I can't lose weight! How many carbs per day for low carb?

I’m frustrated as well because I can’t lose the weight I gained from when I started on insulin two years ago.

I started on the pump two months ago and I’ve been feeling really good.

I work out 20 to 40 minutes Monday to Friday (mostly aerobic, some resistance stuff)

My pump says my total daily insulin dose average is about 20 units and it says I average about 90 carbs per day.

What gives? Not only can I not lose, but it’s like one week I lose five pounds, then I gain 3 lbs., then lose and again.

My husband and I are going on our honeymoon on May 1 and I’d like to look my best.

Any tips?

One more thing – I’m hypothyroid and just got checked. It’s around 1. My doc won’t up my dose.

So my general view is that weight loss happens in the kitchen. And while many people have found diets like the Atkins diet useful, I actually believe that a range of approaches can work, but they all depend on getting your body in a state that encourages fat mobilization and in reducing dietary sources of energy low enough. My best luck at weight loss has occurred with a technique called Intermittent Fasting (IF). I have reduced my carbs to very low levels, and basically, once I got to a certain level of lean, my body just burned fat, it didn’t lose further weight. To do IF, I just choose one day a week and skip breakfast and lunch. If you want to just start, you could just skip a meal.

In either case, you need to have your basal levels properly set. And that brings up the other thing, you should make sure your basals are at the minimum required to sustain your fasting blood sugars. Extra circulating insulin will impede weight loss.

And I have to tell you, I am actually not a fan of aerobic exercise for weight loss. I don’t believe calories in/calories out. I don’t think lose weight from all the calories you burn with exercise, it will just leave you hungry and you will eat. And never be discouraged about weight fluctuations, it goes up and down. Keep averages and see how the averages change.

How many carbs do you think I should eat in a day? I’m pretty sure my basal settings are good because I have good control and my bgs stay pretty closely even if I fast or skip a meal.

I agree on the cardio thing – it does make me hungry. I was focusing on cardio because my resting heart rate was poor and it would take a long time to get my heart rate down after exercising. Because diabetics are at such a high risk of heart attacks, I wanted to work on improving that. And I have. My resting heart rate went from 90s to 70s. And it returns to resting within two minutes of exercise. So I am seeing improvements. Just not dropping weight.

I would start at 40 carbs a day. Go to this website, type in 40 carbs day and your info and it will tell you how many calories, fat, and protein to eat http://www.phlaunt.com/lowcarb/DietMakeupCalc.php

Well, I actually think that 90 g/day is not bad. If you really want to do a ketogenic diet, you will need to get below 50 g/day. It will take perhaps 2 weeks to adjust, you may feel tired and lack energy during that time. I really don’t know where you are at now, so it is hard for me to suggest whether that is appropriate or not. In either case, improving your fitness is good, independent of whether you lose weight.

I really like the exercise called intervals. It quickly improves fitness, it can be done quickly in 20 minutes and it is effective. You can do it on the elliptical or treadmill. Go all out for 1 minute, then walk for 2-3 minutes getting your breath back, then repeat. Do that for 20 minutes and you will be a new woman.

Thanks for this. It’s weird though. It’s saying I can eat 2,400 calories to maintain my weight and 1,900 to lose weight, but there’s no way that’s true.

I’ll try the 40 carbs as that seems to be the suggestion.

The intervals is what I was doing to build up my endurance because I couldn’t run for 20 minutes straight. I was doing 2 minutes walk, 5 run, and then 2 and 2 as I got tired. Now I can run for 20 minutes on the treadmill.

Something’s just not making sense. My body shape has changed, maybe I just gained a lot of muscle?

I have done varying carb levels and have seen results. I really think it is the type of carbs that you eat. I find I do best around 40 carbs per day. Recently I lost too much weight so I added sprouted bread back in and have gained 5 pounds back. I am now around 116-117 which is a good weight for me. When I get close to 110 I look dead. I have eliminated all chemicals and additiives, so no processed or boxed foods. I think it really makes a difference. Plus I try to buy meat without any added hormones or antibiotics. My body seems to function much better. I started on Bernstein’s 30 carb a diet and then recently switched to a diet called , THE DIET SOLUTION PROGRAM by Isabel de los Rios. She has an eating plan and exercise plan that works. She actually has you eating more food not less, but it is all fresh and organic. She has tons of meal plans available. I eat basically everything except the fruit she recommends. The diet is centered around keeping bg stable.

Since everyone else commented on the carb stuff, I am going to comment on the thyroid. You said “it is around 1” – I am guessing you mean TSH because that is what a lot of doctors check. TSH is really useless. You need to have your Free T4 and Free T3 checked. Your T3 is your metabolism - if that is low, you can starve, do low carb or whatever and the weight won’t come off. Your FT3 should be in the upper 2/3rds of the lab range. Your FT4 should be about midway of the lab range.

yes, I was referring to the TSH. My thyroid is weird because I had it checked several times and I was fine, then about a year ago I got really sick and the area around my eyes swelled up and they tested and it was 8.63 from being 1.2 or something 4 months before. Then I took the synthyroid and it was back down around 1.

Had you just have a baby when your thyroid went low? A TSH of 1 is what your doctor should shoot for but as Kelly said even more important is how you feel and your free t3 and t4.

Well, that is a good observation. Muscle is denser than fat, so if you gained muscle and lost fat you would seem to shrink but you may be the same weight. I actually gave up on the whoe weight thing. Now I just try to stay lean and have as much muscle mass as possible.

Re the intervals, I think that’s a really good way to go. I have worked my way up very gradualy (5-6 years, I dunno, maybe 7? since I started walking regularly and concentrating on it? ) to running pretty regularly and intervals always seem to burn a few pounds. If you are doing 2 minutes walking and 5 running, you might try running faster, even if for only 30 seconds to crank things up? When I run intervals a lot, I seem to be able to buzz off a pound or two more readily. Unfortunately, it also cranks up the creaking, snapping, crackling, etc. but it can be a fun diversion?

I have lost quite a bit of weight too but it is very slow going, not even a pound/ week, maybe 90 lbs total since the winter of 2006 I think? I think it’s important not to get too burnt out by what I found to be a very slow pace.

Hmmmm…sounds like aerobic excercise

With intervals, done right, your all out running should be well beyond your aerobic/anaerobic threshold. Think 100 meter dash. You won’t be able to breath fast enough to sustain yourself. Intervals are a good mix of aerobic/anaerboic and have actually been found to result in markedly superior improvements in cardiovascular fitness (as measured by V02max) compared to aerobic.

And I think acid has a good point, we often think that weight loss should just happen fast, the pounds should just roll off. But they don’t. I’ve never really been much overweight, but I’ve never had fast weight loss, it either slowly changes, like 1-2 lbs/month, or suddenly I just lost 3 lbs. But never fast.

There is no “right way” to do intervals. The length of the interval is based on what your goals are.The mix of anaerobic/areobics compononents will differ between a sprinter and a distance runner.

I slowly reduce the carbs and calories I consume and reduce my insulin via temp basal more drastically. This will cause higher blood sugars, true, but I do an hour of cardio before my biggest meal, which causes a low, so I can eat my meal with less insulin and be “normal” range after. Granted my biggest meal is 20 carbs. I usually stick to something small, like 100 cals and 15g carb or less, every 2 to 3 hours so I don’t experience the spikes, which require more insulin. Kinda tricky.

My thyroid went out of whack about 6 months after my second son was born. That was almost two years ago.

Diet is going to have the biggest impact on your weight loss. I wouldn’t analyze the working out too much except for how it affects your blood sugars and nailing that down. Focus on the food. Cut out grains and sugars. Focus on meat, fats, and non-starchy veggies. I eat 8-12 grams of carbs per day from veggies. You’ll repair gut irritation caused by grains. You’ll lose weight. You’ll have tons of energy, sleep better, and the list goes on. Check out Mark’s Daily Apple for more resources on a primal diet (but do skip the fruit) at http://www.marksdailyapple.com, Robb Wolf’s site (he’s a biochemist) http://www.robbwolf.com and his book The Paleo Solution, and my blog at http://www.paleogirls.com for some recipes. Also get Dr. Bernstein’s book The Diabetes Solution. He is a type 1 diabetic, engineer, and doctor who has his A1C in the 4s using diet and injections. His book has all the details you need to manage your diabetes and diet. If you follow this, you will lose the weight you want and blood sugars will be great as well :slight_smile: