Diabetes Type 2

  1. My mom was just recently diagnosed with diabetes type 2, and she's pretty overwhelmed. The thing that she's struggling with the most is what she can or cannot eat--the doctor wasn't too helpful, and I've been searching on the internet for her, but I keep getting conflicting reports. Some websites say coffee is bad for diabetics, others say it's okay.

    Does anyone out there who is diabetic (and who doesn't mind sharing) have any advice on food? My mom loves eating breads, pastas, and white rice (we are Chinese), and it's killing her that she can barely eat these foods now. Or can she, but with moderation?

    Please help!
  2. I also have diabetes type 2, I would start by recomending that you get in touch with the diabetes association in your area. They have all kinds of programs in many languages that will help your mom with meal planning and monitoring her sugars. Diabetics can eat most foods, but it is about the balance. Meals should be planned so that there is a small amount of carbs (rice, breads and pastas), a serving of protein and vegetables. It is important to know that carbs raise blood sugar, but they are also important for keeping blood sugar stable. It is all in the proportion. Excercise is also very important for lowering blood sugar. There is alot to learn about diabetes, but it is a managable disease. She will feel better when she meets other Chinese woman who have the diesease and can tell her how to cook her own food so she can enjoy it and still stay healthy. Good Luck!
  3. my husband is diabetic and is insulin dependent. when he was initially diagnosed (age 24, so technically they called it juvenile diabetes)he saw a nutritionist. it was somewhat helpful.
    does your mom take insulin shots? if so you and she may want to look into something called carb counting-----it involves taking enough insulin to compensate for the carbs you are about to eat. my dh also saw a nurse educator and she helped w/ this also. but her doctor should be there for her to educate her...or at least refer her to the people who can. gotta love the healthcare system.
    if she is not insulin dependent she really needs to watch what she eats as far as carbs go. and she should exercise. in some cases diabetes can all but be reversed w/ diet and exercise.
    Good luck to you and your mom and feel free to post more questions and i'll do my best. Oh, I'd better state my disclaimer : I'm not a doctor! (I just play one on TV) LOL!
  4. Thanks so much for your replies. The problem is that my parents live in Shanghai, China, and the healthcare system here is clearly not as good as it is in the US--there are a very limited number of resources available, and the doctors are extremely unhelpful.

    My mom isn't taking insulin shots--the doctor put her on medication, which she takes three times a day. She's exercising at least 30 minutes a day now, but what's most difficult for her is the food. She doesn't know what she can or cannot eat. She's afraid to eat anything, and then ends up being hungry at night and extremely unhappy.
  5. ^^^ Hmmm.....that is a problem. Try contacting the diabetes association in Washington and they will probably send you material. You can then translate for her. The most important thing for her is to eat at regular intervals. The excercise is very important, and she probably just needs to balance out her meals. There are some very good books on the market as well.
  6. I am not an expert in this either but it is as others posted a balance of food portions and exercising every day. The diabetic lifestyle is a very healthy one!! And it doesn't mean cutting out carbs completely.

    As Sarah2808 posted I'm sure you can get reading material which you can then translate for your Mom.
  7. wow. ok, carbs are definetly her enemy. as well as anything high in fat. like say, pizza=carbs+fat. the fat delays the carbs from hitting your system and when they hit your system your blood sugar hits the roof!
    when my dh was diagnosed they put him on medication (pills) at first and he ate 5-6 small meals a day. she can eat pretty much unlimited vegetables and lean protien.
    if you don't mind me asking, how high were her initial blood sugars? and does she test her blood sugar daily?
    i will do some searching.....
    here's something http://www.diabetes.org/nutrition-and-recipes/nutrition/healthyfoodchoices.jsp
    and this is a book http://www.health.harvard.edu/special_health_reports/Healthy_Eating_for_Type_2_Diabetes.htm
    and another http://www.ediets.com/start.cfm?funnel=specific&dietchoice=6

    i hope some of this will help!
  8. So I am not a Doctor nor am I diabetic despite my entire family and DH having it. I intended to stay that way even though diabetes is hereditary and the odds are against me!! ;)

    So this isn't advise, per se, but what I have read and what is working for my family in successfully controlling the disease.

    Type 2 is thought to be caused by either both or one of the following: the body doesn't produce enough insulin to break down the sugars in the blood or the "key" to bind the insulin to the sugar and break it down for the muscles to use isn't working, in which case the body flogs the pancreas for more (ineffective) insulin.

    One way to address this is thought to be eating foods that release their carbohydrates *slowly* and over a longer period of time. The glycemic index is a great way to look at foods, for anyone, especially diabetics (and athletes):


    This theory actually advocates eating more carbs of a COMPLEX and harder to digest nature: think steel cut oatmeal, high fiber bread, ala dente pasta.

    It is also thought that weight loss is a key to staying diabetes free and controlling your blood sugar after diagnosis. Even being as much as 10% overweight can trigger it.


    There is a TON of literature out there, some of it in conflict, so really your Mom needs to figure out what works best for her.

    Best of luck :flowers:
  9. Good advice Nola and hmwe :tup:

    I have Juvenile Diabetes, which is very different than Type 2. I have an insulin pump, so I can basically eat like a normal person. The only thing that's off limits is drinks with corn syrup-- they make my blood sugar skyrocket and they're too many calories anyway so I NEVER have them.

    Daily exercise is GREAT for Type 2s. Another thing that's important is the Glycemic Index. Basically, each food is given a number to determine how much/quickly they raise blood sugar. Foods high on the Glycemic Index should also typically be avoided by Type2... Obviously things like sugar, corn syrup and honey should be avoided. Juices and non-diet soft drinks should be avoided. Sugars should be replaced with non-caloric sweetners and white carbs should be replaced with whole grains and eaten only in moderation. It is also important to more eat fiber and lean protein as they slow the absorption of sugar. Like Nola said, lean protein (things like chicken and turkey breast, egg whites, fish) and non-starchy vegetables can be eaten in *almost* unlimited amounts. Most fresh fruits are okay, because they have fiber-- fresh berries, apples and oranges are best. Sweet potatoes, skim milk, oatmeal, bran cereals and beans are some other "safe" carbs...

    I like the suggestion of buying them a book and helping them read it. Just steer clear of Dr. Bernstein books-- he's amazing, but his standards are a little bit unrealistic. I think it would be too overwhelming for new Type 2s :shrugs:
  10. #10 Nov 26, 2008
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2008
    Reviving this thread, as I need some more info on diabetes.
    I'm having 2 of my favorite friends next month over my house, to spend New Year together, and they will stay with us for a week. 1 of my friends has developed diabetes and she takes insulin. She is in her late 30's, very thin, very active (she is a dancer) and she is a vegetarian. Since I'm the one cooking all the meals in my house any tips for the things I should avoid including in our meals? I know sugar is a big no no, but other than that, I'm ashamed to admit I'm clueless.

    Also an appropriate diet for diabetes is a low glycemic food diet?
  11. ^^def. check out claires post above yours^^. minus the meat. does she eat fish? that's a great option. and if she takes insulin she may be able to eat whatever she wants. have you asked her what you should shop for??
  12. Thanks for the reply!
    I have stayed over at her house before (weekend), and she can have dairy, eggs, and if I remember correctly she did eat salmon (in a pasta dish). Is rice ok? should I buy brown rice and whole grain pasta? Of course I will ask her if she needs something special, but since she comes from a dif country, she might think out version of (lets say) pastries are sugar free. I 'm planning our meals right now, and I don't want to kill her by accident, or leave her hungry for a week!:p
  13. My mom also has type 2, she's 70 now and was just diagnosed a few years ago. She takes oral medication but is not insulin dependent. We were all very surprised when she was diagnosed because she doesn't fit the stereotype -- she is only about 105 pounds, eats very little sweets and is physically and socially active. So sometimes it's just the luck of the draw.

    A lot of the advice you have been given is great. My mom believes that everything in moderation is key. Would your mom be willing to switch to brown rice instead of white? That would help. Also, she should make sure that her protein intake is higher than her carb intake to keep her blood sugar balanced. And she shouldn't go more than 4 hours between eating during the day (even if just a small snack) so that she doesn't have highs and lows.
  14. brown rice might be ok. what my DH does is carb count. for a certain amount of carbohydrates he takes a certain amount of insulin. if your friend does this she may be able to eat whatever she wants (for the most part). my DH tries to stay away from rice b/c it is high in carbs. whole wheat pasta is a great option.
    and you won't kill her!
  15. I keep unsalted nuts in bowls everywhere in the house for healthy snacking. And fruits. Someone above mentioned apples, I think, and I can get plenty of these, are bananas ok too?? Or too much carb?

    The meals I will prepare are full of legumes and vegetables. And I will buy low fat fresh cheese, so she can keep her protein intake high.

    Thanks for the good advice everyone!:tup: It's invaluable!:heart: