What is LCHF, Low Carbohydrate High Fat Diet

What is LCHF, Low Carb High Fat

I think there is a lot of misunderstanding of what exactly is a LCHF diet.  Lots of people cringe at the idea of eating fats after a life time of telling them it will clog their arteries.  I was one of them at first, but soon my eyes opened up to the facts and there is more and more research every day to support eating natural fats.

Let break down what a Low Carb High Fat diet really is and the benefits it can have for you in treating your Type 2 diabetes Mellitus.  Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus is a condition which you have a malfunctioning glucose metabolism.  There is no denying this, no changing the facts, if you ingest carbohydrates it will affect your glucose levels.  Your body will attempt to release insulin to bring down your glucose levels, some people with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus will have lots of insulin circulating and others will have very little in both regards their ability to normalize their glucose levels is compromised due to insulin resistance.

I will use myself as an example:  I currently weigh 227 pounds and require according to my basal metabolic rate, BMR, below you can see the calories I should be eating a day.  I will use 2300 calories for this example.

BMR = Basal Metabolic Rate,  RMR = Resting Metabolic  Rate

http://www.caloriesperhour.com/index_burn.php

There are only three macronutrients, Carbohydrates, Proteins, and Fats.  If you reduce one of them like I do, I eat on average 30 grams of carbohydrates a day which is equivalent to 120 calories.  If my total caloric intake for the day should be 2300 calories this leaves me 2180 calories remaining.  There are 4 calories per gram of carbohydrates.  I know from researching that a person of my size and dependent on activity level should eat from 100-150 grams of protein a day.  If I eat 150 grams of protein this is equivalent to 600 calories.  There are 4 calories per gram of protein.  This can be a misleading number as your body will expend calories in order to break down proteins into smaller components that your body can utilize.  Adding the carbohydrates and proteins ingested leaves me with 720 calories.  This is where the term High Fat comes into play.  I have to make up the calories deficit or my body will go into starvation mode or worse I will become catabolic, a state in which my body will begin sacrificing lean muscle to provide energy.  Being in a catabolic state is not good.  So I have to make up 1580 calories and the only way to do this is consuming natural fats.  Fats have 9 calories per gram, much higher than proteins and carbohydrates so this lifestyle requires that I consume 175 grams of fat during the day.  This is easily obtainable by ingesting fattier cuts of meats and using natural fats like butter, heavy cream and cheeses along with coconut oil. 

If you are overweight you possible could get away with a low fat, low carb diet for a short period of time, but by doing so you have to increase proteins or your body will go into starvation mode which will make losing weight very difficult. 

Let us break down the numbers for a low carb low fat diet.  I will use myself again as an example.  I require 2300 calories a day even if I increase my carbohydrates to 100 grams this is equivalent to 400 calories leaving me with 1900 calories.  If I attempt to eat low fat, 20 grams a day which would be equivalent to 180 calories this leaves a caloric deficit of 1720 calories.  In order for me to reach 1720 calories I now have to eat 430 grams of protein a day.  430 grams of protein a day is not a healthy amount of protein and can cause problems later in life.  So I am left with a dilemma, how do I reach 1720 calories without eating more proteins than what my body requires which is only approximately 150 grams a day.

You can now see where the term high fat comes from.  Eating in this manner is the most natural way to treat your Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus.  

Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus, everyone is different or are we.

I read across a lot of diabetic forums and face book pages and the thing I hear the most is everyone is different you got to find what works for you.  To a certain extent this is true; we are all a little different biologically.  What needs to be said is that we are all human beings with basically the same biology, if this wasn’t true, vaccines, immunizations, pharmaceutical drugs all would have to be individually tailored to fits everyone’s needs and we all know that isn’t the case.  Yes there are outliers to this rule; some will have a greater degree of side effects than others. 

A few basic facts when it comes to diabetes and a glucose metabolism that is malfunctioning.  Carbohydrates are carbohydrates it doesn’t matter the source, carbohydrates will affect your glucose levels, some quicker than others but all will have an effect.  The biggest source of glucose you are seeing in your blood is coming from the carbohydrates you are eating; the second source is proteins that are being eaten in excess of your metabolic needs for tissue repair.  When you hear someone say you have to find out what works for you, I interpret that as find out what is acceptable to you, which still may not be what is necessary for long term health.  People with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus all have a varying degree of insulin available to modulate their glucose levels, what this leads to is a varying degree in the amount of carbohydrates you can consume.  This is where the statement you have to find out what works for you.  Knowingly or unknowingly what they are referring to is your carbohydrate budget, in reality they are referring to your available insulin.  If you are taking medications that affect your insulin directly your carbohydrate budget will increase, is that a good thing or bad thing.  Having to increase insulin to cover a food source that is easily removed from your diet and not necessary for human health or longevity doesn’t make sense to me.  Don’t misunderstand, there are plenty of people with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus that require medication even under strict carbohydrate reduction and there is nothing wrong or defeating about that.  The end game here is to be healthy regardless of the path you need to take.  

The question now becomes for a newly diagnosed person with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus, how far am I willing to push the envelope in regards to my insulin supply.  Most people with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus have a finite amount of insulin available and the majority of that insulin is phase II insulin or newly manufactured insulin.  If you consume carbohydrates below your budget your body will once again start to store insulin as Phase I insulin.  Phase I insulin is stored insulin and is used in response to consuming carbohydrates.  In my opinion now that you have been diagnosed with Prediabetes or Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus the wise thing to do is always consume carbohydrates below your available insulin supply.  The less demand you put on your pancreas to supply insulin the quicker your path to health will be.  Now that you have been diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus your pancreas (Beta Mass), the insulin producing cells have been working overtime to keep up with the demand of your insulin resistance.  It could use a break.

How I Broke a Weight Loss Stall While in Ketosis

So you have been losing weight steadily now for months and you are really happy with your results then suddenly you stop losing weight.  You go back and look at what you are eating and just can’t figure it out, why am I not losing weight.  First thing to look at is Omnivores, we are Omnivores, eat fruit, nuts, seeds and proteins in the fall to gain weight for the winter.  If any of those ring a bell it may be your problem.  Nuts have a way of piling on the weight and I am not sure why that is, most likely the combination of fats/protein/carbs in a dense delicious little snack morsel.


The next thing you can try and this is what worked for me, keep in mind I was and still am in ketosis, which means I eat less than 50 grams of carbohydrates a day, most days much lower than that.  When in ketosis you are now burning fats (lipids) for energy, but what would happen if you with hold those fats just a couple of days a week?  Your body turns inward for energy needs; it starts to utilize your stored reserves of fat.  Two nonconsecutive days a week is not long enough for your body to adapt to a different metabolism.  I did this on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s.  I changed my diet on those days to an ultralow fat diet.  If you do this for three or four days in a row you risk altering your metabolism and that’s not worth it in my mind.  I check for ketones two to three times a day most days just to follow how I am doing and to keep a mental log of when I start wasting excess ketones.  By midafternoon on the first day of this experiment I was wasting lots of ketones.  This was a god sign that my body was indeed turning inward for its energy needs.  On Wednesday I resumed my normal high fat diet and still remained in ketosis throughout.  Thursday was a repeat of Tuesday, same thing happened, high ketones and weight loss started to occur again.

This is not an easy thing to do once your body has become accustomed to burning fat for energy.  Fat cravings are extremely intense; you will be hungrier than you have been in a long time when you first attempt this.  Keep strong it is only one day.

A typical low fat/low carb day for me would be:

Breakfast: 5 eggs microwaved with as little fats as possible, no cheese, no butter, no oils

Lunch: Lean cold cuts, chicken or turkey along with as many raw veggies as I could stomach dipped in mustard.

Dinner: Baked chicken breast and steamed veggies, no cheese or fats of any sort.

Give it a try, not sure how effective this would be for those not in ketosis.  I know it works for those that are in ketosis. I have coached a few people that have tried this that were thrilled with their results.

Resistant Starch (High Maize 260) Preparation

The following is the procedure I used to prepare and consume the RS or high maize 260 resistant starch.  I started out taking 40 grams am/pm for about two months, then decreased the amount to 40 grams a day for another month. I now use it as a food additive and take it occasionally if I feel the need to boost my digestive system.

 

Here is what 40 grams of RS looks like, this is a serving spoon.

This works best if you use a conical shaped glass, one that is smaller at the bottom than the top, this allows the RS to compact itself at the bottom.  The following pic is the RS mixed in a glass of water.

I then refrigerate this and allow it to settle to the bottom, takes about 4-5 hours to get it settled out enough to easily pour off the top water.  Works best to prepare this the night before and let it sit in the fridge over night.  The reason I did this was to separate the soluble starch from the RS.  The soluble starch, the starch that would cause a rise in glucose will dissolve into solution while the RS will settle out on the bottom.  The next pic represents the settled RS.

Next I gently pour off the water leaving the RS in the glass.

I then fill the glass with water, stir and drink it down.  I suppose you could make something like a smoothy with this at this point.

 

 

False Hypos

Just starting out with a new lifestyle and wondering why you are feeling like you are suffering hypos even though your glucose levels are close to a normal range, it is called a false hypo.  The human body resists change and when you change your glucose levels from a very high place to a some what normal level your body will protest this change.  The cautionary part is if you are on insulin or a sulfon drug that directly affects your glucose levels you need to watch for trends rather than a hard fast number.  You take your glucose level and it is, 80, (4.4), if you are on insulin or other meds that directly effect your levels and just now changing your diet you have to retake your levels again in 15-30 minutes to see if you are stable.  If you are still dropping you may need to correct this number when it gets to low.  If you are not on insulin or meds that directly affect your levels and you feel like you are suffering a hypo you need to eat some fats or proteins, avoid carbs as they will only make the transition to normal levels all that much longer.  Cheese, Walnuts, Almonds, beef jerky, hard boiled eggs, all are good options. Chips, fruit, bread, crackers, milk, glucose tabs are all bad options.  Think of this as a bridge you must cross to get to normal levels, the faster you cross this bridge the sooner your body will begin to heal.

 

Diabetic Complications

I see more and more diabetics with moderate to severe complications; I am here to tell you there is a different path to follow.  A particular food item that you liked prior to diagnosis is truly not worth your toes, your eyesight, your heart, not even in moderation.  Learn to give up those things and live a healthy and happy life with a much reduced chance of ever getting complications.  Complications from high blood glucose levels can be greatly reduced if you understand where they are coming from.  If you are a Type 2 diabetic with insulin resistance you are engaged in a two front assault, not only do you have to worry about your glucose levels you also need to worry about your insulin levels.  High insulin in your body causes inflammation which leads to a whole host of other problems.  The only way to reduce this inflammation is to reduce your carbohydrate consumption.  Make your own decisions when it comes to treating your diabetes, after all it is yours to treat, no one else’s.  If you follow the ADA guidelines and most of the old school doctors they will tell you 180 at 2 hours after a meal.  These levels will greatly increase the chance of future complications.  You want to keep your fasting’s under 100 and your peaks all under 140 (7.8).  Your peak glucose will occur for most at 1 hour post meals, at 2 hours post meal you should be back to your premeal number or under 100.  Using these as your goals will help decrease your chances of future complications.  If you are on insulin and you’re a Type 2 with insulin resistance it is not just enough to regulate your glucose levels but you have to minimize the amount of insulin you are using.  Type 2 diabetics go through a phase before their glucose levels go high and cause problems; this phase is a drastic increase in insulin production, way more than a normal non diabetic.  It takes more insulin to do the same work as a non-diabetic.  The increase in insulin is a factor in some complications, that’s why it is important to reduce insulin as much as it is to reduce glucose levels. 

http://www.phlaunt.com/diabetes/14045678.php

The Pitfalls of Eating a Moderate Diabetic Diet

So your dietitian, nutritionist, diabetic educator, doctor,  told you to eat 45-60grams of carbs a meal and to be sure they are complex carbs, low on the Glycemic Index.  But they didn’t tell you the whole story.  There is more to it than just keeping your glucose levels in a normal range.  Having Type 2 diabetes means you have insulin resistance.  Having insulin resistance means it takes above and beyond normal amounts of insulin to accomplish the same goal as a non-diabetic person.  Even though your glucose levels are in a somewhat normal range you need to also think about how much insulin did it take to achieve that glucose level.  High circulating insulin is inflammatory on the arteries, which will lead to your body’s need to make more cholesterol to repair the damage.  Doctors will want to give you a statin drug like Lipitor to prevent your own body’s defenses to correct a problem they created by telling you to eat 45-60grams of carbs a meal which increased your cholesterol levels to begin with. 

Man has evolved to store energy as saturated fat, we don’t store fat in the liquid form like canola oil, that would be difficult when running from a wild beast controlling those swinging bags of oil.  So if we store fat as saturated fat it makes logical sense that we should be able to eat natural saturated fats without consequence.  Eating natural fats requires very little insulin to process, has an anti-inflammatory effect on your body, and will help to control your glucose levels, it is not the enemy you once thought it was.  I am of the age where everything was low fat this, low fat that as I was growing up, it was drilled into through the media.

If you want to reduce your inflammation, meaning you want to reduce your insulin, you have to reduce the amount of carbohydrates you consume on a daily basis.  Reduction in carbohydrates will lead to better glucose control, a decrease in cholesterol, and for most a decrease in blood pressure.

http://www.rlcure.com/tests-for-inflammation.html

There is nothing complicated about a diabetic diet.

All we want as diabetics is to have normal glucose levels, after all that is what is going to save us from future complications.  Eating things in moderation will only lead to frustration and food cravings, your diabetic now and your diet will need to change to succeed. Feet hurt, hands hurt, eyes all blurry, tired all the time, the solution to remedy all of this can be found in your grocery store and not necessarily at the pharmacy.  It is true some of us will always have to take medication to control glucose levels, but the amount and type of medication can be altered by what you are eating.  So if you are hurting, sleeping all the time, moody, in pain try changing your diet, your health is far more important  than a slice of bread or a cookie.

First stop and think about what it is you are eating and then come up with a game plan to eliminate certain foods.  You can do this all at once or you can reduce one item at a time, doesn’t matter, you just have to do it.  The list of foods you need to eliminate:  Potatoes, rice, beans, pasta, wheat products, corn, peas, milk, breads, grains, oatmeal, etc.  To replace the lost calories from the lack of these foods you need to increase natural fats, saturated fats, butter, cheese, red meat, pork, dark meat chicken, this is not a high protein diet so you have to watch your protein consumption.  Right about now you are saying “What the Heck am I going to EAT.”  Your eyes will open in time; there is a whole new world out there full of fabulous foods just waiting for you to try. 

Eat real whole foods, as few foods as you can that do not come with a nutritional label, this means throw away the manmade foods except for dairy products.  There is no reason to eat any obvious carbohydrates; none at all, your body will do fine with the carbs that you will be consuming from low carbohydrate fibrous vegetables.  When going to the grocery store, hit the produce section, buy all the low carb veggies you can.  Move on to the meat department, buy the fattiest cuts of meat you can find.  Finally it’s the dairy department, eggs, full fat cheese, butter, heavy cream.  If you are a snacking type person stop and get some nuts, pork rinds, almonds, walnuts, then go home. 

When eating this way your carbohydrate consumption will be down around 50 grams a day, be sure to reduce your medication accordingly as your insulin demand will drop drastically if you have been eating a higher carb diet before this.  We got lots of recipes in the submitted recipe section if you need some ideas.

Diabetic Drugs and their side effects

Metformin:

Gas, abdominal pain, diarrhea. May cause Vitamin-B12 deficiency with long use. Fewer side effects with ER/XR extended release form. Fear it causes lactic acidosis is not supported by high quality research. Can cause a lowering of testosterone in men and women.

 

Avandia:

66% more heart attacks. Causes water retention. Causes weight gain. Causes heart failure. Causes osteoporosis. Causes macular edema

 

Actos:

From Prescribing Information: "In postmarketing experience with ACTOS, cases of congestive heart failure have been reported in patients both with and without previously known heart disease....In postmarketing experience with ACTOS, reports of hepatitis and of hepatic enzyme elevations to 3 or more times the upper limit of normal have been received. Very rarely, these reports have involved hepatic failure with and without fatal outcome"Macular edema. Weight gain. Ovulation in premenopausal women. Raises LDL

 

Diamicron (gliclazide):

Can cause hypos. Causes hunger and weight gain May cause reversible beta cell burnout with prolonged use. Least heart attack risk of this class of drugs

 

Amaryl (glimepiride), Glyburide, (Glucovance is glyburide with added metformin) Glucatrol, Diabeta (glipizide):

Stimulate receptors on heart tissue leading to higher rate of heart attacks

 

Prandin (repaglinide):

Can cause hypos. Same dose much more powerful when combined with metformin. Causes weight gain. Changes concentration of many other drugs including birth control pills in the bloodstream. May cause upper respiratory infection, back pain, flu symptoms, dizziness, joint problems.

 

Invokana:

Increases stroke and heart attack when started, raises risk of acute kidney injury, causes dangerously low blood pressure, low potassium. Too new for other side effects to be apparent.

 

 

 

Byetta :

Causes growth of abnormal alpha and beta cells in pancreas growing a huge mass of abnormal cells that is associated with the growth of precancerous pancreatic adenomas (tumors). Vomiting. Nausea. Chills. Headache. Weakness. Blood pressure fluctuations. Tooth pain. Constipation. Nasal congestion. Doubles risk of pancreatitis.

 

Victoza:

Label contains Black Box warning "Liraglutide injection may increase the risk that you will develop tumors of the thyroid gland, including medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC; a type of thyroid cancer), which may cause death if it is not treated at an early stage." Likely to also cause the abnormal cell overgrowth associated with all incretin drugs that leads to the growth of precancerous adenomas (tumors).May cause renal [kidney] impairment. Study shows it causes more serious rashes than Byetta. Vomiting. Nausea. Chills. Headache. Weakness. Blood pressure fluctuations. Tooth pain. Constipation. Nasal congestion. Doubles risk of pancreatitis.

 

Januvia:

Label warns it may cause pancreatitis, acute renal (kidney) failure, and severe allergic reactions including severe skin rashes. Research found it doubles risk of pancreatitis. Causes strikingly abnormal cell overgrowth in the pancreas and microadenomas (benign glandular tumors that can become cancerous) and neuroendocrine tumors.Cold symptoms, inflamed sinuses, raised blood pressure,constipation. Elevated leucocyte count. DPP-4 inhibition has been called "trigger for prostate cancer", also associated with metastasis in ovarian and lung cancers and melanoma.

 

Onglyza:

Label warns these drugs may cause acute pancreatitis, severe allergic reactions. Research found it doubles risk of pancreatitis. Very likely to cause strikingly abnormal cell growth in pancreas and microadenomas (benign glandular tumors that can become cancerous) and neuroendocrine tumors as this appears to be a class effect found in all incretin drugs. Commonly causes cold symptoms, inflamed sinuses, raised blood pressure,constipation. Lowers lymphocytes, sometimes dangerously.Concentration rises with grapefruit juice, ketoconazole, erythromycin, and verapamil. Raises peak concentrations of sulfonylureas, Actos and Avandia causing hypos.DPP-4 inhibition has been called "trigger for prostate cancer", also associated with metastasis in ovarian and lung cancers and melanoma.

 

For more information about how to control glucose with minimum medication:

Carbohydrates, Nonessential Nutrient.

Of the three macro nutrients only two of them are essential to life, proteins and natural fats, carbohydrates are considered nonessential.  They are considered nonessential because your body will make all the glucose it needs from excess proteins that you consume.  Glucose still plays a role with in your body but it is not essential that you consume any of it in the manner of sugars or starches.  I am not advocating a zero carb diet as I eat around 30-40grams of carbs a day depending on how many low carb vegetables I am eating for the day.

There are two paths to follow while lowering your carbohydrate intake, stop all carbs all of a sudden, like jerking a band aid off or slowly over a period of time, eliminating obvious carbs one at a time.  I preferred the all of a sudden approach but we are all different. 

Adjust your diet, diet is the biggest tool you got in your tool box to manipulate your glucose levels, your cholesterol, your blood pressure, your inflammation. 

Eat real whole foods, foods that come without a label except for dairy products.  Limit your carbs to those found in low carb vegetables.  Avoid foods that have wheat, grains, oatmeal, potatoes, rice, pasta, beans, and flour products.  Do not avoid natural fats, fats found in red meat, dark meat Chicken, or dairy products.  You do not have to seek out fat but avoiding it will not allow your body to heal properly.  Avoid most fruits except for a small amount of berries. This is not a long term plan but a plan to rest your pancreas.  Think of it like putting a cast on a broken bone.  Once you see your glucose levels fall into a normal range and become predictable try to stay at this level for a couple of months.  This is Diabetic cruise control, the lowest point of ingested carbohydrates that will provide a balanced diet with all the necessary nutrients.  Some will find they like it here, I do.  It is easy, no counting carbs, no worrying over a glucose spike or a hypoglycemic events.  You will be eating approximately 30-50 grams of carbohydrates a day at this level of diet.

Now you can choose to remain at this level or you can start to reintroduce the foods you love or thought you loved.  Your cravings will change over time; you will no longer want the high carbohydrate items you were seeking before this.  Most will see a drastic reduction in cravings after a couple of weeks.  You will learn the difference between true hunger, and false hunger created by your previous insulin spike. You will have to test before the new food item, 1 hour after, and 2 hours after to see if it is a food you are capable of eating by comparing the numbers on your glucose meter to the goals you set for yourself.  Your body will respond differently now than it did before you rested your pancreas.

While doing this you are going to have to monitor your glucose levels closely. If you are taking medications, they will need adjusting.  If you are injecting insulin be sure to inform your doctor of your intentions, this will lower your glucose levels and your insulin demand.  If you need help please stop in and see us.

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Following the ADA Diet

I see a lot of people who are recently diagnosed with diabetes who are following the ADA diet and taking medication to cover the carbohydrates they are eating.  Does this sound logical to you?  ADA tells us to eat 40-45 grams of carbs a meal and 15 grams for a snack, that’s nearly, 170 or more grams of carbs a day.  In order for you to accomplish this here take this pill it will allow you to eat that many carbs.  Now that you have diabetes and can no longer process carbohydrates like a non-diabetic why would you want to eat that many carbs and take pills to force your body to do so.  Lots of people I read about with glucose readings in the 200+ (11) range trying to eat according to their dietician, their nutritionist, their doctor and questioning why their glucose is so high.  Carbohydrates are a nonessential nutrient, in other words if you never eaten another carbohydrate your body would function well without them.  Your body will convert the proteins you eat into glucose if it’s needed.  I am not advocated a zero carb diet just trying to make a point.  All the carbohydrates your body needs can be found in low carbohydrate fibrous vegetables.  The idea is to eat real whole foods, as little foods as you can that come with a nutritional label on them except for dairy products.  I have never seen a nutritional label tagged onto a zucchini or a bunch of broccoli.  Stay away from manmade food, manmade seed oils, your body will love you for it.  If you are eating according to the professionals that are giving you advice and your glucose levels are still beyond the normal levels you got to ask yourself am I going to take more meds, start injecting insulin, or am I going to try and reduce the amount of glucose I am putting in my body, it is all about glucose through put.  Minimize the amount of glucose (carbs) you put in your body will minimize the amount of medication and or insulin. 

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t2d@t2dcoaching.com

Learning to Give Up

Diabetic now, not sure what to do, first thing is learn to give up your old lifestyle.  The faster you do this the quicker your body will heal.  Wallowing around in denial, fighting this disease, eating what you want, just because you are mad, frustrated, and angry will only elongate the healing process you got ahead of you.  The physical aspects of this disease are the easy part, eat right, get some exercise, and take your medications if necessary, the mental part is much more complicated.  Your lifestyle choices need to change.  You can lie to yourself, well it is just a slice of bread what can it hurt, that’s the mental game you got to face day in and day out. Your brain will adapt to not wanting that type of foods in the long run given if you are strong enough to put off temptation long enough.  It is a battle especially when friends and relatives get together and food is involved, but you have to stay vigilant in order to succeed.  Your mind will play tricks on you, I can have that, it will not hurt anything, just one bite, and we all have been there in the beginning.  You got to tell yourself I can eat whatever I want but I choose not to eat that particular food item.  This gives you mental strength, empowers you to do the right thing.  Learn to love what you can eat and learn to let go of what you loved to eat. You will get lots of people telling you differently, eat what you want just take your medications you will be alright.  Those that are living that lifestyle that you know, do they look alright, do they look healthy, are they losing weight and ask yourself, do I want to travel down that same road.  I believe one’s motivation to stay compliant is directly proportional to just how sick with complications they were before being diagnosed.  It must be hard for those that have no outwardly signs of ill health yet your doctor just informed you that you have diabetes. I was sick, really sick, being diagnosed was a blessing for me.  Those that are newly diagnosed and feel as if there is nothing wrong with you and you do not take this disease seriously, you will in time, I assure you.

Being Over Weight is a Symptom of Diabetes, not the cause

Being overweight is a symptom of diabetes not the cause of diabetes. More people are overweight, obese, and do not have diabetes than those that are obese with diabetes. 36% of the US population is considered obese, but only a little over 8% of the population has diabetes, numbers just do not support the idea of being overweight cause’s diabetes. 20% of the 8% are thin Type 2’s. Your born with Type 2 diabetes, it has always been there waiting for you to pull the trigger through some environmental stressor.

Insulin resistance is a natural biological process that occurs in the animal kingdom. Its primary function is to gain weight, (fat stores) for future famine, winter, etc. The black bear who hibernates in the winter has no idea winter is coming all he knows is he is hungry. He is hungry because the length of daylight triggered his insulin resistance to increase. All he knows now is find food and eat I'm starving. What is happening in his body is the same thing that is happening in a human that has insulin resistance; your muscles are rejecting the glucose/insulin mix. This rejection of glucose forces your body into making and storing saturated fats. Now the whole time you are eating your brain is still getting signals from your cells, (I'm starving) which makes you seek out more food, store more fat and the cycle continues. The problem of diabetes comes into play when your pancreas (beta mass) can no longer keep up with your insulin demand. This brings on a rise in glucose levels.  When your glucose levels get high enough they will start to kill off your insulin producing cells in your Pancreas, you are now completely diabetic.

The myth that I am trying very hard to dispel is; that being obese, overweight, and sedentary causes diabetes. I don't want anyone in here to feel any guilt that they ate their way to having diabetes. Being overweight is just one symptom in the beginning of having diabetes.   So being a typical Type 2 Diabetic means you have to have a couple of things go wrong and research is finding out they are both genetic.  Your insulin resistance gets activated and will not lower and in some it increases.  Your insulin producing cells stop growing in proportion to your insulin demand.

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Supplements Neuropathy

Lots of people asking, what can I take for my neuropathy?  The first goal to getting your pain under control is getting your glucose levels below 120 (6.7) at all times.  High glucose levels will not allow your nerves to heal which will result in more pain and numbness requiring more and more prescription medication.

What I did for my neuropathy, I had it in both my hands and feet, to the point I could barely drive a car.

L-Arginine, 10 grams a day after lunch.  If taken before lunch it may cause an unwanted rise in your glucose levels.  Arginine increases circulation, you need to be able to get fresh blood to the affected nerves. 

L-Glutamine,  5-10 grams before bed.  Your body will use Glutamine to repair tissue, and make GABA.

Methyl B-12, 1 mg a day.  Methyl B-12 is needed for nerve conductance.  It is important to use the methyl version of B-12 as the Cyano form requires the intrinsic factor to be utilized by your body.

ALA, Alpha Lipoic Acid, 7mg per pound of body weight.  ALA will heal the nerves.

For immediate relief:

GABA, GABA will relax your nerves and reduce your pain levels, especially right before bedtime.

L-Glycine, Glycine is very calming on the nervous system and can also be taken before bed.

If you are suffering from RLS, restless leg syndrome you can increase Folic Acid

Once you begin this your pain level may increase as did mine.  It soon subsided and within a few weeks was almost gone entirely.  After a month I discontinued the ALA, Methyl B-12.  I still take Arginine and Glutamine when needed.

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Moderation => Frustration

Moderation => Frustration

Lots of talk about diet and everything in moderation is ok.  I need help in understanding this.  To me it is like saying I will take a moderate risk with my diabetes.  Now that you have been diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes trying to eat all things in moderation only leads to frustration.  You will never be able to eat the things you loved to eat in the past without increasing medications or having to inject large amounts of insulin to cover your meal and keep your glucose levels in a normal range.  Normal range, that’s the key here.  If you are ok with abnormal glucose levels, then there really isn’t a problem.  Glucose levels above 140, 7.8 for any length of time harm soft tissue with in your body.  You want to try and keep your glucose levels below these limits at all times, your risking complications if you do otherwise.  Being a Type 2 with insulin resistance means your food choices before being diagnosed were that of a high carb nature.  It is not by coincidence that we were all carboholics before being diagnosed.  Your body was starving because the glucose insulin mix was not getting into your cells to provide energy.  This set up your body sending signals to your brain to eat something with glucose, carbohydrates, that’s easily digestible.  Your brain then rewarded you for this by releasing serotonin creating a dependency on carbohydrates. Your body still cannot use the insulin glucose mix as energy well so it uses it to make fat, while still sending signals to your brain your starving eat something carby.  This results in rapid weight gain mostly around the middle part of your body.  There is however a population of thin Type 2’s that develop insulin resistance with in their organs, about 20% of the total diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes.  The only way to break free of this vicious cycle is to reduce your dependency on glucose by reducing your carbohydrate consumption.  If you are still trying to eat everything in moderation your glucose levels are still fluctuating, you are seldom satisfied after a meal, and you are going to make yourself frustrated with this disease.  There are thousands of recipes out there for almost any type of food you want to eat that would be acceptable for a low carb lifestyle.  Your will find your cravings vanish, your desire to make replicas of your favorite foods diminish as well.  You will lose weight, regulate your glucose levels, your cholesterol levels, and minimize your medications and or insulin dosages. 

 

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Dandelion Project/Insulin Resistance

Sounds odd I know, but it is something I have been studying for several years and I will finally get to put it to the test.  Dandelion Greens are among the most nutritionally dense greens you can consume.  Water Cress is similar and I think it can be used in place of the Dandelion Greens if they are not available.  Insulin resistance is a natural mammalian trait.  Problem is with some people it gets turned on and will not turn off; this is the first step to becoming a type 2 diabetic.  I have a theory that high consumption of spring greens like Dandelion greens or Water Cress will lower my insulin resistance.  I am fortunate enough that we are getting two new grocery stores in my area that will supply Dandelion Greens starting this spring and I intend to take advantage of them to see what effects it will have on my body.  Since my glucose levels are in a normal range, glucose will be a poor indicator; I will have to rely on weight loss as an indication of a decrease in insulin resistance.  I would like to hear from others that are having elevated glucose levels and the effect the spring greens are having.


I have built into my website a place for everyone to submit their daily consumption, how they were prepared, effects, glucose level changes, insulin demand changes and a comment area for everyone to see everyone else’s progress.  If you can think of any other information you would like recorded please make the suggestion in the comment area.

Any one that wants to be involved please feel free to participate.  Check out your local grocery stores, your back yards for Dandelion greens this spring.  I am going to try to consume as much as I can every day until my supply runs out.  Would like some suggestions as to how to prepare these greens I have never eaten them in the past.

If you are interested in participating with me and others please enter a nick name and check yes before we begin, it will help me to prepare the spread sheet that I will forward to everyone at the termination of the project. 

http://t2dcoaching.com/dandelion-project/

Laboratory Blood Tests

 

What to look for and what to ask for when seeing your doctor or getting blood work done.   Cholesterol panel, most doctors will order a cholesterol panel, a straight forward very meaningless test and a poor indicator of heart disease.  There is however some meaningful information that can be found with in this older style test regardless of what the totals are.  Do not let total numbers concern you, take a look at the ratios of numbers you are given.

The first ratio you want to look at is your HDL divided by Total cholesterol.  You want this number to be greater than 0.24.  Less than 0.24 is an indication you may have a problem.  An example, my total cholesterol is 150, my HDL is 40, 40/150 = 0.26.  This number is higher than 0.24 but not by much which means I still have room for improvement with my HDL.

The second ratio you can take a look at and this one I find is more important than the first is your Triglyceride/HDL ratio.  Having high triglycerides and a low HDL is a good indicator of future heart trouble.  Trigs/HDL = <2.0 indicates you are at a good ratio, greater than 2.0 indicates you need some improvement in either lowering your trigs or raising your HDL.  Both of these can be accomplished at the same time by reducing your carbohydrate consumption and increasing your saturated fat consumption.  Let us take a look at an example.  My triglycerides are 30, my HDL is 40, 30/40 = 0.75.  So according to this my trigs/HDL is at a very healthy ratio.

If you want detailed report of your cholesterol you need to request either a VAP test or a NMR Lipoprotein test.  Both of these tests will determine particle size.  Particle size is a much better indicator of future complications due to inflammation with in your arteries.  What you are looking for here is large and fluffy particle size, small and dense indicates inflammation your body is trying to repair.  I prefer the NMR test as it also has a math model to determine insulin resistance.

There are other tests you may be interested in, especially if you have adjusted your diet and still are finding it difficult to control your glucose levels.

Vitamin B-12, Cortisol, Electrolytes, DHEA, Testosterone, Estrogen, Estradiol, Progesterone, C-Peptide and GAD antibodies to determine what type of diabetes that you have. 

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Supplements Pain Management

Supplements……Pain management

Pain management is a complicated, multifaceted problem which can lead to deficiencies of hormones, vitamins, and nutrients.  It is important that you try and rebuild these deficiencies and provide building blocks for your body to heal.  Pain is important; it signals the brain that something is wrong, without it your wounds would not heal. Opiates are used extensively for pain management and can cause unpleasant side effects. They alter the way your brain works and can become very addictive.  It is important to identify the cause of your pain and determine what needs to be done to heal that part of your body; the pain is there for a reason.  

Supplements that may have a direct impact on your pain:

GABA, GABA reduces the stress, increases muscle tone, and is a neurotransmitter.

KAVA, KAVA will also relax your body and will provide pain relief if taken in the right quantity.

Supplements that will affect your pain indirectly by helping your body heal:

L-Arginine, increases circulation in your peripheral arteries.  Circulation is important in trying to heal an area of your body.

GPLC, Glycine Propionyl-L-Carnitine HCL, increases circulation.

L-Glutamine, L-Glutamine will provide some of the building blocks needed for repairing damaged tissue

L-Glycine, L-Glycine is an inhibitory neurotransmitter.  Glycine is crucial in preventing certain neurons from sending too many action potentials and over-reacting.

BCAA’s, Branched Chain Amino Acids will provide additional building blocks for tissue repair.

ALA, Alpha Lipoic Acid helps to heal nerves

Methyl B-12 is essential for nerve conduction.

DLPA, DLPA is an amino acid that will help your brain manufacture more of its own endorphins.  DLPA can lead to an over increase in endorphins causing anxiety so you have to increase consumption slowly.

Biopuncture, Biopuncture has to be performed by a licensed doctor but it is effective in reducing pain from various sources.  Biopuncture is a mixture of substances that bring about your own body’s healing capabilities.

If one has been in pain for extended periods of time you also need to look into adrenal fatigue.  Cortisol is released when in pain; if this is constant it may deplete your cortisol and or alter your natural cortisol curve.

The list above is a starting point, reference for anyone that may need help with their pain.  Please discuss everything with your doctor before making a change.

 

 

 

Supplements, Sleep

I am going to go through some of the supplements that I have dealt with and find useful in the next several Daily-Tips.  First up is sleep.  Sleep is very important, if you don’t get restorative sleep all aspects of your health will suffer from it.  We need to talk about what is restorative sleep.  There are four stages of sleep, restorative sleep occurs during stage 3 and stage 4.  If your brain is not getting to this stage it will affect your health, glucose control, food cravings, blood pressure, and mood, among other things.  So how does one get to a stage 3 and 4 sleep cycle?

These are not in any particular order and I will talk about nonprescription supplements first.

Seriphos -  Phosphatidyl Serine, is taken to control Cortisol right before you go to bed.  If you are finding yourself becoming more and more energetic as the day goes along, and you don’t get sleepy till very late at night you may have a Cortisol problem.  This is also related to Adrenal Fatigue.

GABA, GABA reduces the effects of cortisol and adrenal hormones; it usually takes effect within 30-40 minutes after consuming.  It will make you sleepy if taken in higher dosages.

KAVA, Kava reduces anxiety and provides mild muscle relaxation without reducing brain activity.  If taken in high enough quantity it will promote sleep and pain relief.

Passion Flower, Passion Flower acts on the adrenal system as well.  It is an anxiogenic and anticonvulsant. It is used during drug with drawls

Inositol, Inositol will not make you sleepy but it will help your brain to achieve stage 3 and 4 sleep cycle.  Inositol also modulates glucose in your system and is being used to help treat women for PCOS. 

Magnesium, Magnesium is also beneficial in helping to maintain a deeper sleep cycle

5HTP, 5 HTP will be converted by your body into serotonin which then can be converted into melatonin.  If you are on a SSRI you have to monitor closely the amount of 5 HTP you consume to avoid what is known as serotonin syndrome.  Melatonin is needed for helping your body stay asleep.

Fish Oil, Fish Oil is calming on the brain if taken right before bed time and will help your brain maintain sleep.

L-Glycine, L-Glycine is an amino acid that provides calming of the brain it will help maintain sleep.

L-Glutamine, L-Glutamine is an amino acid that can be converted to GABA by your body.  I t will also provide building blocks for tissue repair while you sleep.

Folic Acid, Folic Acid reduces restless leg syndrome, calms the nerves, and helps to maintain sleep.

Prescriptions that will help with getting to sleep and maintaining sleep

Atarax, Hydroxyzine is a strong antihistamine, a non-addictive drug that will promote sleep.

Tizanidine, Tizanidine is a muscle relaxer which will promote sleep within 30 minutes and last for 30 minutes.  Once you get past this 30 minute window the sleep effect of the drug wears off, so it is important to take 30 minutes before bed and be in bed when it affects you.

Gabapentin, Gabapentin is very effective in helping your brain reach stage 3 and stage 4 sleep cycle.  You have to titrate upwards to achieve the proper dose for your particular body.  A dose of 2400mg at night is not unheard of.

There are others that are more main stream sleep aids by prescription only.  The ones listed above are rarely used for sleep disorders but are very effective in that regard.

The key to getting a good night’s sleep is determining what your problems are then deciding which of the above will help me with my problems.

If you would like to discuss this further please come visit us at:

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Diabetes is not Progressive

Progression

You will hear both sides of this argument along your journey with diabetes, that diabetes is a progressive disease.  You first have to determine what it is your talking about that is progressing. 

Diabetes is a term, a word to describe a condition; high blood glucose causes the damage not diabetes.  Diabetes is not responsible for loss of limbs; loss of eye sight, neuropathy, high blood glucose is the reason. 

Having diabetes is not the reason for progression into complications, having uncontrolled blood glucose levels is progressive.  Maintaining glucose levels above 140 (7.8) for extended periods of time will progress to further complications.

If you have an autoimmune disease like that found in Type 1’s and LADA’s, that is progressive in the fact that your insulin producing cells are being destroyed.  This doesn’t mean that all of the complications that come with having high glucose levels need also to be progressive. 

Diabetics can live a normal, long and healthy life if they learn to control their individual disease.  This doesn’t necessarily mean to just keep adding more and more medication and or insulin in an attempt to gain control of your glucose levels.  Doing this is like trying to stop a car with the gas pedal on the floor while applying the brakes, much easier to let up on the gas before applying he brakes.