By pkt Latest Reply 2010-01-16 19:03:42 -0600
Started 2010-01-15 17:08:08 -0600

I need to know how many carbs I need per meal or a day. Thank you!

9 replies

justgeo1 2010-01-16 19:03:42 -0600 Report

There is only one way to know what your body needs and how it deals with carbs, and that is to test, test, test… test before you eat to know where you start, then test again at about 1 1/2 hours out to see how those carbs affected you. Please note that the 1.5 hour mark is a guess on my part, because you may metabalize the carbs faster or slower than that. In other words you may need to test every 1/2 hour to find where your peak is… and exercise after a meal will change that too… :)

As we say on another forum I'm on, YMMV Your Mileage May Vary, meaning that what works for you may not work for me, and what works today, may not work tomorrow!

BeckyJ 2010-01-16 14:19:49 -0600 Report

As someone who is on a carb-ratio insulin regime I was sent to a dietician to decide what level of carbs to ingest. Here's is what the pamphlet suggests. Most women need about 3-4 carb choices (45-60 grams of carb) at each meal. Men generally need 4-5 (60-75 grams cab) If you eat snacks, 1-2 carb choices (15-30 grams carb) is reasonable. How many carb choices you need will depend on your size and activity level. It is recomended that you consult a dietician to decide your carb choice levels. For a 1500-1800 caloric diet you get 3-4 carb choices (45-60 grams carb) with each of 3 meals and 1 carb choice (15 gram carb) for each of 3 snacks. Let me tell you THAT is a lot of carbs. I take 1 unit of insulin for each 4 grams of carb so that added up really quickly. I adjusted to 2-3 carb choices (30-45 gram carb) for each meal and only have one snack in evening. I have lots more energy than before and my insulin intake is much lower. Added bennie was that I lost another 23 lbs. I was able to do this becuase I am mostly sedentary due to a disability. If you are more active than you will need the extra carbs to function. I would most definately recommend you see a dietician before starting a carb counting diet. For a referral to a dietician or more information on meal planning contact the American Dietic Association at or calling 1-800-366-1655. Best of luck!

BeckyJ 2010-01-16 14:26:28 -0600 Report

Totally agree with everyone on here who says that you should start testing your own responses to different foods. Some foods that are low in carb choices shoot me up high while others don't. Unfortunately it's all trial and error to what works on your own body. The fewer carbs the better but you do need some!

Deb-G 2010-01-15 20:42:18 -0600 Report

Its important to go with the recommendation for your own personnal control and weight…

Its also important to make sure your protein equals or is higher then your carbs per meal and snack…Not easy to do if your eating the wrong things…so this is a good indicator of what is good and what is not :)

Trying to limit it too tight can cause reactive issues to arise long term…they are finding too tight of control isn't so good either…

So moderation…and I highly recommend what Kirla said also…Test 1 hour after eating to see what foods effect you specifically…we will all be different…so its good to know what your spikers are :)

London 2010-01-15 18:07:59 -0600 Report

My dietician said 15 for snack, 35-45 per meal for women, and 60 for men. Every one has their own opinions on this but i think it all depends on the person, and your levels.

Kirla 2010-01-15 17:48:30 -0600 Report


Lots of people will tell you what the ADA recommends you follow. I believe if your type 1 with no insulin resistance you may be able to eat 45-60 grams carbs per meal with the 15 grams or so for snacks.

I found by testing my blood sugar before and after each meal, that most foods with more than 5 or 6 net carbs per serving will spike my sugar more than I’m willing to live with. I had to stop eating bread (all breads), pasta, crackers, anything with sugar in it and starchy vegetables like corn and potatoes will spike my blood sugar 100+ points.

I refuse to eat any food that spikes my sugar more than 30-40 points. Most of the time my after meal peaks are less than 30. Most people will peak about 1 hour after eating. You can test this by, after eating a meal start testing about 30 or 45 min. after eating and test every 10-15 min. until it starts to drop. You should be able to get a good idea how long it takes for you to peak.

I eat less than 100 grams of carbs per day. I recently have been trying to add more because I use to eat way less than I do now. I wouldn’t worry too much about how many carbs per day your eating. I would worry more how they affect your blood sugar.

I recently evaluated what I eat and my Protein Carb Fats were 20% protein, 20% carbs and 60 % fats. Most of the fats are good fats coming from beans, nuts, seeds and vegetables.

You have to figure out for yourself how many carbs you can eat per meal by testing everything you eat. Only testing will give you the answer. I wouldn’t listen to no one here but your meter.

thiruvelan 2010-01-15 19:42:12 -0600 Report

Choose healthy-healthy diet;
Blood sugar test & test;
Map-map the results;
Think, plan, discuss and finalize you carb.

Anne56 2010-01-16 13:47:15 -0600 Report

THANK YOU, KIRLA! Your response includes precisely what has been on my mind to learn. I'm a novice and found this to be very helpful. You clearly make the point that everyone is different and how to adjust. Thanks again for thorough, focused, and personal information.

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