Tips From Diane-
Help For Diabetics
Here are some tips that Diane Post, former RN, has found helpful in controlling her diabetes. She was diagnosed with Type II Diabetes in April 2009. Since then, she has successfully replaced her synthetic medicines-not only for diabetes but also for high blood pressure and high cholesterol. With diet, supplements and lifestyle changes, she was able to reduce her daily intake of 8 medications per day to only one low-dose aspirin every other day.
To attempt lifestyle changes, an honest and realistic view of your physical condition is vital. Diabetes is a complex condition and, unless changes are made, it will usually result in poorer and poorer health. Too many diabetics take a pill and do not change their lifestyle. However artificially controlling their blood sugar levels does not heal their condition. It just acts as a mask.
Disclaimer: The tips here may not be practical or helpful for everyone. They are not intended as professional medical advice. Please discuss lifestyle and dietary changes with a medical professional.
These tips are in addition to the great need for regular exercise (especially in the morning, like walking), good sleep and eliminating stressors like poor health or emotional struggles.
* Make changes gradually. These last longer. Pray and ask God which of these will be helpful for you, and which to prioritize. Diane’s small successes helped her feel more energetic and healthier, which then became her motivation to do more.
* Eat some protein 5-10 minutes before, or at the beginning of, every meal or snack [to allow your pancreas to more release insulin in a more regulated and slower manner in order to deal with the increased sugars in the blood.]. ex. boiled egg, milk products, meats, beans, lentils, nuts.
* Avoid or decrease heavy carbohydrates, ie, all sugars, rice, most grains and flours (esp. wheat), breads, pastas, white potatoes, and especially high fructose corn syrup that are in most processed foods. Also avoid chemical sugar substitutes (Sucralose, saccharine, Sweet n Low, Splenda etc.)
* Limit or eliminate all sugary drinks, including “sugar free”, “diet” and even “diabetic” drinks – because chemical sugars are hard for the body to process and may lead to weight gain.
* Meal schedule: eat more meals but smaller meals and protein-rich snacks (like nuts and seeds, celery or carrot sticks with natural peanut butter) ex. Three small meals and three snacks, including one before bed [to prevent a rebound effect when your blood sugar drops during the night, the “dawn effect”]
* Drink water throughout the day in small amounts at a time – about two gallons a day, or possibly more if you are overweight. [Carry a water bottle and sip from it often, and refill it ]
* In the morning, after testing your blood sugar level, enjoy a hot cup of tea or coffee in the morning with 1/3 teaspoon of strong cinnamon and some milk – it helps moderate blood sugar highs and lows and to temper your appetite [note: most packaged grocery store “cinnamon” has fillers and flavoring and may even entirely lack real cinnamon. You may need to try a health food store.]
* Try “bitter melon” (“momortica charantia” ) – found in chinese markets or health food stores.
* Increase your leafy green vegetable intake [spinach, cooked kale, collard greens, cabbage, lettuce and herbs (parsley, cilantro…) ] – with many of these you can have as much as you desire (good fiber, good filler, great for the metabolism).
* Eat starch resistant legumes including lentils, dried beans, and peanuts. Enjoy more garlic, onions, and broccoli but avoid eating lots of starchy vegetables like potatoes, corn, lima beans and peas.
There are several herbs that may significantly decrease blood sugar levels. One of these is chirayito (swertia chirayita) – not available in USA (“over-harvested”). In Nov. 2013 a Nepali diabetic who had been on insulin for two years before using chirayita recommended this to Diane. She began taking a tea containing it and within two weeks her blood sugar was dropping too low. She had to decrease and then stop her medication and has maintained her blood sugar level since then without it. (We of course recommend a doctor’s oversight.)
Here in Nepal, diabetics usually test their blood sugar once a month or less. Do not take such herbs unless you are monitoring your blood sugar level at least daily. It may cause your blood sugar to drop too low which is dangerous and can result in hypoglycemic shock or death. Know your signs of low blood sugar and carry glucose tabs or something to gently raise your blood sugar level. Symptoms of low blood sugar may vary but may include sweating, inability to concentrate, slurred speech, weakness, mental confusion, feeling poorly and/or nauseous. Inform those you live and work with to get you help if you have these symptoms, as the diabetic himself may not recognize the danger.