Type 1 and Weight Loss

Hi folks... hope you can provide some guidance here... I am a 54yo M and have had T1D for 42 years. I've always kept in great shape and worked hard to maintain my BG. As I've hit the 50s though, my metabolism has slowed and its taking a lot of extra effort to maintain my weight... over the last 4 years, i'v put on 15 extra pounds that I'd desperately like to take off but really have been failing miserably at. Its definitely impacting my control as well... any guidance, strategies, techniques, magic tricks, voodoo, that you can point me to that has worked for you...please share? thanx much!


I've always had a hard time maintaining my weight and I am older than you and a woman, so it just gets harder. I find it works best if I keep my carbs as low as reasonable - less carbs = less insulin = less weight. I also differ from most people on here who follow low carb high fat and feel limiting fat is something we were force fed for decades. I don't disagree with that but for me I need to watch both - Last year I found my weight starting to creep up after being steady since diagnosis and I identified a high fat food I was eating too much of.(nut butters which I adore) I've had a very small creep again and am going to head it off at the pass while I'm still at my ideal weight by reducing my intake of cheese which I eat a lot of as a vegetarian. Again, many others will suggest, as I do, carb reduction with high fat. For me I have to watch both. I eat protein and lots of non-starchy vegies and eat a nice varied diet.

I would concur with Zoe: limiting carb intake has always worked best for me for weight and BG control.

I get the low carbs thing... I'm there...any ideas on losing weight though would be mose helpful. thanx!


What sort of activities are you doing for exercise and what does your diet look like in terms of calories/meal?

Are you eating the same quantities of food as you did when you were 15 pounds lighter?

FWIW, here's a brief story about ... ME!

When I was 45, I found I had ballooned up to 185 pounds from my ideal 170. My first step was to flip my meal sizes around. Bigger breakfast, about the same size lunch, dramatically less for dinner (more salads, less fat and protein portions). I actually did this more because I was having BG problems overnight, than the weight thing, but I found over 6 - 9 months that I had dropped some weight and improved my overnight BG numbers. Now don't misunderstand my method. I still have the occasional BIG DINNER, but no longer is it the everyday standard.

The second thing I did was look for opportunities to be more active. For me, I seem to have a direct correlation between activity and increased metabolism. (I even have two basal settings. One when I know I have been more sedentary, and the other for when I have been active.) I realized that being in an office environment was keeping me SITTING at my desk or in too many meetings. I began to always skip the elevator in favor of the stairs, walk outside for a break and after lunch and I started parking my car in the farthest corner of the parking lot. The result again was not only improved BG, but a few more pounds off. I happily hovered around 173 - 177 for a number of years before step 3.

Step 3 was going to the gym 2 - 3X/week and finding a group class that worked for me. I dropped as low as 160 but now I hover around 167 - 173.

One thing that also worked for me was to forget about the weight and just concentrate on eating a little differently, staying active and trying to improve my fitness. The weight loss was just an added benefit.

I have no scales in my house and only get on the scales in the gym every few weeks.

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I think what Christopher and I are saying, Steve, is that if you are eating fairly high amounts of carbs or even moderate amounts, lowering that intake will help with weight loss. (In addition it means less insulin needed which also helps.)

Some people have also been successful in losing weight by using Symlin. I gave it a pretty good try (it takes awhile to figure out dosing for the Symlin and reduction in insulin). I didn't lose an ounce so I stopped using it, but if you look on the Symlin board some people have had good results.

I had a dietician tell me to decrease my total daily insulin by 10% at first, and then eat within that range.

Get a bike and ride it, every day!....you will quickly loose weight...lower impact compared to running. I lost 30 lbs. in two months. In the winter/summer when it's to cold/ or hot I spin a stationary bike. "No secret diet" just ride the bike. I required about 2 carbs per mile to keep BG over 70. As I get older I require less and less food and it's easy to gain, insulin plus any extra calories = fat.

For my activity level I only need about 900 calories to maintain my weight. I ate prepackaged meals for 6 months and figured out what my caloric needs where, and they where much lower than what several different doctors where calculating (at around 1300,1500). The old rules just do not apply to someone that's in front of a computer all day long.

I think and eat like my dad, the problem is he was very active, I'm busy, busy, busy but not active, active, active like my dad was so eating like my dad is a mistake.

In addition to a low carb diet, I like Intermittent Fasting.

I do about 60-90g per day... will check out Symlin

Mike... very helpful... like the plan.. will give it a try.

Thank you!

will integrate the bike riding into the plan that mike laid out.... what do you mean by pre-packaged John... store bought? So you knew exact caloric intake?

JohnG, I have just been researching stationary bikes. I know that our metabolisms are all different (plus I am female so different gender also) but I am curious how long you ride your stationary bike. I would not do outside biking, for my own good reasons.

I walk three times a week with friends but need to do something easy inside the other days of the week. I am one of those needing weight loss too.

Also curious about the "prepackaged" issue. Something like Nutrisystem?

Another important concept is to remember that you didn't add those 15 pounds overnight, so they aren't coming off overnight either!


You should consider adding some weight resistance activity. Building muscle adds weight, but muscle burns calories more efficiently.

I purchased food at Jennie Craig. They put together my meal plane and I just picked up the food once a week and purchased the shopping list of things needed from grocery store. With a little work on my part I could have purchased elsewhere but the GC food is tolerable and the portions are correct, it was a positive experience and gave me the opportunity clean out my pantry, start over and learn portion size.

I have a recombinant stationary bike, and also use the bikes at my gym. I have also gone to spinning classes. Gender has little to do with spinning but older indaviduls seem to prefer the recumbent bike. The bikes at the gym have programs that fit anyone's fitness level. When I started I could not ride around the block but after a week I could and after a few months I was riding 6 miles before work and 25 miles on Saturday morning.

I haven't read all the posts, so I might repeat something.
1. Get your thyroid checked, just in case.
2. I use HIT. This is ultra high intensity (Very short duration) a few times a week. This helps to kickstart metabolism.
3. Weight training (the intense maximum effort type - just a couple of times a week) may also increase metabolism.
4. I am using intermittent fasting (ie. I only eat 2 meals most days). This has resulted in reduced calories (definitely a factor), and more stable blood sugars during the 16 or so hours I'm not eating = less insulin.

Losing weight is still really hard (between hypothyroid and diabetes), but the combination above is what I've found works.

I gained 25 pounds with weight training. I didn't have a goal of losing weight, I wanted to become leaner and reduce my bodyfat percentage. I guess some of it has to do with goals.

Good point, Mike. I do know I need to do that. Now, to actually do it.....?!