By: Joy Pape
Who would have ever dreamed it? A year ago this column debuted when Diabetes Health asked me to write a feature article about some of the research related to lower-carbohydrate diets.
We have certainly come a long way. If you don’t believe me, go to your grocery store or pick up any health magazine.
Whatever we want to call the lower-carb trend-be it controlled-carb plans or lower-carb diets-it is booming one year later.
Carbohydrates: Part of the Problem
We were aware that many people who have diabetes were doing well on lower-carbohydrate plans. Isn’t it true that when first diagnosed with diabetes, people are taught to count the foods that affect glucose the most?
Carbohydrates have the biggest impact. So we begin with teaching carbohydrate counting.
Most people in this country consume too many calories, eat too many high-carbohydrate foods and exercise too little. This is why obesity and type 2 are becoming an epidemic in this country. Plain and simple!
Diabetes Health has received a lot of letters from our readers since this column premiered. The people who have diabetes seem thrilled with the column. Many of them who have tried lower-carb plans have done very well.
Many readers who aren’t doing so well with their current plan have questions about where to find more information. I encourage them to work with a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator who is well-versed in the lower-carb field.
The responses from healthcare practitioners have been mixed. Many are supportive and keep up with the latest research, having seen many of their patients succeed on a lower-carb diet. As long as there is improvement, they say, go for it. If not, it’s time to re-evaluate, just as with any other treatment.
Some healthcare professionals, however, have been angered by this column. They say that it goes against accepted evidence-based medical nutrition therapy supported by the American Diabetes Association and the American Dietetic Association, and that this confuses people.
I agree that these ideas do contradict a lot of things we have been taught. But for many people, the lower-carb plan works.
My advice? Get as much diabetes education as possible, and remember—one size does not fit all. Find out what works for you.
How will you know what’s working? Check your numbers, and keep on checking. The numbers don’t lie.