how many sugar grams should we have in one meal? I don’t know if anyone has ever told me.

I try to stay under 12g per serving. I don’t think anyone has ever told me about sugar only carbs

Gotta agree with DiabeticzME on that one! I think that’s about what all drs tell you now.

thanks! I have only heard about how many carbs. I went grocery shopping and tried to stay under 5 grams of sugar. I just didn’t know how many sugars to eat. So thanks for the info!

Hi Kathleen!
This discussion should give you a good reference. I normally hover between 40-60 grams of carbs per meal but I have learned from may of our members that that can be too much (for adults with diabetes, at least).

As many as you can eat without your blood sugar going over 140 mg/dl at 1 hour and 120 at 2. That’s the formula for getting a 5% A1c and that level of A1c cuts your chances of getting complications down dramatically.

By “sugar” grams, I hope you mean carbohydrate. Starch is just sugar molecules hooked together by chemical bonds. When your body digests starch it turns it into sugar. So bread, rice, potatoes, etc are all full of “sugar” too.

People should understand that those numbers don’t guarantee an A1c of 5. Different people seem to get different A1c’s with the same BG numbers. They used to say that this was because some people were “better glycators.” Now they say it’s more likely that red blood cells live longer or shorter than the 120 days the A1c assumes they live.

My BGs almost never go over 120 at any time, and I can’t get the A1c below about 6. I know other people who go much higher and get lower A1c’s

Jenny, I thank you for your Blood Sugar 101 site and I definitely will buy your book. A lot of the goals that are necessary for us to reach seem unreachable, though. So the stats you post, while true, are somewhat depressing. My niece is 11 years old and has Type 1 diabetes. I believe it may be possible for us to keep her blood sugars under 105 overnight and fasting on the nights when growth hormones do not interfere if we continually monitor to prevent lows. I believe I can reach a 150 or 160 goal two hours postprandially a lot of the time; however, if we do that she will usually drop further and we need to give a few more carbs in the third hour to prevent lows. This is because, despite prebolusing, we need more insulin up front to reach a goal of 150 two hours postprandially, and that would be more insulin than she needs for the meal. If sensor is on (she does not want to wear it at present) or if we are at home and test the third hour, we can do that. I can’t reach a 140 at highest spike, and then drop to 120 in two hours. I don’t even know if adult Type 1s can do that. She is growing so we can’t limit carbs, other than the restrictions given by the endo, nor would she let us. She eats about 200 grams a day and is very thin. I want to prevent damage from occuring, yet it seems the Type 1s are in a Catch 22 type situation. Any advice would be much appreciated. We do Breakfast 35 grams, Lunch 40 grams, Afternoon snack 60 grams and Dinner 65 grams, approximately. We mix the glycemic index so she has some fast glycemic along with slower digested foods. We do balance fat, protein and carbs.

actually i meant actual sugar grams. I know how many carbs to eat, or shall i say, should eat, but after going grocery shopping and seeing the many items I am used to eating with high sugar grams, i got worried about how many sugar grams I should be eating. I also realize that the sugar and the carbs go hand in hand, but I really just was curious if anyone was ever told how many sugar grams we should be having

To answer your question, you should talk to your endo and a dietician to determine the correct amountof carbs to have for a meal. To try to calculate your needs based on what others do is kinda unsafe, in my humble opinion (based on being diabetic for almost 50 years).

Good luck,


That’s what I meant to say Mike! Good way of saying it! Bets my way 100%!!!

I agree everyone is different, what works for may not work for you! Ask your dt always

Thank You I thought I was right but you 2 agreeing with me about it just peaked my ego! HA!!

lol! Whatever I can do to help asist a fellow Diabetic and her EGO, I will do:) hahahhaa

The answer to this was hinted at by the others, but just to emphasize, as I understand the effect of 1 g of sugar on your blood sugar is the same as 1 g of carb. The only thing that varies is how long it takes to digest and enter your blood.

So I think that you do not need to worry about counting sugar grams. Just count your carbs and try to eat healthy :slight_smile:

(Someone please correct me if I am wrong.)

you explained it perfect! I thank you very much

I really need you here at home when they all don’t agree with me! I MIGHT GET MY WAY AROUND HERE!!! hahahahahaha!!!

Kristin hit it right on the nose! I was taught the same, count carbs not the sugar grams! Good luck. Take care, Kelly

I agree with Kristen on this one too. But, going one more step. When I was first dx’d in the early '80’s a dietician gave my parents a pretty good suggestion that I still use to this day. When reading labels, look at the ingredients. If sugar, in all of it’s forms and hard to say names, is one of the first FOUR ingredients…stay away from it. So, in the present day of carb counting, I still go by this mantra. Even though one serving of something is worth 30gms of carbs, if it’s chock full of refined sugar, why bother? This leads me to the posts regarding the glycemic index. I personally, would rather get my carbs from nature vs. refined chemicals that I can’t pronounce. That’s my 2 cents.