Having been diagnosed with Type I diabetes at the age of 12, Dr. Bernstein developed the Bernstein diet, which allowed him to avoid many of the traditional complications. Bernstein found that his diet wasn't just good for diabetics. It also helped non-diabetics lose weight, prevent diabetes and improve their overall health. Following the diet is relatively straightforward once you've mastered a few basic rules.
Learn What To Not Eat
On the Dr. Bernstein's diet, any food that causes a rapid rise in blood sugar is forbidden. When doing the diet, you will need to avoid the following: sweets, grains, starchy vegetables, fruits and fruit juices, most dairy products and most condiments.
Learn What To Eat
You will be creating meals from meats, oils and green vegetables. You may also select dairy products from this list: cheese, full fat yogurt, cream and butter. Artificial sweeteners are also permitted. Nuts are allowed, but only in small quantities.
Calculate How Much to Eat
When doing a low carbohydrate diet, you will need to track the number of carbs in each of your meals. The carbohydrate counts of most foods are available on the packaging. For those that don't come in packages, like fresh produce and meat from the butcher, you will need to locate the nutritional information. This info is readily available online or in books available from your local library.
You are allowed 6 grams of carbohydrate with breakfast and then 12 at both lunch and dinner. Dr. Bernstein recommends eating enough fat and protein at each meal to carry you to the next meal without starving. You should eat the same amount at each meal each day.
Monitor Your Blood Glucose
Dr. Bernstein's diet emphasizes controlling blood glucose levels, so it is important to test yours multiple times during the day. This will allow you to keep track of how your body reacts to different foods. If you find that a particular food causes your blood sugar to spike, then you will know to avoid that in the future. Some possible suspects to watch for are onions, raw tomatoes and nuts.
Plan Ahead of Time
Most quick food options, such as hamburgers, sandwiches and fried chicken, are not allowed when following this diet. You will need to plan ahead to have the right amount of food at each meal. Prepare a menu with a week's worth of Bernstein-approved foods so that you don't get caught off guard.