Food is medicine

25. sep, 2018

I was always physically active when I was young, I played football, ice hockey, I swam, I ran and so on, but in the end of 1986 I broke my foot on my way to a badminton match with/against my future wife.

I couldn’t do any kind of activities during the coming year. At the same time, I kept on eating like I had before, but paid no attention to the fact that perhaps I should be getting rid of all the excess energy I was putting into my body. It all turned into a negative spiral. I started gaining weight. I stopped weighing myself when I passed 253 lbs. (115 kg) sometime in the mid-90’s.

I had no idea I was becoming more and more insulin resistant (I honestly didn’t know something like that even existed). In 1999 I got my diagnosis: “You’ve got diabetes”. My doctor told me that this was a disease which would stay with me for the rest of my life. He said there was no cure for it, but that I could lessen the consequences of it. Consequences include losing a leg, going blind, heart problems, kidney failure etc. A myriad of diseases…

I was scheduled with a dietitian in order to plan my food intake. I was taught to eat according to the official guidelines. I did, but didn’t get any better. I got my first diabetes medications during 2002, Metformin. In 2007 I was put on insulin.

After 25 years with insulin resistance and 13 years with diabetes, the turnaround came. One word: LCHF, low carb, high fat.

 

My timeline taken directly from my journal:

 
1987: Starting weight> 90 kg
1994: Slightly elevated blood sugar during medical examination in connection with job change
1996:> 115 kg
1999: My diabetes is diagnosed. Blood sugar 18.5. Long-term sugar (HbA1c of 9.1).  From now I should eat according to the authorities recommendations.
2002: Starting with Metformin.
2003: Starts with weight reduction medications (Reductil) to lose weight. Goes down to 100.4.
2003: Participates in a so-called "Medical trial", organized by Glaxo Smith Kline with my doctor, Muraglitazar combined with Metformin.
2004: 112 kg. Removed from the evaluation due to ”lack of glucemic control" (!). HbA1c 8.3.
2004: Start taking blood pressure medications. My doctor says it has a protective effect on the kidneys.
2004: Starts with statins when my total cholesterol is too high for a diabetic (pS-Cholesterol 5.1).
2004: Re-introduces Reductil to lose weight.
2004: Participates in new drug evaluation, code name MK-0431.
2005: The study ends, the dose of Reductil is increased and also the blood pressure medication. Weight 102.5 kg.
2005: Participates in a new drug evaluation "Treat-to-target" study. Again Glaxo Smith Kline.
2005: No effect of reductile. Now we try Xenical instead.
2005: Xenical does not work. Again weight gain, 108 kg.
2007: Starts with another medicine to reduce weight. Accomplia.
2007: Starts with insulin, 10 units in the evening.
2008: Accomplia works. Goes down to 92.7 kg.
2008: Accomplia is withdrawn from the market. The medicine appears to have dangerous side effects.
2009: Get Reductil again. Goes down to 100 kg.
2010: Reductil is withdrawn from the market. The medicine appears to have dangerous side effects.
2010. Again over 100 kg.
2010: Blood pressure starts to rise. 168/91 (day pressure) and 151/84 at night. New blood pressure medications.
2010: Statins intake doubles to protect against high cholesterol levels.
2010: Blood pressure is squeezed down with medication for 151/85 daytime and 122 // 70 night time.
2011: Double the dose of insulin to 24 units per day.

 
My way back

2012:
January

Read an article in a newspaper about a 53-year-old woman, who’d started eating low carb and reversed her diabetes. I have to admit I was quite skeptical.
February
Began eating low carb. After 24 hours I had to lower my insulin to 10 units. After 24 more hours I had to skip the insulin completely. ONLY TWO DAYS.
March
The weight fell towards 198 lbs. (90 kg). I quit taking the rest of my diabetes meds.
April
I stopped the treatment for high cholesterol. AGAINST MY DOCTOR’S RECOMMENDATIONS!
I also stopped taking my blood pressure meds. AGAINST MY DOCTOR’S RECOMMENDATIONS!

  
What happened inside my body? 

After my change to low carb, all my metabolic numbers stabilized, even if the triglycerides went up in the beginning, but they too went down later on.

 
And what happened on the outside? 

My doctor did everything to make me lose weight and by doing so get my diabetes under control. But it was the wrong priority. If you heal your inside, the outside will follow suit. So my food became my medicine. Low carb, high fat.