Husband diagnosed with diabetes, Help

My husband was diagnosed with diabetes a week ago with a fasting blood sugar of 6.7 and an A1C of 7.7. We always knew that he had a predisposition to it because of its prevalence in both sides of his family but didn’t know he would have it at the age of 30.

We just went in to get a health check done and found this out. We requested the doctor to let us try lifestyle changes and test again for A1C in 3 months time.

Our current plan -

  1. Test fasting sugar daily
  2. Try to eat a Low carb diet ( it’s been rather difficult for us to follow a LCHF Indian vegetarian diet - any suggestions for this would also be helpful)
  3. Exercise daily - ( target being to reduce 5kgs in 3 months)

The fasting sugar readings have been -
7.5, 7.3, 7.1, 7.4 and latest is 7.1

I’ve been heartbroken ever since we came to know about this and it’s rather a difficult thing to process. We also just had a baby so this has been extremely overwhelming for us.

Please suggest -
What our first steps of action should be ? Are we doing it right ? Any diet recommendations for a vegetarian? Can this be reversed or be put in remission ? Starting on medication - will it be a downward spiral from then ?

Also any sort of reassurance is much appreciated.

Thank you.

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Hi @Dummy2020 and welcome! Testing before meals and 2 hours after meals will give you a better idea of how foods affect your husband’s blood sugar and what foods to either avoid or eat in extreme moderation. I frequently eat Hyperabadi cuisine ( I love the spiciness) but find I need to make simple substitutes or my BGs skyrocket. One easy substitution is riced cauliflower instead of actual rice. Haleem is another favorite, but in moderation. Lots and lots of veggies, with corn, peas and legumes in moderation will help. I have seen adjusted food pyramid charts that may or may not actually help. The link is below.

http://www.diabetesindia.com/diabetes/diets_charts.htm

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Hey Dummy2020:

Welcome to our forum, the indispensable place everyone wished they could do without. The numbers actually do not look all that bad considering no medication used to date. Low carb, is a really great place to start and remove the kgs. Until the weight came off, I would not do any exercise beyond taking regular walks. Any intense exercise will make you hungry until you are fat adapted and then losing the 5kg. becomes very difficult.

Look at https://www.ditchthecarbs.com/ and you will find that you can “fake” most of your favorite dishes into low carb dishes. This website is just one of the better ones and there are many more.

Yes, your numbers can be reversed but that is a lifelong commitment to healthy eating and a happy healthy lifestyle. I suspect with your current numbers you will be started on oral medications and then over time, you may want at least some insulin to allow for a much wider variety of food choices.

This is mostly a DIY disease and how you control it and how much effort you want to put into that control determines type and amount of medication requires (from none to lots of insulin) or somewhere in between.

Figuring out what works for you will initially take a lot of time and effort and education and we are here to answer any specific questions you may have.

Again, welcome and we look forward to helping you any way we can

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@El_Ver : Thanks for your reply. We will start checking 2 hours post meal then, how much of a spike(spike from the fasting levels ? Or is there general baseline? ) is consider good ? ( so that we can make a note of those foods and have them be a regular in his diet)

@CJ114 : Thank you for your reply. He is currently walking and is able to burn around 400calories without any strenuous gym activities. I had a question about following a Low carb diet - does a Low carb diet have to be rich in fat ( will this cause other problems of high cholesterol and such) ? And if it’s more rich in protein instead of fat then will it have any effect ? Does the body need to go into ketosis to lower BG levels ?

Low carb diet - does a Low carb diet have to be rich in fat ( will this cause other problems of high cholesterol and such) ? Just concentrate on the fewer the carbs the better and don’t worry for starters on fat content or other macros. Higher fat will satiate hunger and you will lose the kg faster. Cholesterol will rise if your fats are saturated so keep those to a minimum and no trans fats at all. And if it’s more rich in protein instead of fat then will it have any effect ? I hope you love avocados, as they have plenty of fat and other good nutrients and a quick way to success without harming cholesterol. Does the body need to go into ketosis to lower BG levels - NO going into ketosis will just burn off the 5kg faster as in about 5 weeks or less. Once that goal is met, then adjust food and lifestyle accordingly,

Read about the Keto flu - That is what tends to kick people off of Keto early on. Electrolytes will fix that. Don’t concentrate on Keto, concentrate on low carb any way you can get there. The easiest is to cut back a few carbs every day and when you are ready to kick this into high gear, then get into intermittent fasting as soon as possible and you will be amazed that you can actually function very well on one meal a day, preferably lunch.

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@CJ114: Thank you again for your reply. All of this makes a lot more sense to me now, thank you.
I’m sorry about asking too many questions but I just wanted to know what the journey from here on is -

  1. We stick to a Low carb diet as a lifestyle, exercise/walk daily and try to maintain the levels ?

or

  1. Do we need to start off with fasting at some point in time as just the diet will not be as effective after a while ?

We are here for the questions, don’t worry about it. Take it easy and enjoy the ride. You are in this for the long haul and there are no quick fixes. Push too hard, and like most diets, you will fail. When you eat low carb, high fat, you will not only lose weight but lose appetite as well The easiest meal to skip at first is breakfast. Just take it slowly and each baby step will not feel like a lot of progress, but at the end of every couple of weeks you will be amazed by results. The importance is to stick to low carbs in the beginning. See how soon you can get down to 25 grams per day. Once you reach your weight goal, then you may want to modify to more plant based or stick with LCHF depending on what you like to eat and how it affects your results.

If you can get any kind of CGM, Dexcom is the best but not the only one on the market, you will make much, much faster progress because that would allow you to micro manage, your food, and exercise and medication if need be. The secret is to get yourself and keep yourself under diabetic control while enjoying all the activities you like in life to the fullest. There are always some compromises that may have to be made but each person is unique and what is right for each one of us is not necessarily right for anyone else. This is not a one size fits all disease.

Just remember we are here for you and you will have some very high highs as you go along as well as some very frustrating lows in your diabetic life. We have all been through them and can tell you how we dealt with each issue and it is up to you to choose what fits you best.

I am not recommending but you would be remiss in not at least checking out Virta Health as their philosophy of diabetic management is in line with yours. https://www.virtahealth.com/

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The best advice that I can try and relay to you and your hubby - and this is 10 years + of being a diabetic type 2 - This isn’t something that either of you are going to master after a month, year or decade. Don’t get hassled over things that happen. It’s a learning experience that’s going to take a lifetime where a majority of the things you’re going to learn yourself and some things are still unknown to modern day medicine and science. Hope this helps - It’s a Journey.

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My mom was diagnosed T2 at age 50, now still healthy at 88 and continues to take her meds and enjoy life in own apartment.

I’ve been T1 for over 55 years. Neither of us is in a downward spin.

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