Once in awhile I see a comment on a diabetes social media site like “I’d rather live with a higher A1C and die younger than make sacrifices like living in a rigid diet and living until I’m 90.” Another comment in discussions about low A1C’s is “You people with low numbers make me feel like a failure.”
These types of comments really get me going. They make me want to whack the OP across the shins with my hockey stick. Believe me, that would get their attention! I feel very strongly that we do not have to give up things to get a low A1C. We do not have to make sacrifices to live a full life with diabetes. I also feel strongly that we can all easily get our A1C’s down to a near normal level.
You: "But I want to go out with my friends at lunch and eat at Wendy’s."
John: Do it then, but have the salad.
You: “But I really really like the burgers and fries.”
Do you now? Is this really what’s important in your life? Let’s make a list. Write down all the things in life that are important to you like relationships, activities, work, creative arts, volunteer work, spiritual affiliations and activities, sports, or whatever turns your crank. Ask yourself what it is that you are trying to do with your life. Ask it now!
Now rank them.
Where does eating that junk food belong on your list? Is it more important than spending time with your kids or grandkids? Your spouse? Would you give up going to your church, mosque, or synagogue for a plate of fries? Be real about this. Where does that junk food fit in your life?
I won’t ask you to go home, make a killer meatloaf (or other favorite ‘healthy’ dish), and compare your junk food to that. I’m just adding this paragraph to drive home the point further.
The point is that your tasty high-carb diet doesn’t rank very high on the list. There are or should be many other life objectives ahead of it.
You: "But it’s still a sacrifice. I’m burdening my life by living on this diet!"
John: "So on one hand we have an edible food-like substance consisting of a slab of beef (or chicken or beetles or whatever else your culture serves up), a bun, some fries, and a gag sugared pop. On the other hand we have nearly and endless variety of meats, fishes, vegetables, fruits, and fats. Said meatloaf, some garden carrots, some steamed green beans, real butter, and a glass of whole milk."
John: “That’s Monday. Now how about Tuesday? What do you eat on Tuesdays?”
You complete the rest of this conversation. Honestly tell me who follows the rigid diet? The person driven by hyperinsulinemia? That person who has an uncontrollable hunger due to elevated insulin levels? Or is it me? On Tuesdays I might have fish or chicken or suasage or eggs or natural yogurt or fresh turnip or a greek salad with feta cheese and a nice thick dressing or …"
If this is you, please give your head a shake. Think about what’s going on in your life. Set meaningful objectives and live for them! Live for them!
If you need help, ask. That’s why tudiabetes.com and other diabetes social networking sites exist. Ask for help. I did!