Experience Switching To Paleo Diet

By Dfresh52x Latest Reply 2017-01-12 18:38:50 -0600
Started 2014-03-12 17:40:10 -0500

Disclaimer: I am not preaching or saying this is what you should do even though it has been very helpful for controlling my sugars. I just wanted to share my experience with shifting to this diet since I have seen a lot of talk around about it. I am a T1 since 2012 and take humalog/lantus. I have the Eat Smart food scale I use to weight most everything I eat.

My Diet and Sugars Before:
I would eat 60g of carbs with each meal and about 2 meals a day. Essentially I just avoided foods with more than half of the carbs as sugar. I would still eat high glycemic index foods like bread and rice but tried to eat wheat bread or oatmeal or quinoa when possible. No sugary foods, obviously.
Often I would find 1 hour after eating my sugar would be as high as 180-220 before going down to around 120 at 2 hours after eating. This would cause what I called "first hour weirdness". I would feel slightly nauseous or dizzy or confused in that first hour after eating. After eating like this for about a year I started getting body pains in that first hour. Basically it felt like my whole body just ached and was very difficult to function after eating.

The Paleo Diet:
Essentially you just don't eat grains or beans (legumes) or rice of any kind. All your carbohydrates should come from non-starchy vegetables and fruit, preferably with a lower glycemix index and high fiber content (so that you can eat more, feel full and avoid sugar spikes). The rest of your diet should be lean proteins like fish or chicken. You should also try foods like liver and kale every so often since they are high in important nutrients that you might not be getting a whole lot of anymore on this diet. You should also supplement with calcium citrate since you might get less of this.
When on this diet you must also be very low carb (under 20g). The lower the carbs, the lower the amount of insulin and the lower the chance of miscalculation. That might seem like not a lot, but trust me it is plenty. I have heard it recommended for T1 on this diet that you should also avoid certain sweet fruits/veggies like beets, carrots, watermelon, pineapple etc… I have been avoiding these but have no evidence that this recommendation is true.

My Experience and Sugars Now:
I eat about 15g carbs with each meal and 2 meals a day. I take 4-5 units of humalog for this amount of carbs. My A1C was at 5.3 after about 3 months on this diet. At about 1 hour after meals my blood sugar spikes are around 120-130. At about 2 hours after meals I am around 80-100 on average. I no longer get body pains during the first hour of eating and I generally feel better. I won't say "oh my god, I feel so energetic and my skin glows and I just feel healthy!" like I have seen people say, but my blood sugar logs indicate that my sugar control is pretty damn good. Almost like a non-diabetic. And I am going to stick to what is working for me.
The only problem I have with my sugars now is weight lifting (which makes me high) and beer (which I am trying to stop drinking).

Sample Meals:
15g of something like brussel sprouts, asparagus or mixed fruit is actually a lot of food and will be quite filling with a small side portion of meat. Meals with just the nuts or apples are usually less filling. When I go out to eat and I can't weigh my food, I usually just get a salad with some chicken in it or just eat straight meat.
Breakfast: 3 hardboiled eggs, 1 apple
Breakfast: Smoked salmon, 1 pear
Lunch: 1/2 chicken breast, some spinach, 3 oz Mixed Nuts
Dinner: 1/2 chicken breast, large bowl of Brussel Sprouts
Dinner: 1/2 chicken breast, large plate of asparagus
Other great foods: red cabbage leaves as a taco shell, green peppers, portabello mushroom for a sandwich bun, pico de gallo to add flavor, hummus

2 replies

Nick1962 2014-03-13 11:00:08 -0500 Report

Started a slightly modified Paleo plan about 6 years ago and have had exactly the same great results. Doctor calls my diabetes “dissolved” and no longer treats me for it. Maintained an A1c of 4.9 - 5.3 now for about 4 years.