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Eating Fruit

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Old 10-31-2005, 06:58 AM   #1
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 89
karihager1982 HB User
Eating Fruit

My father who is type II Diabetic, has really been craving fruit. Though he has been avoiding it because he thinks that he cannot have it.

I would think that Type II diabetics could still have fruit...right?

And if so - when is the best time for him to eat fruit, and how much should he eat of it in a day?

- Kari

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Old 10-31-2005, 10:18 AM   #2
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Join Date: Jul 2005
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vikingirl HB User
Re: Eating Fruit

Most definitely have some fruit! The key is in the portion size. Fruit can have a lot of sugar so spread it out over the whole day. Everyone should be eating 2-4 servings of fruit per day. Fresh/Frozen are best choices and fruit juice in very limited quantities. Typical servings are:

Fresh - whole fruit (about 1 cup/ size of tennis ball)
Dried fruit - 1/4 cup **watch for concentrated sugars here i.e. tropical fruit
Canned - 1/2 cup **never in syrup!
Juice - 1/2-3/4 cup **no fibre, little digestion, save for "lows" & eat fruit instead

Through trial an error, you'll find some fruits raise blood sugars much higher than others (i.e. bananas, oranges). It doesn't necessarily mean they can't be eaten just that the portion would have to be reduced. A really good snack for everyone, not just diabetics, is an apple with 2oz cheese (not the processed kind).

Some other good times to eat fruit (always good to eat it with other proteins and carbs) are:

breakfast - berries/banana on cereal/toast, 1/2 orange/grapefruit sliced
lunch - fresh fruit dessert/on salad
dinner - fruit salsa, pinapple w/ham, fresh cranberries
snack - apple w/cheese, dried fruit w/nuts&seeds

It's shouldn't be too hard to incorporate 2-4 servings into a daily diet once portion size is understood. Diabetics just need to be a bit more aware of eating fruit along with something else to keep blood sugars more level. Hope this helps :-)

- Vikingirl

Old 10-31-2005, 11:03 AM   #3
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 89
karihager1982 HB User
Re: Eating Fruit

Thank you SO much for your very helpful reply.

My father has asked me to try and find him a Diabetic Meal Plan that he can easily follow.

The problem right now, is that he does not know what to eat, and my brother (who knows nothing about diabetes) is trying to make it so my father is not eating ANY bread, and hardly any carbs.

I keep trying to tell him that he NEEDS to have SOME carbs.

I did find one plan for my father, so I thought that I would post it below, and maybe you (or anyone else) can let me know if this sounds about right.

Thanks so much!
- Kari


1 Protein
1 Starch
1 Fruit
1/2 cup low fat milk


(Veggies, Fruit, Cheese, etc...)


1 Protein
1 Starch
2 Vegetables


(Veggies, Fruit, Cheese, etc...)


1 Protein
1 Starch
2 Vegetables


(Veggies, Fruit, Cheese, etc...)

Old 10-31-2005, 12:55 PM   #4
Dog House
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Join Date: Apr 2005
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Dog House HB User
Re: Eating Fruit

The more fiber the better. Fiber helps slow down or spread out metabolism of carbohydrates.

Old 10-31-2005, 03:36 PM   #5
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Linda1629 HB User
Re: Eating Fruit

Have him try the low carb juice drinks. They aren't bad (especially the orange/pineapple). They can help with the fruit cravings and they don't have much effect on the blood sugar. I think they are called Carb Options.

Old 10-31-2005, 06:54 PM   #6
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Re: Eating Fruit

I would highly recommend that your Dad make an appointment with a registered dietician (RD) for advice on developing a meal plan, and to learn what portion sizes are.

Another thing you can do is go to the American Diabetes Association's web site and look up the Diabetic Exchange List, which will give you the portion size of each serving. For example, one banana is actually TWO servings of fruit. 1/2 cup of most berries is ONE serving.

The thing is, his individual height and weight needs to be taken into consideration in developing a meal plan, and a dietician can do this for him.

You also didn't mention whether or not he's on medication and, if so, what kind. That fact might have some effect on when he should eat, although it probably wouldn't change his total caloric intake for the day.


Old 11-01-2005, 06:21 AM   #7
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 89
karihager1982 HB User
Re: Eating Fruit

Hello - and thank you all very much for your replies!

Sorry that I left out the important information. My father is currently on insulin. (Just started about 3 weeks ago.) He is on Humalog (28 units before breakfast 18 units before dinner.) My father is also 5'9 and 155 lbs.

I've tried to get my father to a to go to an RD but he has no insurance to help cover the cost, and he hates to pay out of pocket. (I had a hard time convincing him to get on Insulin...he didn't want to spend the money.)

So with me knowing that he is not going to go to an RD or talk to a doctor about a meal plan for him, I was trying to find something that could help him out a little.

I think right now, he just feels lost (even though he won't get the help he needs). He doesn't know what to eat, when to eat, etc...

It's gotten worse since he's been on insulin because his appetite has increased tremendously (sp?). Prior to the insulin, he was only eating once a day, and losing weight at a steady pace. Now that he is on the insulin, he can't seem to stop eating. He says that he is always hungry.

Yesterday I put together a binder full of diabetic recipes for him, just to give him some meal, and snack ideas but I'm not sure that it's going to help that much.

I guess in the mean time, all I can do is try to get him to go to a RD and see what happens!

Thanks so much for all of your replies!
You are all wonderful, and very helpful to us!

- Kari

Old 11-05-2005, 07:01 AM   #8
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 379
almonkey HB User
Re: Eating Fruit

Insulin is the mover of sugar from the blood stream to the cells. The reason he was losing weight before is because the sugar wasnt being used and his cells were starving.
I saw your diet listed above but it worries me a little. The vegetables and fruits are carbs. The starches (more carbs-many times REFINED) are sometimes the main culprit in high #s and hunger. I too recommend the dietician. If he has no healthcare plan many pharmacies offer free diabetes counseling and have plenty of great food plan information.

The key is for him to eat things that are good for him yet keep him satisfied....For instance, If he eats breakfast of egg omlette than a 2 hr later snack of celery & carrots is great w/ a tablespoon of peanut butter. The protein & fat in the pb helps slow the absorption of the carb plus makes him feel full. Lunch of chicken, fish, salad w/ either, or even a sandwhich w/1 slice of whole grain bread w/ turkey & cheese & an apple, then 2 hrs later some string cheese, cubes of cheese, etc, then a decent dinner of lean meat or chicken & veggies.

The hunger will subside but in the meantime, NO JUICE! Juice is empty calories that increase blood sugar. Tell him to eat the fruit. Tell him to stick to milk & water. Even milk although it has some carbs that fat will also help keep him satisfied.

Old 11-09-2005, 02:51 PM   #9
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WannaBeFreeToRoam HB UserWannaBeFreeToRoam HB UserWannaBeFreeToRoam HB User
Re: Eating Fruit

Hi Kari,

I am not a diabetic (yet), but my mom is. She eats way too many starches. She thinks that she should only not eat sweets (or much of them). She takes pills for her diabetes.

When your father eats carbs, make sure that he buys whole grain carbs. Like, oatmeal, for breakfast, with skim milk and splenda. And, when buying bread, make for sure it has at least 3 mg. fiber. Never let him buy white bread or white rolls.

Maybe if you could go to the grocery store with him and check out the fresh fruit and vege dept. and the good canned food. Also, the lean types of meat. And plain oatmeal, can be cooked in the microwave, very easily. He could have some fruit in it, to make it different. Also, he could have an egg and a piece of whole wheat toast, with an apple for breakfast. Snacks that are good, are celery and carrots, peanut butter (the natural kind), and apples. Also, peanuts in the shell, are good.

If your father is too old to understand all the carb and other options and combinations, just try to research and make him up about 5 daily menus (with actual food that he likes) and help him to shop and read labels, for these items! Yeah, and salads are good, just watch the kinds of salad dressings (read the labels).

I hope that this helps a little. Just try and do the best you can. It is hard with older people, that resist help and change and when it comes to spending $.

Take care.


Old 11-09-2005, 03:11 PM   #10
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Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 218
desertdiabetic HB User
Re: Eating Fruit

You will want to look into this a lot further. In one of the above comments it was brought out that fruit has a lot of sugar in it.... That is correct. A lot of sugar. I disagree with the 'the more the better' thinking. Control of blood sugar will be much more difficult if you injest sugar like this. There are non-sweet fruits. Believe it or not, cucumber, red and green peppers are fruits. Technically they are and they are excellant.

This is not just something I am making up off the top of my head. I don't personally have the education to make such bold statements. I follow the diet of a very well known diabetes doctor(can't memtion his name and site here because the will refuse to post this comment) It is a very unpopular thing to not eat the "approved" foods of the non-diabetic world. The key to anything you eat is what it does to your blood sugar. You must do whatever you can to save the beta cells you have left. That is the only hope you have of turning around your diabetes(if you can) and keep you from progressing to Type 1.

I have found that fruit does not effect my blood sugar extremely so I do work a little into my diet, not often though. I maintain very good blood sugars by limiting my sugar(sugar by any name) to a close to zero as possible.

Also check into the statements about fruit being a requirement. It is not. That is old school and you will find many diabetics that have gone many years without any fruit consumption with no ill effects.

Old 11-11-2005, 01:26 PM   #11
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 89
karihager1982 HB User
Re: Eating Fruit

Wow - I just want to say thank you to everyone here who has replied to my questions.

You are all wonderful, and I honestly could not find help like his anywhere else.

About two weeks ago I e-mailed a dietician about my father. She wrote back, and gave me some information. I ended up calling her and set up an appointment for my father on November 28th.

The week before he goes in - she wants me to write down all the food he eats, and when he eats it. She also wants me to have him check his sugar three times a day, (once before breakfast - once two hrs after one meal - and once before dinner.)

She also wants me to bring in his reports from the doctor stating his
hemaglobin A1C, his Lipid Profile, and his Kidney & Liver functions.

She seems like she is very thorough.

My father is 58 years old - and though I think that is a young age, my father acts, and looks very old. (I'm sure the diabetes causes this.) My father is also a very stubborn man who has difficulty adjusting to change.

It has taken me years to get him to go on insulin, so I know that it is going to take some time to get him adjusted to everything that is going on. I'm very proud of him for learning how to use his meter by himself for the first time, and though he cannot fill his insulin needles by himself, he can now inject himself.

So as it goes...we will keep trudging forward...and I will try to keep learning what I can.

Thank you all again!

- Kari

Old 11-17-2005, 09:17 PM   #12
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Join Date: Jan 2005
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warpig HB User
Re: Eating Fruit

Your father also need to be careful because diabetics tend to have high cholesterol due to the higher concentration of protein they eat to compensate for the lower amounts of carbs.

Old 11-18-2005, 12:24 PM   #13
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pipermac HB User
Re: Eating Fruit

OK......I feel i have to add to this conversation. I have been a Type I Daibetic for 25 years so I think I have the experience and knowledge to make comments.

First....One person said something about someone progressing from type II to Type I. This Cannot happen. the Two types of Diabetes are caused by different things. Although Type II can be bad enough to seem like Type I

Second......A Diabetic Can Eat pretty much EVERYTHING.... and should eat everything. The Fact your father is on insulin makes it even easier for him to eat anything he wants. It is just a matter of how much.

Has You father been testing his Blood sugar levels every day? The Key is not that he should not eat many carbs. The Key is to eat roughly the same amount every day and at about the same time. If he is always eating about the same then his Insulin can easily be ajusted to reflect that.

If your father has been very hungry since taking the insulin then it could be that he has been having Low Blood Sugar. has he had any shakiness or cold sweats? a Big sympton of low blood sugar is Extreme hunger and if he isnt eating any Carbs to raise the blood sugar then he will continue be hungry as long as his Levels are low.

It is of utmost importance that he test his blood regularly. Before each meal at least. Low Blood sugars can also be VERY Dangerous. He can pass out and go into a coma if they get too low.

Now that he is taking insulin it is even more critical that he stick to the same diet every day.

Has he been taught how to adjust is insulin when needed? Does he go to his Edocrinoligist on a regular basis?

If You have any Questions let me know...I am pretty sure I can help.

ITs great that you have him going to see a dietician. that Is a very important step to take.

Old 11-20-2005, 04:57 AM   #14
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 4
3285lefk HB User
Re: Eating Fruit

I found the glycemic indexing charts for foods, starting eating low glucose foods there are some books on *********** about these charts and dieting, author jennie brand-miller from Australia,(gave up bread, potatos and pop corn, and sugar items) follow the charts and you will be suprised about the outcome, for the bread I substituted ezekiel 4:9 bread, it has no carbs just protein and is great tasting, exercised, lost weight am now back on oral medicines glucophage & avandia, my blood sugars now running around 100 I eat apples, grapefruits and dried apriocots, these are on the glycemic charts as low glucose fruits, hadn't been able to eat these for years, now I can I am 64 years old have had type 2 for 20 years.

Old 11-22-2005, 04:54 AM   #15
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shesgg HB User
Re: Eating Fruit

Originally Posted by karihager1982
Wow - I just want to say thank you to everyone here who has replied to my questions.

Thank you all again!

- Kari
I was going to suggest that he contact the hospitals in your area, they have free diabetes classes. My doctor referred me to one and it was very informative.

They even took us to lunch in the cafeteria to test us on what we would choose when we eat out.

Good luck to you and your Dad.

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