Dr. Bernstien's Advice

Excellent point, Josephine.

My husband has perfect BG (when he’s actually allowed me to test him). He went low carb when I did, though not as low. He lost over 30 lbs., hasn’t gained it back & says he’s never felt better. Like me, he was a carb junkie before.

To each his/her own. If a person’s goal is have as normal as BG as is possible (which isn’t the ADA’s definition of normal), then the route is restricting carbs. I’ll feel a lot more deprived losing my eyesight, kidneys & legs than I do passing on a donut or piece of pizza.

We’re not normal & this is what we have to deal with. The eat what you want philosophy & take insulin to cover doesn’t work.

People have food allergies & know if they eat the wrong thing they’ll be sick. Same thing with daibetes, but it takes longer to see the long term results of bad choices. We pretend that eating normal won’t effect us, but it does. Doesn’t help that health professionals advocate 45-60 carbs per meal & 15 carb snacks. All that helps is the pharm companies.

I haven’t found it terribly hard. I decided I didn’t want to spend my life correcting highs & fearing lows. Hated the roller coaster. If you want to try this, go into it with a positive attitude that you’ll feel better & be healthier. It’s not a diet, but a life change.

In general, I think moderating carbs is a good thing, and I don’t find it possible to just eat anything and bolus for it. But too low carb doesn’t work me because I am superactive. I did read one of the earlier editions of Dr. Bernstein’s book, and personally thought he was a bit quacky and extremist. He bragged about not having eaten fruit in 25 years, but said that he used glucose tabs to fuel his workouts. Me, I’d rather have the health benefits and great taste of fruit before a workout, not icky glucose tabs. Dr. Bernstein also didn’t advocate using insulin pumps back then.

But at least he says alcohol is OK!

Ditto…Ditto…Ditto…and Ditto.
Ditto, oops, Dino, said it all. It’s hard, but Dr B tells us to limit carbs for the best control. Use it as a guide, or inspiration.

Yes Arielle I agree with you and I apologize for the confusion. My statement was exaggerated to make a point, but no, it’s not normal to eat that many carbs in one sitting…for anyone.

My point was that a non diabetic could theoretically eat a box of donuts with little effect on his/her blood sugar. T1 diabetics could do this too, theoretically, and take a bunch of insulin to cover the carbs. But the diabetic will probably have some level of spike in blood sugar, no matter how much insulin is taken. In other words, our bodies aren’t capable of handling carbs the way normal people do, no matter how much insulin we take.

Now with that said I will say this. According to Dr. Bernstein, even eating like a “normal human being” ie. as a single slice of pizza, a plate of pasta, or bowl of fruit is bad for diabetes. The average entree on a restaurant menu has more carbs than what he recommends for a three day total. Now that’s pretty extreme, and not what the ADA tells us. And frankly, just the idea of eating that few carbs has a lot of diabetics up in arms.

But it works. Period. So thats why its my benchmark for the “perfect daily diabetic diet.” Do I follow it 100%? Heck no, and YMMV. But I do know that this carb limiting lifestyle is the best way for us to eat if we want to maintain stable blood sugars. No question.

If I remember correctly (it’s been a while since I read him,) Dr B had Diabetes for a long time and some complications. His extreme response was due to being scared to death, I suspect. I agree it is possible to be a bit less restrictive, but his results pretty much speak for themselves.

I’ve heard some of his recent web casts & he’s still not a pump advocate.

Dr. B’s approach is being extremely controlled in knowing exactly what you’re eating, hence the glucose tabs rather than fruit for precise amounts. I hear ya on those yucky glucose tabs–bleech.

Nel thank you so very, very much. Over time people (doctors included) were amazed at the minimal damage that has occured in my body. I am forty seven years old, and thirty five years insulin dependant. Many people (including you and thanks again) have made it clear that I should say, or do something regarding diabetes.

I recently started a blog in Oprah’s Diabetes Support board and never counted on any response really, and because the complex issues surrounding diabetes are massive, I figured that the importance of the subject was paramount, and we are all in this together. That is why I did not use my name, it is in fact ALL of our names.

It is very clear that we need a central voice to address two isses. The first being to diabetics that because we experience, we truly understand and do not judge anyone and although it is a lot of work, you can have reasonable control. The second is to let all of the non diabetics know that the job is tougher than anyone can imagine. We as diabetics/humans make mistakes and face incredible challenges in a society that encourages eating disorders on every level from anorexia to bulimia and morbid obesity.

Food is not only our medicine, it is all things. It is very much a fun, tempting, intoxicating necessary component of our lives with massive social and cultural implications. It is our best and worst friend. It is also a major key for diabetics to help control many of the potential dangers we live with that haunt us all.

Somehow we must find a way to focus this message and let everyone know that sooner or later we will all be touched by it, and be as pro-active as possible and use state of the art technology to beat this monster and make no mistake about it WE CAN and WE WILL!!! Now it’s up to us to set the time frame.

I understand it is not possible, nor can I save the world. For now I will continue on as I am trying to help those who are hurting, or not happy with thier levels of control. We definitely need a voice and I don’t care who it is, but it is very clear that although the Walk For A Cure is great we need more. We need to create a momentum where we can manage to consistently support our bodies ever changing needs, both physically and mentally.

I tried to send a message to you, and was even self conscious writing to you here however I figured you would see it. Thanks so very much again for your support and I have no problem stepping out from behind the curtain however it’s not about me, it’s about the data and I will do my best to try to help others based on my experience. We are all here to help.

Love Always
The Anonymous Diabetic.

but I did toss the book…

If you taylor what he says to your own needs you will probably like it. I felt sick following the 6, 12, and 12 carbs recommendation. Actually I started throwing ketones at normal blood sugars because I wasnt eating enough carbs. His ideas made sense but I couldnt do it to his specs. I need at least 30-45 per meal.