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Low carb, low sugar diet in England

I'm planning a trip to London, and I'm a little worried about food. I'm a Type II diabetic. I control it with a low dose of Metformin, and keep a very low carb, low sugar diet. My breakfast consists of Fiber One cereal (made by Kelloggs) and a low-sugar or no-sugar-added soy milk, often with strawberries or nuts and Splenda on top.

I also snack several times a day, either mixed nuts or snack bars (mostly those made by the Adkins diet folks). I've also made my own little tuna sandwiches with flatbread/pita and these little pre-seasoned tuna packets you can get in the supermarket here.

So my question is: How easy will it be for me to find these foods in London? I'm hoping I can have a small refrigerator in my room, or that I can find soy milk in little disposable boxes (the size of those boxes children take to school w/juice in them). The last time I was there was 1987, and I understand things are very different now. I know there is Whole Foods in London as well.

I'm all for Rick's picnic ideas!

Posted by
9724 posts

I wish you had asked yesterday as I was in the Whole Foods off Piccadilly! I saw Clif and Luna bars but did not notice Adkins bars. However I was not looking for them so there may be some or an equivalent. I did see the shelf stable quart containers of soy milk and, again, did not notice if they had the small boxes.

They have beautiful looking fruit there and a wide variety of nuts but those are also available in the regular shops as well.

You also may be walking a lot more than normal which could have some impact on your blood sugar.

Posted by
27749 posts

The only thing on your list I have never seen here is a brand name Adkins. Perhaps you could check their website before you travel and see if they market under a different name here?

I also don't know for sure the Fiber One, but I'm sure that an equivalent is available.

Everything else on your list is available at any supermarket, often in the Free From aisle. Even the small city centre shops will have all those. You don't need to go out of your way to find the very overpriced Whole Foods, nor health foods stores, although both of those would also have what you want.

You won't have any trouble here as a Type II. There are plenty of us here on the little island.

Posted by
285 posts

Sandra, I'm heading London next week and like you, I follow a low carb/low sugar regimen to maintain my ideal weight. I am taking 2 boxes of Adkins bars with me (one breakfast and one snack variety. I emptied the boxes into a plastic ziplock bag and packed them in my suitcase. I also carry a small bottle of liquid sucralose for sweetening tea and coffee. My plan is to maintain my diet as much as possible while in the UK, concentrating on protein (chicken, meat, fish and eggs) and minimizing carb intake, same as I do at home.

I'm also taking some of the small bags of Adkins trail mix in my carry-on bag. Good for a plane snack and a late-night hotel room snack!

Posted by
8293 posts

I am profoundly ignorant on the subject of this diet, but shouldn't it be ATKINS, not Adkins?

Posted by
504 posts

Oh dear...my bad...It is spelled Atkins. I checked their UK site and they do have some of the same snack bars we have in the US. I am also thinking perhaps I could bring some in my bag as suggested.

I am sure all the walking will help keep my blood sugar low!

To complicate matters, I am also a vegetarian (though I do eat fish and eggs). The first vegetarians I ever met were some of my English friends years ago, actually.

Thank you all for your kind replies!

Posted by
11450 posts

I think you will do fine.. you may have to be flexible..you may not find your exact brand of cereal.. but you don't actually need that exact brand really.. you just need to find a high fibre whole grain type and I am sure they have many that will do ..

I also bring Splenda.. but not liquid .. I like the little boxes ( like tic tac boxes sort of ) that dispense tiny tablets. I take a few of the small packages two.. I just slip them in a slot in my purse.

An breakfast of eggs ( not fried if going lo fat.. but poached or boiled) and some cereal will be easy to find.

I like some of the Atkins bars.. but since they are only basically no sugar ( they use substitutes ) you could probably find no sugar snack bars in London.

Posted by
504 posts

I find it very challenging to find food here in the U.S. There are a lot of gluten-free products and fat-free products, but it's hard to find high-protein and low-carb, low-sugar stuff.

I'll certainly consider the little tic-tac type sugar substitutes. Thanks!

Posted by
4684 posts

My mother has the same condition as you, and she uses almost all the products and foods you mention except the snack bars. You should be able to get soy milk and artificial sweeteners from any large supermarket, not the overpriced Whole Food.

Posted by
3685 posts

I'm not diabetic, but I do try to avoid too much sugar and arificial sweeteners.

No one mentioned Stevia so far. It's in green packets appropriate for an almost natural no calorie sweetener, rarely available here in restaurants, but easy to find in grocery stores under a variety of brand names.

I'm planning a solo trip to England, Scotland and maybe Wales for May. Is Stevia available in most grocery stores?