I got diagnosed with type 2 diabetes just in time for my 40th birthday (happy birthday to me!). The first two doctors I had were pretty good. Each of them would spend half an hour to an hour per appointment explaining what I needed to know, going over test results, explaining medications and their side effects, and, most importantly, asking questions and listening to what I was telling them was going on in my body. They both also were relatively familiar with different dietary approaches to diabetes and natural remedies. As long as my hemoglobin A1c and lipid numbers stayed within goal, they were encouraging and supportive. Funny that though they lived in different cities they had gone to school together and knew each other well. After a few years, A1c was 5.5 on 2 grams of metformin and 2 grams of cinnamon per day. The following year, I missed my follow up and ran out of metformin, but when I finally went back in, A1c was still well below goal at 6.3 with just the cinnamon. At the time I was doing a somewhat modified Atkins Diet.
Fast foward 2 years. That last good A1c on just the cinnamon must have produced a certain amount of over confidence. After we moved this past summer, I went in to get established with a new physician, and A1c was now up to 11.8 and triglycerides were 590. Wow! What happened? This doctor, though, was quite a bit different from the first two. The first thing that disturbed me was the 15 minute appointment model – even for a new patient visit. How do you address a brand new patient with an extensive history in 15 minutes unless you’re running a sausage factory? I mentioned the cinnamon, but got the impression that the doc wasn’t a big fan of home remedies. She also wasn’t a big fan of the Atkin’s approach and recommended a diet with 60 grams of carbohydrates per meal and not so much concern about fat or protein. At first I misunderstood and thought she said 60 grams per day, which would have been closer to what I had been used to on Atkins, but no–it was 60 grams per meal.
I tried her approach for a couple of months until the next appointment. Blood sugars were all over the map – but consistently high – still in the 200s to 300s, seldom below 200. Next appointment, still only 15 minutes in length, two new meds prescribed with no time for explanation, and reinforcement of the 60 grams of carbs per meal, and a brief indication that if these medications didn’t do the trick then her next step would be insulin, and come back in 8 weeks. The numbers in the 300s all the time and the reference to insulin had me a little freaked out, so I figured I’d better try to do what she said. The patient information sheets for the new drugs made me a little uncomfortable, though. I already had occasional mild problems with a couple of the prominent side effects of these two meds, and I wondered how my body was going to react. But lots of people are on this very same combination of 3 medications, so it must not be that bad. Right?
Well, within days, my occasional leg swelling at night turned into constant swelling in both my hands and feet, and my occasional indigestion turned into 2 big bottles of Tums gone in the space of about 4 weeks. After a while, I stopped both the new meds, and both problems disappeared within days.
A brief period of discouragement followed, and then I was flipping through the channels one day and came across a program called Blaine’s Low Carb Kitchen. Bingo! It had worked before, maybe it would work again. After looking up some recipes, I went out the next day and bought some flax seed meal, almond flour, and soy flour to make my breads with and a bunch of veggies and went back on Atkins in earnest. Fasting blood sugar the morning I started was 211 (normal less than 100). That was a week ago, and I have yet to have another reading over 200. In fact, the last two days, all my checks have been in the 140 range. I even had a 126 before dinner today. Wow!
Thoughts? First off, I’m not fond of the 15 minutes and out model I’ve experienced here. I know doctors are under a lot of pressure to make their clinics profitable, but 15 minutes for a new patient visit? I don’t think so.
Secondly, If something was working for a patient previously, why not let them give it a try again. Does diabetes really get harder to control, as this doctor told me during my first visit, or is the standard advice really just overloading the body with something it can’t handle?
Third. For 5 years I worked in a genetics clinic at a major teaching hospital. One of the doctors I worked with specialized in metabolic disorders. The approach for those childhood metabolic disorders is not to keep feeding the substance the kid can’t process, but rather to restrict it severely. If the major malfunction in diabetes is that the body no longer process carbohydrate properly, why overload that process? Sorry if I’m being simplistic here, but if I can get my blood sugar where it needs to be in less than a week simply by changing what I eat . . . .
The picture above is of the very yummy low-carb cookies i made tonight. Instead of white flour, they’re made with almond flour. Instead of sugar, Splenda. If I keep finding recipes like this one, I might just do okay this time – even if I do disobey doctor’s orders.
1 cup almond flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 stick of butter
3/4 cup Splenda
1 tsp vanilla
4 tbsp. almond butter
Preheat oven to 400. Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt into a bowl. Creeam butter with Splenda. Add vanilla and almond butter, add eggs. Gradually stir in the dry ingredients until mixed. Spoon onto greased cookie sheet and bake 10 to 15 minutes until lightly borwn. Remove from oven and let cool on rack. (makes 24 cookies – about 1 net carb per cookie)by beakennedy
Well, the year is quickly drawing to a close. Fall color is quickly flying past, and it’s time to take look back at the “New Year’s resolution post” and check progress.
- Get Organized. Nope. Not an inch of progress. I did manage to give the site a face lift this summer, though.
- Show Off. Currently working on selecting some pictures to make LARGE living room sized prints from. Contests? I’ve entered a few online that weren’t outright “rights grabs” where you have to give up all your rights to your photo whether you win the contest or not. Last night, though, I actually did win a place in my very first photo contest with this shot:
I guess the winning photos will be in the newspaper sometime in the near future, so I guess I get another 15 minutes of fame. Sharing online? Some sort of consistency would probably help. Still struggling there.
- Try something new. Well, just about the time the weather was getting nice enough for me to start getting out the Bender, we had to go and move. Now that the year is nearly over, I’m finally pretty much done with all that, so I hope to start playing with that again. I’ve been looking at large format printers since the summer. My husband may have just made it possible for me to actually acquire one of these, and I believe there is still a rebate going on for the one I want which will make the price much more appealing, so it’s possible that by the end of the year I’ll be delving into the other end of the photographic process – making prints worth putting up on the walls.
- New perspectives. While the technical skills continue to improve making it easier for me to reproduce in two dimensions what I see in three, I’m still fleshing out how I uniquely see the world.
- Do some good. It’s a pleasure to use my photography skills and equipment in service to Christ. It’s probably an odd thing to do, but I told a pastor here, “You know how some people dedicate their babies? I dedicate my cameras.” And I do. It’s God who has given both the equipment I have and the skill to use it, and when I get a new camera or lens, I take it to church with me and lay it on the altar and dedicate it to the Lord’s service first. Do I get a lot of pleasure from it that’s not at all related to serving the Lord? Absolutely! But if that ever begins to take first place in my heart, I have a tangible reminder of where my blessings come from and who really owns “my” stuff, and that’s a blessing too. I’d still like to explore this area in more depth, though. As far as teaching, since my daughter is the one who inherited my Rebel, I get the pleasure of throwing her a tip or new technique to try now and then, as well as watching her progress.
- Challenge myself. The photowalks have sort of come to an end during the moving process. Not to say that it will stay that way forever, but . . . . Taking pictures of people I don’t know. Is it only photographers who react badly to having their picture taken? Maybe just some photographers.
- Start a project. The only “project” currently in the works is trying to decorate the new place with some of my photographs. Mostly, it’s my own indecision holding that one up. I finally made some small prints of potential candidates while mom and dad were here, but that’s as far as I’ve gotten.
- Take my camera everywhere. Definitely. Good move.
Here’s another picture entered in last night’s contest that didn’t win. Enjoy.
Well, my little story made the cut. Look for me on June 4.
Dear One Year Life Verse Contributor:
Well it took a while, but the edited manuscript for The One Year Life Verse Devotional has gone to the typesetter. Phew!
Attached is a single month of the manuscript — the month that includes your contribution. I’m sending this to you to confirm that you’re in the book! And this note is also a final safety net to make sure we didn’t totally mess up your story. Unless there is a glaring error, please don’t find anything you want to change! The typesetters would not be happy with me.
A couple other thoughts:
The book is not yet on the Tyndale website. But other bookselling sites are pre-selling it. Check out amazon.com for a view of the cover:
Thanks! It turns out I got way more stories than I needed, and so quite a few didn’t make the cut. Please pray with me that our devotional draws people to God and His Word.
With much appreciation,
Jay K. Payleitner
I’ve got a couple. First is Psalm 40:2-3 because that’s the story of what God through faith in Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection has done for me.
He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD.
My second is 1 John 3:2.
Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.
Here’s the story I submitted for the One Year Life Verse Devotional, which will be published next year. Check back to see if I’ll have my 15 minutes of fame.
During my last two years of high school, I attended church with one of my high school teachers, Mr. G., and his family. Mr. G. would listen to my teenage troubles, and say “Don’t worry. You’ll get there.” After graduation, I joined the Navy and lost contact with Mr. G. for many years. During that time, I became an atheist and spent the next 18 years totally apart from God. But no matter how bad things seemed, I would always hear Mr. G. saying, “Don’t worry. You’ll get there.” Sometimes that was the only hope I had.
Finally, in 1997, just when things couldn’t have been better, God stepped back into my life, and in January 1999, I placed my faith in Jesus Christ. Sometime later I began to understand how unlike Christ I was. It was then that I found 1 John 3:2 and realized that, even though I wasn’t as much like Jesus right now as I wanted to be, there is coming a day when I will be. Then I remembered how Mr. G. would always say, “Don’t worry. You’ll get there.” I didn’t know where “there” was then, but now I don’t worry about how slow my progress seems or how often I fail. God has promised that with one look I’ll finally be there.