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Can There Be a Happy Ending After Borderline Type 2 Diabetes Diagnosis?

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If you get this diagnosis, don’t despair, there is light at the end of the tunnel. Making conscious lifestyle changes can slow or stop the onset of type 2 diabetes. Unfortunately, type 2 diabetes is escalating worldwide. The medical profession has declared it a “lifestyle disease” because the majority of those at risk are overweight, middle-aged adults who enjoy a sedentary lifestyle. My husband was a borderline diabetic and through a determined effort not only to change his mindset but also to engage in regular physical activity, he transformed his life. Weight loss and regular exercise have confirmed that he is no longer in that borderline category. Yes, there can be happy endings, but it takes hard work!

My husband’s success in reversing his type 2 diabetes diagnosis was due in large part to a small book written by Dr. Written by Sandra Cabot: “Type 2 Diabetes You Can Reverse It Naturally” WHAS Pty Ltd 2007. The author’s insight and sound advice stood the test and formed the basis of his recovery.

246 million people worldwide fall victim to this disease. The number of people living with diabetes is expected to reach 380 million in the next twenty years, based on current trends. The complications of this disease are worrying as patients can go blind, require amputation, and suffer from erectile dysfunction, stroke, kidney failure, and heart attacks. Heart disease is a factor that contributes to death in four out of five diabetics. These are alarming statistics, and serious enough to convince and motivate people with borderline type 2 to make some radical lifestyle changes. That’s exactly what my husband did.

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I embraced the same changes because, while not in the same category, I wanted to encourage my husband to adopt a healthier lifestyle, knowing that it would take willpower and motivation. First, we’ve started to make a fuss about reading all food labels and avoiding foods high in carbohydrates when we’re shopping at the grocery store. We also looked for low glycemic index foods whenever possible. The glycemic index (GI) measures how quickly your blood sugar rises after eating a particular food. The high GI foods are digested quickly, which in turn leads to a rapid rise in blood sugar and insulin levels. However, low GI foods work more effectively in the body because they are digested more slowly and blood sugar rises much more slowly than high GI foods. Analyzing all food labels was a great way to not only avoid eating fattening foods, but also helped stabilize blood sugar levels. A high GI is above 70, a moderate GI is between 56 and 70, while any food with a GI less than 55 is considered low GI.

For this to work and for a borderline type 2 diagnosis to be successfully reduced, the patient must lose weight by reducing the total carbohydrate content of the diet. The golden rule was to have a ratio of one quarter carbohydrate, one quarter protein and the remaining half of your plate a variety of vegetables. We have followed this method for the past three years and it has worked. As soon as the weight loss has become noticeable, small treats are of course allowed. I’m not advocating total abstinence from certain high GI foods, but common sense and motivation will tell you that moderation is the key to regulating blood sugar levels and maintaining weight control.

The importance of exercise cannot be underestimated. Physical activity not only lowers blood pressure, triglycerides and “bad” LDL cholesterol, and improves “good” HDL cholesterol, it also prevents heart disease and lowers blood sugar spikes that always occur after every meal. For this reason, getting regular physical activity every day is of paramount importance. There are so many other benefits of exercise, namely promoting better sleep, preventing depression, increased energy levels and a boosted immune system to fight off potential infections.

However, motivation and the will to succeed are the most important points for making a lifestyle change, especially when the weight has crept in over the years due to a more sedentary lifestyle. It’s about changing the mindset. It’s not easy in the beginning, but with a combined effort and also the support of a partner or friend, it can be achieved. Past bad habits are just that, bad habits, and they can be changed. There can be a mistake from time to time, we are human after all and we all make mistakes. Show resilience and get back to your healthier, chosen routines to eat more nutritionally and move your body!

By understanding this disease and taking positive action to counteract the long-term effects, you stave off high blood sugar and allow your pancreas to adequately make the hormone insulin, which is essential for the uptake of glucose into cells. This is where our energy comes from. When the body is in an unhealthy state, fatigue is one of the many symptoms. Diabetics produce too little insulin, which causes excess glucose to build up in the bloodstream. By adopting healthy exercise routines, eating low GI foods, more unprocessed foods, and regular exercise, a borderline type 2 diabetes diagnosis can be reversed; it just takes willpower, motivation and determination to get a healthier body back!

Thanks to Pamela Smit

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