Forum home Road cycling forum Road general

Diabetic Fuelling

ddraverddraver Posts: 21,108
edited April 2013 in Road general
Hi Guys

My dear mother (and father) has started cycling and is starting to do rides long enough to require some thoughts about food and drinks. She's recently become Diabetic (Type II I assume) and she's not sure what to take.

She's terrible at drinking and eating as it is so she frequently ends up finishing rides feeling totally terrible as they havent eaten or drunk anything since the cafe stop 2 hours beforehand. If I can just get her drinking water that would be a start!

We re assuming that your traditional energy bars and drinks are out for a start. She thinks that things like oats and bananas are better but she's struggling to find things that are easy to take in a jersey pocket without getting squashed. Does anyone have any ideas?

If we could avoid the traditional discussion about energy bars and drinks that would be good too...

Thanks all!
We're in danger of confusing passion with incompetence
- @ddraver

Posts

  • jezzasnrjezzasnr Posts: 225
    I'm type2, and since i've lost the weight (3 1/2 stone!), i pretty much eat normal stuff, on and off the bike.
    As with anybody, if you're doing the miles, you'll need the fuel.
    I don't have Carb drinks, and try to aim for low GI foods so as to avoid spikes in sugars.
    Whilst i was getting the weight off i used Hi5 zero tabs to help hydration and keep cramp at bay, and still do now for longer rides.
    love some dates for quick, cheap hit if i go too low and need a quick fix, dried fruit generally is good for me. She'll need to try some different things and see what works
    General rule for me now is anything, in proper moderation.
    ....like it's golden
  • danowatdanowat Posts: 2,877
    jezzasnr wrote:
    I'm type2, and since i've lost the weight (3 1/2 stone!), i pretty much eat normal stuff, on and off the bike.
    As with anybody, if you're doing the miles, you'll need the fuel.
    I don't have Carb drinks, and try to aim for low GI foods so as to avoid spikes in sugars.
    Whilst i was getting the weight off i used Hi5 zero tabs to help hydration and keep cramp at bay, and still do now for longer rides.
    love some dates for quick, cheap hit if i go too low and need a quick fix, dried fruit generally is good for me. She'll need to try some different things and see what works
    General rule for me now is anything, in proper moderation.

    Pretty much this ^

    I am T2, have been for a lot of years, I race, so fuel is very important, but a general healthy diet is mostly more than good enough to support the majority of rides, heck I've done 2-3hr fasted rides on nothing but water........
  • dennisndennisn Posts: 10,496
    I am T2 and on longer rides I usually eat a protien bar midway through things and a half
    a Clif bar every 15-20 miles or so. I don't use Gu's of any kind, nor do I put anything in my water. You need to learn to simply keeps the carbs coming(in reasonable doses) and not get to the point where your body takes over providing energy. YOU need to put whatever energy you need, at the moment, in your mouth. Don't simply jamb carbs into your body. Take it easy but be consistent.
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 25,689
    How about starting with a visit to the GP? I am sure the NHS can provide better advice than a forum...
  • jp1970jp1970 Posts: 130
    +1 to ugo's advice......

    I'm also T2.... Need to make sure they also have some form of ID to indicate their medical condition... Also worth taking a few bananas during the ride to combat any sugar lows.


    I managed to bonk 5 miles into a ride the other day... I thought I had fuelled up during breakfast.. Luckily I had food with me !... This is the first time this has happened to me ..
  • crankycrankcrankycrank Posts: 1,830
    How about starting with a visit to the GP? I am sure the NHS can provide better advice than a forum...
    This^^^ Should also add that it can be a highly personal thing to find out what works for her since everyone reacts different to meds and such. She may have to bring along a blood meter for a few rides to find out how her levels are doing and adjust her snacks accordingly. Just as an example my blood sugars can drop dangerously low when cycling for over an hour so I take lower doses of meds when I know I'll be riding but this may not be a problem for her. Always..Always carry some sort of fast acting glucose (glucose tablets are small and easy to carry) with you to treat low blood sugar which can lead to a seizure if not rectified in time. Tell her once she gets everything sorted it shouldn't effect her cycling much, if at all.
  • danowatdanowat Posts: 2,877
    How about starting with a visit to the GP? I am sure the NHS can provide better advice than a forum...

    I'd be very suprised if the GP/Diabetes support team hasn't already indicated that exercise is an important part of managing T2 diabetes.

    T2 diabetes has strong links with a sedatary lifestyle and poor nutrition, exercise and a good healthy diet is a big part of managing T2 diabetes.
  • Buckie2k5Buckie2k5 Posts: 600
    How about starting with a visit to the GP? I am sure the NHS can provide better advice than a forum...

    thats like saying halfords can give better advice than here...
  • dennisndennisn Posts: 10,496
    Buckie2k5 wrote:
    How about starting with a visit to the GP? I am sure the NHS can provide better advice than a forum...

    thats like saying halfords can give better advice than here...

    I think one has to assume that when someone(the OP) tells you he is T2 that he learned this from a Doctor. Not really any other way to find out. I would also assume that the Doctor will follow up on the OP or vice versa.
    The big three are diet, weight loss, and exercise.

    To the OP - Forget alcohol from now on. Maybe a beer once in a while. Key words being A beer.
    Good luck. Do the best you can. Most of diabetes complications are not what you want in your life.
  • team47bteam47b Posts: 6,424
    Buckie2k5 wrote:
    How about starting with a visit to the GP? I am sure the NHS can provide better advice than a forum...

    thats like saying halfords can give better advice than here...

    :D

    My doctor is obese and tells normal weight people to eat cake. Maybe see a nutritionist/dietician for more specialist advice.

    T2's need to eat little and often, every three hours, 3 meals a day, 3 snacks a day, about 50 grams of carbs at meals and 30 grams of carbs for snacks, never set off half an hour before a snack or meal always after, if riding for more than an hour eat 10 grams of carbs per hour. Your amounts will vary this is only a guide.

    Avoid: anything with white flour in, cakes pastry bread white pasta, potatoes, root vegetables, white rice, most processed food, fruit juice. Be careful eating bananas, very fast carbs, eat only a half and only if you need to raise blood glucose quickly.

    Eat: wholemeal bread, brown rice, wholemeal pasta, sweet potatoes, most kinds of veg, fruit, low GI slow release complex carbs.

    Exercise makes you more sensitive to insulin in your system so will lower your blood glucose, this can be affected up to 12 hours after you stop exercising, so measure blood glucose, especially first thing in the morning when it should be at it's lowest. Eat a bowl of cereal before going to bed.

    If you want more detailed advice or a typical days meal/snack plan PM me.
    my isetta is a 300cc bike
  • jezzasnrjezzasnr Posts: 225
    ^^
    team47b gets it right, and to be fair, i think pretty much all of the above is good advice, but the key is finding what works for you.
    I was lucky in that i had a great diabetic nurse. doctor on the other hand, whilst well meaning, didn't really get it.
    I've packed up drinking pretty much completely now 3 or 4 pints, maybe 6 glasses of wine in the last 2 1/2 years
    I stuck rigidly to the diet advice my DN gave me until i got to target weight, and then carried on. Top up with the right stuff when you know you're going to need it.
    As well as diet, they kept on to me about the importance of generally looking after yourself, esp feet / hands, keeping extremities warm during cold weather rides.
    I just wish i'd made the changes i have 15 + years ago.
    ....like it's golden
  • ddraverddraver Posts: 21,108
    She's a practice nurse with 30 years of experience and Dad's a GP with similar....
    We're in danger of confusing passion with incompetence
    - @ddraver
  • dennisndennisn Posts: 10,496
    ddraver wrote:
    She's a practice nurse with 30 years of experience and Dad's a GP with similar....

    That's great. They both know the seriousness of being diabetic.

    After I got informed that I was T2 I went to some classes at a local hospital that taught people how to deal with it.
    I think one of their main objectives was to scare people into doing what needed to be done or changed in their lives.
    The scare part sure worked on me. I'm now a firm believer in the idea that diabetes is and or can be a major life changer. Either for good or bad, it's your choice. When they started talking blindness, loping off body parts, etc. I knew they weren't lying just to scare me. Now I'm healthy(at least as much as a 64 year old can be) and eating a much better and healthier selection of foods. Alas, I do miss those grande burritos, margarita's, beer, and most of all carrot cake. I will confess to sneaking in something bad every once in a while.
  • ddraverddraver Posts: 21,108
    Well ok, if anyone has some ideas on what to eat as jas, team and dan have, can they add them please? Dont think they or I need to be told about the seriousness of it really...
    We're in danger of confusing passion with incompetence
    - @ddraver
  • dennisndennisn Posts: 10,496
    ddraver wrote:
    Well ok, if anyone has some ideas on what to eat as jas, team and dan have, can they add them please? Dont think they or I need to be told about the seriousness of it really...

    A company here in the States called "Kind" makes a big selection of snack bars / energy bars(not sure that's what they should be called, but bars none the less) that are aimed at diabetics and people interested in low glycemic index stuff. Not a lot to them except the right ingredients. Taste? Well, I used to use them but they seemed pretty plain tasting to me. Don't know if the are available "over there".
    Also a lot of web site stuff and info on bars for diabetics.
  • Zendog1Zendog1 Posts: 816
    I think it's very dangerous for anyone to say your mother can / should eat any specific thing. There are just too many variables.

    What she should be doing is try fueling from low GI foods and test her glucose levels during rides. The modern testing kits fit in a jersey pocket no problem. Then she will know what works for her power output / metabolism /T2.

    This was the advice I got from a NHS diabetic dietition.
Sign In or Register to comment.