What Do I eat?

I was just dianosed with diabetes and give metfomin and told to take it before my largest meal. But what do i eat am i soposta keep eating like i have in the past but just take the meds? Is life over as far as eating is concerned. I mean i am 250lbs and i love to eat things like PIZZA, Burgers, Frys, Chicken Wings… ect… Now here is someething weird i at BONELESS chicken wings and my sugar was LOWER than when i ate home cooked Chicken Parm. I dont know what to do. I need some help here and someone that can talk to me and answer questions as i go along. I can only assume now after taking my sugar levels that my levels before i knew what they were, were above 380 and i did not even know it but ever sence i have been taking it i have been trying to watch what i eat. and the levels are now below 300. I mean i only know they must have been high as i ate a lot more than i do now. Now i look at things and freak out… CARBS , SUGARS ahhhh cant eat that too high… I would love some patato chips and dip cant… too many carbs and sugars… What do i do … Can you tell how many Grams of sugars to have or not to have in a day? somene please email me i am really in need of a experianced person to walk me thru this before i give up and just go back to eating everything i used to out of frustration. My email is thereverend at 1stclassinc dot com. please Feel free to email me i would love to talk about this

Hi John…you are at the right place. There are so many knowledgeable people on this site…most of them have been where you are now, to some degree. It can be very confusing as you don’t always get the best info from the professionals. You might want to scan through some of the past discussions. There will be info that pertains to you. I suspect that the whole carb counting thing will be a learning process for you. What raises my blood sugar horribly might not raise yours to the same degree, for instance, but with all of us relaying our experiences, you can learn a lot. Your eating life is not over, but you are facing a challenge and some changes. It’s all about choices and responsible behavior and again, something that all of us are dealing with. Good luck to you…

dear John,Please don’t cave in.First of all you have to learn a new way of eating.Your meals should be at about the same time everyday as with your meds…It would help if you ate smaller portions.You can still have those chips and dip but only in moderation.Eat lots of vegetables when you can.They are lower in carbs and don’t raise your sugars as fast.Try to eat foods with lots of fiber.Fiber slows down the absorption of sugar.If you have trouble with staying with small portions drink an 8 ounce glass of water before you eat.You will fill up faster on smaller amounts of food.You will also learn alot through trial and error.I hope this helps.Take care.

Hi, John,
Check out this website for some great information and advice:
Good luck,

Hi John:

I have great news! You are going to lose weight! How? By following Dee’s instructions. In order to control your blood sugar, you will need to get your readings down. I am supposed to be at 80 to 120 before meals. My readings are in line and I have lost 45 pounds since being diagnosed with type 2 in 5/2006. I take my meds and I eat smaller meals. I still eat pizza, wings, etc. I severely limit my intake of chips, and other junk food. I also gave up all beverages that contain calories.

Keep in touch,


I can tell you not to try to feel so overwhelmed…try not to feel like you have to change everything all at once…work on a couple new skills until they become habits. For instance, I concentrated on keeping an eye on the carb counts of foods, and keeping my snacks at about 15 carbs. I watched my portion control, too. After a few months, I was able, and didn’t feel so overwhelmed, about looking at other things to try, like a new food, more exercise, more healthy foods. What helped me so much was testing very often at first. I was lucky enough to have a stockpile of strips, so was able to test before I ate anything and then 2 hours after for everything I ate. I kept a log of the numbers and times, what I ate, and if I didn’t feel well, felt tired, I’d note that. It was like a science experiment and very educational. I was able to see that certain foods shot my levels up high and made me tired, that some foods kept my sugar level, and I felt better. I was able to see very plainly what food was doing to my body, without me really knowing it. I disagree with many doctors who tell their patients to only test once or twice a day at first. Frequent testing is so educational. Anyways, check out the internet for useful information–I found a lot at dlife.com. There is a men’s board there, to. Take it one step at a time, don’t be scared, each small change is a lot. If you can, attend a Joslin education class, or talk to a nutritionist or diabetes nurse.

Your boneless wings didn’t have the breading on them that the chicken parm does, and your portion amount contributes too, what else you ate, drank, exercised. Keep track of your numbers and what you eat and you will learn. Try not to think “I can’t have this, I can’t have that, I’m suffering”…Think of yourself as a science experiment and you are gathering data. If you are seeing improvements in your numbers, you’ve already done something good…congrats!

I totally understand what you are feeling right now, John. On January 2nd it will be two months since I was daignosed. I also felt like my love afair with food was over. Once I got over the panic I decided to try to change my eating habits by taking small steps. I started by cutting out regular soda. I now only drink diet soda. When I eat out( which is often) I try to make better choices and go to healthier places. I still have times when I cant ignore the pie or chips but I try to take it one step at a time. If you do have moments when you feel like you have overeatin or had something you feel like you shouldnt try not to beat yourself up about it. After all habits are not changed overnight and changing our diet is one of the hardest. There are lots of helpful people on this site. I have found it very useful and I hope that you do as well!

I have beendiagnosed about 4 years. At first I did as my doctors told me and followed the diet recommendeed by Diabetes uk. It’s the same pretty much as the ADA. then I found i was taking ,not only Metformin, but another couple of things. Now, having thought it through and read widely, I eat low carb. I base my diet on Meat,fish, eggs and dairy with loads of greens. I personally have given up bread and potatoes. It works for me and I’m fitter than i was for years. I also exercise( swimming or walking) about an hour a day. I recommend you get the Dr. Richard Bernstein Book “The complete diabetes Solution.” It will tell you all you need to know. It’s a big book and quite costly, but worth every penny. Also make sure you havee your meter.

I second that recommendation for Dr. Bernstein’s book! It changed my life. I once weighed 251 lbs. In one year I am down to 174lbs…and I eat well. My blood glucose is stable and for the past 14 days averages 91. I also managed to get myself off the actos I was taking and am now only on metformin which my doctors says I may get off of if I keep up the way I am going. It is a drastic change, but it is one you can master. Fat is filling and much better for you than empty carbs. Also, I posted a great pizza substitute in the low carb recipe forum. Check it out.

I agree about taking small steps at a time. I think the greatest thing for me was to keep a daily log or journal of everything I ate, drank and all my blood sugar readings for the day. That way you can go back and see what all you actually took in and where your blood surgars were in response When you can actually go back to a day when you felt better and see what you did you have a better idea of what you want to do.for the next few days. You will see that when your blood sugars are down you have more energy and your blood pressure will be lower. After awhile you will find that high carb foods just don’t have the same appeal anymore. When you want ketchup, Heinz makes a great reduced sugar one with only 1 carb for two tablespoons. There are a lot of ways to cut down on the carbs in your favorite foods and recipes.like substituting parmesan cheese for the bread crumbs you used to use. When you see the difference in the way you feel with lower blood sugars your choices will get a lot easier. Good luck.

i was surprised to learn in my 1st yr that it’s a carbohydrate eating disorder. So it’s about balancing your diet and eating much smaller portions but eating like every 3 to 4 hrs. It was surprising for me that when i eat protein with each meal i am much more satisfied & now after 3 yrs i can eat what i consider a small meal and be satisfied and full. I changed to eating off smaller plates and that helped me a great deal as well. I also bought smaller bowls so that when i eat cereal i don’t get too much. Sometimes for some of us it’s trading off old habits for some new ones. Since i have ‘other’ health problems i got a no impact walking machine and i force myself to use it. I don’t know why but that seems to be the hardest part of the control… making ones self excersise. I hope these tips can be of use to you. Also, most insurances will pay for you to go to a one day Diabetic course where you learn a lot about foods. Ask your doctor to send u to one.

sorry for the double post but i forgot to tell you that hydrogenated oils and corn syrup are you enemies now and corn syrup is in soups, sauce, whip cream, catsup,juices, sodas and many breads as well. U have to READ the labels on EVERYTHING. Shopping becomes a bit arduous until you figure out what u can still have and decide what your willing to change to. I’ve found one spagetti sauce here in Wa state that comes to us from Canada that has no corn syrup. It’s available in “The Dollar Store” of all places.

A suggestion from an older housewife. The best way to eat right is to cook pretty much everything from scratch. I know some of you younger ones haven’t ever learned to cook, but now’s the time to . That way you know EXACTLY what is in your food and save a load of money too! It doesn’t even take much longer. Spaghetti sauce ,for example, is something I’d never buy ready made. It’s so easy to make a variety of them. I do take some short cuts. I don’t bother skinning tomatoes, when the canned ones are so good. I use tomato paste from a tube. and one or two other things which I think of as “ingredients”… This includes some canned vegetables. Canning doesn’t require preservatives. Work out some good recipes and make in bulk, which can be frozen into portion sizes for when you’re in a hurry.

You can do this ! With me the food ruled & now i work everyday on keeping control of the food. If you have to eat alone, like i do, then set some rules… have a desinated spot to take your meals, i don’t have a dinning table so it’s in the living room for me at the opposite end of the couch where i normally sit to watch TV or visit. Make yourself eat off a dish, when some people are alone they will eat out of containers or out of the pan. Your worth dirting a dish for! Even if it’s paper dishes, dish up, use silverware, get a napkin & something to drink to sip with dinner (not guzzzle) . Many people drink 3 or 4 glasses of stuff when eating, what that does is dilute your digestive juice in your stomach & intestines. Getting control of the disorder is about changing your life habits & we know what stinkers those are to change.
I have changed from eating a 2 slice of bread sandwich to using on large slice cut in half & to my surprise i could get my portion of meat, lettuce, avacado (good for lowering cholesterol), onions etc onto it. I have a dish of fruit prepared to go with it so i wouldn’t get up & go make another sandwich. Beware of Banana’s as they are very high in carbs. Eat 1/3 of large to 1/2 of a med banana. Oatmeal (1 portion !) is good but eat some protien with it, a hardboiled egg, meat or one of my favorites is peanut butter on 1/2 of an apple. I use the oragnic without sugar peanut butter. well i hope to have more tips soon, tired fingers right now.

I try to avoid carbs , other than what’s in vegetables., because the smallest amount makes my numbers skyrocket… I’m alone during the day, because I’m retired, but my husband still works. I have a meal ready for him when he gets home, but midday, I try to eat small Atkins type things. For example, today I had ultra thin salami slices with cheese on top cooked in the microwave. I’m drinking fruit tea now and will probably have an apple mid afternoon. For dinner, we’re having kippers and cucumber salad Czech style. We only use the dining table if the kids come for a meal and eat on the kitchen “bar” when we’re alone. I cook properly most of the time and generally do a rough weekly plan at the weekend. My husband is type 1 and fussy. He can cook too, so yesterday, I made chicken kiev for dinner with glazed carrots and cauliflower. I left the kitchen for a while and when I got back, he’d made cheese sauce for the cauliflower. I had a little despite the flour it contains. He knew I’d give him grated cheese, not sauce, so waited untill I was out of the way.

Eating in the past is most likely what has gotten to your present situation so why would you think that continuing the same behavior is what you need to do. Use the link - It is a book on-line about low carb dieting controlling your blood sugars.

Good luck

It has worked for me. Started at 277lbs and down to 235 last check. Walking every day and I stay in the 80’s to 100’s with the meds I take.

Thanks ! i’ll take a look at it cos i’m willing to learn. My BS is between 59 & 138 every single day but when it gets close to 138 i get icy cold.

Hi John,

The following is the diet plan my diabetes dietitian recommended to me.
Bear in mind that this is based on my being morbidly obese and BG levels very high.

Each serving/exchange of carbohydrate is equivalent to 15g. (Carbohydrates are foods which contain sugars and starches)

I must not have more than 12 serves (180g) of carbs per day.
Aim to have at least one low GI carbohydrate food at each meal

The carbs are preferably to be split up as follows:

  • 8 serves (120g) per day from the starches group
  • 2 serves (30g) per day from the fruit group
  • 2 serves (30g) per day from the milk products group

3 serves (45g) for breakfast
1 serve (15g) for snack
3 serves (45g) for lunch
1 serve (15g) for snack
3 serves (45g) for dinner
1 serve (15g) for snack

Small amounts of protein in the daily eating plan are important for fighting infections and for the growth and repair of body tissues.

Protein foods do not raise BGL but many are potentially high in fat, especially saturated fat. Choose lean low-fat varieties and use low fat cooking methods.

Try to eat oily fish (eg. salmon, sardines, tuna) at least 3 times per week and then lean red meat, skin-free chicken, low fat cheese, eggs, white fish.

Each serving of protein is to be “palm size” (approx. 120g).

Proteins are to be split up as follows:

  • 1 serve breakfast
  • 1 serve lunch
  • 1 serve dinner

From the free food list aim to have at least 3 cups of vegetables per day.
The rest of foods on the free list can be eaten as desired as they do have any major affect on BGL.

Reduced saturated fats from diet by:

  • trimming fat from meats and removing skin from chicken
  • choose low fat dairy products
  • choose processed foods that contain less than 10g total fat per 100g and less than 3g saturated fat per 100g
  • use low fat cooking methods
  • Cools oups, stew and casseroles and then remove fat from the top
  • replace meat in recipes with dried beans or lentils
  • use yoghurt of light evaporated milk instead of cream or sour cream
  • use filo pastry instead of puff or shortcrust pastry

After reducing saturated fats from diet you can include small amounts of healthy fats (monounsaturated and polyunsaturated) such as:

  • margarine
  • oil
  • avocado
  • unsalted nuts
  • peanut butter

Choose only 4 to 6 serves of unsaturated fats per day where one serve is equivalent to:

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil, canola, sunola peanut or macadamia, sunflower, safflower, sesame, soybean, grapeseed oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons canola or olive magarine, polyunsaturated margarine, soy margarine or peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon avocado
  • 1 tablespoon almonds, cashews, macadamia, pecan, pistachio, brazil, pine nuts and walnuts.

Per 100g. use this information when choosing and comparing products.

FAT: pick products with the least fat.
As a general guide look for products with less than 10g per 100g (exceptions to the rule include peanut butter, oils & magarines) .
If the product is based on saturated (animal) fats, look for those with less than 2g per 100g.

TOTAL CARBOHYDRATE: This includes sugars (naturally occuring and added) and starch.
One exchange is equal to 15g of total carbohydrate.
Say a product has 22.5 total carbohydrate that would be equal to about 1 1/2 exchanges.

SUGARS: This tells you how much of the total carbohydrate is sugar. Choose products with less than 25g per 100g. There as some exceptions to this guideline, eg. fruit based products.

DIETARY FIBRE: Pick products that are higher in fibre (per 100g), especially when comparing cereals, breads, bsicuits.
Try to have approximately 30g of fibre daily.

Hope this info helps somehow. It’s a lot to take in.
All the Best!

I never learned to use “exchanges”, but I am a trained biologist, so I can work most of it out. However this looks like the ADA or Diabetes UK diet, which is high in carbohydrates. I’d have real trouble with my numbers if I followed this.
I prefer to eat low carb, because it makes more sense not to eat suff which will push up my insulin and make weight loss impossible. If you haven’t done so, read Dr. Bernstein and Gary Taubes on this diet. There’s also an excellent bit in Atkins. We are not internal combustion engines and the idea"calories in = caloriess out" doesn’t work for us. Neither are all calories alike. The high carb diet for diabetics is based on some very bad science.
I thought I knew quite a bit about nutrition, but I’ve learned volumes recently by reading the newer stuff. I even found the Swedish study and was able to point it out to David Mendosa, who’d managed to miss it somehow. This high carb diet is the road to complications. I even found a quote from a registered dietician in Britain who said she’d never had a patient, in 20 years practice, who could maintain blood sugars and lose weight on the Diabetes UK diet, without masses of medication. It increases your need for medication. It’s the so-called Healthy Balanced diet, which causes a lot of weight gain and diabetes via Hyper insulinaemia.
If you are VERY heavy and diabetic, you simply cannot lose and maintain weight loss on a high carb diet, especially if taking medication, which stimulates your system to make more insulin. Insulin will drop your blood glucose, but make you store fat. I would like to lock up all the dieticians untill they learn what food really does in the human body. I think they know what molecules the food is made up of, but not what happens to them. a lot of nutrition is counter-intuitive and the “establishment” hasn’t made that jump yet, although a few are beginning to. That which is a better fuel for flames, isn’t necessarily a better fuel for the human body.

The myth of the high carb diet comes from the idea that fats are bad. Read Gary Taubes book on the bad science behind this. I did get diabetes uk to admit to me that they know of some diabetics who do very well on a low carb diet, but they still don’t recommend it. My diabetes nurse told me on Wednesday that she has another patient doing low carb and she’s doing well too. This after giving me the results of my latest blood tests. {A1c 6.1 ; cholesterol 3.4 ; triglycerides 0.6(131.5)}. I think the A1c is too high, because my focus was on trying to keep insulin promoting medication down to help lose weight. Anyway Nurse Janetta and I agreed that i will take and extra, midday meal, Metformin 500 and not use anything else, except the low carb and exercise. Nurse Janetta thinks 6.1 is very good. I’m a bit of a perfectionist and would like to get it down further. I’m going to try this new pattern for 2 months and then we’ll get another A1c and see if the weight goes down.
I’m going to try the Atkins Fat fast in that time too.