Carbs and Cals

The first time I had ever heard of carb counting as a ‘thing’ was in fact a good few years ago when a child on one of the summer camps I worked on was doing it.  In the evening staff meeting, her group leader mentioned it and I scoffed at the preposterous notion that someone with diabetes needed to count their carbohydrates and that was the end of the conversation.  Having been taught back in the ‘dark ages’ that one must inject and then eat to keep up with the insulin, counting carbs and injecting accordingly just seemed ludicrous to me.  I didn’t really think about it again until much more recently when I was offered a session with a DSN on carb counting and I thought I might as well give it a go.

I had been struggling a bit with my control and was on the waiting list for the DAFNE course so this was just an interim session to get the basics.  I sat down with the DSN and the first thing she did was whap out the Carbs and Cals book….


This made me super excited for a number of reasons…I am a geek and love books, I am a geek and love learning new stuff aaaaaaandddd my mind was slightly blown by the whole carb counting concept and the brilliance of the format of the book.  Having the pictures there makes it so easy to do a quick calculation and it covers such a wide range of foods.

I was then lucky enough to get on a DAFNE course and who should be the dietician running it but none other than Mr Chris Cheyette, co-author of the Carbs and Cals books.  It was pretty great to have someone so knowledgeable educating us for the week and Chris was also able to give us the exciting news that they were in the final stages of production of a new Carbs and Cals book based on smoothies.  I of course pre ordered this straight away and am making my way through all the recipes.  They range from super clean and healthy smoothies using water as a base through to slightly more indulgent options using a variety of milks however, the great things are that 1. Every recipe is based on 1 x serving so you don’t have to get out the calculator and super sharp knife in order to work out how much 1/16 of a lime actually is. 2. The carbs and calories are provided for all recipes.  Winner winner, tasty smoothies with all the hard work done for you – what more could you ask for?!  Smoothies can often be really tricky to calculate carbs for and I have made definite errors in the past so now I just stick to the recipes from this book and so far, every calculation has been spot on.


Can you therefore IMAGINE my excitement when I got an e-mail to say that there was an imminent release from Carbs and Cals and this time it was to be a salad book?!  Just in time for summer and with all the same principles as the smoothie book – all recipes for one serving, carbs and cals calculated perfectly!  I have made at least half of these yummy salads now and yet again, all calculations are on point and there are a loads of variations and ingredients that I have not tried before which has meant my meal repertoire has grown and I have found loads of new things I like.

In summary, I think the Carbs and Cals books are great.  They are obviously really useful for us T1D’s out there but I also caught my housemate whizzing up a smoothie the other day and realised that they can be used by anyone.  There is also an app for your phone which means you are never caught out when grabbing food on the go!


Thanks Chris and Carbs and Cals for these fab books, can’t wait to see what the next one will be!! (Soups??!! – just a suggestion ;))

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