Category Archives: Experiments

Low Carb Pasta – A Freestyle Libre Test

There is no such thing as a (carb-) free lunch? After trying Dreamfield Low Carb Pasta with  unsatisfying results I tried a new low carb pasta brand “Pasta alla Eva”. They claim to have less than 5g of carbs in 100g (uncooked )- too good to be true.

Low Carb Pasta
Low Carb Pasta

My test meal was

100g Low Carb Pasta
100g Barilla Pasta Sauce
2 Slices of Emmental Cheese
7 Kalamata Olives

All in all this should be around 15g of carbs – a joke if you look at the full plate of pasta:

Low Carb Pasta Yummy
Low Carb Pasta – Yummy

One of the rare occasions where the pasta sauce has more carbs than the pasta themselves 🙂 .The pasta needed to be cooked for 15mins.

How did the low carb pasta taste?

Not bad – a bit too firm (dreamfield pasta tastes pretty much like the real thing) but okay. Maybe they can tweak their recipe a bit but I liked it. For me it is trillions of times better than shirtaki konjak noodels which I simply hate for their consistence.

If you were blindfolded you would recognize the difference to normal pasta – maybe the best way to describe is like a bit undercooked.

The taste was okay, nothing artificial or bad tasting.

How was the impact of the low carb pasta on blood sugar?

I tested with the Abbott Freestyle Libre.

Normally a full plate of pasta would send my glucose up and above the 200mg/dl limit with ease.  What a surprise – not so with this low carb pasta:

Freestyle Libre Low Carb Pasta Test
Freestyle Libre Low Carb Pasta Test

Wow only a rise from 117 to 134 mg/dl? Not bad, not bad! I did not expect that.


It seems like this low carb pasta will go into my arsenal of foods. It tastes okay and is filling.
Maybe they tweak the ingredients a bit so it is more pasta like.

Latest searches:

  • pasta alla eva diabetes

Foods high in carbs – Lentils Experiment with Freestyle Libre

After the disappointing tests with resistant white rice I checked the next family of foods high in carbs: lentils. Legumes are said to be filling and have low impact on blood sugar. So why not try a can of lentils?


Foods high in carbs - Lentils Can
French Lentils


To make things easy and reproducible I chose to open a can of french precooked lentils with sausages (I live close to the french border and sometime buy food there – uhm and wine…).
Conveniently they put the nutrition values for one person on the label: 33g of carbs (see NB below).


Foods high in carbs - Lentils Nutrition
Foods high in carbs – Lentils Nutrition


I assume most of the carbs come from the lentils as the other ingredients (sausage and spices) are not carb-rich.

Result for foods high in carbs – Lentils

Foods high in carbs - Lentils
Blood Glucoses from Lentils

Here are the results from the Freestyle Libre Flash Glucose Meter: now that looks very nice: a BG rise of only 18 mg/dl from 34g of carbs.

NB: in some countries (like US) the total carb value does contain the fiber amount as well. I do not know how the french are doing it but even if I subtract fiber from total carbs – for 23g of carbs this is still a gentle rise.


Retest of resistant starch rice (cold)

In my first test with resistant starch rice (basmati) I did not see improvements compared to ordinary rice. After googling around I found a page mentioning that reheated rice looses some of its magical resistant starch power:

“Heating the rice — as rice dishes are normally consumed in hot dishes  — can melt the crystals and make them less resistant to digestion.”

Well okay I had some leftover rice from last saturdays test so I decided to give resistant starch another try. I ate 200g of white basmati which contains appx. 60g of carbs (in my first test I ate half of this ammout and gave the second half to my girlfriend). Nothing was added. Just the pure rice (I did not want to have the vinegar effect interfering with the resistant starch ),

Cold resistant starch rice


After the usual delay my blood glucose went up. And it went UP. AND IT WENT UP:

FreeStyle Libre - Resistant Starch Test
FreeStyle Libre – Resistant Starch Tes

Holy Maccaroni! After my BG went over 200 I decided to briskly walk away my glucose as I do not want to stay too at such high levels.  It worked and now I am back below 140 which is my current after meal maximum goal.

Resistant Starch Rice (cold)
Resistant Starch Rice (cold)

Resistant Starch Rice – Science Fiction?

Here are my conclusions of this experiment:

  1. “Resistant starch” rice (like I prepared it) does not help to keep my blood sugar low. It had the same effect as ordinary rice.
  2. I can walk away the peaks of BG spikes pretty easily. No jogging required – brisk walking is enough.
  3. I have to keep in mind that the Freestyle Libre has a 5 to 15min delay compared to the real blood glucose. I will have to start my counter-walking earlier if I want to stay below 200 mg/dl.

Resistant Starch Foods – Basmati Rice

(UPDATE:  my test on cold resistant starch rice is now online)

As mentioned in the resistant starch rice post here are the results of my first test.  This is far from any scientific methodology but enough to fulfill my two goals:

  1. improve my personal eating habits
  2. inspire others to do their own tests (which one should always do)

Resistant Starch Foods – Basmati Rice

I prepared one (raw) cup of basmati rice, two and a half cups of water, salt and two teaspoons of coconut oil. Cooking time 18 min. Rice was cooled down and put in the fridge for >14h.
Next day I prepared an asian inspired “resistant goreng” with the following ingredients (sorry, the tool only works in German):

Resistant Starch Foods - Basmati Rice
Resistant Starch Goreng

I used only half of the rice for cooking and after checking the carbs and cals I decided to eat only half of the prepared meal (~ 400kcal and 38g carbs) – so eating only a quarter of the prepared rice. My girlfriend ate the rest of the meal- and liked it 🙂 .

Resistant starch rice - before
Resistant starch rice – before
"Resistant goreng"
“Resistant goreng”


I checked the influence on my blood glucose with my Freestyle Libre flash glucose monitor:

Resistant Starch Rice Blood Glucose
Resistant Starch Rice Blood Glucose

Resistant starch basmati rice gave me a rise of appx. 68 mg/dl from 38g of carbs. The “real” value will be higher as the Libre sensor reads 10 to 20% lower than my finger glucometer.

The rise of BG is not lower than what I would have expected from untreated rice.

Thinking about it – the preperation of rice with oil is surely something that is quite common. So if this had any positive influence some Type 1 diabetics would surely would have recognized this.


In this one person single meal study on resistant starch foods resistant starch rice did not show any beneficial influence on BG compared to normal rice.

I decided to at least two tests as blood glucose seems to behave somewhat fuzzy. So I will retest this with some of the basmati rice leftovers (maybe cold rice salad) but do not expect any improvement.


Latest searches:

  • resistant starch basmati rice
  • resistant starch basmati rice and coconut oil

Xylitol side effects – rise of BG?

UPDATE: I did a retest and had a much less rise in BG. I will keep an eye on this.

Another big surprise.  I regularly use Xylitol (Xucker) instead of table sugar because it has low or no impact on blood glucose. Or is said to have. But there seems to be some “xylitol side effects”.

Today with my morning coffee and with the help of my freestyle libre I checked the influence of four heaped teaspoons of Xylitol in my morning coffee (together with one teaspon of low fat cream). And I nearly fell off my chair: it raised my BG from 123 to 171 mg/dl (fingerpick, freestyle 146)!

What kind of xylitol side effects are that?

I will redo this experiment tomorrow. Maybe the lowfat cream had some negative influence. I hope so.

Rats, so I have to wait another hour for my BG to go down before I can have my breakfast…

Four heaped tablespoons of xylitol in my morning coffee. What strange kind of xylitol side effects is this?
Four heaped tablespoons of xylitol in my morning coffee. What strange kind of xylitol side effects is this?

Spaghetti with a surprise

Can you “walk away” your glucose?
My diabetologist told me “you can eat everything as long as you do sports afterwards”.

Well, sport is my weak point. I enjoy walking and cycling. But anything where you have to change dress and have a shower afterwards is not my kind of thing. I am lazy. I admit it.

Asking him if walking would be enough he disagreed. Not enough of the sweat factor.

But on the internet I found this article :

The Effect of Walking on Postprandial Glycemic Excursion in Patients With Type 1 Diabetes and Healthy People

So I tried that out: I ate a bowl of dinkel (spelt) spaghetti at a local restaurant (Vapiano) with arrabiata sauce and parmesan. And a small coke light. I guess as the pasta portion was quite large there were 80g of carbs involved.

And I went walking.

Spaghetti with a surprise
Measurement Log

I started the meal at 17:10 and went on the road at 17:40. I walked at a normal pace. Not strolling and not “nordic walking” style.

According to my Freestyle Libre blood glucose had its peak at 18:15 with 119mg/dl and fell slightly.

After one and a half hours (!) at 19:20 I finished my walk and sat down comfy in my chair at home. As soon as I rested, my blood sugar started to climb again.

 Frustrated by that I decided to leave my comfy chair and see what happens. At 19:50 I went out for another half hour and my blood sugar went down again.

Now something strange happened: I was tired and went to bed at 21:50. And during my sleep BS climbed again with its peak of 155 mg/dl at appx 23:10. What? Six hours after eating a lot of carbs?

My Interpretation

  • I CAN walk away blood sugar. With a bowl of spaghetti my blood sugar would have been otherwise much higher  (definitvely above 180 mg/dl) after one hour
  • it takes a long time to walk away the glucose. Over 1,5h of walking time after each meal is nothing I can do on a regular basis
  • I have no explanation of the peak six hours later. Maybe some rebound effect or something else. Maybe I check if I can repeat that
  • BG values are higher than logged as the Freestyle Libre was appx. 20% lower on the first day of sensor usage than my fingerpick readings.

Effect of Resistant Starch Rice

Yesterday I saw an interesting article about a new way of preparing “enhanced resistant starch rice”.

Resistant Starch Rice
Resistant Starch Rice


Today I bought basmati rice (I could not get the special sort that was mentioned) cooked one cup of it with two teaspoons of cocosoil and now it is waiting in the fridge to be eaten tomorrow.

It may not have a different effect on my blood sugar than ordinary rice but it smells incredibly tasty!

More background in this video.

Edit: I have written down the results of my first resistant starch rice test.


That is what happens after 100g gummy bears

Okay I got my new Abbott FreeStyle Libre. And just out of pure stupidity I tried what happens if I eat half a pack of gummy bears (over 70g carbs).

Well nothing I could not have forseen. Sugar rises sky high. Maximum at 224 after 50min (fingerpick glucose 245 on the Diamond Mini). Geez.

After four hours back to base level – a short but heavy trip into hyperglycemia.

Two things are different than I expected:

  • There was a “plateau” from 18:40 to 20:00. I expected it to be more peak like
  • The base level is lower after the hyperglycemia. Maybe an overshoot



Satiety Index: Potato Salat

To check the satiety potential of various food types I today checked potato salad. Potatoes are said to have a high satiety index, so I will check some potato foods.

  • 280g Potato Salad
  • 330 kcal
  • 32g carbs


After 1h blood glucose rise 10mg/dl, satiety 7 (on a scale of 0 – hungry like a wolf, 10 – full)

After 2h blood glucose rise was 2mg/dl which is below measurement accuracy. Satiety was 6.

Not bad. I expected the rise to be much higher. This seems to be too good to be true. I need to redo the experiment.

Potato Salad is easy to prepare and store (I bought one at a local store), quite healthy and tastes great. Will continue to check high satiety index foods.