Thursday, May 26, 2011

The "30" Rule

Although I was never told this, I've read many other diabetes bloggers that follow the "30" rule, trying not to eat more than 30 carbohydrates per meal.  I get it, the less you eat, the less you have to bolus for, the less insulin you take, and, hopefully, the better control you have.  Although many strive for this, and also follow this "rule", I don't think it is suited for diabetic athletes.  Or, at least, for me. 

On a typical day, I eat three meals, and one or two snacks.  In the past six months or so, I have started to eat more because I've been training more, .and therefore burning more calories.  My body needs energy boosts multiple times a day, especially in the morning. 

Breakfast is a bigger meal for me, typically about 50 carbs or so.  I'm almost always super hungry when I wake up, and it is my favorite meal of the day.  I then eat a mid-morning snack around 9:15, which is 25-30 carbs.  Lunch is at 11:45, being 40 to 50 carbs, then another snack at 3:30 or so, which is another 25-30 carbs.  Dinner is late, around 8 or 9, and 60 carbs.  I typically consume another 20 or more during my workout, depending on a variety of factors.  According to these numbers, I eat about 250 carbs a day, 

I feel like when I look at the number 250, it seems big.  If you follow the "30" rule, from what I gather, you would only consume roughly 100 carbs a day.  I get 2.5 times that amount.  However, I typically burn 1,000+ calories a day working out.  I don't think the "30" rule people do that.  If I followed the 30 rule, I would be a worse runner.  But the same is true for the opposite.  If the 30 rule people ate 250 carbs a day, they would most likely gain a ton of weight, which would not be healthy for them. 

There is no set of rules for diabetes management.  Yes, test your blood sugar, and test it often.  Take your insulin.  But when it comes to the finer points, like food intake, everyone has different needs.  There is no master plan because everyone is different.  Even though people have diabetes, it is unique to them.  I am able to learn from other people's uniqueness to make my diabetes work better for me. 

Do you follow the 30 rule, or do you break it, like me?


  1. The more we exercise, the more fuel we need. It's simple math. More so, proteins and fats just WON'T cut it when our bodies need ENERGY. So yes, I totally don't pay attention to that.

    I pay attention to what my body needs. Just like you.

  2. I hadn't ever heard the 30 g. thing... Doing the reports, it appears I'm right around 250-260 as well, though about 40-50 of that is pure fuel... I put it in my body prior to running and don't need to bolus for it.

    I'm convinced low carb is a great way to lose weight, but I'm just as convinced you couldn't do it and be much of an endurance athlete.