Your tablets are starting to fail you.
Fasting blood sugar level is creeping to hit its highest in your entire life despite taking multiple oral anti-diabetic drugs.
Next option your doctor recommends – “SORRY, BUT IT’S TIME FOR YOU TO INJECT & MAINTAIN ON INSULIN.”
Insulin is useful and initially life-saving, however, only up to a certain extent.
Before grabbing that pen or syringe, read this first…
CARBOHYDRATE (sugar, bread, pasta, fruits, rice, soda, and the likes) is the major stimulator of insulin release.
Carbohydrate is broken down into glucose (and/or fructose) when digested.
And with INSULIN’s help, glucose enters tissues like the muscles or liver to be either used as energy or stored as glycogen or fat.
The problem of type 2 diabetics (T2DM) is “carbohydrate intolerance” and “insulin resistance.”
CARBOHYDRATE INTOLERANCE – T2DM patients cannot process consumed carbohydrates normally because of their insulin resistant state. This results to high blood sugar.
INSULIN RESISTANCE - the body does not respond to normal amounts of insulin that the pancreas produce.
Hence, the pancreas needs to secrete more insulin than normal to produce desired effect in tissues (use glucose for energy & storage, and normalize blood glucose in the bloodstream).
Due to this fact, majority of diabetics exist in a state of hyper-insulinemia (hyper denotes “more” or “too much”).
Although adding more insulin helps temporarily, it DOES NOT totally solve the problem.
The symptom (hyperglycemia or high blood sugar level) may improve, but the disease process WILL NOT CHANGE.
I agree with other experts that strategies on REVERSING T2DM so patients can ultimately get off their daily insulin injections and/or some oral medications (if condition still permits) should be the primary focus.
Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus is a state of insulin resistance & carbohydrate intolerance, the most important and first step of treatment should be AVOIDANCE OF EXCESS CARBOHYDRATE in their diets, especially the REFINED & PROCESSED types!
The next step is to incorporate more HEALTHY FATS into their diet so they can have sustainable energy source.
Here is a practical analogy:
It is just like saying “If I am allergic to shrimp, I will not eat shrimp and I will be Ok,” rather than, “I am allergic to shrimp. I will take medicine first so that I can eat shrimp.”
Definitely, this doesn’t sound proper and the former statement seems the more practical thing to do.
Putting it into a diabetic’s perspective:
Practical – “I have T2DM and cannot tolerate too much carbohydrate. I’ll avoid carbohydrate whenever possible.”
Not Practical – “I have T2DM and cannot tolerate too much carbohydrate. I’ll take medicine regularly so I can still eat (x amount) of carbohydrate.”
See the point?
High carbohydrate intake = High Blood Sugar = Higher Need for Insulin/Oral Medication
Low carbohydrate intake = Low Blood Sugar = Lower/Nil need for Insulin/Oral Medication
To survive, humans need essential amino acids, and essential fatty acids; there is no such thing as essential carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are not even essential for human survival.
The amount of glucose (sugar) that the brain and other tissues need as fuel can be easily made by the liver through a process called gluconeogenesis.
Ever wondered how our ancestors survived thousands of years ago without relying on agriculture?
If the patient can be compliant with a LOW CARBOHYDRATE (High Healthy Fat) DIET to start with, they can get off insulin most of the time and if not, certainly they can reduce the total use of it.
Even when you have beta cell (insulin-producing cells) loss or dysfunction, most can be managed with a this method of eating +/- metformin and monitoring.
FACT: When people are pre-diabetic, REVERSAL IS SO MUCH EASIER!
Learn to check not only the fasting blood sugar, fasting insulin levels, and HgbA1c’s, but also blood sugar levels every after meal (so you will have an idea how your blood sugar behaves after eating certain types of carbohydrates).
Find experts who can teach you how to EAT CORRECTLY and MODIFY YOUR LIFESTYLE so you can reverse your T2DM, get off your medications, and live a longer and healthier life.
Alex Saroca is the founder of Tabachoy Academy. He is a general physician by profession, an author, a blogger, and an entrepreneur. He is on a mission to educate and make Filipinos realize - especially those with overweight, high blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes - that lifestyle modification is still more powerful than any drug in preventing heart disease, treating heart disease, and improving one's physical state and longevity.