Meeting - 17 September 2019 - Carbohydrate Awareness

The group invited Bridget Lee and Harnom Zabairu to present to the group on ‘Carbohydrate Awareness’ on Tuesday 17 September 2019.  Bridget and Zabairu both work for Broomfield hospital as dieticians, and both have diabetes as one of their areas of specialism.

Bridget and Harnom advised that Type 1 and Type 2 are managed very differently in terms of diet.

On diagnosis people with type 2 are usually referred onto a CREDIT course.  The course includes guidance on diet.  People with type 1 diabetes have to learn about the carbohydrate and sugar content of food so that they can adjust their insulin dosages.  

Because of the differences in the two types of Diabetes, Bridget and Harnom briefed the audience on being aware of foods that contain carbohydrate.  

Carbohydrate foods include: - bread, potato, pasta, rice, fruit, cereal, milk, baked beans and lentils. All carbohydrates are broken down into sugar before they enter the blood stream.  When trying to reduce your weight it is important to look at the food with the carbohydrate in, as some of it may also contain a large amount of fat.  Carbohydrate food including cakes and biscuits and many manufactured desserts include a large amount of fat. Bridget and Harnom also pointed out that foods containing large amounts of fat make the carbohydrate element take longer to absorb into the blood stream. This fact is important to type 1 diabetics as they may initially have a low sugar level and then experience a high sugar level.  

There has been a lot of talk in the media about low carbohydrate diets, especially for type 2’s.  Type 1’s should not follow a very low carbohydrate diet as this will put them into ketoacidosis, which can be life threatening for them.  There are many press articles on how people with type 2 diabetes go into remission as they have followed a low calorie/carbohydrate diet.  If you wish to go on a low calorie/carbohydrate diet you should consult your doctor first.

Bridget and Harnom brought along some food models and copies of the eatwell plate.  The audience where invited to look at the food models and where asked to decide which category each model fell under.  The members asked many pertinent questions.  

After the presentation coffee, tea and biscuits were served while the bi-monthly raffle and the 100 club numbers were drawn.