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How do you count carbs?

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by bnmom, Oct 10, 2011.

  1. hawkeyegirl

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    Total carbs. I don't find diabetes overall to be predictable enough that sugar alcohols and fiber matter.
     
  2. mom24grlz

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    At the hospital we were told to count total carbs. I called them once and asked if we should subtract fiber amount, but they said no. Total carb counts seem to work well for us.
     
  3. TheFormerLantusFiend

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    I was originally told only to subtract fiber past five grams- fiber is indigestible carbohydrates. The nutritionist and CDE instructing me at that time seemed to think five was a lot of grams of fiber but I guess I was eating a high fiber diet because my meals almost always include at least that much fiber. They said most people are consistent about how much fiber they eat so as long as they always count or always don't, don't worry about it.

    Anyways, I subtract fiber.
     
  4. MommaKat

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    Thank you for the light bulb moment!! I remember this being part of our conversation, and even found it in my notes after reading your post. It also totally answered our question about some changing trends - we haven't been consistent lately with our normal routine for meals - mostly in terms of veggies and fiber, and that looks like it might just be the difference. (One more reason to love our Weight by Date program!) I can so tell that the Farmer's market recently closed, and dd is not terribly happy about it :( Not as many fresh veggies.

    Anyway, thanks again for sharing - it made our night...
     
  5. swellman

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    I'm not sure I'm getting it ... if fiber is truly indigestible, and our goal is to finely tune the amount of carbs that turn to glucose in the body, then why would one not subtract every bit of fiber? I don't agree that foods, in general, contain about the same percentage of fiber so I am honestly not understanding the 5g rule or not subtracting it at all.

    Unless, it just doesn't matter if you're off 5 grams or so. I know, for a fact, that if I counted all the carbs in a high legume meal that I would see serious lows.

    Is it possible that the "experts" have assumed it's just too hard for the general public to do the math or is it something else?
     
  6. hawkeyegirl

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    With respect to your last question, I think the answer is yes. Not the math, but I know that if I had to count carbs as well as worry about the fiber in everything, I might just lose my mind.

    With respect to why it works for us to not worry about fiber, I think the answer is that carbs counts, ISF, ratios, basal, and BG meters are all so darn inexact that a couple of grams of fiber here and there just get lost in the "static." I also think that we, personally, somewhat balance that out by not counting foods such as spinach, broccoli, and hummus.
     
  7. Ellie'sMama

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    We were taught from Day1 to count the total carbs minus all fibre minus half the sugar alcohols. It's the most accurate count but I agree with a previous post that the educators seem to try to make it more simple for the masses even if it's not as accurate.
    We have always counted each carb this way and it seems to make difference now that she's on the pump and can get more precise doses of insulin.
     
  8. swellman

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    This really gets my OCD flared up. However, we haven't been counting many vegetables either.

    99% of the time we do the CHO - Fiber - (0.5*SA) and it's no big deal - breakfast and lunch but when I cook dinner and have, say soups, etc. the beans and other vegetables that go into the meal are all a PITA.

    One would think I had an experiment going on in the kitchen when I make chili. It would also help if I actually followed one recipe but that never, ever happens.
     
  9. Momto3

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    We were told the same thing.
     
  10. Beach bum

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    This is pretty much we were told. The only difference is subtract DF over 4.
     
  11. Momto3

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    Sorry if I sound completely stupid, but how do you count sugar alcohols?
     
  12. Amy C.

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    There are many, many folks who use imprecise methods to count carbohydrates - if any. I imagine that nutritionists would like some level of precision -- measuring or weighing first, counting all carbs. Subtracting out fiber or sugar alcohols are additional steps that some may not want to bother with. Others find it incredible this isn't done.

    My son has never subtracted out the fiber and doesn't eat sugar alcohols. He does a lot of guesstimating, which is barely better than nothing.
     
  13. Melissata

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    These days a lot of foods are starting to have more fiber in them, especially breads and other foods that are lower carb. If you are not subtracting fiber, you are adding carbs to your count that are not digested. If your are on MDI's it is not exact enough to really matter, but once you fine tune things more on a pump, I really do think that you should subtract all of the fiber. The ADA carb counting book gives examples of how a meal can have a lot of fiber and you don't even realize it because you have a couple of grams here and a couple there. The math is not that hard, I have taught my daughter to do it. I wouldn't have done that if I hadn't felt it was important.

    It is probably true that if you eat the same foods a lot, that you can get away with it, but the next time you see a low pretty soon after a meal, you might want to check and see if it might have been caused by not subtracting fiber. That is how I realized it. No doctor ever told me to subtract it, but I read about it in books and it just makes sense to me.
     
  14. TheFormerLantusFiend

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    Sugar alcohols are only an issue in foods with sugar alcohols- mostly diet foods or "sugar-free" foods. On those foods, the nutrition label will list sugar alcohols under carbohydrates.
    I almost never eat foods with sugar alcohols, but when I do, I look at the total carbs on the side of the package, and subtract half the number of sugar alcohols.
     

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