Yeah, I get it. Growing up and well into adulthood I never cared about the nutrition label or calories or what was considered a serving size. However much I wanted of a food was a serving size, thank you very much, and if I eat less I’ll still be hungry.
But now, I’m becoming expert at understanding what’s on that label, and I use it all the time, every day.
I’ve touched on this subject a little previously, so I’ll mention a little more about it this time. Here’s what I’m looking for.
First I check Total Carbs. That’s the single most important information to me. Then, if I don’t already, I need to know what the serving size is. For instance, sometimes a single slice in a loaf of bread is considered the serving size and sometimes it’s two slices. “Serving” still doesn’t really matter to me because I’m going to eat as much as I need and as I can, but it helps so much with math and medicine dosing.
Next I’ll skip over Sugars and check the Fiber instead. I think I use fiber differently than others who are concerned about carbohydrate content for non-DeTickles reasons. I’ve heard others can subtract total fiber from total carbs, but that isn’t how I’ve been instructed to use the label.
If a food is a “high” fiber food, meaning five grams or more per serving size, and if I’m going to have that whole serving size (or more), then I can subtract half of the total fiber from the total carb.
But if I’m not eating at least five grams of fiber, the number changes nothing for me.
And honestly, for an added wrinkle on the side, if my numbers are higher than preferred, I probably won’t subtract anything. Higher blood sugar makes me more insulin resistant, so I probably need the whole amount of insulin to cover the carbs.
That’s how I roll. Others with DeTickles, especially other types of DeTickles, might handle it differently. In the game of diabetes, there isn’t much of a one-size-fits option.
Next up on the label are Protein and Fat, both of which are my friends because they help to keep my blood sugar from rising faster than my insulin can keep up.
I’m still figuring out how much is a good ratio of protein to carbs or fat to carbs for my best results, but I have been learning that the closer the number is to the carb number (for myself, it’s a lot easier to rack up carb numbers than it is protein or fat), the more likely it is I’ll manage and feel better after my meal.
Eggs are like my best food friend. And cheese sticks.
Then I’m pretty much done with the nutrition label. I’m fortunate that I don’t have to worry about sodium intake because my body is doing just fine filtering things, though it’s always good to be careful with it, and the same with trans fats and I’m sure lots of other things. It’s also good to know what the ingredients are but I will admit to being more lax with that of late. Sometimes I just need to not worry about it and have a meal or a snack.
Thanks for reading my first Q&A post of National Diabetes Awareness Month! I’m open to questions all month and will be working on my planned comic answers in the near future.