Well, hello there!
My name is Claire, and I’ve created this space on the web to document my journey through Type II Diabetes and kicking it’s ass through Low Carb.
I was diagnosed with Type II Diabetes in December 2013. This came at a time when I was feeling super shitty, gaining weight like a hot damn and had a weird rash on my legs that just wouldn’t go away. My family Doctor sent me along to a specialist. Who in turn had me do some blood work to see what was going on. It was there that I was diagnosed with Metabolic Syndrome and Type II Diabetes.
He then referred me to the local Endocrinologist for further follow up about what to do with my Diabetes.
Now, at this point I was in complete denial. How could my eating have gotten so bad that I essentially broke my body.
Oh, let me tell you that poor eating habits has a way of creeping up on you and then kicking your ass seven ways to Sunday. I guess in a way I was relieved to know that there was something wrong with me and at the same time I felt so defective… because I’m an idiot. Let me tell you there was a lot of self-loathing involved.
When I went to the Endocrinologist – he discussed options on medication. Advising that I start with Metformin and then check back with him in 3 months. He also had me testing my blood before every meal and an hour after. He gave me a run down of what would be an “ideal” range for my blood sugar and to see how it went. He also referred me to the local Dietician and Diabetes Nurse for some further counselling.
From 2013-2016, it was rough. I went to the Dietician who gave me the advise of 45 carbs per main meal and 15-25 carbs per snack. During this time as well, it was no more Metformin; I was now on Insulin. Short-acting and Long-acting insulins. Checking my blood sugar before every meal, every snack. Depending on what I needed to track for the Endocrinologist/Diabetes Nurse – sometimes that also included checking my blood an hour after eating. I was stabbing myself up to 8-10 times a day to check my blood sugars and then I had to sit there and calculate how much insulin to take. Thank goodness I had a blood meter that would help me with that… but it was completely overwhelming.
I will say that I wasn’t a great patient either. During this time, I went through a stage of denial. I went through a “fuck it” stage, I went through a “why me” stage, and I just really felt that life couldn’t get much worse in how I was feeling and how I just wasn’t getting my diabetes under control.
Well, it did get worse and that came a knockin’ in February 2017.
After feeling so horrible, for so long – it felt like this was my new normal. I didn’t ever think I’d get my blood sugars under control, and that all the bad shit that comes along with Diabetes would be inevitable. I was told by the Diabetes nurse that I would be on Insulin forever. To look into getting an Insulin pump. I know they were being helpful – but it just put me in such a bad headspace.
I knew I had to change this, I didn’t want to be on insulin forever. I don’t want an insulin pump. I don’t want to have Diabetes anymore. I was just done.
For some time I’d been following Dr. Jason Fung and his website Intensive Dietary Management. It was like a light went on in a room of darkness for me. I really felt as though I finally had some hope. That I don’t have to live forever in this Diabetes hell, that it could even be possible to reverse Diabetes. That it’s diet related and by going low carb, doing intermittent fasting, you can get this under control. This led me to the Diet Doctor website which has meal plans, great videos, and information about the low carb lifestyle and Diabetes. Finally I felt like I could see a light at the end of this tunnel.
On February 20th, 2017 I started my low carb journey.
I also had blood work done at the end of February for my follow up with the Endocrinologist at the beginning of March. With this blood work, I got a call from my Doctor – who wanted to see me if I didn’t have an appointment with the Endocrinologist because my results needed to be discussed, as changes needed to be made. With this, I was worried. What did the results show?
The Endocrinologist didn’t have good news. I had a fatty liver, cirrosis of the liver, elevated cholesterol levels, and high blood sugars. He also told me that I would now be a candidate for Gastric Bypass surgery. He told me I was a mess and needed to get a grip on things as this was terrible.
I told him what my plan was. I was going to get my eating in order and go low carb.
He said go for it, and to see him again in 3 months for a follow-up.
Everyday I documented what I ate, kept it low carb, and lost 40 pounds.
When I went back to see him at the beginning of June 2017, after my next round of blood work was done. I had left him speechless.
I was quite proud of myself.
He showed me my chart over the past few years – where the numbers were going up and then suddenly with the switch to low carb their was a dramatic downturn of those numbers. To the point of which he was so shocked – he didn’t have anything to say. He was amazed that I’d lowered my insulin, lost weight and my blood sugars were pretty much normal.
I had really wanted to “stick it to the man” – and I did it.
I’m now working on keeping things as low carb as I can without becoming manic about it. I want to love my life again, and I feel like I’m on my way.