had told me that I had borderline diabetes, which is also called impaired
glucose tolerance. Well, I was kind of fond of cake and cookies but, apparently,
its not so much about that as it is about getting older, and being
sedentary and a bit overweight, that plus heredity.
I didnt pay too much mind to it because it wasnt bothering
me any. I was on a diet for a while but then I went off it.
I started to get really, really sick. I was tired all the time and rest
didnt help. I couldnt breathe properly. I had to have the
head of my bed raised up at night to help my breathing. My vision got
blurry, especially in the morning but also, periodically, throughout the
day. I wondered if I was losing my eyesight. I was making more trips to
the washroom than I could count. Parts of me started to swell up
my feet and my hands.I went into the doctor and told her I thought I had
a heart condition. She took a look at me and all the things that were
wrong and said, Diabetes. She cut right to the chase. She
said it looked like I had full-fledged Diabetes 2. Well, darn!
Diabetes seeks out the weaker parts of your body and produces symptoms
I had the A1C blood test and, of course, my figures were over the moon.
I had to learn everything there was to know about diabetes now, because
thats the way I am, if something goes wrong I research it. My first
resource was the Internet. I went looking for Diabetes Forums with Chat
Rooms and found some.
A Microsoft Network group called Diabetes Fun and Friends was very helpful.
They were mostly from the southern USA and were very polite about my being
from Toronto, Canada. I found out that there were people out there who
had Diabetes symptoms one heck of a lot worse than I did.
I got books to help me understand it all and I learned that Diabetes is
a disease where you have some control. You can manage it, and are wise
to do so, by watching your diet and your blood count and taking your pills
as required. I studied these books about diabetes and my symptoms.
What had happened to me with the breathing was edema, pulmonary edema
and its serious and thats why I had to straighten up and fly
right. My diet became very, very, very strict and I got a blood glucose
meter and strips. I leaned how to punch holes in myself with little jabbing
needles and use my strips on the little drops of blood The little test
machine turned these blood samples into numbers that meant something.
I couldnt get my figures down where they should be. I tried one
medication and proved to be allergic to it. Tried another and I wasnt
as allergic but it didnt work very well. Now, Im on a third
medication which is working so far. However,diabetes is a progressive
disease so I may have to change this medication by and by.
I cant do too much exercise because I have arthritis but that also
acts as an excuse. I have to do as much exercise as I can while avoiding
that No pain, no gain slogan and easing off when it started
to hurt. Slow and steady wins the race. Gentle, low impact exercise is
a good thing.
Diet is another story. I eat more whole grains now, lots of vegetables
and fruit and lean meat in small portions. That part of the treatment
is under my control.
I dont mean this article to be a downer but, rather, an advisory
in case someone else out there gets the early symptoms. I want to say
its not the end of the world. In fact, Im feeling better now
than I have in years, and thats progress. Thats due mostly
to diet with some exercise.
Ive started taking 1000 International Units of Vitamin D daily and
my blood sugar counts have improved a lot since Ive been doing this.
We northerners have to watch that we get enough vitamin D because of our
long cold winters. Some tests are starting to show that extra vitamin
D supplements are effective. Better safe than sorry, I say, so I pop that
1000 mgs of vitamin D twice daily, along with a multivitamin, folic acid
and calcium supplements.
If youve just been diagnosed with diabetes bear in mind that coping
with the disease through positive strategies will help to rein it in and
youll definitely feel better for it. Non-diabetics should note what
my doctor says, Everyone should eat like a diabetic.
© Sonia Brock 09/12/05