Low Carb Diabetic Diet

Meet doctors who have Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. Learn what foods to eat on a low carb diabetic diet to control blood sugar, stay healthy and feel great!

Dr. Jay Wortman, Type 2 Diabetic

Jay Wortman found out he had Type 2 diabetes when he was 52. At first he just hoped to buy some time while researching what medications he should take to manage his diabetes. He thought he could get his blood sugar under control first by avoiding ALL carbs and sugars so he did this right away.

What happened next came as a surprise to him.

Within days his blood sugar started to normalize. Over time he lost weight and his blood tests all returned to normal (including his total cholesterol, LDL and HDL cholesterol, triglycerides, and blood pressure).

Dr. Wortman continued following a low carb diet and he never had to take insulin or other diabetes medications!

He wondered if a low carb diet could work for other diabetics too, so he began reading the medical research on carbs and diabetes to find out.

He found promising studies by Dr. Eric Westman at Duke University. Dr. Westman had been treating his patients with a low carb, low sugar diet and was seeing their health turn around too.

The two doctors met in person and Dr. Wortman decided to start his own research study in British Columbia, Canada. The CBC made a one hour documentary film of this year-long experiment called "My Big Fat Diet".

"My Big Fat Diet" - Low Carb Diabetic Diet Documentary Film

To see the rest of "My Big Fat Diet" watch Part 2 of 3, and Part 3 of 3. 

Dr. Richard K. Bernstein, Type 1 Diabetic

Dr. Richard K. Bernstein

Richard Bernstein devotes his practice to treating only diabetic patients (those with Type 1 diabetes, Type 2 diabetes and prediabetes). Bernstein is 80 years old and still practices medicine.

The life expectancy of type 1 diabetics is about 15 years shorter than the average person. When I see someone like Bernstein who is clearly energetic and healthy despite living with a chronic illness, I take note. He must be doing something right!

How did Dr. Bernstein live such a long, healthy life?

He gives credit to the low carbohydrate diet and other lifestyle changes that he practices.

Bernstein started testing his blood glucose in 1969. Blood monitoring devices were expensive and hard to find then, but he found one and began using it several times a day. He quickly realized that his blood glucose changed depending on what he ate throughout the day.

So he naturally asked himself...

What foods can I eat to keep my blood sugar in check? Bernstein experimented and within a few years he could control his blood sugar by counting carbs and eating 30 grams of carbs or less per day.

All of this happened before he decided to attend medical school to become a doctor.

At the time he was in his mid-40s and working as an engineer
, but he felt that he could do more to help other diabetics, so he decided to enroll in medical school and the rest is history.

 Use Caution!

If you are taking medications for diabetes or blood pressure, you need to reduce or discontinue your medication, usually within days of beginning this diet.

You MUST monitor your blood glucose/ blood sugar and see a health care practitioner who can oversee your health and make sure you are getting the right dosage of any medications you are taking.

"Failure to do this would cause blood sugar and/or blood pressure to go too low potentially endangering the health of participants." says Dr. Jay Wortman.

What Foods Can I Eat on a Low Carb Diabetic Diet?

  • green vegetables like spinach, kale, chard, endive, lettuce and celery.
  • green herbs like parsley, chives, basil, oregano, dill, fennel, fenugreek, etc.
  • cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, asparagus, and cabbage
  • fatty meats like beef, chicken, fish and fish oils
  • butter
  • cheese
  • cream
  • eggs
  • oils

Foods to Avoid on a Low Carb Diabetic Diet

  • milk (because lactose in milk raises blood sugar)
  • baked goods (bread, cakes, cookies, muffins, donuts, bagels, pasteries)
  • grains and grain flour in cereal, pasta, rice, crackers and bread
  • potatoes in all forms: baked, boiled, potato chips, crisps and french fries
  • starchy vegetables such as corn, carrots, peas, tomatoes, potatoes and beans
  • sweets (foods with added sugar or honey such as desserts, candies and pastries)
  • fruit and fruit juices, preserved fruits, jellies, and jams

To follow a low carb diabetic diet, it is very important to count the number of carbohydrates you eat. Many apps for your cell phone can make this easier.

Dr. Wortman asks his diabetic patients to eat less than 20 grams of carbs/day.

Dr. Bernstein recommends LIMITING CARBS to 30 grams/day or less. He also prescribes exercise for all his Type 2 diabetic patients.

Per day, Dr. Bernstein recommends that diabetics stay within these limits for carbs:

 6 grams for breakfast
12 grams for lunch
12 grams for dinner
30 grams = TOTAL carbs per day

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