How to Reverse Diabetes and Other Illnesses Naturally
My Journey to Learn How to Prevent and Reverse Stuff Like Diabetes and Heart Issues and Other Nasties Naturally
I looked in the mirror lately, and was disgusted at what I saw. I no longer saw the fit, vibrant ultra-healthy person I had once been.
Instead, I saw someone who was bordering on depressed, was tired all the time, overweight, and tied to a few nasty habits, and probably soon to follow in my dad's footsteps (he has type 2 diabetes and suffered a stroke last year).
This is NOT what I want the next part of my life to be like.
I've always thought I ate really healthfully, and up until a few years ago, I was very active.
Since working at home on the computer all day (starting in about 2007), I've done little. I had a scare this last winter when I developed phlebitis behind my right knee, and subsequently had to have a leg vein lasered shut from ankle to groin. 6 months later, my lower leg is still numb, and it still hurts to touch it in certain places. (I wrote about this at my Self Development blog a few months ago)
I've always enjoyed learning about alternative health and wellness, so now it's time to put this into action and become the vibrant, happy, healthy person I am meant to be.
Hence this article, which I hope will help inspire others as well. We'll talk about the basics of what is diabetes, what can diabetics eat (consult your doctor first!!!), what foods to avoid with diabetes (no-brainer), the movie Fat Sick and Nearly Dead, my thoughts on reversing diabetes naturally (with some info from experts I admire), and my own journey back to vibrant health
I Just Made This Video: Risk Factors for Diabetes - And, oh yeah... I've got some of those factors...
I'm not trying to be a fear monger here, but the more research I do, the more I feel I need to act, and act now! I actually just made this video (I really LOVE making Youtube videos!), and am sharing my quick results here...
I Honestly Don't Even Know if I HAVE Diabetes
But I'm certainly showing signs of heading that way...
I won't tell you how I feel I'm on my way. Let's just say that I don't want to go there.
It's not even "just" diabetes that I don't want to experience. After the 'vein thing" as I call it, I realized that I needed to move away from the computer and start getting regular exercise. (see the photo of my ankle a couple of weeks after I had the "vein thing" - it was still swollen. If you click the photo, you can read about my thoughts on that...)
By the way - it is currently 6 months after that "vein thing" and my leg is still numb, and extremely sensitive to the touch. Better than letting a clot run around though...
As of this writing, I'm walking nearly every day, and incorporating a little "jogging" into the routine - in intervals, just to break it up and get the heart pumping a little bit more than it does when I'm just walking.
A lot of the things in many Americans' lifestyles in general point to developing not only diabetes, but heart disease and other cruddy dis-eases as well.
Because of my personal beliefs, I truly do believe that most of these things can be prevented - or reversed, if we're already manifesting them. I honestly do believe this.
I know that much of my own beliefs fly in the face of conventional medicine, but I'm not really concerned about that. This is more-or-less my own ramblings, my own feelings, and kind of a "journal," if you will, about my own path.
I'm hoping to log some of what I'm learning and doing here. So, this little article will be ongoing for a while as I begin to sort things out.
What IS Diabetes?
In the simplest terms, diabetes (aka diabetes mellitus) is a condition where the body is unable to make and use insulin properly. Insulin is a hormone that is produced by the pancreas. Insulin's job is to to help the body turn food into energy. Here is a link to a website that can explain the important role of insulin in our bodies - Source: Endocrineweb Endocrineweb - Explanation about Insulin
I need to start with a movie I watched the other day...
"Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead"
This movie is extremely well-done. A filmmaker from Australia named Joe Cross went on a journey to heal himself of Uticaria (an autoimmune disorder that manifests itself in nasty hives), and obesity. Under the supervision of Dr. Joel Fuhrman (who is AMAZING!), Joe embarks on a 60-day juice fast.
While he's on his fast, he travels throughout the US meeting and talking with a bunch of different people about what he's doing. While he's in Arizona, he meets a guy named Phil Staples, who is struggling with morbid obesity and Uticaria - the same condition that Joe has.
One thing leads to another - and Phil jumps on the bandwagon.
After juice fasting, the primary lifestyle change is that they go from eating "regular" or "Standard American Diet" foods to a plant-based diet.
Long story short - peoples' lives are changed. They inspire thousands of others. Including me.
The movie is exceptionally well-done, and is very educational as well. I thought I knew a lot about healthy eating, but I found myself quite surprised at how much more I learned.
Ok, so I'm not saying I'm going to go on a 60-day juice fast (or "juice feast" as some teachers call it) - but I do love making juice.
And, in another book I just picked up - an e-book by Matt Traverso called "Reverse Diabetes Now!" he talks a lot about the information that I picked up in "Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead." And some of the things Matt talks about is Dr. Robert O Young's recommendations (including a 14-day liquid "feast").
So, I'll be talking about my own experience (if I decide to do the juice fast as part of my "lifestyle cleanup").
More about this inspiring movie
If you can't find a copy of Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead at your local RedBox, you can get it at Amazon - either the DVD or even the download.
Have You Ever Juiced?
Whether it was to reverse or prevent an illness or just for general well-being, is this something you've ever done?
Have you, or would you, ever juiced?
Juicing Can Be Fun!
(uh huh... I'll keep telling myself that!)
Ok, so I dug out this old Jack LaLanne juicer and began putting it to work. I also have a VitaMix that I use a lot for my smoothies and other recipes.
But for now, I just want to give my cells a kick in the butt as I begin making certain changes. Tonight, at "cocktail hour" we will be enjoying a big ol' glass of this! (see picture)
I decided to go with some Kale, carrot, celery, ginger, and tomato in this batch, just to see how I like it.
I did NOT put the Vitamineral Greens into this batch - I'll use that for my chia/greens/turmeric/pepper mix later today.
The sprouted almonds are raw and unpasteurized, which I get from Briden Wilson Farm in California (in the US, you can't buy unpasteurized almonds in the store - you can get them directly from the grower though). I will eat the almonds AFTER drinking the juice today...
Here's what the Juice Looked like...
It tastes better than it looks!
So, it took me a little while to get the hang of the juicer - In the movie "Fat Sick and Nearly Dead" Joe and, later, Phil, use a Breville. Right now, I'll use what I have. Once the household finances improve a little, I may splurge on the Breville, because it really does look like a nice model. They have one that has a smoothie function as well, which would be nice.
You saw all the veggies in the photo above - they made about 12+ ounces of juice.
It honestly was delicious!
As I write this, I drank the juice about 2 hours ago, and followed it up with about 20 sprouted almonds.
It's now 12:00 noon, and I have to tell you... it may be coincidence, but I'm feeling VERY focused, no jitters, and ready to head out for a walk!
Hmmm... Interesting, to be sure.
This is the Breville Juicer I Want!
As much as my old Jack LaLanne juicer is working pretty well as an extractor, I would like to upgrade to this cool Breville "Juice and Blend" model. Best of both worlds! :) (But, I still love my Vitamix, and won't give that baby up!)
So what are some foods to AVOID with Diabetes?
You probably already know most of this!
And it's not just what people with DIABETES should avoid eating, but really... once you see the list, you'll instantly recognize that most of this stuff just isn't really good for us no matter WHAT we're trying to heal from...
I know that people will argue that this, that or the other thing is fine - and I'm gonna go with you on that with the added "In Moderation." The problem seems to be, however, that most folks struggling with weight or chronic illness probably are NOT eating this stuff "in moderation."
Including yours truly. Again, I'll add info as my own journey progresses, but here's the "short list" (Got a lot of this from Matt Traverso's book, Reverse Diabetes Now!" - You can read a little more detail about the details of this list if you want at this site about reversing diabetes website.
=> Fast Food - You name it!
=> Sugar (this includes that ever-present "high fructose corn syrup")
=> Processed Fats
=> White Flour
What CAN Diabetics Eat?
Or... Perhaps I should say, what can and SHOULD we ALL be Eating??
By now, if we humans haven't gotten the picture yet, well...
Ok. We KNOW what we should avoid. We KNOW we should be eating dark leafy greens!
We KNOW all this.
Then why do we not do it?
One thing I learned in the movie Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead was that there are "micronutrients" (found in plant-based foods) - and which are the foods that we must have to maintain good health right down to the cellular level, and "macronutrients" - which is everything else.
So, where do we get these micronutrients?
=> Dark leafy greens
=> Sprouted seeds and nuts
One of the things that Matt Traverso emphasizes is that if our body is 70% water, and our brains are 80% water, doesn't it make sense that 70-80% of our diets should be live, high-water content foods?
Instead, most people's diets (mine included) has typically been 60% meat/dairy/animal based, with a small percentage of live and vibrant foods.
Well, again, I just wanted to get this article up and running. It's by no means completed! It's going to be on going.
For now, however, I've been sitting at this computer for 5 hours, and it's time to get outside and take a walk.
(Incidentally, it's now 1:00 pm, and I'm still energized from my earlier juice and almonds). :)
I Made THIS Video about a REALLY Yummy and Healthy Cabbage & Noodle Salad - Try this... You may be surprised at how wonderful this is!
As you know, if you're a reader of either my website about managing type 2 diabetes without drugs or my Self Development and Healthy Living Tips Blog, you know that I've been working to go more "plant based" in my diet. I made this particular video demonstrating how to make a really nice cabbage salad. If you're going gluten free, just use gluten free noodles - or omit them entirely! Either way, this is wonderful!
Preparing To Heal...
Today is Sunday, July 15, 2012. For the last few days I've been getting pretty amped up about improving my general state of well-being.
I think I already mentioned that I've always thought I've eaten healthfully - but I can tell you this: After watching Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead and reading that book by Matt Traverso, I have a long way to go.
It was far too hot and muggy for me to take a walk today - so I stayed home, puttered a little in the yard. That's about it for physical exercise.
For the last few days, in preparation for a major overhaul, I've been juicing and eating primarily vegetarian meals, with the exception of dinner. Tomorrow will be entirely vegetarian.
Today, I had only one cup of tea this morning. I'm working on weaning myself off caffeine now so that I don't have headaches when I begin a full-fledged program.
As for alcohol... well, not doing so well on that right now. This week will see less wine however! :)
Juicing and Juicer Issues
Every morning for many years, we have begun our day w/ a large glass of freshly squeezed lemon and orange juice in water. I'm going to keep that up!
I juiced a bunch of veggies like I did the other day. Then, I took all the fibrous material left over from juicing and boiled it into a broth, and drank that throughout the day w/ cayenne for flavor.
The Jack LaLanne juicer is... well... unsatisfactory to me. It took too long to juice this morning, and the food kept getting jammed. It's all I have for now, besides my VitaMix and small mini-blender. But, I'm beginning to look at the Breville, and will be looking at some reviews as well.
So, I used the small mini-blender to grind up the kale and a whole apple, and used the carrot/cucumber/celery/tomato juice from the juicer for the liquid. It was surprisingly delicious! I followe that with some raw, sprouted almonds, and a handful of pumpkin seeds.
How I'm Feeling Overall
I felt a little lightheaded for a while, but have stabilized.
Blood Pressure... Yikes!
Finally, yesterday, I was at a Wal-Mart, and saw their blood pressure machine. I took my blood pressure and nearly passed out. It was high. Very high, according to that machine. Even John's was a bit high (and he is thin as a rail).
This was VERY disturbing to me.
Anyway, I just wanted to post my update. I'll be back with more!
Newest Update: 2/15/13
I've learned a lot in the last few months, and will be writing more on this topic. But, to make it short for now, I have cut out all wheat and almost all grains.
Hard to explain it all in this note, but I wrote a LONG entry about it at my website.
See the info in the next paragraph, below...
This is written 2/15/13 - I Am Going WHEAT FREE
I'm keeping the info from September 2012 for reference...
I very nearly removed the section below dated from September 2012, but decided to keep it for now, for reference.
For the last few months, I really haven't made much progress, despite my efforts (rather feeble efforts, admittedly).
However, I want to mention something that I honestly feel is turning things around for me. I wrote a VERY long post on this over at the primary website, but in a nutshell, I'll tell you that I have decided to be WHEAT FREE.
I'm not talking merely "GLUTEN FREE" but WHEAT FREE - and also, for the most part, GRAIN FREE.
It honestly isn't just about the Gluten, which you'll see. In my research for something completely unrelated, I came upon a preventive cardiologist by the name of Dr. William Davis who wrote a ground-breaking book called If what he says doesn't knock your socks off about what you thought about "healthy whole grains" I don't know what will. Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to Health.
In the same week I discovered Dr. Davis and his work, I also discovered Maria Emmerich, who also lives a wheat-free life. She takes it further, and consumes NO grain at all.
For this particular update, I will just say that I have not had any wheat at all for over 3 weeks. I have cut back on nearly all fruits - still drinking my lemon water. I'm still using (daily) my Vitamineral Greens, but have cut out the apples in my smoothies (way too much sugar in them). I have plenty of protein and veggies.
I've been thoroughly enjoying this process, and am happy to report that my energy levels are very stable, I'm more active, and one thing that REALLY is noticeable is that I don't feel the need to nap as much.
My dad is coming for a visit in a few weeks, and I'm going to test my blood sugar with his glucometer. It'll be interesting to see where I am.
Anyway, Sorry for this rather disjointed update - I need to get back to work, but I really wanted to mention this as a factor that I'm 100% convinced has a LOT to do with the things that ail us. I'll put an intro video about Dr. Davis below this section, and am also asking you to see what I wrote at this post: My Post About Going Wheat Free
PS: By the way... See that photo of pizza? I made that! It's totally wheat and grain free!! And ya know what? It was GOOD! (Photo by Kathy Tremblay... that would be me.)
Introducing Dr. William Davis
Please watch this short video introducing the idea that wheat is NOT healthy... I read the book last week, and have made the decision that I'm DONE with wheat.
Update - 9/13/12 - 1 Step Backwards, and What I'm Doing to Make Progress - So, turns out that if I eat pasta at lunch, I crash.
I don't like to waste leftovers. The other night, both John & I worked late, and needed a FAST dinner. John works VERY hard all day - up & down ladders for 10 hours that day. So, he needed a big meal. I had frozen spinach ravioli in the freezer, and a jar of a fairly high-quality spaghetti sauce. Easy enough...
So, we ate that, and had a fairly early night of it. It didn't occur to me that this would have a "sleepy" effect on me. Today, I needed to have some lunch, and hadn't had much in the way of juice - just an 8-ounce glass of kale smoothie.
I heated up some of the leftover ravioli. Felt fine for ... about 5 minutes. I seriously crashed. Like, to the point where I needed to lay down and take a nap. I am NOT pleased. I wasted a LOT of time because of that today! Like, nearly 3 hours!
I realized after I rallied, that this was the FIRST time in weeks where I've felt so tired after eating. SO... what did I do?
Immediately, I went into the kitchen and mixed up a quart of Vitamineral Greens for myself, and brought it back upstairs to the office.
I'm feeling a lot better - but am still disgusted with myself for losing so much time today.
Fessing up about the REST of the Story
So what ELSE plays a factor in this?
Thanks to fellow writer from another site who left me a really encouraging comment, I am reminded to mention something else about this journey - and that's the importance of really watching carbohydrate intake.
I knew enough to keep the overall carb count low, I hadn't known about how to best calculate them (total Carbs minus fiber content = the "net" carb load) - but now it's becoming more and more natural to look at that. When I learned that 4 grams of carb was the rough equivalent of about a teaspoon of sugar in the bloodstream, that was an eye-opener (got that tidbit from Maria Emmerich's book ). Secrets to a Healthy Metabolism
One thing I'm noticing is more energy and less daytime fatigue. That's a biggie right there. I was also always very thin until about 10 years ago. Looking back, I can now begin to see where some of that excess weight "snuck up" on me - so I'm encouraged to see it beginning to fall away.
But it's time to 'fess up folks.
Red wine has been a big issue for me - I have drank way too much (honestly? I just really LIKE it!) - which is not just unhealthy, but the effects on blood sugar and weight (not to mention overall health and life) are undeniable. Reading Maria Emmerich's take on alcohol was enough to convince me.
Yeah, yeah... I've been writing about alcohol, and how it is not good for anyone wanting to heal themselves from one nasty thing or another - whether it's diabetes, high blood pressure, or anything else.
KNOWING something is one thing... TAKING ACTION on it is another thing entirely.
Yes, I am aware about "all things in moderation;" however, in my case? There really has been no REAL "moderation" in quite a long time. SO... I decided to go 100% without for 30 days to see if I can notice any discernible changes. No "moderation." Pure & simply, NONE.
Well, it's been 8 days, and the great feeling I have is awesome - not a whole lot of impact on the excess weight yet, but I am thinking that there will be. I just feel great!
I had forgotten how good it feels to feel so good.
Image: Royalty Free Clip Art
So there you have it. I've bared my entire life before all of you!
More updates as they come...
These are the books I purchased that have now changed my life. - I feel so much better, I truly can scarcely explain it all...
I do believe that it was "time" for me to take solid, real, no-holds-barred action on my life. I still feel like a kid, but the fact is, I just can't ignore what appears to me to be sound science. I'm not superstitious, and I'm not a "fad" type of person. In fact, the last real "fad" I followed was hot pants and tube tops in the 1970s. (No... please... don't try to picture it. It isn't pretty...)
So, here we have it guys. Between the movies I watched, the other wonderful changes I've been incorporating (juicing - although I've since cut out the "sweet" stuff out of my juices - e.g. less carrot), and less of everything else that's just nasty, these books were the straw that made the camel sit down (I don't like the image of breaking a poor animal's back, so let's just say the camel sat down...)
Please consider reading them. They could change your life. They are certainly changing mine. Quick word about Maria's books - they are self-published by Maria and her husband on a budget, so you may find some small typos or grammar errors since they weren't edited in some large publishing house - but please don't let that get in your way. The information is fabulous.
"Failure Notification" (AND PROGRESS in 2018)
In August 2014 I went through this page to update, and said it was time for me to watch Joe Cross' movie again - I've faltered, and need to re-motivate and re-invigorate. I have been eating too much wheat-based stuff (living in Florida in the winter where there are hundreds of restaurants is too tempting for me, I guess), and well, let's just leave it at that. I can feel the effects of my "relapse" profoundly. I wanted to give you a better update. SEE 2018 UPDATE BELOW! YES! Progress!!
Another Health and Fitness Related Site! - This video is to introduce the site
2018 Update... I've really made some wonderful strides in my own journey to better health over these last few years since I first wrote this article. I've begun a newer YouTube channel (see the introductory video below which will definitely explain things to you). I hope you will visit and subscribe to my channel where I'm doing my best to be publicly accountable along the way. :)
In addition, some of my mentors invited me to be a contributor to this Health, Fitness and Wellness website. I hope you'll stop by! I'll be doing a lot of updates on my personal fitness journey. I think you'll agree by just looking at my picture (taken in January 2018) that I've made some progress!
My Introduction to my "Health Transformation" & Tracking My Journey at YouTube!
If you've been on any kind of personal journey yourself and would like to share some pointers - or just want to wish me luck, please sign my guestbook! :)