Diabetes Diet

My Current Diet

The question that people ask me the most often when they learn that since 2007 I have been following a very low-carb diet to manage my diabetes and my weight, is “What can you possibly find that you really like to eat?”

That’s a good question, but one for which I have an equally good answer: “I eat so much healthy and delicious food that I have a hard time stopping myself.”

In my continuing quest for these fine foods, I eat some old standbys, but have also discovered many foods that aren’t common in this country yet. I still keep discovering great additions to my diet and keep on writing about these foods here.

Essentially, my diet is to eat no more than about 50 or 60 grams of total (not net) carbohydrate per day. My typical meals keep changing. But lately this is what I generally eat when I am at home:

Breakfast: Two poached eggs, 4 oz. of smoked wild salmon with capers added, and a little kimchi or sauerkraut.

Lunch: A large salad consisting of baby greens (including spinach and, when available, kale), bok choy, broccoli, and natto. For salad dressing I use apple cider vinegar and either extra virgin olive oil or extra virgin coconut oil. Sometimes the salad will also have green onions, green peppers, a small avocado, a can of sardines, mackerel, abalone, or salmon, a little hard cheese, a little summer squash, cucumber or radish slices, or a few pitted green olives. I always add a sprinkling of chia seeds.

Dinner: This is the meal that varies a lot. Sometimes it’s just a bowl of plain whole yogurt with a few organic blueberries (or organic raspberries when I can’t get the blueberries I prefer) and a sprinkling of chia seeds. Often instead it is a quarter pound of fish; wild ahi tuna is my favorite, but wild salmon is the healthiest, because of its high omega-3 level. Rarely it is beef, and only if it is grass-fed.

I don’t snack much, but when I do it’s a couple of olives, a handful of almonds, a bit of hard cheese, or no more than two Brazil nuts.

I make sure to eat dinner at least three hours before lying down for the night. I never have anything to eat after dinner. I skip dinner entirely if my weight is up and it’s above my goal weight.

This probably doesn’t seem like enough for most folks. But in fact I am never hungry. I never need more. That’s because as I brought my weight down into the low normal range, I don’t need as much food. I no longer need to feed all that fat!

This article is based on an earlier version of my article published by HealthCentral.

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  • Rhonda August 21, 2013 at 7:17 pm

    Thanks I will get the book. I had heard of something called Ezekiel Bread but did not want to try it until I checked it out.

  • Rhonda August 13, 2013 at 2:42 pm

    Is there any kind of bread that I can eat on the low GI diet? I am diabetic and overweight. Thanks!

    • David Mendosa August 21, 2013 at 10:28 am

      Dear Rhonda,

      I have heard of several bread companies that CLAIM to have low GI bread. But our group has tested the leading such brand, and we have grave doubts about them. In any case, no wheat products are good for us. Have you read the new book, “Wheat Belly”? After reading it, you will probably never want to eat any wheat and other grains again.



  • Kiran March 24, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    Oh god. This is exactly what I do, and have been doing for 14 months. I got diagnosed in Feb 2012 with a A1C of 10.2 or something. My fasting was as high as 230. Doctors put me on metformin, and started the downward trend. In parallel, i started exercising, and controlling my diet. 3 weeks into metformin, I started going low, as 65 for fasting. The doctor started reducing the dose, and within a week I was off metformin. My A1C, in June went down to a drastic 6.5. Oct 6.3, December 6.0… And now yesterday March 23rd, 2013, I dropped to 5.9 for the first time.
    Guys, Listen to Doctor Mendosa ( He is my hero)…. Diet and exercise is the key. There is no substitute. I do 3 slices of 12 grain bread, I do a lot of veggies, and lean white meat (Chicken), White of eggs, some cereal, dark chocolates, Almonds, Lactose free milk, Coffee once a day….I dont drink, and I drink only water. And believe me, i have never felt better in my life. My cholestrol levels, are the best, I went from 29 to 62, LDL and TGL are way low. I know if I fall of the wagon, I have the drugs like metformin…But I also know if do what i am doing….I will never need metformin or any of the stuff. Good luck to you all.

  • Dan Karkoulas March 8, 2013 at 3:06 pm

    How much is too much protein?

  • Dan Karkoulas March 8, 2013 at 3:05 pm

    If a person does eat more protein then you describe (I’m sure I eat twice as much) is that unhealthy?

  • kellie March 5, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    Thanks for your response.
    From your example above, the fat are from salmon in the morning; salad dressing for lunch; yogurt for diner. How much fat are there? you have count it as high fat.

    • David Mendosa March 5, 2013 at 6:26 pm

      Dear Kellie,

      You are absolutely right. I have always said that I follow a very low-carb high-fat diet. When we go low-carb we absolutely must go high-fat. That’s where I get my energy!



  • Kellie March 5, 2013 at 9:03 am

    Do you get too low surgar? or you have passed the feeling? If I eat like yours, I will be hungry to death. Is this mean I have some other problem other than diabetics?
    I also have to do low protein to protect kidney, how do you deal with it?

    • David Mendosa March 5, 2013 at 12:53 pm

      Dear Kellie,

      Those of us who have diabetes go hypo — which means too low or below about 70 — only when using certain drugs, especially insulin and one of the sulfonylureas. I don’t take ANY diabetes drugs so I have no concern about going how. In fact, my blood sugar level is almost always between 80 and 85.

      I probably don’t eat more protein than you do. It’s a myth that a low-carb diet is necessarily one that is high in protein. In fact, protein doesn’t give us any immediate energy, which we get either from carbs or fat. I eat a high fat diet for my energy and health.

      Actually, I don’t have any special hunger. When I am feeling a little hungry it is when I need to — before a meal. It is the carbs you eat that counterintuitively make you hungry. I wrote all about this at “How Eating Can Make You Hungry” at http://www.mendosa.com/blog/?p=245



  • Jennifer February 21, 2013 at 2:42 pm

    Your website inspires me to do better with my diet. I am 5’2″ and weight 115 (today). I have been type 2 for approx 7 years with an a1c of 6.3. I am trying so hard to cut back on carbs but it is soooo not easy.

  • claire February 8, 2013 at 9:22 am

    great post as always!
    question about your dinner- if you eat the fish or beef, is it just the meat you are eating? you don’t mention anything else with it.
    #2 – eating full fat yogurt, although healthy, is higher in carbs, especially with blueberries. How is this following Dr B’s diet? do you stay in the 12g CHO guideline?
    thanks so much!

    • David Mendosa February 8, 2013 at 9:54 am

      Dear Claire,

      Thanks. And you ask an excellent question.

      In addition to the fish or beef for dinner I usually do eat some full fat yogurt with blueberries. I usually limit my lunch and dinner to 12g CHO for each meal. The goat milk yogurt that I have in my fridge says that 6 oz, which is about my usual portion, has 7g CHO. But it actually has even less, because I strain out the whey (see http://www.mendosa.com/blog/?p=272) and because the fermentation in yogurt and other probiotic foods converts the milk sugar to lactic acid, which isn’t carbohydrate, so only about 1/3 of the stated amount of CHO is actually present (see near the end of http://www.mendosa.com/blog/?p=1207).