Friday, November 26, 2010

Don't under estimate the importance of nutrients!

Over the last few months I found that my blood sugar numbers were kind of all over the place and higher than they had been in the previous months.   After thinking about what I was doing differently I came up with a few things.   I had recently cut down on some of the supplements that I was taking, mainly vitamin D.  I ran out of my 5000 IU bottle and so I bought some new bottles that were 2000 IU about two months ago.  My numbers have been higher ever since no matter what else I do, even extra exercise wasn't doing it for me.    I knew that my Diabetes had been under good control a few months ago when I was taking the higher amounts of vitamin D so I decided to increase it once again.  I also went back to taking a daily supplement of magnesium which I also had stopped taking.   I increased my vitamin D to 6000 IU's.  I added what would be simply the daily RDA of magnesium as well.   What a difference!   My fasting blood sugar has been down 15-20 points each day and my after meal readings have all been about 20 points lower.  

Today was Thanksgiving.  I had Turkey and all the trimmings... mashed potatoes, gravy, a bit of cranberry sauce and sweet potato and a slice of pumpkin pie!   2 1/2 hours after that big meal my BS reading was 128!  That's virtually normal for an after meal reading.   I expected it to be over 180.  I was so pleased.

Oh, and since I added the extra vitamin D and magnesium back into my diet I have also lost the 5 pounds that I had put back on.   So, today is a good day!    So, again, nutrients are a really important component of controlling diabetes.   For an hour long presentation on vitamin D and the numerous heath benefits from it check out Dr. Mercola's website at

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Celebration Day!

It's a day of celebration for me today.   I was dreading my diabetes check up fearing that I would not see any additional improvement in my numbers.   I was pleasantly surprised!  My A1c was at 6.2.   The A1c of a non-diabetic person is below 6.0.  I am two tenths of a percent away from normal!    Now I would say that I am at the place where I can nearly say that I have reversed my diabetes.   7 months ago, at my original diagnosis my A1c was at 8.2 with an average daily glucose readings of 180-230.   In april my A1c was down to 6.8 and today it is 6.2!      My daily BG numbers average from 113-135.  Still not perfect but well under control.   To add to the excitement my blood pressure was a very normal 110/72 and my total weight lost since December is 20 pounds.   My careful attention to what I put in my mouth, my Chia seeds and Multibetic vitamins have been helpful but I don't want to rely on them forever.   Yeah!!!!!
Link to  Read more about what A1c levels mean here

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Sorting Through The Diabetes Maze

Yesterday I happened to stop by a Borders book store to browse.   Just after I arrived a woman and her friend came in and headed over to the diet and nutrition section of the store.   I heard a store associate ask the ladies if they needed any help.   The woman said "my husband was just diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and I have no idea what to do."  I listened from afar as the lady explained that her husbands doctor had just started him on Metformin but that the doctor had not given them any information on what else to do.  She continued to tell the associate that her husband had seen a nutritionist for the first time and they were given no information on what he should be eating or how many carbs he should eat per meal.   She said that they had no idea where to start and that the doctor and the "Diabetes class" was no help at all.

Well, I couldn't help myself, so, of course I went right over and offered my assistance.  She asked me if I had Diabetes and I said "yes".   I gave her the website address for which was the greatest help for me as I was beginning my search for answers.  I also gave her the names of the books that helped me and told her about s few of the supplements that her husband could try.

I relate this story for a couple of reasons.   First,  I was amazed that this couple was left with so little help by their doctor and their Diabetes educator.   I can't say that this is the norm but this lady and her husband were left truly in the dark about doing anything for Diabetes other than taking a pill and using a meter a few times a week.   The second thing that surprised me was that her husbands fasting glucose levels were around 135 mg/dl and he was already on medication.   He had not even gotten his A1c test results back yet!  (A1c gives the average glucose levels over about 120 days time)

Okay, now I'll admit, I'm not a doctor and I'm not going to say that I know more than the man's doctor but it just seems to me that perhaps some other strategies might have been tried or suggested and he could've at least waited for the A1c test results to come back before starting meds.  Perhaps, as in my own case, the patient would have rather tried to adjust their diet and lifestyle first.   Maybe they don't want to try that but at the very least  I believe that the question should be asked!   From speaking to the woman she made it clear that she and her husband were very committed to making diet and lifestyle changes.  They just weren't getting any help to make those changes.

I am thankful for my doctor.  She did suggest that I try to make some lifestyle changes first.    After three months she evaluated my progress and was clearly very happy with how far I had come in getting my numbers down.    We did talk about medication.   She made it clear that it was an option for me but we decided to go for another 3 months and see where things would be.   My doctor made it clear that the lifestyle and diet changes were for the best for my heath over all and not just because I had Diabetes.   Three more weeks until my next evaluation.   I am hopeful that my A1c will again be lower.

I've had some ups and some downs, literally with my blood sugar numbers.   I've had success's and failures.   I'm still confused at times about what affects my numbers but I'm still determined to get control of this thing.

I would certainly like to see more doctors lean towards prevention and nutrition than pushing pills.   I don't know that it is all their fault though either.  We have all been taught to take a pill for everything.   Maybe doctors just feel that patients really are just looking for the "quick fix", the "band aid solution" to everything.   I just know that I personally would like to see some changes.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

More About Supplements

As I mentioned a few posts ago... I was kind of stuck in the same place as far as my blood sugar was concerned.   Don't get me wrong, I am overall very pleased with my success so far.  My doctor thinks that it is an amazing accomplishment to have lowered my A1c from 8.8 to 6.8 in three months.   but my goal is aggressive.   I know the damage that can be done over time with this disease.   My goal is to reverse this thing.   So, after buying Dr. Whitaker's book I was pretty exited about trying some of the new supplements and herbs that I read about.   One of the supplements was vanadyl sulfate or vanadium.   The book explains how this nutrient acts very similar to insulin and is especially helpful in lowering morning or fasting blood sugar.  I'm not going to get into re-writing the text of the book here but I knew that this was one supplement that I wanted to try because my morning blood sugar highs have been a problem for me.   Researching it further on the internet,  I learned that this supplement alone is all that some people need to bring their sugar back to a normal range.   I also learned about a form of vitamin B6, also called pyridoxine.    This vitamin helps convert carbohydrates to fuel.   It also helps to prevent Neuropathy, a complication of diabetes.

The book "Reversing Diabetes" suggests several other vitamins and supplements that I discovered I already had sitting in a bottle in my medicine cabinet.    The Vitamin formula was called Multi-betic.   I had forgotten that I even bought it.  I pulled the bottle out and read the ingredients.  I was surprised to find that many of the supplements mentioned in the book were in Multi-betic including the vanadyl sulfate and the pyridoxine.    I started taking the recommended 2 tablets a day.   Within a week my blood sugar was down another 10-15 points bringing my fasting blood sugar down to a "high normal" of about 113.

I am really pleased that I am getting closer to reversing my diabetes.   While there is no magic pill, and I still have to watch what I put into my mouth,  I believe that the chia seeds and the other supplements including the Multi-betic are helping me to attain my goals.    You can find this at Walgreens and other drugstores.  I buy mine as a double pack at

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Controlling & Reversing with Supplements

Once again, I must add a disclaimer before I start. What works for me, works for me. It will not necessarily work for others in the same way. Please work with your doctor and never change any medications you are on just because you have started using supplements. Remember also, that diet remains a very important part of controlling diabetes. There are no miracle cures. That being said, I will share what has brought me from a 230+ fasting blood sugar to a 113 fasting blood sugar level in 5 months.

Again, my first and still most important addition to my diet was Chia seeds. The chia seeds have a perfect balance of omega 3 to omega 6. The seed is also loaded with fiber, protein and antioxidants. I can't possibly explain it all here so there is a link to it at the top of my page under favorite websites. Many of my friends and co-workers have started taking Chia seeds and have started recommending them to their relatives. It almost makes me wish that I could get paid a commission! But really, I'm just glad that they are using them too and that they have seen reductions in their weight, their glucose levels and their blood pressure.

The second supplement that I added which seemed to make things happen faster is 5000 IU's of vitamin D3 that also included a small amount of vitamin K. the vitamin K helps with the absorbtion of the vitamin D3. I found an increase in my weight loss and an increase in the speed that I saw my blood sugar come down when I added this supplement. I also take Magnesium and Calcium everyday.

After about 4 months, it seemed that my blood sugar and my weight was at a stand still. Not going any higher but not coming down more either. I needed to kick something into gear. One day when I was at the store refilling my test strips I happened to see a book on the shelf in the pharmacy section. It was called "Reversing Diabetes" by Dr. Julian Whitaker. I bought the book and started reading it. It is a great book and it led me to my next diet and supplement additions. More about those in some of my posts as I go along.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Todays Victories

Today is a great day! I got on the scale this morning and my total weight loss now is 20 lbs. Gosh, I have been struggling with those last 3 pounds! I can't complain too much though because up to now I haven't been exercising. I've only been relying on my chia seeds and the other supplements I've been taking. Although 20 lbs is a milestone, I am far from where I need to be. Ten more pounds is the next goal. Time to start exercising. I've been avoiding that up till now.

The second victory is that my fasting blood sugar was 113 this morning. It's the first time since my diagnosis in Dec, 09 that it has been in what would be considered the high normal range for fasting glucose. Two victories in on day! I feel good. I feel like I've accomplished so much to get here today.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

My Best Discovery for Reversal-Chia Seeds

Well, after my dismay at the grocery store (which did get better eventually) I went on to my next quest which was to find the magic formula to my cure. I am a true believer that most diseases are somehow related to either diet or hormones or both. I am also somewhat of an intellectual and I have been accused often of over analyzing things to death. I'm guilty as charged. In this case though this trait is helpful.

I kept searching the internet looking for anything and everything related to blood sugar. I finally found something that I thought was amazing so I spent some time researching it more and I was convinced that I needed to try this natural seed called Chia Seed or Salvia Hispanica. This little tiny tasteless seed is full of Omega 3 and Omega 6 in a perfectly balanced ratio. It also provides protein, calcium, fiber and much more. There are many places to read about it but my favorite website to read about them and to buy them is

I bought a whole pound of the seeds and I started to take them everyday at every meal. I sprinkled them in my soup, on my salads, in my potatoes and vegetables. I ground them into my home made smoothies and drank them mixed into water sometimes too. My relatives, friends and co-workers are used to seeing me with my little take along bottle of the seeds which I sprinkle on everything even when I go to restaurants.

To date, this has been my best discovery. In the first week my blood sugar dropped from over 200 to 160 or lower. I lost 4 lbs that first week and continued to lose about 2 lbs a week for the next two months. I have to also say that a few weeks later I added 5000 IU's of vitamin D3 to my diet and I noticed even more of a drop in my blood sugar and weight.

10 weeks after adding Chia seeds and vitamin D3 to my daily diet, my average glucose was at 123 and I had lost 12 lbs. My blood sugar was down 100 points! My doctor was excited and amazed! She had never heard of Chia but she said "whatever you're doing, keep it up!" My A1c was down to 6.8! It had been 8.6 when I was diagnosed three months earlier. (Normal A1c levels are from 4-6)

Since I started on chia seeds, one of my co-workers started on it too. she has had high blood pressure since high school. She went to her doctor shortly after starting on chia and her doctor was blown away. Her blood pressure had never been even close to normal range even after years on medication. although it wasn't quite in normal range, she told me that it was lower than she or her doctor had ever seen! she has since started giving it to her sister and her daughter.

Again, I will say that not all things work for all people. I did not experience a change in my blood pressure as my co-worker did but we both experienced major results in different ways. For me, this is my little miracle. I suggest that you do your own research, talk to your doctor and if you do start using it, be aware that you may have to adjust your medication if you are on medication.

You can find Chia seeds in many health food stores, mexican food stores, or on the internet. They are inexpensive and they last a long time.

Dazed and Confused In the grocery store

I remember the first month or two after being diagnosed with the big D going to the grocery store looking for what to eat that I could eat.... that I was supposed to eat. I just kind of ended up standing there like I was in a maze not knowing what to do. I went down the aisles reading the carbohydrate and sugar info on the packages. I had just had my first diabetes education class so I was armed with the info on how many carbs, fat etc. I could eat. I was also concerned about salt because they said my blood pressure was borderline.

 It didn't take long for me to figure out that there wasn't much that I could eat there other than fresh meat and fresh vegetables.  I am a working girl!    I don't have a lot of time to cook. I need to make quick meals. How is this going to work? Bread? Spaghetti? Macaroni and cheese? Pizza? Potatoes..... french fried, mashed, baked or boiled? No, no, no! What could I eat! I had absolutely no idea! I am not a fast food junkie by any means. I try to make healthy meals but I felt like I was never going to figure it out.  I was paralyzed by the choices that I couldn't seem to make.

I thought about just calling my doctor and asking for medication. Then maybe I could just eat what I wanted to like so many others I knew who ate what they wanted and took medication or insulin. The problem is that all of these people just had to keep taking more and more medication. I didn't want that to be my life. So, I have to figure this out. I am figuring it out and it gets easier and easier as time goes by. I hope that I can pass on some tips in the future as my life changes continue.

5 Months from Type 2 Diagnosis

Well, it's Mothers Day today and it's also the five month anniversary of my Type 2 Diabetes diagnosis. Believe it or not I do have reason to celebrate it. I almost can't believe the progress I've made in these last five months. I've come from denial and anger to acceptance and control. I've come from an average fasting blood glucose level of over 225 to an average of 125. An A1c of 8.8 in December 2009 to an A1c of 6.8 a few weeks ago.... and still going down. Down, down, down to normal, I hope. I'm going to share in my posts how I got to where I am today with my Diabetes. I believe that others can get here too.

Now I must put out a disclaimer before I go any further. Everyone's experience is different. No ones body reacts like anyone else's body. What I have done may work for some and not for all. There are things I have tried that work for me and may or may not work the same for you. Our doctors and families need to be involved with us in this journey. What I share is my experience. Go beyond what I share about my experience and research how something may benefit you or not benefit you. This is where I end my very first blog today. More to come.