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Type 1 Diabetes

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    Type 1 Diabetes

    Long story short, I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes about a year and half ago at 43 years old. It has really impacted how I can train. These days I'm only a trad martial artist, my competition days are long behind me, but I still enjoy training. If anyone has experience training as a diabetic or training diabetics as a coach I'd appreciate any insight into maintaining good BG levels, training with an insulin pump, etc. Thanks.

    I know that this is an old thread, but I found it from searching for Type 1 diabetes. I just posted for advice from the health forum if you want to see what my responses are. I am a mother of two boys, CWT1D, ages 8 and 10, dxEd at 27 mos for my oldest and 3 yo for my youngest. I am looking for T1D friendly, no BS MAs to enroll my two boys in. Have you consulted your endo? Are they helpful at all? Do you use a pump or a CGM? I know that for grappling, some recommend taking the CGM or pump off. I really am not going to be taking off the Dexcom G6 as it is expensive AH in case a transmitter gets lost and Dexcom is stingy for the sensors which must be inserted.

    For diet-based management and to be ahead of lows and highs, we follow a constant carb, sliding scale and Insulin-to-carb ratio daily scheduled meal and snack plan. The more routine, the better. We kind of operate on an every 2-3 year hour rhythm of eating and checking and dosing based on activities. Prior to the CGM, that meant a LOT of finger sticks.
    Your amount of carbs will be radically different, and I hope your endo can make good suggestions or a T1D educated nutritionist for adults. But to give you an example, their daily rhythm during a school week looks like:
    630 am breakfast
    8:30-900 15 grams of long burning, whoel grain and protein plus fat carbs with lots of fiber ( like Chia seed snacks) with hopefully under 8 grams of sugar ( so Greek fit yogurt and not the kind with like 16 or 23 grams of added sugar!) the fiber helps with long burn. When we can afford it, glucernas. Or maybe brown rice cakes, or whole grain ( no white carbs cuz that equals blood sugar spike from hell). If they are high, we use sliding scale
    11:30-12 lunch
    2:30 snack\
    4:45-5:30 dinner always before 6 pm every night.
    7:30 bedtime snack to head off overnight lows.
    And even with CGM I check every night at 10,12 and esp 3-4 am. T1D adults I know have alarms since things can go crazy in 3-4 am window.

    I am always combining a high quality carb at a constant carb amount -for the kids it is 40 grams for meals and 15 grams for snacks) like freekeh instead of rice or whole grain rice with red beans, or taking chickpeas mashed and sauteed in *walnut oil* with a side of bulgarian yogurt with min for dipping. Using sweet potatoes and lentils and beans. Things like that coupled with a protein source plus fresh greens for that long, steady burn of carbs versus the crazy spike from white carbs ( white rice, white bread etc). The fiber really helps, so a lot of enriched fiber bread like Natures Own high fiber. And swapping all white carbs or high fructose containing high glycemic carbs for low glycemic, longer burning carbs ( unless there is a pattern of lows, of course)

    These kinds of ideas may help when you train for "carb loading" for practice in a healthy and manageable way without having to dose too high. We all know that with T1D it is really hit or miss sometimes no matter what you eat ( and with so many, exercise can also shoot your BGS up high). If you can get a Dexcom G6 covered by insurance or crowdfund for it, it can really help you and your endo team identify the patterns of your blood sugar when training.

    I think a lot is pattern recognition, prognosticating, planning ahead and keeping your food and drink supplies, plus informing those around you discreetly or opening depending on your comfort level.

    For hypos, we use the 15/15 rule: 15 gram of fast acting liquid carbs for lows, then wait 15 minutes, then retreat if high. Once above 70 or 75 in our case, I give the kids a nut based butter with crackers or a proteinplus fat plus healthy carb combo to level it out and keep it steady, almond butter works great, but can be pricey.

    I hope some or any of these might help with the diet element if you do not already know it ( apologies if you do_). Hopefully your endo can help with great advice on bgs management while training. I just shared what results in years of 6.1-6.5 A1C results , diet -based and routine management for two CWT1D. We all know diet does not cause T1D, but can be used in management. I will also be asking their endo and will post on any advice given.

    Last edited by Benga_Azad; 12/07/2019 3:15pm, .


      One of my main training partners for years and years is type 1 diabetic. He's a firefighter, EMT, and international sambo/judo player.

      He had known about his condition since he was a child, though, so he has a kind of body awareness for it that perhaps you haven't developed yet... idk. In any case, he would have to frequently stop to check his blood sugar mid-practice, and always had his pump inserted. There were some times, as well, when he would have to stop practice and go home. Diet-wise, he just ate very moderately with moderate amounts of all macronutrients because, according to him, that helped him control his blood sugar the best. Keto didn't work, super-high-carb even worse, so it had to be right down the middle.


        Thanks guys. I don't often check the site and had forgotten that i'd posted this. It's great to read your insights. Benga_Azad I've got much better control now than I did back in 2015 when I posted the question. My experience falls in line with yours. Blackmonk, like your buddy, I've learned to sense some (but unfortunately not all) oncoming lows. I test frequently when I train.



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