Newly Diagnosed with Diabetis
#1
As if I don't have enough  health issues.  I was diagnosed two weeks ago with diabetics type 2.  I have been testing a couple times a day.  I am concerned and worried.  I understand about foods with sugar and carbs and the importance of meal balance.  One problem is I cannot afford nutritious foods.  I am taking metformin.  Today I had a lot of water and two hard boiled eggs.  I am starving but I have some potatoes and butter and some Rice eroni and some oranges in the house.  It has gone as high as 475.  Just now I got my lowest reading of 107 but I am hungry.  I think how awful it would be to go blind.  This is all new to me and I am a bit freaked out. 
Can anyone set my mind at ease?
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#2
I have been type 1 my whole life and my son is type 1, too. 

I don't know about where you live, but here there are some grocery stores that have free diabetes medication or $4 generics.  I don't know much about type 2 but my understanding is that it can be controlled with diet and sometimes medication.  I can understand that it's hard to afford food that is low carb/low Glycemic index but there are ways to work around it.  During college/grad school I was pretty broke and it wasn't easy to afford healthy food.  If you don't know how to cook a pot of beans definitely now is a good time to learn.  I ate a lot of beans, nuts, chckpeas, lentils, hummus, etc.  Brown rice isn't much more expensive than white rice and it has a better glycemic index.  Roasted whole chicken is one of the easiest things to make, and you will be very satisfied while spending less per pound than if you buy it cut up and packaged.  Focus on just cutting out as much sugar/carbs as you can and don't worry about fat grams or anything. 
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#3
For starters, nutritious food isn't always expensive.  It can actually be cheaper than a lot of junk foods (which tend to be processed and over-priced).  You just have to learn some things that most people have forgotten in our age of heavily-processed foods.

Though I have relatives with borderline type 2 diabetes, I don't know enough about the recommended diets to give good advice on that.  I do know they manage without medication so long as they eat properly.  I seem to recall that it's important not to overdo it on starchy foods even if they are healthy.

Someone else will have to give the nitty gritty on diet recommendations but based upon the article I found, you should look into beans and oatmeal.  If purchased bulk in dry form they are far cheaper than just about any other food and they are healthy.  Beans and oatmeal are great foods for just about anyone and can be used in many different types of dishes.

9 Foods for Type 2 Diabetes


It looks like Chestertonian already brought up (and confirmed) much of what I said above.

I'm no doctor so someone should correct me if I'm wrong...  I believe that type 1 diabetes is caused by the body's inability to produce insulin.  Type 2 is caused by the body becoming resistant to insulin.  Type 2 is often a result of general poor health and/or long term over exposure to sugary foods but it can usually be controlled without medications by watching the diet.  Be very careful about treating type 2 with medications meant for type 1.  Since the underlying cause is different treatments that are effective for type 1 could be harmful to people with type 2. 
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#4
I read that article I linked to a little more closely and I noticed they recommend swiss chard.  This is good news if you live in an area where you can plant a garden.  My mom grows swiss chard in her backyard and it practically takes care of itself and grows back quickly to replace stalks that are picked.  The result is a constant supply of super healthy food that is almost free.
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#5
I get food stamps once a month on the 8th of the month.  Until then I have no funds for food.  But I did scrape up a couple of dollars and got popped corn and coke 0.  Popped corn never was so good
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#6
The 9 Foods for Type 2 Diabetes was very helpful thank all of you for your tips.  Salads will be good too.  I could use oil and vinegar dressing.  I am sure that it all new to me.  Maybe I am struggling  digest it all.  No pun intended.  Again thanks.
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#7
In my experience, people on food stamps actually have more per person to spend on food than I spend to feed my family, and I am an uber-picky health nut who buys a lot of organic food.

I would recommend that you:

- Stop buying any processed food at all. Most are carb heavy and bad for diabetics anyway, and crackers, cereals and lean pockets cost more per pound than meat.

- Stop buying foods that have no nutritional value.  Like coke 0.  This will be hard because artificial sweetener is addictive (in one study, rats addicted to both aspartame and cocaine and given the choice between them, chose aspartame).  You should do it anyway though, because though these foods seem cheap, you aren't actually getting anything of any value to your body, so you are really just throwing your money away. Buy for nutritional value, not just something that will take up space in your stomach and your wallet.  Most people find that they eat less when the food is higher quality, too.

- Don't shop for just one meal, or just one day, shop for a whole week at least at a time.  A whole chicken costs way less per serving than slim jims or other individual meals. 

- Plan out your meals ahead of time.  As a diabetic, it's important to have healthy snacks available throughout the day to keep your blood sugar stable.  Planning is key, put time for it on your calendar.  If you have a meal planned you won't be tempted to run to the store and buy something quick and expensive because you are hungry. 

- Making everything from scratch saves you money.  Make soup.  It's easy, cheap and healthy.  Make a pot of soup on Sunday and you have healthy lunches for the whole week.  Don't want to eat the same thing everyday?  Freeze half of the pot in individual servings. 

My top cheep healthy foods:
eggs
dry beans/lentils (I have a good lentil soup recipe, if you want it)
yams/sweet potatoes
whole chickens (a low cost meat - use the bones to make broth which is very good for you, and effectively stretches all sorts of other foods)
spaghetti squash (a great pasta substitute for diabetics)


I hope that helps.


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#8
Look around for threads from Zedta, he has diabetes 2 and has posted a slew of stuff on the foods part.

Lentils and beans are great, and I have modified a recipe for an Italian dish Minestra for them. It is hearty and filling. It makes about 20-24 8 ounce helpings all about 150-175 calories with out carbs.

I lb Lentils rinsed and drained

1 whole celery a medium sized one cleaned and cut into spoon sized bits

2 large onions cut the same

1-28 ounce can of diced tomatoes not crushed or pureed

4 cloves of garlic peeled

In a very large stock pot or dutch oven heat about 6 tbsps of oil and a half of stick of butter, saute the celery and onions until soft, add the tomatoes and continue till they are incorporated and lose the acidity, then the beans and garlic until they are coated with the veggies and grease, then add the water to cover them, cook for about an hour until the lentils are done.

You can make that wild rice on the side and add some to each serving. Normally this would have a small pasta added like pipette or such but not for us. The other thing is normally this would have meat like pancetta or mezzina in the initial sauteing but not for us in lent.

You could use bacon and it works fine. You could also use Chicken stock if handy, but not necessary. You could also add two leeks for more flavor in the saute and reduce the onions by half. I have added tons of celery and onions to the recipe and it increases the flavor making this more than the original.

The crowning bit is grated cheese, the friend of all diabetics. It packs a flavor punch and makes this fab tasting.  You can substitue any beans you like, but they may need pre-cooking. I have substituted canned beans of any kind sometimes for variety.

tim
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#9
Tim's recipe looks yummy, but I would recommend the added step of soaking the lentils overnight for more nutritional value.  The phytic acid in lentils can block the absorption of vital minerals and cause gas, and soaking neutralizes it.
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#10
Great suggestions, Johanna (espsecially re: artificial sweeteners and the proper preparation of legumes!).

That recipe looks good to me, Tim.  I have a bunch of lentils in my cupboard - they're great since I'm on a student budget, and now I have another Lent-friendly idea of what to do with them.
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