7 Low-Carb Diet Mistakes To Avoid When You Have Diabetes

You are aware that carbohydrates raise blood sugar levels. So, it makes sense that reducing carbohydrates and switching to low-carb diets is a popular nutrition strategy for lowering blood glucose levels and improving type 2 diabetes management.

According to a study, type 2 diabetics can reduce blood sugar spikes by following a low-carb, high-protein diet.

Nevertheless, adopting a low-carb diet is more complicated than simply reducing your carb intake, particularly if you have type 2 diabetes. The following seven low-carb diet blunders should be avoided for improved blood sugar control and general wellness.

Not Examining Every Low-Carb Diet Option Available

Everybody's definition of "low-carb" is different, as are the definitions used by different researchers. There is no set suggestion for how many carbohydrates to consume while following a low-carb diet.

Having said that, in general, eating fewer than 26% of your daily calories from carbohydrates is regarded as low-carb. That would entail consuming less than 130 grams of carbohydrates daily for someone following a 2,000-calorie diet. Diets classified as "very low-carb" call for consuming only 20 to 50 grams of total carbohydrates daily. Ketogenic diets and low-carb diets have many similarities. Both these diets mean eating less carbohydrates daily.

Which one fits you best? The amount of carbohydrates a person should ingest each day depends on different factors. How effectively blood sugar levels are under control, use of insulin or other drugs, coexisting medical problems, dietary choices, financial situation, and health objectives are such variables.

Not Contacting Your Doctor

Your diabetes care team can assist you in choosing the best low-carb strategy for you. It can also assist in avoiding any negative, possibly harmful, or fatal side effects of cutting carbs to help control type 2 diabetes.

To prevent cardiovascular problems, diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), low blood sugar, hypoglycemia, and other potential side effects, you and your doctor may need to reduce or modify your medication regimen. Those who take insulin, medications that increase insulin, or blood pressure medications should be especially aware of this. Moreover, low-carb diets increase the risk of DKA, which can be fatal, caused by SGLT2 inhibitors, oral drugs that help the kidneys lower blood glucose levels. People using SGLT2 inhibitors must never start a low-carbohydrate diet. They must else consult with their doctor or change the drugs.

Nevertheless, working with your medical team should go beyond getting approval before beginning a new diet if you want the best outcomes. Some people only require yearly appointments, while others can benefit from going every two to three months to see a licensed dietician or diabetes educator.

You can also look for trained experts in diabetes care and education for the best results.

Failure to Regularly Check Your Blood Sugar

Blood sugar levels are controlled by eating a low-carb diet, but this is not a guarantee that they will be. Hyperglycemia and Hypoglycemia can occur without proper monitoring.

Monitoring your blood sugar while on a low-carb diet can give you valuable information that you can use to modify your meal portions and medication dosing. Use a continuous glucose monitor (CGM), which measures your blood sugar once every five minutes or fewer, if you want the most accurate information possible to help you make the best decisions. Both Medicare and your commercial insurance plan might cover CGM for persons who take insulin.

Overemphasizing Total Carbohydrates While Undervaluing the Quality of Carbohydrates

When following a low-carb diet, one must include food items that are nutritious and also avoid items that harm the health. A healthy diet, after all, satisfies your body's nutritional requirements in full and doesn't go overboard in terms of calories.

Yet, when people get narrowly focused on cutting carbs, they run the risk of substituting those carbs with high-calorie fats, meals that don't contain sugar, and artificial sweeteners that are loaded with chemicals. The more you can concentrate on complete, unadulterated foods when eating a low-carb diet, the better.

Olive oil, avocado, walnuts, and salmon are examples of high-fat foods that fall in this category. Nevertheless, how much fat you should consume depends on whether you're on a ketogenic diet or aiming to gain lean muscle through a higher protein intake. Again, it's beneficial to have a line of communication with a certified dietician.

Spreading Out Your Carbs Rather Than eating All at Once

The harder it can be to maintain the diet round-the-clock, the lower your objective for carb intake should be. You might feel tempted to "reserve" your carbohydrates for special high-carb treat meals or snacks, but you should fight the desire. It's imperative to consume carbohydrates consistently throughout the day to maintain steady blood sugar levels, high levels of energy, and a sharp mind. To get the ideal balance for you, divide your goal quantity of daily carbohydrates by the number of meals you intend to eat throughout the day. Most people with type 2 diabetes aim to consume 30 to 45 grams of carbohydrates every meal.

Divide your desired daily intake of carbohydrates by the number of meals you anticipate eating during the day to determine the ideal balance for you. Snacks are included in this total but should typically contain fewer carbohydrates than meals.

Not Consuming Enough Fiber

Fiber is essential for overall health because it lowers blood pressure, enhances insulin function, and promotes weight loss by regulating blood sugar levels and raising feelings of satiety.

Make it a point to include high-fiber foods when on a low-carb diet. Leafy greens, berries, legumes, chia seeds, low-carb, high-fiber bread, and tortillas are a few examples of low- to moderate-carb foods. You might try taking fiber supplements if you're still having difficulties getting enough protein in your diet or if constipation, an indication that your digestive system needs more fiber, becomes a problem. The trick is to use them as supplements rather than a crutch to avoid consuming high-fiber vegetables.

Lack of Water Consumption Puts You at Risk of Dehydration

Going low-carb can raise your risk of electrolyte imbalances and dehydration if you don't monitor it. It occurs as a result of the body also storing water when it stores carbs. Moreover, the body produces less insulin in response to lower blood sugar levels. The kidneys then remove salt and water from the body.

Also, if your low-carb diet calls for cutting out a lot of items high in sodium, such as potato chips, it can help lower sodium levels.

Both dehydration and low sodium levels, which prevent the cells throughout the body from working at their best, can cause lightheadedness and dizziness.

Before consuming a lot of salty meals, though, keep lines of communication open with your medical staff. Increasing sodium consumption may not be a good choice in persons with uncontrolled high blood pressure or congestive heart failure.


Avoiding these seven low-carb diet mistakes can help diabetic people to lead a healthy life. If you want to start a low-carb diet, speak with a doctor.

Updated on: 04-Apr-2023


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