Many people I talk to are very surprised to hear that it is possible to manage, and even reverse, Type 2 Diabetes without drugs. Our culture has been taught that if you have a disease like this, you will be a slave to pharmaceuticals for the rest of your life. I opted out of this bondage, and I know there are many others out there, who want to do the same, but don’t know how to do it.
In this post I will share 8 tips to assist you on your journey to freedom from Type 2 Diabetes. If you have type 1, these tips will also be helpful, but you will most likely still need to take insulin for the rest of your life, because your body isn’t producing it well enough to sustain you. Dr. Fuhrman is a doctor, who has helped thousands reverse their diabetes. He says that his type 1 diabetic clients usually are able to cut their insulin needs in half when they follow his diet! Make sure not to stop taking any medications without talking to your doctor about how to do it safely! That leads me to tip number 1!!!
- Educate yourself! When I was first diagnosed with diabetes I spent a lot of hours reading and talking to experts. I also found some really great videos on Netflix, that documented other people’s journeys from sickness to health without drugs, or with limited drugs. Check out my Resources page for links to get you started. One link I must share here is for Dr. Fuhrman’s book, The End of Diabetes: The Eat to Live Plan to Prevent and Reverse Diabetes. If you read nothing else to educate yourself on diabetes, read this book! You do not have to become a vegan, like Dr. Fuhrman (I didn’t), but will learn a lot from him! One more link I’ll give you here is for the Dr. Page diet. I stuck closely to phase 2 in the first few months after diagnosis, and it worked! In educating yourself you’ll also learn that exercise is really important for reversing diabetes.
- Shift your perspective away from the western mindset towards health. Say it with me, “DRUGS ARE NOT THE ONLY WAY!!!” I am certainly not against drugs, but they should be a last resort. You will have many skeptics, who will tell you that defeating diabetes without drugs cannot be done. I want to encourage you to be confident and know that THOUSANDS of people have done this. Drugs are a bandaid, while developing healthy habits in your food and exercise can actually heal your disease! If you’re worried about the time and effort required to make healthy changes, think of it this way: you are going to have to invest time, money, and energy into dealing with diabetes, regardless of which route you take…you can’t just ignore it. Do you want to spend your resources on doctors, drugs, needles, and hospital visits, that sink you further and further into slavery, or do you want to spend them on actual freedom and health?
- Find a chiropractor, nutritionist, or naturopath, who can assist you on your journey. I know this one isn’t possible for everyone, but I highly recommend it if you can! Eric Burlingame has been very helpful to me, and we do all of our appointments by phone! If you live in SoCal, try Dr. Shaffer. He’s also been a great help! Like I said earlier, do not stop taking any medicine, unless you also talk to your regular physician. Keep him or her in the loop, and if they don’t like that you’re seeking alternative care they may not be a good fit as your physician anymore.
- Have mercy on and be patient with yourself! It is not an easy process to break deeply embedded eating habits! Food can truly be an addiction, and you will have some very low moments. If you mess up or aren’t seeing progress as quickly as you’d like, try not to beat yourself up for it. Actually, the extra stress that comes from judging yourself will only make the diabetes worse! Remember that God loves you…have mercy on yourself, just like He does.
- Find motivation. There were a few things that motivated me on my journey, and I’ll share some with you. My first and foremost motivator was that I didn’t want to be a slave to drugs and symptoms! I felt TERRIBLE on the metformin. God designed us to be free, and I believe that making healthy food and lifestyle choices are part of that freedom. My second motivator was and is my family. I want to give them food that brings life, and teach the children healthy habits that will last their whole lives! A third motivator was certainly weight. It feels good to be small again. What motivates you? Support from loved ones? A Fitbit? Maybe a gym membership? One of those before/after weight loss websites? There are lots of ways to be motivated.
- Don’t give up on food! The Page diet would not be a long term option for me, because it was too restrictive. It was just for a season to heal. I was pretty excited when it was time to open my diet up to a wider variety of whole foods, including more fruits and healthy treats. Healthy food is delicious, interesting, beautiful, and satisfying if you learn how to prepare it well. It took about 6 months to get into a good rhythm in preparing food for me and my family. Now that I’ve gotten past the initial stress that change inevitably brings, it is not overwhelming for me to consistently serve healthy food. Trading out your pantry is a big piece of this puzzle. Check out my Healthy Pantry page for help getting started.
- Share the truth with others. My story has been encouraging to others who are fighting the same battle. In sharing it with others, I’ve found joy in helping them, and encouragement to keep going on this course! If my example has helped other people, it may be discouraging for them if I return to my old ways…since so many people know about it, I have extra motivation to keep going! Another benefit of sharing your story is that you develop a community of like-minded people. Some will reject it, or call it a fluke, or maybe even tell you that you never had diabetes in the first place, even though your original A1C came back at 10.1. Others will want to walk alongside you and encourage you, and maybe even embark on the journey for themselves. You’ll be surprised at how many people there are out there, who want to make healthier lifestyle choices, whether or not they have diabetes!
- Be creative with produce, nuts, and seeds. A diabetes diet needs to both AVOID refined sugars, and INCLUDE lots of veggies, fruit, healthy fats, and proteins. Veggies and fruits provide your body with tons of vital nutrients (think of them as the building blocks of healing), while healthy fats and proteins help to slow down the release of sugars into your system. Healthy fats and protein have other benefits, of course, but I’m focusing on that one for now. In this blog I try to give you lots of creative ideas on how to serve these superfoods, but I want to encourage you to do make some of your own masterpieces! It’s pretty fun to play around with your food! Smoothies are a great way to combine fruit, veggies, nuts, and seeds, so I’ll end this post with the recipe for my Broccolada Green Smoothie.
Before we get to the recipe for the smoothie, I want to invite you to join with others who are making healthy changes. I’d love to walk alongside you in your journey towards wholeness and health! Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full!” Freedom from food addictions is part of having a truly full life.
I’ve been a little nervous to try broccoli in smoothies, but have read in multiple places that the broccoli flavor disappears if you do it right. Since my nutritionist prescribed more broccoli I finally mustered up the courage to give it a go! This Broccolada Green Smoothie was surprisingly tasty, refreshing, and just made me feel good! You know that feeling you get from certain foods? It’s like your body just says, “YES!”
Broccolada Green Smoothie
- About 1/3 Cup Raw Chopped Broccoli
- 2 Tsp Chia Seeds or Hemp Hearts
- 1/3 of a Slightly Green Banana
- 1 Cup Frozen Pineapple
- 1 Small Apple, Sliced
- 1 Cup Light Coconut Cream
Combine all of the ingredients in your blender and run it on high, until smooth. If it is too thick to blend you can add a little water. Enjoy!
Here are two of my little motivators. They had basketball practice for an hour and a half this afternoon, and haven’t stopped eating fruits, veggies, and other healthy foods since they got home!