the type of chocolate that diabetics are told to avoid for treating lows They think that chocolate is too slow. That’s only true for solid chocolate which has a lot of fat.

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@Elyssia_Reedy, maybe see a cognitive-behavioral therapist to work on strategies to help manage cravings and increase distress tolerance? Depending on where you are located (if in a city or near a medical center), you may be able to find one who specializes in behavioral health or even diabetes specifically. You’ve mentioned in a number of posts across the forum that you can’t do various things because of relatively strong emotional reactions, and that makes a lot of sense, but there are a lot of skills a therapist can teach to help manage that so those emotions or cravings don’t derail things as much.

What a queen! Dave44 that’s a brilliant idea. Hershey’s syrup would probably make me feel like royalty during a low.

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Abstract: I deal with this issue a lot, and I’ve found that having alternatives to snack on, intense exercise, and life goals including keeping my heart and feet healthy help a lot.

So… I have a wife and a child who are not low-carb eaters :slight_smile: By that, I mean there is usually prepared pasta, fruit, candy, cookies, crackers, chips, cheerios (think of how many carby things start with “C”!), those little goldfish buggers, juice, milk, and a gazillion other things in the fridge, on the counters, and behind every cabinet door. This is the worst time of year, since candy tends to accumulate between Halloween and Easter at alarming rates.

How do I cope with cravings? It can be hard, but I really dislike the results of caving: high postprandials, higher fasting BGs for a week or so, feeling like crap, and worrying about the risk of long-term complications. So, for me, there are three things I’ve found to help:

  • Availability of low carb snacks: Kirkland Protein bars (Erythritol doesn’t spike my BG much, and those things are full of fiber); cheese; salami; homemande jerky; mixed nuts (preferably low on cashews to reduce carbs) I get in bulk from the grocer; and snackin veggies (celery, carrots, broccoli).

  • Tracking calories and macros with something like MyFitnessPal: the more disciplined and honest I am with tracking what I eat, the less likely I am to deviate from my eating goals.

  • Serious, regular, intense exercise: biking, weightlifting, and walking to work on the daily tend to make my body far more efficient at all sorts of metabolic functions, and in combo with low-carb eating reduces hunger and cravings for some reason (not sure why, but it does).

  • “Regularish Eating Days:” on Fridays, I have family dinner with my brother’s family, mom and dad, all the nephews and nieces, etc. and I eat a few more carbs than normal; and about once every other month or so, I go out with my wife and have a “normal” restaurant meal for date night, including dessert. Knowing I’m going out for an eight course gourmet meal on Wednesday (Valentine’s Day!) helps me to avoid wanting that snack cake right now…

  • Vanity: I look and feel better, and my wife things I’m sexier, when I’m trim, full of energy, and happy, and that tends to be when I’m regularly eating low-carb and exercising.

  • My son: I look forward to taking him backpacking, teaching him to climb, and taking him on trips to the outlandish places I am fortunate enough to get to work (jungles, the Arctic, and the occasional desert); I have to be healthy and have functional feet to take him backpacking.

So, to sum it up: have low-carb alternatives to eat; exercise a lot; have an occasional “normal” meal and deal with the temporary BG issues; and stay focused on the goal of a long, healthy, near-normal life.


oh, and now I don’t do snacks. As in, I don’t even munch on low-carb bars (we have plenty in the house from prior to getting my act together, nutrition-wise) or other low-carb snack foods. After sticking with lots of fruit, veggies, meat/fish/chicken, I simply have lost my “munchies”. I feel full when eating a lot less that I would when eating lots of "bad"things.

Having said all this about my recent diet, we STILL have small amounts of homemade pizza once in a while. And thankfully, my wife is a fantastic cook who can make great tasting soups of all types, minestrone and veggie/beef my favorites. In the past I used to eat a lot of soups that contained noodles like chicken-noodle. Too many carbs when going “low-carb”.

It’s amazing how easy it is to diet,IF you have access to tasty foods that are good for you. When we go on vacation, I dread the lack of options to eat healthy.

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Love this response David49! How do you handle your “cheat days” or “cheat meal” it seems without having it make your levels go through the roof? I do MFP as well and have lost 30 pounds on it through the years.

The real problem is that sensations of hunger don’t always correspond well to blood sugar levels, so I can feel starving at 180 or not hungry at all at 60. This means that there will be times when your mind is telling you to eat when you shouldn’t – unless of course you want to take a dose of fast-acting insulin to cover what you consume.

By not eating very much of something like pizza. Major portion-control is the key. I don’t want to be getting my carb or fat intake up to what it used to be or I’ll have to take large, problematic boluses, then ride the roller-coaster. Life is a lot better for the moment. :slight_smile:

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I try to pre-plan, so to speak :slight_smile: For example, tonight we’re going out for a fancy meal, and I’ll be doing some extra hard workouts this afternoon. Knowing how my body works and responds, this will mean I’ll be going into supper a bit lower than I normally would (in the low 70s most likely), and my body will be well-primed to soak up all those extra carbs to restock the muscles with glycogen.

But, the biggest thing is…I’ve made a decision to not worry so much about my levels for this one meal and after. Today, I’m sticking to the regime. Tomorrow, I’ll do what I always do. But, tonight, I’m going to have high blood sugar that will be difficult to deal with, and that’s OK for me for this one night. I tend to have a real heavy carb meal only once every two or three months, so my doctors and I have decided to not worry about it too much.