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Thread: Type 1 Diabetes, Intermittent Fasting and Ketosis page

  1. #1
    adamm's Avatar
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    Question Type 1 Diabetes, Intermittent Fasting and Ketosis

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    So I have a few questions as a type 1 diabetic, and I've never been able to get an answer to either of them. If anyone could help me figure out the answers (or already has them and can share them so I don't need to figure them out) I'd be mighty obliged!

    1. As a type 1 diabetic, I inject insulin. Obviously I need to guess, prior to an injection how much I'm eating, of what, and how much I'm exercising. Like most diabetics who still have their feet, I'm pretty good at it. But nonetheless, occasionally I take a wee bit too much, get a bit sugar low and need to eat some glucose tablets, or I take a wee bit too little and get sugar high and need to take some quick acting insulin ot bring it down. This is all fine and dandy, as it works. My question is this. If I'm IFing, how much does needing to eat some sugar in the middle of it mess up the "results". How much does it effect the body's feeling of starvation mode, the cell protection stuff Mark has talked about, etc.

    2. Similar question. Can a diabetic enter ketosis? I mean, I'm on a very low carb diet anyway, but I've never had any of the symptoms of ketosis. I inject insulin (small amounts, because I'm very low carb) and need to keep my blood sugars in a fixed range (generally between 80 - 100). So my insulin dose + food + occasional sugar tablets is all played with to keep me in this happy range. Because of that, I'm not sure it is possible to enter Ketosis. Is it?

    Thanks for reading folks!

    --Me

  2. #2
    jakey's Avatar
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    hi *i am not a doctor* but here are my thoughts - IFing is great, but it's not the be all and end all of life. if you're blood sugar drops precipitously low as a T1 diabetic, that can literally be the end all of life. do not let your blood sugar get to low in an attempt to experience the benefits of IF. you can be extremely health primal, and best buds with grok with out IFing. safety first!!! but to answer the question, yes, you lose the benefits of a fast if you take in either glucose or protein.

    diabetics can definitely enter ketosis. i have no idea if it's a safe practice, and wouldn't dream of advising you to do so. you also don't need to be in ketosis for anything - health or weightloss.

  3. #3
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    L8F
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    For this I would find a Paleo doc or other type of practitioner. Even another Type I might have very different issues going on from you, so not all experiences would be equivalent or interchangeable with your situation. Just be careful, safety first...
    Started Whole30 December 31, 2011
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  4. #4
    adamm's Avatar
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    I appreciate the responses and the feedback. I'm not worried about precipitously low blood sugar. I'm on a low carb diet with minimal insulin, so if it gets low, it gets low slow I'm in excellent control as it is, and have non-diabetic sugar numbers.

    At the same time, how much sugar does it take to bust you out of the IF phase? I mean, if I take a single sugar tablet and all of it is used to boost my blood sugar level to a healthy number (ie 90, for example, after I take it), will that bust me out? Would half a tablet? Would 10 tablets?

    If diabetics can enter ketosis (it is fine for diabetics as prior to injectable insulin they used to treat us by putting us on ketosis only diets. I just didn't know if we could enter kesosis while injecting insulin.

    Cheers!

    --Me

    P.S. I've been IFing for about 20 years now (and I'm 35) and my doctor (or doctors, going back through all of them) never had a problem with IFing. It is healthy and good for type 1 diabetics if you are careful (from a sugar point of view). I'm just wondering if I get the other benefits since I'm doing it anyway...

    My questions are more about "is it possible", not "should i do it"

  5. #5
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    Good questions. Have you read Bernstein's book Dr. Bernstein's Diabetes Solution. A Complete Guide to Achieving Normal Blood Sugars. Official Web Site

    I would think that either on his site or his book should answer some of these questions, although I can't off the top of my head.

  6. #6
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    I am a type II diabetic and have recently started a Lean Gains protocol by skipping breakfast and an occasional 42 hour fast once per week. I work out at 7am and take 10g BCAAs pre workout and 10g every two hours post workout until I break the fast at lunch time. I usually consume 30g total on my workout days, MWF. On Monday I got low blood sugar symptoms (BCAAs stimulate insulin production if you still can produce insulin) and took some sugar around 10:00am as a precaution. While not type I like you, our concerns are the same, does that little boost in blood sugar break the fast? I have heard others discuss IF and mention coffee/tea with cream or small amounts of sweeteners as being ok, so the little bit needed to boost blood sugar should not be an issue. Today I worked out, and had coffee mixed with sugar-free cappuccino post workout. It still has some carbs, but not a ton and got me through the morning without any low blood sugar symptoms. I also believe that eating slightly more carbs on your last meal before the fast will make sure your glycogen stores in your liver are topped off and prepared for the fast.

    Good Luck!
    SW on 10/1/11: 380lbs.
    CW 12/13/12: 315lbs. (Was under 300#, added some muscle :-) )
    GW: 10% B.F. 250lbs. - 275lbs. (6' 4" tall)

  7. #7
    adamm's Avatar
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    Ha! I own his book, and love it. I'm also a member of the forums over there, but I find MDA forums a bit more active and knowledgeable in general.

    I don't really know if he is an exponent of IFing (though he talks about how to go without eating), so in the book I don't think we're going to get answers as to whether or not it will help with aging, blood pressure, whatever

    As for ketosis, I can't find a reference to whether a diabetic on insulin can enter it.

    --Me

  8. #8
    adamm's Avatar
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    Thanks for the response nomadinjeopardy! Glad to hear it. I've been very low carb (a la Diabetes Solution) for about a year now, and never really noticed a difference in anything. Maybe I am in ketosis, but my wife hasn't complained about bad breath, and I don't "feel" any different. And if I do eat some potatoes once in a while (hey, everyone has to cheat occasionally) I don't feel different. It doesn't give me more or less energy.

    I wonder if the body leaves "starvation" mode when you take a sugar tablet, though...?

    --Me

  9. #9
    Motorhead's Avatar
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    Regarding ketosis, I don't think everyone will be spilling ketones once fully adapted. If you body is efficient at using ketones, there is no need to be spilling them in your urine. You may be in ketosis and not even know it. I would say that if you are low carb, and mildly active you almost have to be in ketosis.
    SW on 10/1/11: 380lbs.
    CW 12/13/12: 315lbs. (Was under 300#, added some muscle :-) )
    GW: 10% B.F. 250lbs. - 275lbs. (6' 4" tall)

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