Diabetes: A Tale to my Daughter of Lions and Sheep

My Daughter’s Angst

I want to tell you a true story about my diabetes and it is also about lions and sheep.

Recently I rolled my ankle while exercising and as a result, I had a sore foot. I was hobbling around at home and my daughter noticed.  She didn’t say anything but a few days later my wife relayed a conversation that she had with another mother from my daughter’s school about my diabetes. That mother was a nurse.

You see my daughter had been picked up from school by the nurse with her daughter. During the car ride, my daughter had said that I had diabetes. My daughter was really worried that my foot was going to be amputated because that is what happens to people with diabetes. The mother, very concerned, proceeded to tell my wife about possible treatments for diabetic feet.

What Would you Say About Diabetes Complications?

Do you have diabetes? What would you say to your daughter or loved one? I’ll tell you what I told her. I hope it is useful for you if you are in a similar situation.

“Firstly,”, as I explained to my daughter. “you need to be aware that retinopathy is diabetic blindness, neuropathy is diabetic nerve disease (a precursor to diabetic amputation) and nephropathy is diabetic kidney disease that usually leads to dialysis.”

“Now a measure of your diabetes severity is called HbA1c or A1c for short. Your A1c is a measure of the sugar in your blood cells. This is useful because your blood cells are renewed every three months so you kind of get an average of the sugar level in your blood over that time.”

A Dirty Little Secret

“Below 5.8% you are normal, and above that, you have pre-diabetes until 6.5% when you have full diabetes.  Diabetes organisations tell us to aim for an A1c of between 6.5% to 7.0% but darling there is a dirty little secret there. You see eating carbohydrates (as they recommend) it is hard to get that low. If fact many people do not get below 7.0%!”

“Sweetie, have a look at this graph that maps those complications against HbA1c in people with diabetes.”

 

complications risk diabetes
Patients with type 1 diabetes (n=1,441) Adapted from DCCT. Diabetes 1995;44:968-43.

“You can see that someone with an A1c of 7.0% has almost double the risk of all those complications as someone at 6.0%. Someone wth an A1c of 9.0% has about five times the risk of going blind!”

My Diabetes Results

“But you said that most people struggle to hit 7.0% where they double their risk” she said: “Daddy, what is your A1c?”

I showed her my test results. “Well, when I was taking 3 different diabetes medications my A1c was 9.0%, but when I restricted carbohydrates (LCHF diet), my A1c dropped to 6.0% while taking no medications.  That took three months. Now my A1c is 5.8% and my risk is essentially the same as someone without diabetes.”

The nice ending to this story is that now my daughter’s mind is at ease AND she thinks her daddy is a ‘lion’ for beating diabetes complications.

But I am not an animal superhero. This kind of result has been repeated by many people.  It is a result based on science and results like mine must, therefore, be repeated by others.

So if you have had this awkward conversation with your son, your daughter, your wife, husband, lover or another dear relative or friend, consider backing up your assurances that you will be all right by taking control of your health. Restrict your dietary carbohydrates.

Maybe you have denial and uncontrolled diabetes and haven’t told anyone close to you. If you have not had this conversation, then still take control of your diabetes and nix your chances of complications so you can have a positive experience like I did. Better than having instead to try and explain your complications to close ones in the hospital.

Be a Lion, not a Sheep

Dietetic and diabetes associations do not want you to know this information. They have tried to silence the people that are telling you and expect you to use their services like helpless sheep. Thank God they cannot stop me telling my daughter the truth nor telling you this true story.

Consider that:

  1. The Association of Dietitians from South Africa (ADSA) complained against Prof. Tim Noakes and continue to ignore the evidence that he presented in pursuing his comprehensive acquittal. It showed that the LCHF diet was beneficial to health.
  2. Dietitians complained against Orthopaedic Surgeon Dr Gary Fettke to silence him against giving this advice to patients. How despicable to ask him to keep quiet when he can prevent amputation by diet.
  3. The Dietitians Association of Australia (DAA) deregistered dietitian Jennifer Elliott after another dietitian complained a patient was confused by her low carb advice and they reinforced their advice that results in higher risk of diabetic complications.
  4. The DAA complained against Carynn Zinn, another low carb dietitian in New Zealand where they had no authority nor any reasonable business to do so.

Why is this being Suppressed?

Low carb is actually quite simple and its safe.  On one level its just “give me a plate of healthy meat and vegetables for dinner (and hold the potatoes)” but the organisations act like you will eat rat poison.

I do not believe in conspiracy theories- but business is business. Businesses love sheep that just keep paying money for their products. As they are profitable, they have money for marketing to keep everyone buying. Marketing can pay for favourable research studies and it can sponsor dietitian’s conferences. It is worth spending marketing money to keep revenue streams going and growing. That is completely normal.

LCHF means you eat a lot less processed food (like breakfast cereals) from the food industries that sponsors dietetic associations. It appears dietetics associations are happy to ignore science and promote bad and unscientific advice from their members because it keeps you going back with a chronic condition or when their advice fails and you regain weight or worsen.

Consider too that the amount of diabetes medicine you need is almost proportional to the carbohydrates you eat.  I ate next to no carbohydrates and went to no medications. You will need less medication if you restrict your carbs- naturally if you do plan to reduce medications then talk to your doctor first.  Any reduction benefits your health and wallet but is not good for pharmaceutical companies.

Be a lion, not a sheep, and if you are still not sure I leave you with part of the testimony by Tim Noakes that these organisations do not want you to see. If this does not convince you there are 80 more short videos that the dietitians pretend to ignore that you can watch.

Whether you have type one diabetes and follow Dr Bernstein’s low carb diet or type two diabetes, if you do take this journey I know you will almost certainly have similar results. Do tell me and pay it forward by telling others, but do me a favour and don’t tell my daughter.

You see it’s nice for a daddy to be a lion to his little girl for more than just one day.

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