Sharing 20 years experience

I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in 1998. Though | was shocked at the time it should not have been a really big surprise. My family on my father’s side has been prone to diabetes depending on how well they took care of themselves. My paternal grandmother, a quite obese lady, died after being left blind by her diabetes type 2. An uncle died of a heart attack at age 49 possibly as the result of undiagnosed diabetes. And me - up until my 40s I was in good shape and slim and had no health issues. Then I got work that mostly was sitting down and typing and ordering in fast food for lunch and snacks. I pretty soon went up from my previous weight of around 180 lbs. to 230 lbs. i.e. obese. Then I started getting sexual problems and head aches and tiredness and my doctor had me do an hba1c test which came out at 8.4. So that was it. I had diabetes type 2.
I was determined to beat this thing without drugs and did quite a bit of research before launching on my personal regime. From the spring of 1998 to the fall of 2004 I was able to maintain perfect blood sugars including hba1cs below 5 by doing three things:

  1. Going for a brisk half hour walk immediately after each meal
  2. Restricting my carbs to ones that are low on the GI scale like barley, rye bread and beans
  3. Otherwise eating as healthy as possible i.e. avoiding red meat, eating plenty of fish and getting enough sleep every night.
    Then I had a bit of a setback, I was waiting for a bus to go to work and woke up a couple of months later after being in a coma and rehab. I had a cardiac arrest witch can strike anyone unexpectedly and affects about 500,000 Americans every year,.
    The next two years I had to focus on winning back my brain which had been severely damaged. When that was in order I could go back to focusing on my diabetes.
    My latest hba1c was 7.1 which was not perfect but with walking and a drug my doctor prescribed to increase my insulin production, Glyberide, I have a pretty positive outlook.
    And I am back to eating barley instead of rice, rye bread and roasted squash instead of potatoes.
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