J Korean Diet Assoc.  1999 Feb;5(1):64-73.

The Meal Management of Korean Type 2 Diabetes Patients Using Carbohydrate Counting

  • 1Department of Food & Nutrition, College of Natural Science, Hoseo University, ChungNam, Korea.
  • 2Department of Internal Medicine, College of Medicine, KonKuk University, Chung Ju, ChungBuk, Korea.


Carbohydrate(CHO) counting is a meal planning approach used with diabetic patients that focuses on carbohydrate as the primary nutrient affecting post-prandial glycemic response. However, it has not been used in meal management of diabetic patients in Korea. CHO counting can be used by clients with type 1 and 2 diabetes. The purpose of the study was to determine the barriers to utilize the CHO counting when three levels of CHO counting were educated to type 2 diabetic patients who started continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion (CSII) therapy by nutrition lectures and counseling. And the CHO-to-insulin ratios were determined for the individual patients who followed the carbohydrate counting as a meal management, and the factors to influence the CHO-to-insulin ratios were selected through the stepwise regression analysis. Twenty- four subjects were received three lectures, and one or two nutritional counseling for a month. The average age of the subjects was 50.7 years, and the duration of diabetes was 9.4 years. Their body mass index (BMI) was 21.5 kg/m2. The difficulties of using CHO counting were 1) confusing the CHO exchange system to diabetic food exchange system, 2) lack of basic nutrition and not distinguishing nutrients such as CHO, fat and calorie, and 3) lack of motivation to make effort to count and record the amount of carbohydrates eaten. Nutritional counseling replenished the nutrition education and made patients practice CHO counting. Average CHO-to-insulin ratios at breakfast, lunch and dinner were 4.1+/-3.3, 2.9+/-2.6 and 2.9+/-3.0units/23g of CHO, respectively. CHO-to-insulin ratios were influenced by gender, age, BMI, post-prandial blood glucose levels and post-prandial c-peptide levels. The effective education and nutritional counseling of CHO counting can make CHO counting applicable to type 2 diabetic patients as meal management for improving glycemic control with less hypoglycemic episode.


carbohydrate counting; carbohydrate-to-insulin ratio; type 2 diabetes; continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion therapy
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