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Eating low-carb on trail


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Home Forums General Forums Food, Hydration, and Nutrition Eating low-carb on trail

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 15 total)
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  • #3802531
    Mart
    BPL Member

    @1goodpacker

    Locale: Central Texas

    I’m 74 and have been battling insulin resistance and an elevated HbA1C. At home, I’ve been eating low carb along with intermittent fasting. That has helped my numbers. Most of my outings are 3 nights (or less) because my wife doesn’t drive anymore. I won’t stay out longer. Does it even make any difference for  trips that short? Thoughts on this?

    #3802532
    Bill Budney
    BPL Member

    @billb

    Locale: Central NYS

    I’m not clear on what you are asking.

    What are you trying to accomplish?

    #3802537
    Mart
    BPL Member

    @1goodpacker

    Locale: Central Texas

    Tips for eating on trail that further my low-carb goals. Most commercial, freeze-dried, backpacking meals (except Next Mile Meals) are high in carbs. For short trips, I can take hard boiled eggs, cheese, Justin’s Peanut Butter, and jerky but that gets old after awhile. It lacks variety. Then again, my trips are short. Maybe I just don’t need to be concerned about this at all.

    #3802538
    Paul Wagner
    BPL Member

    @balzaccom

    Locale: Wine Country

    This would seem to be a good thing to discuss with your primary care physician, who knows your medical details.  I am a little concerned about giving you medical advice here.

    #3802552
    baja bob
    BPL Member

    @bajabob

    Locale: West

    Google Search for lo-carb freeze dried meals.

    A company called Next Miles makes them.

    https://www.nextmilemeals.com/collections/entrees

    #3802554
    Jon Fong / Flat Cat Gear
    BPL Member

    @jonfong

    Locale: FLAT CAT GEAR

    A1c is a measure from hemoglobin and that has a lifespan of 80 to 120 days.  It is an accumulation so 3/80 days shouldn’t budge the reading much.  Additionally (and these are my thoughts only)  When backpacking, you typically burn more energy so the initial spike after eating can be offset by your physical activity.  Not a doctor, but have been a Type II for several years with my A1c hovering just under 7.  My 2 cents.

    #3802555
    Bill Budney
    BPL Member

    @billb

    Locale: Central NYS

    Low carb is great for the trail, and higher fat is the lightest way to carry extra calories. In addition to reducing your risk of most chronic diseases caused by insulin resistance, the freedom from having to constantly snack is very nice.

    Salami (all kinds of sausages) are a top pick. Corned beef. Bacon. Many fast-food places in the US will sell plain, cooked, burger patties (no bun or condiments) at reasonable prices. They last several days unrefrigerated. Pemmican is about as lightweight and complete as meat can be. Jerky is OK, but doesn’t have enough fat; you’ll need to supplement.

    Hard boiled eggs carry well for a couple of days. After that you may need freeze-dried. Tip: Cook them in a bag for easy clean-up.

    Canned meats and seafood last forever (although they are not dehydrated).

    Cheese, of course.

    For long trips, buy a large can of freeze-dried ground beef and make your own meals.

    If you eat some carbs on trail, then jerky and a pack of ramen is great, easy, and ultralight. Or freeze-dried ground beef and ramen. Ramen is better than plain pasta because it includes fat (and sodium, which you need on-trail).

    Nuts are a convenient trail snack: Think GORP without the raisins. Careful with amounts, though; it’s easy to eat a lot of them, which can add up to a lot of carbs.

    Whey protein shakes are also nutritious, delicious (well, some are), and ultralight. Again you will need to supplement some fat.

    For fat: Coconut oil and ghee carry well, even in warm weather. Just make sure that your containers are leak-proof (maybe put them in a zip-lock to be sure). Bacon. Olive or avocado oil.

    As you say, it’s easy for short trips. Some backpackers carry an uncooked steak for the first night (to be cooked over a fire). Cooked meats last a couple of days, especially if you don’t package them too tightly. A little air keeps the nasty anaerobic bacteria away.

    You’ll need electrolytes, too. LMNT is great, but it’s just expensive salt. Gatorade Zero packets are more reasonably priced and pretty close to the correct ratio for replacement of sweat. Most people should supplement magnesium separately because we just don’t get enough in our diets; don’t even worry about how much you sweat because it is tiny compared to how much we need.

    You can mix your own electrolytes: about two parts regular salt (NaCl) to one part “lite salt” (KCl). One-fifth of a teaspoon per liter.

    #3802561
    Glen L
    Spectator

    @wyatt-carson

    Locale: Southern Arizona

    Since these things are sensitive to the individual I’d say consult a healthcare professional. Some can do more carbs while active but that’s up to the individual. However we have been keto for more than ten years, don’t have any medical issues and intend to keep it that way but I personally wouldn’t change on the trail. Strawberries and blackberries are low carb. Lilys Extra Dark Chocolate is sweetened with stevia and it is good when paired with pecans, walnuts and the aforementioned low carb fruit. That’s  how we fuel while on the trail. Salami, cheese and sliced low carb veggies are good in camp. Beverages with coconut milk are good and that you can find in powdered form. Doesn’t hurt to have our 9 tray Excalibur dehydrator for more meals to keep things from boredom.

    #3802572
    Mart
    BPL Member

    @1goodpacker

    Locale: Central Texas

    Thanks to all for your suggestions. I’m not really looking for medical advice. My PCP and I handle that. I’m looking for ideas from other KETO-ites about what THEY do on the trail. The nice thing about Keto is that most of the foods I carry are no cook. Still gotta carry a small alcohol burner, though. For morning coffee. With powdered NIDO, or course.

    Bill: Thanks for your thorough response. I’ve followed most of your suggestions–at one time or another. I’m not really wild about grains, but I especially try to avoid wheat. I DO HAVE a carb allowance, though. They’re reserved for good Tex-Mex or a quality, dark, craft beer.

    #3803907
    David Thomas
    BPL Member

    @davidinkenai

    Locale: North Woods. Far North.

    It can be hard to get a health plan to pay for them, but glucose monitors aren’t hugely expensive and can be very educational.  It may be that modest carbs, combined with fat and sugar at the same time, and especially with exercise (you’re on a hike!) doesn’t cause your blood sugar to spike.

    A1C is a 3-month look behind.  If it’s high, sometimes during the last 3 months, you had elevated blood sugar.  The higher A1C is, the longer and higher your blood sugar was high.  The area under the curve.  It would like gauging your vehicle’s average speed by your fuel consumption over a whole tank: low MPG (could) mean you were uisually driving too fast on average or that you peaked at very high speeds for short times.  Versus looking at your speedometer to directly, instantly and constantly see the measurement you’re concerned about.

    A blood sugar monitor tells you your blood sugar at all times (and shows you on a graph on your smart phone).  “Oh, that’s where I ate that doughnut while reading a book – it shot up.”  “But that wrap, despite the white flour tortilla, had enough meat and cheese in it and I was hiking before and after eating it, that I never spiked.”  That sort of thing.  So in addition to generally reducing carbs (especially the simple, white starches of rice, potatoes, pasta and bread), you can learn WHEN and WITH WHAT you can have some of those carbs.

    But cheap, light, flavorful and of low glycemic index?  Dehydrated beans in bulk off Amazon.  Reconstitute with coconut milk (from coconut milk powder), letting them soak for an hour before heating.  Add dehydrated veggies – carrots, onions, peas, mushrooms, etc – and flavor with a pinch of green, red or yellow curry paste.  I did that repeatedly for a large party that includied vegetarians and people wanting less-processed foods and it worked well, even for us omnivores.  A benefit of a higher fiber diet is that it keeps your intenstines flowing, you poop pellets like a rabbit, and use less toilet paper.

     

    #3803911
    Jerry Adams
    BPL Member

    @retiredjerry

    Locale: Oregon and Washington

    yeah David

    I dehydrate my own beans that I cook with some spices and herbs, then add dehydrated tomato, carrot, onion, and bell pepper from packitgourmet.  Resulting in nicely formed poop : ).  Rehydrate by boiling water, then adding the dehydrated food and waiting 10 minutes.

    Also, raisins or other dried fruit – not low carb but they have fiber so blood sugar isn’t spiked (not medical advice). I make some cookies with whole wheat flour, oats, dried fruit, nuts, (and sugar).  Nuts.  Cheese.  Beef jerky.

    My A1C is fine so maybe this doesn’t apply

    The A1C looks at the last 3 months, but maybe you’re “cheating” to think that a few days of bad are okay?  If you’re diabetic is it okay to have a few days of high blood sugar?  As long as they’re averaged out with a lot of good days?  This is probably a minor factor.  Maybe ask your doctor.

    #3803912
    Jon Fong / Flat Cat Gear
    BPL Member

    @jonfong

    Locale: FLAT CAT GEAR

    See the above comment: the OP does not want medical advice.

    #3803949
    David Thomas
    BPL Member

    @davidinkenai

    Locale: North Woods. Far North.

    Jerry: The dehydrated beans and veggies I was buying from Amazon were by Mother Earth Products.

    My point about doughnuts was NOT to “cheat” and consume simple carbs in the absence of protein, fats and exercise.  Rather that the effects of such behaviors can be seen in real time with a blood sugar monitor versus only seeing incremental effects on a later A1C.  No spikes are always better.

    #3803953
    Jerry Adams
    BPL Member

    @retiredjerry

    Locale: Oregon and Washington

    “Cheat” not really the right word.  Not being critical of anyone :)

    #3803956
    Sarah Kirkconnell
    BPL Member

    @sarbar

    Locale: Homesteading On An Island In The PNW

    We live in a time where you can find almost any meat freeze-dried. So life is good. But seriously, it’s very easy to eat low-carb on the trail. I don’t myself see vegetables as evil.

    https://trailcooking.com/2022/01/12/beef-fajitas/

    That is an example of a meal that is grain-free. Just meat, veggies and cheese. Simple. And good tasting. I have a number of those recipes, as I was asked to do a series on lower carb.

    I personally would stay eating as you do at home – but and a big but – pack more food. High activity may push your numbers down and you may need a boost. That is from experiences shared to me by a hiking partner who is Type 1 and did extreme hiking for many years.

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