Good Morning People!
So, I have always seen on social media that a lot of others with T1D choose to follow a low or lower carb sort of lifestyle so I thought I would give it a go. Now I’m a very carby type of gal, my Instagram bio literally has the phrase ‘Carbs, carbs, carbsssss’ in it. I like food okay?!
But, I have always thought that it was a really interesting idea, I saw that people were saying good things about it and that they were finding it was helping to control their blood glucose so I thought I would see if it is something that would interest me and help me with my glucose control.
Now, it’s important to say that I didn’t go completely low carb because my body is so used to carbohydrates that it wouldn’t have been healthy to do so. So, my aim was to try and stick to around 20 to 30 grams of carbs per meal which is probably still a lot less than what I was initially used to (I am not lying when I say I LOVE carbs). Now, I’m definitely not an expert on what carbs are but essentially the body takes all the carbs that you eat and breaks it down into glucose, which is used to give us lots of energy1.
Now, it was a good couple of months ago now that I tried eating lower carb and I did find a lot of benefits to it, however I don’t follow low carb now because it doesn’t fit in with my lifestyle at the moment. Now, like I said I eat a lot of carbs anyways, so sometimes I still choose to eat a meal or snacks with less carbs if I feel like I am having a really high carby day.
If you are thinking of trying out low carb eating then I am going to put what I liked and disliked about it below.
LIKES: INSULIN NEEDS DECREASED
Oh my goodness, over the past couple of years my insulin needs haven’t necessarily changed massively, every now and then I need to make changes but they are usually small adjustments. But, when I was low carb my insulin needs decreased by crazy amounts, obviously I wasn’t eating as many carbs so I wasn’t needing the insulin but my basal rates throughout the day changed dramatically as well. For me, I practically halved my basal rates throughout the whole day. Now, I don’t mind how much insulin I need but I found it crazy how a change in my diet could affect me so much!
DISLIKE: DIFFICULT FINDING ALTERNATIVES
It was very strange at first trying to reduce my carb intake or find different alternatives for the carbs. Obviously it was a new way of eating for me so I knew it would take time to get used to it, but at first I just felt like I was eating considerably less than before and was feeling a lot snackier than usual.
Oh your girl is not or was not a vegetable type of girl, it is bad I know. But, my Mum will be happy to know that I eat my greens now!! Eating low carb sort of forced me to fill my plate with other things instead so I found myself chucking a lot more vegetables into my meals and I still do it now…I AM A CHANGED GIRL. Because they’re all packed full of fibre I found myself feeling a lot more fulfilled after my meals so this is even something I try and do now I don’t eat low carb because it makes me feel soooo good.
DISLIKE: MISSING OUT
It was a really weird feeling but I just felt like I was missing out sometimes, like there was food I wanted but was restricting myself to because I was eating ‘low carb’. This was more to do with me and the type of person I am, like I am really competitive so when I set my mind to something I want to do well, so I felt like I was restricting myself when I didn’t necessarily have to. I sort of had to tell myself that I was trying out low carb because I wanted to not because I had to, so if I wanted to eat carbs I could.
LIKE: LESS SPIKES IN MY GLUCOSE
Honestly, my CGM graphs were so pleasing to look at; they were smoother than I had ever seen before. Because I wasn’t eating as many carbs I didn’t notice as many spikes in my glucose as I do now, I found it easier to control my glucose and keep them within range which did feel really amazing.
DISLIKE: HYPO-CITY URGH.
Urgh. This was so frustrating. First of all when I was making all the changes and my insulin needs to changing I did suffer with a lot a hypos whilst I attempted to adjust my insulin and make all the changes. For me it did take a while and what felt like a lot of work, but it didn’t last forever I promise. We just all know what hypos are like, they can be annoying, so a couple a day for what felt like weeks… ah.
So, I hope my little likes and dislikes of low carb eating are helpful, it is really important to know that we are all different and our bodies will react differently to changes though. So what effected me might not necessarily effect you guys but I just wanted to share my experiences with you all. Like I said I am not eating low carb at the moment because I am currently going to the gym quite a lot and do 12 hours work days on my feet so I like to eat carbs, they make me feel a little more energized.
However, I do have an absolutely banging low carb chilli recipe so stay tuned and I might share that with you all very soon.
Published on 2 January 2020.
By Cally Roberts
I am 22 years old and have been a type one for 12 years. I am currently at University where I am training to become a Children’s Nurse, and one day I hope to become a specialist diabetes nurse and help and support others like myself.
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