Help with Weight Loss for Type 1 Diabetic(s)

So of course like most of us when I was diagnosed my weight was down. I have always been a little thicker but ideally where it should be when diagnosed, according to height etc. But now I am roughly 20-30 lbs more than I should be for my height. My question is for anyone that either has been successful in losing weight as a Type 1 diabetic or those who know how to do it safely. I think I have eaten well and exercised some, although now that I’m done with school I have been able to work out more. I want to hear success stories of Type 1’s who have lost weight! So I know it can be done! Thanks, Mandi

Hi there.

I figure loosing weight as a type 1, is just the same as loosing weight as a non diabetic, the same rules apply.

You would just have to adjust I:C ratio accordingly to reflect the changes in diet.

I have lost 12kg since November by doing the following..

Working out my basic metabolic rate..

I then ensured I was running a calorie deficit of 300-500 calories a day. I also exercise daily. (30-50 minutes of cardio that keeps my heart rate above 170, every morning before breakfast)

I then left weights three evenings a week. Moderate weights 4X12 reps of the basic exercises.

I eat 5-6 small fist sized meals a day, all high in protein and very low in carb.

No bread, no pasta, no processed foods, no sweets, no sugars, no potatoes, no white rice, no fruit..

Lots of lean meat, egg whites, salad, fish, greens, nuts and seeds.

My body fat has reduced from 28% down to 15.5% which I am really happy with.

I have also found that I need less insulin, I believe that insulin can promote fat storage so I find it best to reduce carb intake and as a consequence take less insulin, enabling me to stay lean.

The keys to weight loss are setting goals, making it sustainable it shouldn't feel like torture, I don't feel hungry or fed up with this new approach as I am eating every 3 hours :)But I NEVER consume more than 2,000 calories a day.

Try opting for a lifestyle change rather than a short term approach to dieting and weight loss. Diets don't work. Long term changes in lifestyle do.

There are no magic pills, exercises, or supplements. They say a good body is made in the kitchen not in the gym, I would say it is 80% eating cleanly and 20% exercise to get you the body you want.

Eat less and move more is the most important element of weight loss.

Consistency is also hugely important, but then again so is the odd cheat day to keep you sane :)

All the best and good luck with it.

In some ways, there may be benefits to having diabetes. Since we are already counting carbs, protein, etc., you may be more conscious than "straight" people about what you're eating and thus able to say "well, if I weigh that much eating x, I can eat x/2 [reducing insulin accordingly, of course...] and see what happens." I started doing that in 2005 and lost about 90 lbs. Eventually I reached the point where I replaced a lot of small serving of carbs w/ veggies (which still have carbs, just not as much...) and various proteins. I haven't totally banned pasta, junk food or bread or any of that but eat quite a bit less than I used to. Good luck!

I went from 158lbs to 152lbs from August to November by cutting down on my daily carbs.
Went from 275 grams to around 200 grams.

I have lived with Type 1 D for most of my life, I'm now a senior citizen. During the 1990 I retired and gain a lot of weight. When I decided that I had to lose that weight I decided to walk several miles every day. At that time I was also seeing a CDE who helped me to calculate what my insulin to carb ratio was and from there I instituted my own program. I joined a gym and when I didn't go to the gym I would walk those days. After about 5 months I had lost 40 some pounds. If I had to lose weight again I would do it the same way...walking several miles a day helped immensley.

Buckley said it well...

I'm T2 but I lost weight pretty much the way Buckley described. I went less carb and exercised. I counted carbs and skipped over the high carb stuff. My main goal was to reduce insulin resistance and weight loss was a necessary element of my plan.I figured that carbs plus insulin equals fat, thats why reducing IR was so important for me. When I make my food choices fat content is not the first thing considered rather carbs are.

Losing weight as hard as it is not the hardest part, keeping it off is, thats where lifestyle change comes into play.

I also think Buckley was right, losing weight is the same for all, but as diabetics we do have an awareness of whats in the food we eat. I think that can be used as an advantage.

Yes I agree that diabetics are more aware of what they consume in terms of carbs, fats and protein than the average person.

I was talking to my friend the other day, an intelligent successful guy and it appeared he didn't have much of an idea what a carbohydrate was ha.

I weighed all my food for a year or two when I really started taking my control seriously, so these days I can pretty much eyeball a meal and go "50g protein, 25g carb, 10g fat"..

I think the most salient points from the posts above have been, try to reduce TDI requirements through carb reduction, ensure you are eating healthy and get some exercise.

What shocked me is that it can be really slow going and you have to be in it for the long term, I would say 2lbs a week loss tops. I went a bit faster than that and in hindsight should have slowed down and let the weight come off a little more slowly.

Weight loss tips that do seem to work though in my experience.. Drink lots and lots of water, get some fibre in your diet and drink green tea if you can stand it :)

MOVE MORE EAT LESS Diet..Delight in Eating Thoughtfully.

Use the ADA Plate Method Use a blue plate (mind game) Control portion sizes Count calories carbs keep a food journal I have lose 58 pounds and have kept it off 20 years. I am 85 and still going strong.

First of all thank you for all this input! These are all great tips!

I have been drinking more water and exercising more within the last 3 weeks. I have generally done no more than 30 carbs per meal, occasionally I go more (rarely even 3x that). The nutritionist at my doctors office said I should be eating more like 45-55 carbs per meal because I am younger. Which my I:C ratio is low, meaning 1 unit per 5 carb, so 45-55 is a lot of insulin! For the snacks I have been eating carb free; hard boiled eggs, cheese, deer sticks, turkey bologna, nuts (sometimes I mix a small handful of dark chocolate M&M’s and is still low carb), etc. I have also tried to brush my teeth not long after eating dinner and that way I don’t have the urge to eat a bedtime snack. As for the exercise part, this is what annoys me about being a diabetic. If I don’t plan that I am going to exercise and have taken meds earlier for a meal I have to eat after exercise, which then basically screws up the point of exercise. That’s the case in general when my BS drops I have to eat, so annoying when trying to cut back on food/calories/carbs. I most definitely check my BS before and after exercise. If it is even around 100 I’ll drink like 1-2cups of light vanilla/chocolate soy milk (8carb per 1cup), its nutritious and tasks really good! This has helped with the dramatic drops.

Long story short, I am going to keep trying and trucking along. It’s still early in the game of weight loss for me but hopefully by summer time I will be looking and feeling good about myself!

*has anyone heard anything about Lantus causing weight gain?*

Hi there.

Afraid I haven't heard anything about Lantus causing weight gain, although there is a general consensus that insulin can contribute to it.

As for exercise, are you on injections or a pump? A pump has certainly made it easier for me.

Remember that exercise is not all about burning calories, it is great for cardiovascular health and can also be useful in speeding up your metabolism meaning you burn more calories when resting throughout the day. Especially true if you are building muscle mass.

Exercise wise, on the pump I turn basal down by 60-70% and have 15g of carbs for every hour of exercise, typically jelly beans. 15 jelly beans an hour seems to the trick.

To be honest though, if exercise is cardio and under an hour, which is often the case these days as I have been doing interval training. I just disconnect for an hour and have a unit or two when I have finished exercising.

This is a great tool, if you log everything you eat religiously for a month or two, it can be a great way to get a view on what your calories intake actually is on a day to day basis.

I am currently on injections but am going to a pump very soon, it's on the way to my house! I am getting excited about it too! I will likely be more careful of what I eat in the beginning due to it being a new way of taking meds. And that was one of the reasons I am getting the pump: easier to exercise and it will be easier to back off on the insulin dosage.

I have that app on my phone and it is very handy! I should try to use it more again. I also have On Track app on my phone and it is really easy to use. Although i just enter my foods in the notes part. I kind of wish there was a way to combine my fitness pal with on track. On Track you are able to print the logs or email them I believe.

Congratulations pumps do make exercise, especially cardio alot easier.

Get hold of a copy of this if you haven't already, it made my transition to a pump an easy one :)