I Love to Share my CBD oil experience

Image of marijuana plant with text "Getting Help from Nature"

CBD Oil Really Works for Me


CBD Oil has become a great passion of mine.  I began using it and found out it made my sciatic pain go away.  Now my hip feels regular most of the time and there is no pain shooting down my left leg any more.  Whenever I start to get that feeling again in my hip, I take a few more drops of my CBD oil and a little while later, I feel good again.

I became a CTFO associate and I now help others by promoting and selling this great brand of CBD oil products.  I use several of the products myself and love them.

If you have pains you haven’t been able to get rid of,  you might try some CBD oil yourself.  You can even become an associate like myself.  I’m sharing my site where you can shop or sign up as an associate below

Shop and Sign up Free

Shop here at my shop

Sign up as a CTFO Independent Associate here.  Pick me (Shirley Dawson) as your enroller please.  I will be available to answer your questions.

Comments

I welcome your questions and comments.  Please leave them below.   Also, please share this post with your friends that may be interested also – Shirley

Note:  This page contains affiliate links, if you click on them and purchase items, I will get a small commission – at no extra expense for you.

 

Product Review – The Complete Guide to Fasting – Healing Your Body through Intermittent, Alternate Day and Extended Fasting

 

 

 

TITLE:  “The Complete Guide to Healing Your Body through Intermittent, Alternate Day and Extended Fasting” by Dr. Jason Fung and Jimmy Moore.

Author:  Dr. Jason Fung and Jimmy Moore.

Publisher:  Victory Belt Publishing, Inc. Las Vegas

Where to Purchase: This book is available at many book stores and online.  I personally purchased it on Amazon at a price of around $20.  This is well worth it.

 

 

I purchased this book in mid-December of 2016 when I became so disgusted with myself and my diabetes that I determined to do SOMETHING.  I researched and found this book by Dr. Fung and purchased it right then and downloaded it and read it straight through.  I purchased a hard copy later so my friends and family could look at it also.  I began fasting the next day.

Before mid-December, 2016, I was injecting 182 units of insulin daily.  Then I began my adventure with Intermittent Fasting (IF).  Within 78 days of starting IF, I was down to injecting under 10 units of insulin a day and I had lost a lot of weight (from 260 to 227 pounds).

Read how my fasting story started here.

Dr. Jason Fung began promoting this new way of eating after finding that intermittent fasting worked for his patients and many patients lost a great deal of weight, decreased many of their medications and became free of their insulins with normal blood glucose readings by using his methods.

You can read testimonials from several fo Dr. Fung’s patients on his website. “Intensive Dietary Mangement”

The dangers of diabetes and periodontal disease

Image of tooth brush and paste

Taking Care of Your Teeth

For the nearly 30 million Americans who have diabetes, many may be surprised to learn about an unexpected complication associated with this condition. Research shows that there is an increased prevalence of gum disease among those with diabetes, adding serious gum disease to the list of other complications associated with diabetes, such as heart disease, stroke and kidney disease.

Image of diabetic pricking fingerEmerging research also suggests that the relationship between serious gum disease and diabetes is two-way.  People with diabetes, like myself, are more susceptible to serious gum disease.  Serious gum disease has the potential to affect blood glucose control and contribute to the progression of diabetes. Research suggests that people with diabetes are at higher risk for severe oral health problems, such as gingivitis (an early stage of gum disease) and periodontitis (serious gum disease). The reason for this risk, is that they aremore susceptible to bacterial infection, and have a decreased ability to fight bacteria that invade the gums.

I have receding gums and my dentist and I have talked about it.  Many people have gums that are pulling away from their teeth.  This condition can encourage bacteria growth at and below the gum line.  Eventually, the gum tissue and even the supporting bone may deteriorate and the damage become irreversible.

 

So What Do We Do About This?

I’ve been a diabetic (type 2) for years now and as I age, I really do NOT want to lose my teeth. I see my dentist regularly, usually twice each year for cleaning and a checkup.  But what else can I do?

Here are a number of things I can do:

  1. Brush my teeth after meals (brush tongue and gums while I’m brushing the teeth).  This will get rid of the bacteria that form plaque on my teeth and gums and causes them to become inflamed.
  2. Floss every day to get out all the bacteria and food particles stuck between my teeth.
  3. Choose a plague reducing mouthwash and swish some around the mouth after brushing and flossing to remove all of the particles between teeth.  (Don’t swallow the mouthwash – spit it out)
  4. Make sure you choose a great dentist or even a periodontist, who will check your teeth and gums for the start of periodontal disease and start treatment early.
  5. Avoid food with sugar and sodas with sugar.

image of coconut oil in jarSome other things I try to do is “oil pulling”.  This is swishing a small amount of virgin coconut oil around in my mouth for as long as I can (20 minutes is recommended) but I rarely can hold it that long.  Do not swallow the oil after swishing it around – spit it out.  Some naturalists claim the lauric acid in the oil prevents tooth decay.

My dentist has also recommended I use an electric toothbrush to clean my teeth.

An Electric Toothbrush has these advantages?

  1. It helps control and stops too aggressive brushing by sounding a warning tone when you are pressing too hard.
  2. It has a timer to warn the user when 2 minutes (which is the dentist recommended time to brush your teeth) has passed, or it may simply turn off.
  3. It removes up to two times the amount of plaque than a regular toothbrush.

The chances of gum disease can be significantly lowered when plaque is removed and prevented from building up. You can do this better using an Electric Toothbrush.

 

What is the Best Electric Toothbrush for Gum Disease?

Some of my dentists have recommended the Oral B Pro electric toothbrush.  So that is the one I purchased and use.  Of course, there are others on the market to choose from as well.

 

Oral-B Pro 1000 Electric Power Rechargeable Battery Toothbrush with Automatic Timer and CrossAction Brush Head

Oral-B Electric Toothbrushes are designed to gently but effectively clean the surface of your teeth, which helps to remove plaque buildup without causing irritation. In fact, some Oral-B Electric Toothbrushes include a special message or gum-care cleaning modes. In addition, only Oral-B Electric Toothbrushes have a visual pressure sensor that alerts you when you brush too hard, to help promote healthy gums.

Claimed benefits:

  • The Oral B removes 300% more plaque along the gum line than a regular manual toothbrush
  • Clinically proven superior 3D Cleaning Action oscillates, rotates and pulsates to break up and remove 300% more plaque than a regular manual toothbrush
  • Senses when you brush too hard with the pressure sensor. It is also rechargeable with 1 mode- Daily Clean
  • In-handle timer pulses every 30 seconds to let you know when to switch areas of the mouth
  • Compatible with Oral-B Brush Heads for every Oral Care need: CrossAction, FlossAction, Precision Clean, 3D White, Sensitive Gum Care, Deep Sweep, Dual Clean
  • The Oral-B Pro 1000 provides a clinically proven superior clean vs. a regular manual toothbrush. The professionally inspired design of the CrossAction brush head surrounds each tooth with bristles angled at 16 degrees, and 3D cleaning action oscillates, rotates, and pulsates to break up and remove up to 300% more plaque along the gumline than a regular manual toothbrush. The pressure sensor lights up if you brush too hard to prevent harmful over-brushing and there is 1 mode, plus an in-handle timer to help you brush for a dentist-recommended 2 minutes. Best of all it’s brought to you by Oral-B – the #1 brand used by dentists worldwide.

Currently, it is a #1 Best Seller on Amazon with a price tag of $39.94 and a 4.4 rating out of 5.

You can purchase it through the link below:

 

Conclusion

It is not a good idea to neglect your teeth – because you risk some serious periodontal disease when you do not take care of your teeth.  There are a number of things you can do to help keep your teeth and gums healthy and switching to an electric toothbrush is one of the best.

Note:  This post includes affiliate links, which when clicked and a product purchased will give me a small commission (with no increase in price to you).

I enjoy receiving comments and questions.  You can leave yours below. – Shirley

 

 

 

 

 

Why I Stopped Eating!

Eating has consequences for diabetes


An image of Josiah finally seeing his mom in the ICU
An image of Shirley in Austrailia

If the title of this post caught your attention and you are thinking I’m taking some drastic measures,  well, you are right.  I’m stopping eating two meals a day and some of the foods that are mainstays of the standard American Diet.

 

Being a type 2 diabetic for many years is no fun.  I deal with blood glucose lows and highs and insulin injections daily, as well as the pain of neuropathy in my feet, legs, and hands.  I’ve lost some of my fine motor skills in my hands which makes picking up small objects more difficult.  I also suffer from fibromyalgia and degenerated discs in my low back.  I am in a wheelchair most of the day.  I’ve been in this wheelchair since the fall of 2014 when I developed severe diabetic feet and leg ulcers.  It was eight months before these were healed and life was very painful, excruciating even and trying.  I’ve been in this wheelchair ever since.

An image of diabetic testing equipment.
An image of diabetic testing equipment.

Like many type 2 diabetics, I’m overweight.  I wasn’t always overweight.  I was actually very normal and active in sports and coaching all through my 20’s and until I turned 34 and became pregnant with my only child.  I gained 60 pounds and my back went out – severely. Afterward, could not be active at all and continued to gain weight.  At one time I weighed 284 pounds on a 5.5″ frame.  In 2016 I found out about the “Whole30” way of eating and ate that way for most of the year.  I lost 30 pounds that year.  But I still had my issues with uncontrolled diabetes, even though the diet made some improvements overall.  It also helped with my inflammation and the pain of fibromyalgia, since I removed gluten and grains, sugar, soy, legumes and alcohol mostly from my diet.

Then I came across a book by Dr. Jason Fung, about how he is curing his diabetic patients of their type 2 diabetes through Intermittent Fasting.  It was the middle of December 2016 and I began Fasting the next day.  I did very well, fasting anywhere from 24-72 hours a couple of times a week and in February of 2017 my blood glucose numbers were so good I was off all my insulins.  My blood pressure was way down, my cholesterol was way down and my weight had dropped from 260 to 240 – a 20-pound loss.  I felt great.

Then I got a cold and ended up with a very bad sinus infection.  I was given 12 days of prednisone tablets.  This sent my blood glucose number skyrocketing and I was hungry all the time.  My fasting was impossible to keep up because of the hunger cravings and I had to go back on my insulins again.  This was in the summer of 2017 and I have struggled since that time to get back to fasting and eating low carb.  Its been uphill and downhill – mostly downhill.  Then the holiday season came and I had lots of social activities where I was not strong-willed enough to not eat the candies and cakes and bread.

2018 came around and I tried to go back to eating only one meal a day.  I ended up having to eat two meals a day more than I needed.  When I cook – I eat.  Yesterday I was miserable – my entire body hurt and my BGL was very high (high 300’s and 400’s), I cried a lot and decided I HAD TO get back to my fasting and low carb eating.

A Decision

So I began fasting after dinner last night.  Today, January 28, 2018, I kept fasting and only eating one meal a day again (OMAD).

An image of a salad
An image of a salad

Today was pretty successful with me eating only a large salad for dinner which really filled me up.  It was not an extremely low carb meal because it had some croutons and ranch dressing.  I did manage to push aside half of the croutons though.  When I checked myBGL tonight it was 277, (not good but much better than the 300 and 400’s I’ve been having at night.  We’ll see if I can keep this up.  I hope to get back to my LCHF (low carb hi fat) eating with no sugar and bread.  It may take a few days but that is my intention.

I weighed just now and I weighed 245.0 pounds.  I injected 70 units of long-term Lantus and 28 units of short-term Novalog tonight and took my regular 1000 grams of Metformin. I’m curious what my morning BGL will be as I tend to be high in the mornings (dawn syndrome).

Resources

You can read my post about the Whole30 healthy eating plan and access a link to purchase the book here.

You can read more about my decision to start fasting here.

Comments

Thanks for looking at my site and coming to this page. I would love for you to leave any questions or comments below.  In addition, I’m open to new topics to research and comment on as they pertain to my own health and experience living with diabetes.  Please share your interests and questions in your comments.  I also love to hear others’ stories about how they handle their own diabetic issues.

– Shirley

Freedom from Diabetes and Chronic Pain

My Water Therapy


Image of water aerobic class
Image of water aerobic class

One of the habits that I have taken up to help with my diabetes and pain is water exercise.  I must say this is one of the few things that is always enjoyable that I do for my health.

Swimming and water exercise is often recommended for those who have trouble with joints and movement.  It can be cardio, muscle building, stretching/flexing and extremely relaxing.  The resistance of moving in water is over 40 times that of moving out of the water.  Also, the body weight is so much less while in the water, that one can perform movements and stretching that is impossible out of the pool.

I’ve read that you can burn 400-600 calories per hour exercising in the water and I know that at times I’ve dropped my BG levels many, many points during water aerobic classes (once I dropped 100 points from before a class to after the class).  For this reason, I always take a tube of “rescue” tabs with me just in case I have a low while I’m at the pool.  It has happened a few times and I was very glad I had those tablets to take.  One thing I noticed when I did have those lows, was my first symptom was not sweating, which is usually the beginning of my low symptoms.  You don’t sweat in the water, so the shaking and sinking feeling in my tummy was the symptoms of my blood sugar levels dropping that I noticed.  No sweat is another benefit I enjoy from my pool exercising – I’m really not a fan of sweating.

Free from my Body Limits

The best thing about my time in the water is the great sense of freedom I have.  As soon as I step into the pool, my body feels so weightless; I can move my limbs and torso in so many ways that are impossible for me outside the pool. In addition, my pain is almost gone when I move around in the water.  I can’t even describe how good it feels to not be in pain at last.  Sometimes I just wish I could hang onto the side of the pool and take a nap without pain in my hips and legs.

I have a personal routine to my exercise when I’m not participating in a water aerobic class.  I step into the pool, walking around a little and doing a few stretches with my “water tube”.  I use the tube to help me balance and stand tall when walking back and forth across the pool (water walking).

Only in the water can I stand perfectly upright and those back and leg muscles and tendons finally get nicely stretched.  Then I begin doing my laps, which I do on my back with a backstroke.  On the back, because I have never perfected the breathing technique for swimming “free style” or front crawl.

An image of a swimmer backstroking
An image of a swimmer backstroking

I always do 10 labs, taking time at each end of the pool to stretch my back, completing 20 specific power arm exercises at the deep end and doing 10 water squats each time I’m back at the 3′ mark. These water squats are wonderful for building my leg muscles and I’ve had docs tell me that squatting is one of the best exercises we can do.  I can really only do squats when I’m in the water, certainly not the really low ones, and I credit all my water squats with my success in building my upper thigh and buttock muscles back so I can now get up from my wheelchair or recliner much easier.

 

After my 10 laps, I will have finished 100 squats in the water and 1000 arm exercises with the resistance of my water gloves.  This usually takes about 40 minutes.  Then, I do about 15 minutes of water walking to strengthen and straighten my legs.  After that, I will go to the side of the pool and do several leg flexibility movements in sets of 10 or 20.  Finally, I will just play around by myself twisting and turning in the water, marching, doing jumping jacks, bicycling, and hopping around.  I finish up sitting in the hot tub and doing some final stretches before I hit the shower and go home.  This pretty much wears me out and takes about 1.5 hours to complete.

Water Exercise Equipment

I use swim gloves and I really love them and the extra resistance they give me when moving my arms in the water.  They are so good at building muscles in both my forearm and upper arms and helping with losing the “bat wings” under my upper arms.  I have used swim gloves for so many years now that I feel “naked” if I swim without them.

Using my swim gloves with the webbing between the fingers creates much more resistance for each movement of my arms in the water and also in my shoulders and chest.  The intensity of my workout is significantly increased when I wear my swim gloves.  I order a size medium in gloves.  I have created a Product Review of the gloves I use which you can read (under construction).

I also use a water tube in the pool.  I use it to help balance and stand tall when I do my water walking, as well as resistance when doing specific exercises.  It is easier for me to push the tube up and down underwater with my arms than using water bells.  They tend to hurt my fingers and wrists when pushing and pulling with them.  I also “ride” my tube when I do “bicycling” in the water. These tubes can be purchased during the summer in stores like Walmart or Target.  I use the larger in diameter ones.

I’m lucky that our recreation center provides tubes, bells, balls, and other water equipment, so I only have to bring my swim gloves and towel and rescue tabs.  I notice many other swimmers bring water goggles, swim fins and snorkels when they come to do their laps. I’ve thought about purchasing swim fins, but I’m going to do some research first.

An image of water shoes
An image of water shoes

Oh, I shouldn’t forget that I always wear water shoes so my feet do not get abraded against the bottom of the pool.  This is important for me as a diabetic.  I buy my swim shoes online usually in size 9.5.  I also have a Product Review of these you can read (under construction).

All of these equipment items help to enhance the benefits of water exercise.

A Recent Experience

Yesterday, I was at the indoor pool after finishing my routine exercises and laps and was getting out of the pool into my wheelchair.  I park my wheelchair near the steps into the pool and leave my “rescue tablets” on the seat of my chair just in case.  A lady who had been doing laps in the lane next to me told me that she was surprised that I was in a wheelchair because she had noticed I was moving so well in the water.  I told her I loved the water and she said: “I can tell, you look very comfortable in the water”.

She was so right, I feel completely FREE when I’m in the water and there is practically no pain when doing most of my exercises and movements.  I feel so much less weighty, my legs and back can move in so many stretches and movements that are totally impossible for me outside of the water.

I can’t truly explain that wonderful sense of freedom I get in the water.  It makes me so happy.  However, I never realized that other people could notice that freedom from just watching me.

How often to exercise?

I have set a goal for myself of routinely going to the pool 3-4 times each week year-round.  I am so fortunate that I have access to an indoor pool that I can go to during the fall, winter, and spring when outdoor pools are closed.  At least 3-4 times each week I can enjoy the ability to move my body freely, without pain and disability. WHAT FREEDOM!

 

A Day Living with Chronic Pain

Maybe You are Like Me


An image of a wheelchair
An image of a wheelchair

I’m 63 years old, I’m in a wheelchair most of the day.  I have Type II diabetes, fibromyalgia, a blood condition (essential thrombocythaemia) and I’m very overweight.  I have degenerative discs in my back and have lost 2 inches of height and my left hip is deteriorating fast.  I also live in chronic pain and disability.

I am retired and these are supposed to be my “golden years”.  But they are not so “golden” after all.  I spend most of my day in pain ranging from mild to severe.

5:30 am.  I’ve been back and forth from my bed to my massage recliner in the living room more times than I can count.  There is just no position that is comfortable enough to allow me to go to sleep.  My bed has 5 pillows on it that I use to stuff around my body to try to get comfy but they don’t work much.  I’m fat and it is difficult for me to move about in my bed anyway.  Rolling over is a chore and getting up and into my wheelchair is painful.  My left hip freezes up and every movement causes a sharp pain.  I suck it in so I can sit up by the bedside and transfer to my wheelchair to move to my recliner and try it again.  Actually, I use my transport chair in the house because the wheelchair doesn’t fit into my bathroom doors and tears up the walls and doors.  The transport chair is smaller and fits, but I have to move it forward by shuffling my feet.  Getting over the door sills is hard because I have to push fast and hard to pop over them and if I aim wrong, I still hit the door frame and sometimes cabinets hard and gouge into them.

Once I move into the living room and get close to my recliner, I dread the transfer because it brings on more pain as I stand and turn to sit in the recliner.  Once there I can use the remote to lean back and start the massage.  That feels nice and I can turn on the heat too.  For a while, it feels good, but then I get too hot.  I throw off my small lap blanket and get back in the transport chair to go turn the overhead fan on.  Again, the move is painful, but I get settled back into the recliner and am a little more comfortable.  I may fall asleep for a few minutes.

Image of woman in pain
Image of woman in pain

6:30 am.  By now, my body is fixed in the somewhat sit/recline position and my left hip is beginning to lock up again.  I move around – throw that leg over the arm and try to stretch those hip muscles.  It really hurts a lot – a sharp pain, very sharp pain, as I start to stretch that hip.  But I know I need to keep stretching it.  I try several different moves, holding the leg out straight – or as straight as I can, flexing my buttocks,  the pain moves down into the front of my knee.  I rub that knee but it doesn’t help.  I stuff my lap blanket under that hip to give support, at first that helps but then it begins to ache more and more.  Now I’ve got to get up out of the recliner – which again causes pain during the transfer to the chair.  I gingerly move the chair over to the kitchen table and drink some of the coffee my great husband has fixed for me.  I need to check my blood glucose level (BGL)  and take my morning pills.  Hopefully, the Tramadol and the Cymbalta and 2 extra strength Tylenol will cut the pain in a little while.  My left leg has pain running down it to the knee and I can’t lift it without a sharp pain deep in the hip.  I prop my legs on the shelf under the table and start stretching that leg very slowly.  I hurt but gradually that sharp pain goes away.  I push my chair back from the table and stand up to stretch the buttock muscles and ligaments and while it hurts, it feels good too.  I stand for a minute and my leg feels better.  I can now sit and take my meds.

Afterwards, I go back to the bedroom and lay down on the bed flat (as I can get, on my back with my legs out as straight as I can – maybe with a pillow under my knees.  I flex both legs and try to straighten them out more each time.  I do this through the pain in my hips and at last, I feel I can turn on my side with a pillow between my knees and relax for awhile.  Maybe I sleep a few more minutes. I’m on my left side and it works for a while.  But eventually, the hip begins to ache from my body weight on that side and I turn over.  The first movement makes me what to cry out – it hurts, but I keep going and after a few attempts I swing over to lay on my right hip.  Darn, the pillow between my knees falls to the floor.  I grab another of the 5 bed pillows and stuff it between my knees.  Now I try to relax laying on my right side.  This side is not as comfy as my left side was at first. and I’m so close to the edge of the bed I feel like I may fall off.  I can’t relax.  10 minutes later, I decide to go back into the living room and get in the recliner again.

This is my routine much of the day and all of the night.  I average only  1-2.5 hours sleep each night.  I never feel rested in the morning and I’m tired all day long.

My Day

About 9:30 I decide to get into my step-in tub.  I love this tub, my only issue is it takes lots of hot water and our tank doesn’t quite handle it.  If Mel has showered recently or the dishwasher or clothes washer has run, my water will turn cold before the highest jets are covered.  Most of the time I have to turn the jets on at the lower level and just use them.  I stay in as long as I can and my hips begin to feel looser and the pain lessens.  It takes a while to drain and it is chilly waiting on the water to all drain out.  I get out and get dressed, although most days I just put on a loose gown to wear around the house.

I try to do some housework like folding clothes, unloading or loading the dishwasher, wiping the counters and running the dust mop over the floors.  Thankfully they are all hardwood or tile. We replaced all the carpet so my wheelchair would move easier around the house.  We also purchased a Roomba auto vacuum.  I love my Rosie vacuum cleaner and she cleans our floors every other day.  I gather up the folded clothes and deposit them in bedrooms and towels into the linen closets.  I unload the dishwasher and put the items on the cleaned counters.  Mel puts them on the shelves since its so hard for me to stand and reach the shelves without dropping dishes and breaking them.  I cook but Mel helps with lifting heavy pots and pans and getting things in and out of the oven and pouring out hot grease.  I also get him to do the heavy cutting, as I’m not too great handling knives.  I dust furniture but Mel has to do the tops of things that are higher than I can reach.  I also use the swifter to damp mop our floors but I must admit I often hurt after doing that.  I can strip our bed and wash the bedding but Mel has to put it back on.

Speaking of dropping things, I HATE to drop things, then I have to bend over and try to pick them up.  This is very painful to reach down so far and my hands have become less nimble because of the neuropathy from Diabetes.  I can’t pick up small items like I used to.  I dread seeing something on the floor that needs to be picked up.

My laundry is a hallway with the washer and dryer on one side and my pantry cabinet on the other.    I roll my chair into the closet one way to move clothes from the dryer and clean out the lint filter.  I have to back out and roll in backward to load the dirty clothes into the washer and move then into the dryer.  Sometimes I drop clothes as I move them, especially socks and I dread picking those up.

I carry the clean and dry clothing in a basket to the living room and fold them on the couch. Then, I take the empty basket back into the laundry hallway to put on top of the dryer. Carrying things can be somewhat difficult.  My big, loose gowns come in handy as I form a pouch and put things in and close the pouch with my teeth and roll around with my “bag”.  In my walker, it is even more difficult to carry things around.

After I finish these daily chores, I either go to my PC and work on my blogging or my digital art or one of my online classes I take.  I do tend to sit there too long and when my hip begins to hurt again, I start my recliner to bed ritual again.  I read books, either from the library – hardbacks or on my large screen iPhone and the Kindle app.  I read a lot, I can read two or more books a day.

After I finish these daily chores, I either go to my PC and work on my blogging or my digital art or one of my online classes I take.  I do tend to sit there too long and when my hip begins to hurt again, I start my recliner to bed ritual again.  I read books, either from the library – hardbacks or on my large screen iPhone and the Kindle app.  I read a lot, I can read two or more books a day.

Right now I have two chiropractic appts each week and 2 physical therapy appointments each week and I try to go the indoor pool 3-4 times each week at least.

Leaving the house requires me to get fully dressed and I use my cane to move from my transport chair inside my house to the car.  Depending on my much pain I’m in, this is more or less difficult.  I can usually drive with no problem unless my left hip is really hurting.  It’s nice to be able to still drive and go places.  When I get to the chiro or PT places, I had been getting my wheelchair out of the trunk (not easy because it is awkward moving it from the trunk and opening it from the folded position and it is not very light.  It is harder getting it back into the trunk after my appointments or my swims.

The chiropractic adjustments do not hurt.  The worst thing is getting up onto the table tummy down and then getting off the table and putting my wheelchair back in the trunk of the car.

An image of a walker
An image of a walker

Now the PT appointments are another matter.  I like the Technicians that work with me, they are very nice, but they do push me (they are supposed to do that).  Most of the exercises hurt, but I try as hard as I can and I sweat a lot from the effort.  They starting working on straightening me out and stretching the hip and thigh muscles that had shortened from my 3 years in a wheelchair.  At this point, we are working on my standing and balance and moving my legs and feet and walking.  This is proving difficult and I usually am breathing very heavy very quickly during the exercises.  They want me to begin using my walker more and coming to my appointments in it.  Oh boy!  After the first appointment where we did a lot of standing and walking, I hurt so much that I couldn’t get up on my feet or even go to the pool for two days straight and got no sleep at all for two nights.   I believe this is my fibromyalgia acting up when I overdo.  I’ve experienced this before when I felt good and did too much.  I’m trying to not overdo like that again.

At my next PT appointment, I told the technician and she cut back some of the work and I didn’t have as bad a reaction that night.

Mel and I have purchased me a lighter walker that is easier to fold/unfold and it stays in the car now to make it easier for me to take to my appointments.  I’m starting, very slowly to use the walker more, but I’m still in the wheelchair or transport chair a lot.

Each time I go to the indoor swimming pool, I use my wheelchair to get inside and back out – there is just too many steps and I have to carry my swim bag also. I change in the locker room and roll out to just beside the steps into the water.  I can hold onto the bars and make it into the pool.  Once in the pool, I feel so much freedom, it is WONDERFUL!  I no longer feel the weight on my spine, hips and left knee.  I can water walk and exercise with the noodle mostly without pain. I always do 10 laps on my back and 100 squats at the 3-foot level, then I walk back and forth across the pool many times and do pushups on the steps and some water aerobics.  I try to really stretch all my muscles in my legs and arms.  I recently participated in my first “water aerobics class” in months and I made it through without having to stop.  I’m trying to increase my squats in the water to help strengthen my legs so I can walk better out of the water.  But after about 1 hour and 15 minutes, I get out and go to the hot tub to soak and stretch for 15 minutes.  But all good things come to an end and I finally must get out, shower,  get dressed and go home.  It hurts to lift the wheelchair into the trunk of the car.  When I get home I use my cane to go from the car to the house and my transport chair again and that hurts once more. But hey, I felt so very free for about an hour and a half.

I’m usually tired and can take a short nap when I get home from the pool.  Later I’ll read or go work on my pc again until I cook dinner.  Mel and I eat and then we like to watch Netflix movies.  Right now we are watching all 8 seasons of “Dexter” one episode after another – about 5 episodes each night.  I try to do exercises in my recliner while watching TV.  I have ankle weights and an exercise band now to use and some light hand weights.  Mel goes to bed at 10 pm every night on the dot and falls to sleep instantly.  I stay up and begin my recliner to bed ritual, over and over.  I talk to God and Jesus evry night and when the pain is really bad I post on Facebook for my friends to pray for me.  This does help.  Sometimes I practice walking with my walker or standing at the back of a chair and getting up and down and stretching my legs and hips.  I’m hoping to eventually regain enough strength and enough pain relief from the chiro and PT that I can use the walker a lot and even outside my house.  Right now it’s slow going because the pain is mostly always with me and overdoing causes regular relapses.  But maybe if I keep it up along with my diet, I will eventually reach my goal of getting out of this wheelchair and walking again on my own.

I must confess, I often watch other people, as they get up and walk about and bend and pick up and carry things with great envy.  I remember that I once could do that myself and I pray that I’ll be able to do it again one day.

Nothing is easy right now.  Mel and I went to the Library Wine Pull social last evening and it was held outside.  My wheelchair did not do well over the rough ground, so Mel and I didn’t stay very long.

Hope

But each day is new and I’m hoping one day they will become much easier if I keep working at it. Meanwhile, I grin and bear it like many others who live in chronic pain and if you ask me how I’m doing, like them, I will say “fine”.

I’m not looking for sympathy, but I do want to help folks understand more about those who live each day dealing with pain and disability.  I enjoy my life for the most part unless the pain is very severe.  I enjoy my reading, my painting, my online classes.  I have a great husband, a cool monster dog, friends, and I enjoy floating with my kayak buddies.  I have a wonderful daughter who is on the mission field and I Facetime with her regularly, I have a sweet step-daughter and 5 wonderful grandkids.  I’m hoping to see the girls in California next year and I’m planning a trip to see my daughter’s family in Papua New Guinea in about 3 years – one of the reasons I’m really working on my health starting right now.  I talk with my God regularly and lean on Him.  I am a “listener” each week for our church’s AWANA club and enjoy the kids.

Comments

Thanks for looking at my site and coming to this page. I would love for you to leave any questions or comments below.  In addition, I’m open to new topics to research and comment on as they pertain to my own health and experience living with diabetes.  Please share your interests and questions in your comments.  I also love to hear others stories about how they handle their own diabetes issues.  I send out a monthly newsletter around the 1st of each month.  If you would like to receive that email newsletter, you can sign up here.

– Shirley

 

 

 

The 31 Day Keto Challenge – Take it!

I Challenge You!


After a slow July, at least as far as my weight loss and health goals are concerned, I’m heading into August with a brand new initiative.  Starting today I am beginning my 31-Day Keto Eating Challenge. From July 27th through August 26th, 2017 I will be living a “keto lifestyle”.

What do I Mean by a “Keto Lifestyle”?

Image of a breakfast of lean bacon, tomato slices, and a zip-lock omelet.
A breakfast of lean bacon, tomato slices, and a zip-lock omelet.

I read this today in the keto book I’m studying today.

“The Ketogenic diet consists of high amounts of fats, ample proteins and fewer carbohydrates. It forces the body to use fats instead of carbs for breaking down to convert them into energy. In our regular diets, we consume more carbohydrate and shun fats. Thus, our body is perfectly adapted throughout history to break down carbohydrates for energy. However, in the Ketogenic diet, we try to change the pattern of our body to break down the elements to be used for energy. We feed our body with more fats and less carbohydrates and thus force it to adapt in a new way to use fats for energy.

Normally, our body would convert food into glucose that would be transported to various body parts. This glucose is especially important in fueling functions of the brain. It is easiest for your body to convert carbs into glucose and use it as energy. Thus, it is obvious that your body will choose carbs over any other source of energy. Our body produces insulin to process glucose in the bloodstream and makes it travel around the body. Since glucose is there to provide energy to your body, fats are not required and hence, stored. However, if you do not feed your body with carbohydrates, the liver starts converting fats to ketone bodies and fatty acids. These ketone bodies enter the brain and pass through it to replace the old source of energy, which was glucose. Thus, all the fats you consume in the form of meats, oils, creams, etc. is broken down and it does not get accumulated in your body. When you lower down the carbs intake, the body is persuaded to enter into a state of ketosis. It is just a natural process, which is initiated by the body to help it survive when the food consumption is low. The Ketogenic diet is known by some other names as well- low carbs

However, if you do not feed your body with carbohydrates, the liver starts converting fats to ketone bodies and fatty acids. These ketone bodies enter the brain and pass through it to replace the old source of energy, which was glucose. Thus, all the fats you consume in the form of meats, oils, creams, etc. is broken down and it does not get accumulated in your body. When you lower down the carbs intake, the body is persuaded to enter into a state of ketosis.

It is just a natural process, which is initiated by the body to help it survive when the food consumption is low. The Ketogenic diet is known by some other names as well- low carbs high-fat diet (LCHF), low carb diet. The ultimate aim of a well maintained Ketogenic diet is to persuade the body into a metabolic state. But, this does not mean that you have to go hungry on calories. However, you just have to strictly control your consumption of carbohydrates. It is definitely easier than starving on fats.

Noll, Mathew. Ketogenic Diet: Do’s And Don’ts For Beginners: How to Lose Weight and Feel Amazing (Ketogenic Diet for Weight Loss, Ketogenic Diet for Beginners, Anti-Inflammatory Diet) (Kindle Locations 129-140). UNKNOWN. Kindle Edition.

While in ketosis, your body effectively uses fat for fuel. In general, the daily intake of net carbs required to enter ketosis could vary from 20 to 100 grams per day (and very rarely over 100 grams per day). Most people, who have experienced ketosis, claim to have reached that state at about 20-50 grams of net carbs per day.

My goal will be to eat one/two meals each day after a fasting period and stay under 20 grams of carbohydrates total for the day to ensure I will reach a state of ketosis.  Once I get my body into ketosis, continuing extremely low daily carbs should keep it there as long as I eat correctly.

What will I be eating?

My diet will consist of lots of good fats, a moderate about of proteins and low glycemic vegetables.  The more natural the food, the better.  So I’ll try to get organic vegetables if I can; and meat, poutry and fish that are free-range or wild caught.  I will avoid sugars, starches, alcohol, wheat, legunes, dairy and soy (to keep inflammation down).  This will include cutting back on my cheese, which I love.  I will be able to have some heavy cream and almond and coconut milk.  Good fats are full fat cream, real butter, olive oil, meat, bacon, fatty fish, coconut oil, eggs.  I will avoid peanuts but can eat almonds, walnuts sparingly as well as low glycemic fruit.

I need to be careful eating dairy-especially cheeses and nuts as they can contain too many carbs.

I need to eat to satiety when I’m hungry with low-glycemic, carbs, good fats and adequate protein.

Ketogenic diets are high in fat, adequate in protein and low in carbohydrates. Generally, the macronutrient ratio varies within the following ranges:

  • 60-75% of calories from fat (or even more),
  • 15-30% of calories from protein, and
  • 5-10% of calories from carbs.

The exact amount of fat and protein is a matter of individual body responses and activity levels. However, most people on ketogenic diets don’t consume over 5% of calories from carbohydrates.

Additional Goals for the Challenge

I’m not abandoning my Intermittent Fasting during this time, but plan on staying on a schedule of 18:6 with 2 meals or 23:4 with one meal a day.  I will not plan on doing fasts of  24 hours or more, since that is problematic for me – as I’ve found out the last month of my plateau due to “cheating” on my part. (because I don’t handle hunger well).

The most important thing, in the end, is for me to stick to the Ketogenic diet. The process of ketosis will happen in my body as it starts to depend on fats for my energy instead of carbohydrates and sugars; I cannot just “cheat once” on my plan without consequences. If I do, it will ruin my efforts of the past one week with just one cheat meal! It would take another one week to get my body back to ketosis and function in a fat-burning mode again.  So I’m giving myself an emotional break in sticking to the shorter fasts during this challenge and trying to keep my hunger under control

During the period of this Challenge,  I’m planning on doing a lot of reading and research on the keto lifestyle and meal plans.  I have downloaded several e-books to read and look over during the period. Here’s a snapshot of the different books I have in my Kindle Library.  Most of these were free to purchase or free to borrow through my Kindle Unlimited subscription.

Image of Keto books in Library
Image of Keto books in Library

 

 

 

I’m also reading on this blogsite:  http://2ketodudes.com/ (2 Keto Dudes)

Physical Lifestyle modifications

It so happens that I just started with a new Chiropractor today.  So I will be keeping track of how the chiropractic treatments are working on me the next 4 weeks.

Also, I will be starting some physical therapy next week.  So I will also be reporting what I’m doing and how that PT is working for my pain and flexibility.

I will not really be doing any extra exercising other than my weekly kayak float and occasional time in the indoor pool.  When I do go to the pool I will try to do so in a fasted state which will help me create more growth hormone so I lose weight and build muscle better.

I WILL be trying to increase the amount of water I drink each day.

It will be very interesting to see how the diet, PT, and Chiropractic adjustments will affect my weight, inflammation and pain levels, as well as my flexibility and mobility after this month.

Recordkeeping

I will be logging the following measures daily:

  • Weight
  • Morning Fasting BGL, insulin doses
  • BGL before and after 1st meal, insulin dose if given
  • Macros for 1st meal
  • BGL before and after 2nd meal, insulin dose given
  • Macros for 2nd meal
  • Total Carbs for the day
  • Total Calories
  • Fasting hours each day

Comments

Thanks for looking at my site and coming to this page. I would love for you to leave any questions or comments below.  In addition, I’m open to new topics to research and comment on as they pertain to my own health and experience living with diabetes.  Please share your interests and questions in your comments.  I also love to hear others stories about how they handle their own diabetes issues.  I send out a monthly newsletter around the 1st of each month.  If you would like to receive that email newsletter, you can sign up here.

– Shirley

Let’s Check Out the Whole30 Plan

When I Decided to Eat the Whole30 Way During 2016


An image of a plate of green beans wrapped with bacon.
An image of a plate of green beans wrapped with bacon.

Recently, I’ve been reading more posts in the various groups I frequent about those who have decided to change to the whole30 way of eating.  This is certainly a change I can agree with and I must say that I decided to eat this way during 2016 and I lost 30 pounds that year which I attribute to the Whole30 way of eating.

What is Whole30?

Whole30 is a clean-eating plan created by Dallas and Melisssa Hartwig which is based on an initial 30-day nutrition plan that emphasizes healthy, whole foods and getting rid of foods that tend to cause negative health issues in people.

Continue reading “Let’s Check Out the Whole30 Plan”

The Body is Simply Amazing!

Our Bodies are Amazing


Image of scale showing weight of 228.4
Image of scale showing weight of 228.4

That was my thought as I got on the scale and weighed this morning.  The scale displayed the number 228.4.  I was amazed because yesterday was a day I ate a lot.  I had two meals (my Break Fast meeting with the support group and then two servings of crockpot pork tenderloin and veggies which included Irish potatoes and carrots) and then I binged on chocolate.  I rarely do that, but I was feeling low, had a stuffy nose and my hip was hurting and I was alone most of the day.  I found my husband’s stash of little chocolates and succumbed to the temptation – twice actually.  I probably had 20 of his mini Hershey dark chocolate bars.  Then I threw the wrappers deep into the trash bin.

Needless to say, my fasting BGL was 361 this morning, so I definitely dosed myself with Novalog.  But I am still amazed at the 228 pounds since I’ve been pretty stalled at over 230 pounds for a while.  Maybe my body needed a binge day.  I had set my next weight goal at 220 and it had looked very bleak at reaching that number for a month and a half now.  But today is a full fasting day for me and I’m assuming tomorrow’s number on the scale will be less that 228.4.  Maybe I’m going to reach 220 after all.  I’m going to drink lots of water to help my body purge toxins today. Continue reading “The Body is Simply Amazing!”

A Keto Asian Salad Recipe – Guest Post

Keto Asian Salad


My name is Shirley Dawson, and I’m writing this guest post for Jasmine, the author/creator of the AsianFruitWorld.com blog site.

I have been a type 2 diabetic for years, beginning my treatment with metformin tablets and then eventually requiring insulin injections.  I have learned that I can control my blood glucose levels to a great extent with my diet.  As part of my changing WOE (way of eating), I’ve turned to whole, less processed foods.  I shop around the edges of the supermarket in the produce and meat areas.  I enjoy using healthy, even organic produce in my meal preparation. I tend to eat and love great salads.  In addition, I try to eat low-carb to reduce the carb effect on my body’s blood glucose levels.

During 2016 I ate a “whole30” style diet and lost 30 pounds.  I’m continuing eating low-carb during 2017 and I’m losing even more weight.  I can happily eat a salad every day and I’m even creating my own salad cookbook “Salads to Live For” which I hope to publish some day. Continue reading “A Keto Asian Salad Recipe – Guest Post”