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Diabetes Educator re: Fat (Do I listen or ignore?)

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  • Diabetes Educator re: Fat (Do I listen or ignore?)

    Per the orders of my endocrinologist I had to (grudgingly) meet with a diabetes educator the other day since I am going into a pregnancy as a Type II Diabetic.

    Hereís the dilemma. The educator wants me to gain no more than 20-25 lbs for my pregnancy. But, in addition to counting carbs, her approach involves strict calorie control, which (according to her) entails strictly limiting saturated fat.

    She advises that I stick to 6 small meals per day, 15 g of carbs per each meal, and eat only low fat foods.

    This (approach to fat) obviously flies in the face of everything Primal Iíve been doing until now. I offhandedly mentioned that Iíd been using full fat coconut milk and she looked at me as if Iíd just uttered a string of obscenities.

    I have morning sickness and the only thing Iíve been able to stomach is full fat Greek yogurt. The educator advised that I switch to low fat/no fat Greek yogurt.

    Anyway, Iíve seen a lot of debate on this board about calories in/calories out as it relates to weight control etc. So my questions are:

    In an effort to avoid excessive weight gain, do I take her advice and lay off the saturated fat by eating low fat yogurt and getting rid of the coconut butter/oil/milk Iíve been using regularly until now? (Note: I usually try to limit dairy. But these days, as I mentioned, Greek yogurt is the only thing I can stomach. BUT I thought low fat dairy products are even harmful...canít remember why but Iíd read about this a while ago).

    Do I just stick to monounsaturated fats?

    Do I ignore her and continue what Iím doing with respect to eating full fat products?

  • #2
    What you feed yourself, you'll be feeding your baby. With this said, continue to feed yourself nutrient dense food. That's my limited take on the matter
    If you have a problem with what you read: 1. Get a dictionary 2. Don't read it 3. Grow up 4. After 3, go back to 1/ or 2. -- Dennis Blue. | "I don't care about your opinion, only your analysis"- Professor Calabrese. | "Life is more important than _______" - Drew | I eat animals that eat vegetables -- Matt Millen, former NFL Linebacker. | "This country is built on sugar & shit that comes in a box marinated in gluten - abc123


    • #3
      Over eating fat/calories will make you fat - not the fact that it's fat, itself.

      If you want to eat/drink fatty foods, go for it. The more whole and natural the food, the better.

      Eating full fat dairy or coconut is not the same as eating donuts, because the fat used to fry the donuts is not naturally a part of the grains in the dough.

      A fat reduced product is less than a whole food, because it's been altered and most times, has carbs and other things to make up for the lack of taste or the thickness.

      Don't go on a binge as many expectant mothers do "I can eat anything I want, I'm pregnant" and feed themselves trash.

      If you're craving full fat greek yogurt, eat it - just not by the gallon.


      • #4
        Hi, thanks for that advice. I'm definitely not the"I can eat anything I want, I'm pregnant" type. To give you some perspective, with my last pregnancy I gained a total of 18 pounds. I didn't know anything about Primal eating at the time though.

        As for the full fat greek - that's the ONLY thing I've really been able to stomach. So I've been eating about 6 small ice cream bowls of it a day. If I don't eat anything my stomach get acidic and the nausea starts up.

        So I guess that's kind of a concern....but I don't know what else I can eat that can make me feel better...


        • #5
          My son is going to be 5 in May, but I had a type two diabetic pregnancy with him. I was on insulin from 10 weeks until I delivered him. Take what a dietician says with grain of salt. If you don't have a history of gaining a lot of weight during pregnancy, then with care you probably won't with this one either. With my son I only gained 15 lbs. I started out heavy enough that they wanted me to gain zero pounds. My endo laughed at that one. My son was genetically large(not from diabetes) at nearly 9 lbs so it wasn't surprising that I gained some. I also had some pretty severe and long lasting 'morning' sickness with my older daughters. I could tolerate non-stinky vegetables and most fruit. Beef was the only meat that didn't smell like week old road kill and I could eat that. Eggs were out. The morning sickness ruined me for shellfish for years afterward and I could only eat fish that had minimal smell. I could eat mild cheese and I ate a lot of cottage cheese and yogurt with my son. I had my son before I discovered PB and my craving with him was refritos and hot sauce(I never got any heartburn with any of my kids). As for how often you eat, play it by ear and feed the morning sickness as needed.

          It looks like the dietician wants you on about 90g of carbs daily, which is within Primal Blueprint territory. If you aren't gaining weight on the high fat diet then just keep up what you are doing. Hopefully the morning sickness will ease up soon and you can eat more variety. I lost 15lbs my first trimester with my son due to morning sickness and I lost weight with both my daughters too. Good luck.


          • #6
            Thanks so much for your input! I'm excited to finally find another mom who went through pregnancy with Type II. I am seriously totally freaked out, completely. I'd been controlling my Type II pretty well with Primal and have had pretty ideal fasting and postprandial readings. However, as you note, I'm well aware that blood sugar control is very difficult in the final weeks of pregnancy when placental hormones throw everything off. For that reason the educator as well as my endo have warmed me that I probably will also need some insulin toward the end. I'm scared. I've never been on insulin. I have no idea what that will be like.

            In addition to yogurt I can also tolerate mild cheese but the educator told me to stick to low fat cheese. i'm quite certain I will NOT be able to stomach that. Ugh.

            Thank you so much for sharing your perspective, it makes me feel better to hear from someone else whose gone through pregnancy with Type II.


            • #7
              Personally, I believe if you stick to a fairly low carb eating approach (not ridiculously so, but focus on meats and veggies and include tubers in sensible moderation) you will have a hard time gaining fat. You may not LOSE (but then you don't want to anyway, right?) but you won't likely gain.

              I have the slowest metabolism on the planet, and I don't lose any weight if I don't fast... Eating every day is too many calories for me to lose. But still, I don't gain ANYTHING if I am low to moderate carb. And believe me, I eat full fat! So it is not as simple as calories in to calories out for maintaining.

              Yeah, for losing, you need a deficit. But not for maintaining. For maintaining, and supporting a healthy pregnancy, watching carbs should be more than sufficient.
              5'6" Female, 29 Years Old, 260/195/120

              "Discipline is choosing between what you want NOW, and what you want MOST!"


              • #8
                Feel free to drop me a message if you have any questions. I've been part of a forum called 'Diabetic Mommy' for several years. I think you dietician is having a brain disconnect. Protein is fairly constant in amount. If you drop the carbs you have to increase the fat to get the same number of calories. Even my dietician had that figured out. I wasn't much impressed with her otherwise.

                Insulin shots hurt less than poking your finger for blood sugar. I only took insulin while pregnant. You really have to be on top of how much you are eating so you can balance the insulin(they will teach you how). Don't be discouraged if you end up on insulin. Pregnancy is a special case and not a failure to eat right. I went on insulin when my sugars kept going up and I kept eating less and less until I started dropping weight fast.


                • #9
                  I have heard some diabetics say that they could not keep their blood glucose levels stable or lower them until they reduced their fat intake. I'm not sure if this is relevant or not, but I have heard a few unrelated people say this. This might be why the dietitian is going that route. Ultimately, only you will know how your body reacts to certain foods, so keep a log and monitor after each food.
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                  • #10
                    Your dietician is afraid of Saturated fats because of mainstream. Saturated fat is essential in developing a healthy baby. Lowering fat would only be in the context of dropping calories. If you were to lower fat it should be that fat you would get from o6...which oxidizes so easily...and thats the fat we have to watch
                    Primal since March 2011

                    Female/29 years old/5' 1"/130ish lbs


                    • #11
                      Dr Rosedale, a portion of Boston Speech at the Heinz Conference - YouTube

                      Blood Sugar 101


                      • #12
                        Diabetes educators are required to teach the American Diabetes Association recommendations in order to be reimbursed by insurance. The ADA recommendations are relatively high carb low fat, based on the idea that heart disease is the main threat to diabetics and the belief that fat causes heart disease. They accept millions of dollars from Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages, a major soda maker.

                        I wasn't yet diagnosed with diabetes during my second pregnancy--I failed the first test but passed the second by the standards of the early 1980s. I gained at least 40 lbs and gave birth to a 10 lb 1 oz baby (vaginally) who did not show blood sugar issues on the test they did when she was born and who was in the 99th percentile for height and the 60th percentile for weight most of her childhood. I kept eating to give me energy to function in my job. I really don't regret gaining a lot of weight; it meant a nutritional cushion for my baby. It would have been better if I had known to be careful with carbs, but no harm was done.

                        Keeping your blood sugar even is important. Limiting your weight gain is not.
                        age 56, type 2 diabetes, swimmer
                        low carb since 2006 thanks to Jenny, primal since Jan. 2012