So, that’s how Peter Parker felt?

Reversing diabetes, curing diabetes, I see it all the time. When I see it, I think to myself, it only works as long as one works it, diabetes is still a life sentence, not always a death sentence, but a life sentence none the less.

In April 2011, I embarked on the journey of a lifetime. I was set to path with choice, inject-able insulin or change my lifestyle.

Lifestyle change was a choice I had been given in 2007 upon diagnosis, trade in my white for wheat, use moderation when dealing with sugar, you no doubt know the drill, and well, that mess backfired. The lifestyle change of 2007 helped me to not only up the dosage of Metformin, but invited it’s friends starlix and glipizide to the party. They in turn welcomed hypertension, GERD, and elevated cholesterol to the mix. Four years of ups and downs on the blood sugar roller coaster was no piece of cake.

With the exception of some birthday sushi and a rogue pork wonton this year (2 1/2 years into my newer lifestyle change), my blood sugar has been that of a normal person. On those 2 occasions, I hit 140 at an hour, but was back down to around 100 (give or take 5 points) at the two hour mark.

It is so easy to go a couple years of good blood sugar control and think one’s self cured. I’ve read about a lot of people reversing, curing, what have you, sticking to my guns, telling them that I am not cured, rather remission, matter of fact, I’m thankful my doc didn’t remove my diagnosis, that just one bite could have my diabetes rearing it’s ugly head once again.

So as I sit here waiting to tie this up, I think about how Tom Hanks was talking about his doc telling him to just get down to his high school weight and he wouldn’t have to worry about his diagnosis of T2D, and I’ve got just a bit of pent up anger about the whole “fat makes us diabetic” nonsense, while today’s little experiment shows me that the fat didn’t make my diabetes, the fat was a symptom of my diabetes. At 157 pounds this morning, 80.5 pounds less than three years ago, 3 pounds less than my high school weight, wearing clothing several sizes smaller than the size 15/16 I wore in school (8/10 currently, thank you very much), I’d like to tell Tom Hank’s doc (and all the other docs that tell us to just lose weight and we won’t be diabetic) to go suck an egg.

The experiment:

Test at bedtime, test after fasting 12 hours, upon waking, eat the banana, test. Simple, take pics, using the conventional wisdom that since I’m not really fat anymore, I should be perfectly capable of eating a freaking banana without having any problems. Easy, peasy, maybe?

Because this test was important, I set rules in place, fast like it’s the night prior to a lipid panel (I ate nothing after dinner), go to bed and try to get a good 8 hours, banana only, water is ok, no other thing eaten because bananas are nearly fat free and fat is the evil villain right? Anyways, just the banana, some water, my test kit, my camera. This is how the games began:

001

This is the banana left on the counter after the minis. It is ripened now, so it is probably the full 29 grams of carbs with 14 grams of sugar as reported on Fatsecret.

005

After a dinner of chili verde, a cup of coffee, relaxing with his hotness, my blood glucose reading before bed was 88. Nothing else to eat, a glass of water, a shower, off to bed, nighty night.

006

Fasting glucose 12 hours later 89. Look mom, no dawn phenom!

007

I have to admit that while warming my hands to take my fasting glucose I told my husband that I was nervous about the test. I thought that I would turn into a sugar monster with one bite, but I didn’t. Too sweet, had to make myself finish it.

008

Pardon the camera lens, it’s not so easy taking a pic and finishing a banana without some type of blooper.

It couldn’t have been more than 15 minutes when his hotness started getting ready to go out to start the truck and wait for his crew to arrive. As he was getting his boots on, I said “This is how Peter Parker felt”. He looked at me crooked and said “What?”.

“I feel it, surging through my veins, the sugar from the banana, it’s like this weird little buzz, zipping around, like when Peter got bit by the spider.” I said. He told me it was probably my nerves and to just test my glucose. I did just that at the 30 minute mark.

009

If conventional wisdom is so wise, why is my blood glucose already 136 only 30 minutes after consuming a banana? Maybe because conventional wisdom is wrong about diabetes? Maybe because diabetes is a problem with sugar, and fat is just the smokescreen to keep us sick and tired? Ok, enough conspiracy theories, lets wrap this up.

010

While waiting between testing, I read a little in a diabetic group I am in, I told them about today’s experiment, and told them about this 45 minute reading. 174 totally freaked me out, so I did what any other sane freaked out person would do and turned on some music and gloved up. I must honestly tell you that the heavy bag and speed bag whooped my keister in only 3 minutes. My normal boxing stamina last 10-15 minutes each bout, and well, this morning I failed miserably. At 3 minutes, I was exhausted, but hey, sugar is the preferred fuel of our bodies, right? WRONG (In my experience anyways)

013

One 3 minute round of boxing doesn’t sound like much, but I was thankful that my 1 hour reading was a little lower. (Still too freaking high though) Did the boxing help it decrease? Would it have dropped in that 15 minutes had I continued to just do nothing? I don’t know, but this is one experiment I will not be repeating so yes dears, the world may never know…

After the hour reading, it was time to take May to school. I made it home without making a bee line for Nashville and the nearest Krispy Kreme. While in the past, sugar made me hungry for more sugar, today’s banana has left me feeling quite nauseous, tired, and overly thirsty. The bacon waiting for my breakfast has been bagged and put in the fridge because even though the test is over (as I type this), I don’t feel like eating.

016

One and a half hours in, back down to 137. To be honest, 137 sucks. Damage begins above 120, no matter how many times the powers to be say that 140 is good. While I probably won’t lose a toe to one banana, I did lose a bit of my faith in “My Plate” et al. (who am I kidding, I already knew they were full of caca…)

018

2 hours in and I barely made it lower than the 30 minute mark. Looking at this reading, I am still diabetic.

Today’s experiment was a test on my nerves. I learned what I already knew about my diabetes, that 1. it’s still there. 2. Even if I lose another 5 pounds it will still be there. 3. I am not diabetic because I was fat, I actually lost 25 pounds prior to diagnosis, I gained 50 after diagnosis. 4. My increased lean mass did not help me to be ok with eating a banana, but it will probably help me to live through this experiment.

Just so no one worries their pretty little heads over my glucose experiment this morning, I will tell you that I took a break typing to test at the 2 hour and 15 minute mark. My glucose is down to 119, still feeling thirsty, another glass of water please, and my tummy feels poorly. While the minis didn’t bother me, it didn’t mean that bananas are ok for me, only that 1/6th of a banana combined with cream cheese, pecans, eggs, and dark chocolate isn’t so bad as an occasional treat, just no more whole bananas.

 

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17 thoughts on “So, that’s how Peter Parker felt?

  1. Hi . I read this with interest, Nice analysis of the effects of a banana, and it reminded me that everyone is different.

    I was over fifty, obese, and did not make any attempt whatsoever at control via food or exercise. I recognised only two states – “full up” and “hungry”. I got hugely overweight, and avoided any kind of exercise. Then I was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, with blood sugars were in the high 300’s. I had no confidence I could do ever tackle this, but built some very powerful and effective mental tools to help me succeed. In the end, I shed 40 Kg, used exercise to help reduce the insulin resistance of my muscles, and ended up with proper sugar levels without medication.

    12 years later, I was tested for diabetes, including the dreaded 75g glucose test, passed them all at levels below pre-diabetic, and was removed from the diabetic register.

    Perhaps I was lucky catching it early. I know that not everyone with T2DM is due to being overweight, but I do believe that a significant number are, and many of the millions of diagnoses are potentially avoidable. Now in my sixties, I keep my carb consumption very low, and exercise level high, and aim to be ex-diabetic for the rest of my life.

    • Thank you for reading.

      12 years and passed the glucose tolerance test? WOW. My opinion on my own remission may very well change by then. In the event that I’m still kicking in 2024 (that will be my 12 med free, fingers crossed), I will test out another banana. I’m thinking that even at this point in my journey 75g of glucose would no doubt have me in the outer limits.

      The main reason I don’t like talking about lifestyle as a cure is that for many, myself included, cured means I no longer have to be diligent and maybe I can eat a couple of bananas or reeses cups.

      The more I remind myself that something as seemingly innocent could be the difference in my A1c at 5.4 or 7.0, the more I stay true.

      I’m not trying to take away from people like yourself. You are only one of the only handful of people I’ve ever heard of with more than a decade diabetes free. Keep fighting the good fight.

  2. I loved reading this. I am in the process of making that lifestyle choice. I received my diagnosis a few years ago and have been through a few doctors. One refused to prescribe anything but Metformin, which makes me incredibly sick. The other did nothing but crab about my weight (which I was losing…and she did it in front of my little girl, who promptly chastised her.) and even though she said she was not interested in giving me diarrhea, proceeded to up my dosage of metformin to something I could not tolerate. So here I am working on losing weight (because I know I am fat and would like to get healthy). No more bananas for me BTW. 🙂

    • Hi Melissa, Thank you for reading. If you haven’t already read “Dr. Bernstein’s Diabetes Solution” by Dr. Richard K. Bernstein, it is very helpful in making the changes. (A lot of his book can even be read on line)

      Focus on your blood sugar, the weight will follow. You will be able to see by testing what works with you or against you. Make sure to keep a food log to accompany your meter and show it to your doctor. I am thankful that I was able to keep in close contact with my doctor, we had weekly visits to go over my food log and meter, altering my meds as needed.

      Test every day, upon waking, prior to, one and two hours after meals, and at bedtime. Take your meter everywhere you go. Before you know it, your doc will be awed instead of crabby. Have a nice day 🙂

  3. Great post. I’m going to share it on Facebook. I do feel responsible. And I do feel horrible. And I will never view the humble banana the same way again. I’m sorry, but that was simply an amazing phenomenon to see. Good point about once “bitten,” never cured.

    • Thanks 🙂 You are not responsible and should not feel horrible. I do not know how old you are, but I figure from your pic that conventional wisdom is much older than you are, so we’ll just pin it on them. Well, them and fast food, processed food giving out nutritionist credits these days.

      That banana turned out to be a wolf in sheep’s clothing. It with all it’s 105 calories looked so innocent sitting there on the counter. Anyways, I’m glad I did it because, the banana is no longer taunting me, and well, now I really can’t fool myself into thinking I’m ten foot tall and bulletproof. Have a great day

    • Thanks Ruth 🙂 A lot of times, Docs get the raw end of the deal, having to rely on the drug companies to tell them about this or that, and well, there’s just lots of transparency there, right? (sarcasm)

      Dr. Kruse once posted that we should be foot soldiers for our docs, to learn what we can and share what we find. I really liked that and it stayed with me.

      A lot of times people tend to shy away from thinking outside the box, heck I know some who are scared to tell their docs that they don’t eat bread anymore, but the results are the proof the docs need to maybe see things other than the things they shown (by conventional wisdom standards)

      I hope that this post has more diabetics deciding to test and see what works and what doesn’t and that they will show their own results. With the health situation here in the states, I don’t think docs are going to really have time to do their own research that isn’t biased. It’s up to us to show them.

      Have a great day

      • Yup, there are docs that will hear your story and similar stories and start questioning what they know and make a change. But others will feel very threatened by it. I’ve read stories of patients coming to their doctors after finding a diet cure/alternative cure that works, thinking the doctor would be interested in a successful healing method, only to be asked to leave. That’s ego, and it’s pretty hard to battle.

  4. Bravo!! Thanks for this perfect reminder. When I quizzed my dr on why my 70# made no difference in my testing I got..oh you don’t know just how much difference it made! Bah

    • Thanks Karen 🙂 When my doc took me off the last of the metformin, he refused to take away the diagnosis, while it hurt my feelings at the time, I only thank goodness that it worked out that way.

      I ended up losing 30 more pounds after the meds were ended, but my A1c went from 5.2 to 5.4 (11 months later). 5.4 is still good, but if conventional wisdom lived up to it’s name, when I lost that extra 30 pounds, my A1c should have dropped a bit more. Anyways, I think that even with losing the extra, I re-introduced some foods that had been cut out, still learning, and that it is truly what we eat that has the biggest affect on our blood sugars. Have a great day 🙂

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