The doctor asked: “What have you done?”

Yet another story from a person with type 2 diabetes, who has tried an LCHF diet:

At an appointment with my doctor, after being on an LCHF diet for one year (diabetes checkup):

The first thing she asks me is…. “What have you done?” – with a big smile.
“I started eating an LCHF diet”, I say.
“I just knew it had to be something like that!”, she says.

All numbers are good. Blood sugar normal, cholesterol numbers good, blood counts…. everything that can be measured is great (all was not good a year ago). My waistline has shrunk by 5 inches, and I have lost more than 30 pounds (have acquired more muscle mass too, so my fat loss is probably significant).

In addition I have completely stopped taking some antidiabetic medications (don’t need them anymore), and am currently taking half the dose of the last remaining antidiabetic medication┬áthat I take daily. I don’t need more than that when I eat an LCHF diet.

Then comes the funny part (or the not so funny part). She tells med that many of her patients have changed their diets to an LCHF diet on their own. And they all lose weight, they all improve their health markers, become healthier and feel much better.

“Isn’t this amazing?!”, she says, adding “And I am not allowed to recommend this to my patients, because we have to follow the official guidelines. Our whole society is sugar-poisoned.”


The doctor’s idea that she is not allowed to recommend an LCHF diet is a common urban legend, that is spread by ignorance. As a physician in Sweden you may certainly recommend an LCHF diet. I have done so to appropriate patients more or less daily for the past six years, with results similar to the above.

Previously on diabetes

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  1. Ugh, I spent 5 minutes editing that comment, and there was no button to actually post the edit.

    Anyway, I meant to correct a typo and add a word on fat.

    It provides your energy and doesn't upset your body's insulin levels. It's good. Don't worry about it.

    In the absence of excess carbohydrate, fat keeps you feeling satisfied and is important to your body. I typed more in the other comment, but alas can't be bothered doing so twice.

    Search for info on this site about fat!

  2. Galina L.
    No one will be able to predict how much fat another person may loose based on the number of calories. It is all individual, and we are not calorimeters. Many LCarbers have to disregard a very popular advise to put butter everywhere and drink heavy cream.
    2000 calories seems to be ok, especially at the beginning. Avoid snacking between meals, there are LC foods people often eat for fun even when not hungry. Excessive nuts and cheese could be especially problematic .
  3. Galina, I'm not saying one needs to put butter on everything.

    I'm saying that for most people, their appetites will adjust to eating a reasonable amount of food when they eliminate almost all unhealthy food from their diet. I'm saying it's not necessary (and is probably borderline impossible) to accurately count calories for everything, and that focusing on food quality and physiological hunger symptoms is the way to go.

    I do believe there's something such as "emotional hunger", which needs to be addressed. Eating out of boredom, for stress relief, etc.

    An extremely fascinating and important --- and too-little appreciated including in the Paleo/Primal/Low-Carb, High-Fat communty --- study is the "Adverse Childhood Experiences" study.

    This study started out originally studying obesity, and noted that children who had had more adverse experiences during their childhood had a far greater likelihood of being obese as adults. I believe emotional trauma, through a variety of mechanisms, is the proximate cause of this, and its inverse is a major factor in why some people are able to maintain leanness despite the poor dietary options which are prevalent in society.

    It's complex and it isn't necessarily a straight line, but I do believe childhood trauma plays a major role.

    Here's an interview with Dr. Felitti, the director of the Adverse Childhood Experiences project.

    A high ACE (Adverse Childhood Experiences) score has been shown to be correlated with a great many problems in later life, from obesity to cancer to depression to anxiety to suicidality to crime and so on.

    Raising children in non-traumatic loving homes is vital. And moral.

  4. Joe
    I think what the doctor was trying to say is not that she "cannot" prescribe a LCHF diet. What she probably meant was that it would be too risky to do so. Unfortunately, if a doctor prescribes LCHF to a patient and they have a heart attack 3 months later the doctor can be sued and held liable much more easily. With a traditional diet, doctors are more protected against malpractice claims. It's really too bad, because stupid political garbage like that really holds back the state of nutrition.
  5. Karel
    I'm a 62-year-old female with 35 pounds to lose (again!) My cholesterol levels have always been excellent. My most recent lipid panel, though, came back not so great:

    272 mg/dl cholesterol (last year: 188)
    59 mg/dl HDL (was 65)
    200 mg/dl LDL (was 111)
    4.6 Chol/HDL ratio (was 2.9)

    My triglcerides are fine at 65 mg/dl (previously 59).

    I was just one week into LCHF (with 6.6 pounds lost!) when I had this blood work done. I've no intention of starting statins because I believe these numbers will turn around. (I also wonder if the elevation may be due to taking glucosamine chondroitin supplements, since there's anecdotal evidence this raises cholesterol in some people.)

    So here's my question: Is it common for LDL cholesterol levels to temporarily rise immediately upon adopting a LCHF diet?

    Thanks in advance for any insight.

    Reply: #58
  6. Benboom
    >So here's my question: Is it common for LDL cholesterol levels to temporarily rise immediately upon adopting a LCHF diet?

    Short answer: yes. If you are losing weight you should wait until it stabilizes to check these levels.

  7. Moo
    How about checking ones ketone level with blood ketone meter as a more precise determiner , especially in the case of difficulty managing the diet with only appetite as a guide. Though many can manage just fine with the simple guidelines, perhaps others ,at least in some point of their journey in weight loss and maintenance of health may decide on that.
  8. Zepp
    Yes it quite comon in the begining.. my values sky rocket.. and then landed on a lower value then befor LCHF!

    Its still not perticaly good, and was not good befor either.. but now its nearly in the upper normal range!

    And some of us is hyperresponders!

    Take a recheck after a half year.

  9. 1 comment removed
  10. Kyle
    Thanks for sharing this all with me. As for myself, I was suffering from hemorrhoids for a while before I found a working hemroid relief product.
    I highly recommend that you check them out!
  11. Barney
    I'm in Oz too, but where did you, and where can I, find such an enlightened doctor?
  12. Madeleine
    I have had type 2 diabetes for 20 years and have been on a carb diet that, obviously, did not work. Since November I have be eating LCHF and have already lost 12 pounds and am off most of my insulin - no more Humalog! And more than half of my Lantos dose as well! So glad I found this website.
    Reply: #65
  13. Fay
    That's terrible, I would have reported her !
  14. adam
    Australia is fighting hard against it check this out:
  15. Leslie
    I'm so encouraged. I started 4 days ago and my sugar dropped to normal! Except my morning fast. I'm on alot of meds. My doctor wants to see my log after a week. Perhaps we can adjust. I've mentioned program to lots of people, they think I'm nuts. I don't care...the numbers don't lie. Can't wait to get an A1C. I'll post my logs in a few weeks. I've been struggling for 20 years also. Thanks for your post. Leslie in Maryland.
  16. mel
    I have started today the lchf diet.. did it a few year ago but couldnt stick.. there were not that many recipes about so i strayed. i did everything that i should today and believe i only had about 20 carbs. however i have tested my bloods 3 times.. before, after and then 3 hours after and my bloods are still 10.5.. they havent moved all night despite having virtually no carbs. hoping for progress through the week. going to stick at it this time
  17. Dawne
    The UK is the exact same can't tell you to do the LCHF diet because they want you to eat from the eat well guide and by god its full of crap. I went to the dietician for advice and that's what she advised for me and guess what she was overweight herself. I had my charts and spreadsheets ready and she admitted she couldn't advocate it and said yes we do as a nation eat too many carbs.
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