Diabetes and me: An early Christmas present

I received some good news yesterday. I’ve made some significant lifestyle changes recently to help with my (type 2) diabetes. Yesterday’s news validated those efforts – and its timing made for a lovely early Christmas present. 

It all started back in October with a jolt of motivation and a switch to a low-carbohydrate diet. This has had a profound and visible impact. I’ve lost 20 pounds since then, helping with some of my lifelong body confidence issues in the process.

The primary goal for me, however, was reducing my blood glucose levels. The key indicator of this is a test called HbA1c (snappy name, huh?) At my previous test, this had veered into ‘are-you-trying-to-kill-yourself-or-are-you-just-stupid?’ territory. This time, however, I was expecting better news.

I hadn’t dared to dream just how much better, though.

Long story short: a reading of 49 or below qualifies as ‘normal’ and is what a type 2 diabetic like me should be striving for. I had never before registered lower than 58. This time … 48!

I was stunned. Delighted. Chuffed to bits.

It’s a brilliant result but it doesn’t mean I’m ‘cured’. Once you’re a diabetic you’re always a diabetic. (It’s a bit like being an alcoholic in that respect.) I will spend the rest of my life doing blood and eye screening tests, and obsessing over stats. I can quickly undo all the good work by slipping back into bad eating habits. And I’d still like to lose some more weight if I can. The battle never ends. It is one I will be fighting for the rest of my life.

But the future is another day. I can take this good news for what it is: good news. I’ve made huge strides in a relatively short space of time. And, best of all, my diabetic nurse agreed I can reduce my daily medication. When you have a progressive condition such as diabetes, any time you can scale back rather than increase the drugs you need is a cause for celebration.

After nine years, I finally feel like I have some semblance of control over my health. It’s a good feeling. Actually, no … it’s a great feeling. Let’s see what comes next.


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