Diabetes is a disease which is growing like a plague. For the year 2014, Diabetes NZ cites 257,776 people affected by this disease. Furthermore, one in three adults and one in ten kids are obese in New Zealand, with disproportionate representation in the low socio-economic population.
This article aims to present diabetes from a different perspective, investigating the possibility that diabetes is not a ‘disease’, and that it’s not necessarily about ‘calories in – calories out’. Perhaps we need to think outside the ‘official’ guidelines to cure diabetes, and do our research before the so-called ‘healthy’ food actually kills us.
In 2007 I was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. I consider myself fortunate. Diabetes is a slow killer and can go undetected for many years. I was given the common professional advice to control diabetes; eat complex carbohydrates, avoid fat, do a bit of exercise, and take the prescribed pills. Accepting that doctors and dieticians know more than me, I followed the advice, but my diabetes got worse. Every doctor visit added one more tablet to my prescription. Eventually I was on nine pills a day and the next step would be insulin injections. I was also losing weight. Exercise was difficult because I was always hungry. I had high and low sugar peaks, eating six times day to keep the sugar level optimum, but was still losing weight, and confidence.
This was a very hard time for me, but at this point I had an epiphany about the human body. If, when software is created to run a machine, the software engineer also creates an anti-virus - an alternate source of power or ‘safe mode’ to protect the system, then why would ‘nature’ create such a complex machine like the human body without an anti-virus or self-healing ability?
This revelation led me to look at alternatives. I tried different diets; eating raw, then Paleo, and finally, a low carbohydrate diet without *wheat. After much online research, books, and YouTube videos (see references online), it occurred to me that the common professional guidelines for diabetes sufferers need to be reviewed.
In 2014 I started eating a low carb, high fat diet (LCHF). Within 60 days my blood sugar results dropped to pre-diabetic levels without any medicine. Today I eat only twice a day, a wheat- and sugar-free diet. I have started to do strenuous exercise, my energy has improved, my slight belly fat has reduced and muscle weight has increased by 1.5kg. This is on a high fat diet, whereas on a complex carbohydrate, moderate-eating diet I was losing weight.
This diet is very helpful for obese people as they lose weight very easily and can maintain satiety for a longer period. However, here I must issue a disclaimer: I am not a qualified health professional. I started this journey out of necessity as my health was declining in spite of following professional recommendations. I urge you to do your own research, and take responsibility for your own health and nutritional education.
This article is not intended to condemn health professionals, it is simply an invitation to think outside the square, challenge the conventional wisdom, go against the flow and get back what you have been deprived off - your health.
“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their mind cannot change anything” George Barnard Shaw
The references below are provided as a starting point for your own research. Watch documentaries, read books, look at websites, create your own recipes, calculate your calories and make your own muesli bars to keep you and your family healthy.
Sustainable Landscapes Consultant