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

New Pictures taken Today

 

Took New Pictures Today


This is after 112 days practicing Intermittent Fasting.

Down almost 30 pounds.

Lost 15 inches overall.

Insulins reduced by over 2/3 most of the time.

Went from size 4X to size 2X clothing.

Me before beginning IF – FR

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Me after 112 days on IF

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Before begining IF – side

 

Me after 112 days on IF
Me before beginning IF – back

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Before beginning IF - front view
Me after 112 days on IF

 

 

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 will be sending out a monthly newsletter starting in May 2017.  If you would like to receive that email newsletter, you can sign up here.

– Shirley

A Month Wasted

My One Month Fail


 

I have to admit to having a very bad month since February 26th.  I found that after my trip to take food photos, I got off my fasting/feeding schedule and slid backwards.  I had so much trouble with my fasting times.  My hunger came back strong and I began to nibble and nibble on my fasting days.  My nibbling was low carb at least, but broke my fasts nevertheless.  Although I did have one day I craved chocolate and gave in for a dark chocolate binge.  That’s a first, since I normally do not crave sweets or sugars but plain old good food.  I’ve spent each day since the 26th losing a pound or two and then gaining it back again, over and over.  My blood glucose reading went up and up, I was into the 200, 300 and even a few 400s.  All this made me very frustrated and mad at myself.  After days of high bgl, I began to inject my insulins again to bring my numbers down and then of course I could not lose any weight.  But the high numbers were scaring me.

Now I’m back on track

To get back on track, it took me several tries and I basically decided to do a restart.  I went back to doing one meal a day or a 20:4 fasting style and injecting enough insulin to bring my numbers down to 200 and below.  Finally I’ve managed to get back to an alternate day schedule of true fasting with no nibbles.  Also, I reduced my eating during my feeding window some and began to eat salads again with some chopped chicken or tuna on top.  This morning I finally weighed below 235 again (233.4) for the first time since February 26th when I weighed 227.  My morning fasting BGL was 251 and I did inject 10 units of short term insulin but no more today.  My bgl was 190 at 2:45pm and will go down a little more before the dawn thing takes hold again in the morning. I notice that today I’m having no problem with hunger and I feel certain I will do well until my Lunch time feeding tomorrow where I plan on eating scrambled eggs and bacon.  I’m also trying to drink lots of water to keep me feeling full.  To motivate myself, I’ve been rereading Dr. Fung’s “The Complete Guide to Fasting” again and going to his website and reading the various success stories there.  They are truly inspirational to read and help me to visualize myself being successful.  I’m praying that I can now stay on an alternate day fasting schedule again and keep my weight/fast loss going.  Yes, this has been a wasted month as far as making progress, but I’ve learned how a break can affect me now and know that sticking to my schedule and my LCHF eating style is important to keep me on track.

One question I would like to have answered is “has this happened to other diabetes following Dr. Fung’s plan?”  I’ve been watching many of his youtube videos and reading on his website to get an answer to my question, but so far, no luck with finding an answer to this.

I did learn during this break, that I need to only keep just enough food to get by in my frig.  When I know that there is chicken, ground beef or other meat sitting there waiting to cook, it bothers me so much I want to cook that day and when I do that, I feel that I NEED TO EAT.  So I plan from now on to only keep salad fixings in the frig along with eggs and bacon – no perishable meats.  That way I will not feel the pressure to cook it or let it ruin.  One good thing I learned was how to fix a ketogenic pizza and it turned out good, so I now know how to fix a pizza crust out of almond flour and cream cheese.  I combined several keto recipes and came up with my own keo crust. Continue reading “A Month Wasted”

Slowly Making Progress Again

I’m Finally Making Progress Again


An anime image of person sweating
An anime image of person sweating

I did plateau for a while after my trip out of town and the food photo shoot.  It seems like it took forever to get back into a groove. I was so messed up with my blood glucose levels that I’m back taking insulin several times a day – not a lot but still injecting.  For some reason it seemed that all my will power and motivation was crushed during the trip.  I certainly ate off plan and my blood glucose rose greatly.  It became so hard to fast without cheating that it was demoralizing.  I wanted to kick myself back into shape.  But I decided to address the issue as the “sin of gluttony” and began to read up about gluttony and overcoming that failing.  I found several ebooks to download and read.

  • Sweet Surrender  (Christian 12 Step Recovery from Food Addiction)
  • Gluttony (A study of overeating in the Bible)
  • 10 Reasons Christians should care about what they eat
  • The Obesity Code
  • Food Addicts Recovery from Food Addiction Anonymous

I’m now treating my overeating as a disease and helping with FA (Food Addiction) methods.

I’m also rereading Dr. Jason Fung’s book about intermittent fasting which is the book that started me on my journey.  You can check it out.

Learning More about eating Keto

I’m learning more and more about eating keto and how to do it.  I love keto foods and meals and I’ve just received a great cookbook I’m going to use a lot.

  • Quick & Easy Ketogenic Cooking: Meal Plans and Time Saving Paleo Recipes to Inspire Health and Shed Weight

I can’t wait to try some of these meals.  I’m hoping that keto eating on my feeding days will help keep me in fat burning mode longer.

An Unwanted Issue with Keto Eating

Talk about the bad breath!  I hate my breath when I’m in fasting mode.  It’s awful, even after I brush, floss and swish mouthwash.  I’ve been researching what to do and found that chewing and swalling some parsley helps – its amazing but it does.

Where I am in my Journey Today

At this point, I’ve been on my IF (intermittent fasting) journey since 12/11/16, about 65 days into this way of living.  I started out weighing 260 pounds and injecting 182 units of insulin each day.  This morning I weighed 237.4 – so I’ve lost about 23 pounds.  I am currently injecting 10 units of long term Lantus each night and dosing with 5 units of short term nova log whenever my bgl is over 200 which is frequently, so I usually end up injecting around 15 units of nova log daily.  At one point I was totally off all insulins but my trip and backsliding blew that and I’m struggling to get back to the point I was before.  In addition, my weight loss plateaued and has slowed down during the 2nd month a lot.

Image of woman showing slimmer belly
Image of woman showing slimmer belly

I believe because of my trip and cheating on my fasting days.  I  have started having many more problems with hunger and giving in to temptation as I mentioned before.  However I do believe my research into Ketogenic eating will help me get back in control and losing weight steadily again.  I’m setting short term goals for myself.  Right now I’m working on getting to a weight of 230 pounds. But I can happily say that I’m now wearing some 2X clothing.  I can still wear my 3X and even my 4X (once I’ve washed them in hot water and dried them to tighten them some).  I ordered a new swimsuit in the next size down since one of mine was getting way too lose on top.

What I Need Long Term?

I’ve been thinking and realizing that my insulin resistance is very high and I’m not sure when I will be able to overcome it.  I definitely figure I will have to keep losing more and more weight and eating very consciously low carb, high fat. I suspect that IF will be part of my life for the long term.  I’m having a problem believing that I will actually get to the point that my blood glucose levels will be close to normal and I am totally off insulins, but I intend to persevere since w/o hope life becomes a lot less fun.

Yes, 1) reaching my goal weight of 145, 2) getting off all insulins, are still my goal, along with  3) getting out of this wheelchair.  I’ve started going to the indoor pool several times a week to work on strengthening my legs and straightening my back.  I can only walk with a straight posture when I’m in the water up to my hip level, but this does give me hope that with more weight loss, I’ll be standing straight again at some point.   I’m also adding some back stretching to my routine to lengthen muscles that have shortened from sitting so much.

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 will be sending out a monthly newsletter starting in January 2017.  If you would like to receive that email newsletter, you can sign up here.

– Shirley

17 Down, Less than 100 to go!

CONTINUING TO LOSE WEIGHT!


An image of diabetic testing equipment.
An image of diabetic testing and injection equipment.

This is Day 34 of my journey in  intermittent fasting and I’m down 17.4 pounds and practically off my insulins.  This is the best thing I’ve ever found for my diabetes and my health.  My fibromyalgia pain is almost all gone too.  As for the experience, its been great.  I continue to be surprised with the lack of hunger I feel for most of the time when I’m fasting.  Everyone has been telling me that and I’ve been reading it in my reading about fasting, but it still seems unbelievable for this to be comparatively easy.

Its not that I am not tempted at times, especially when my family is having a great meal and for sure when I am doing the cooking myself.  And I’m finding my major problem that I need to figure how to deal with is how to eat during my eating times.  I know that in order to keep burning fat, I need to eat very ketogenically (very low carb), but I do find that is hard for me to do.  I struggle with my age old problem with overeating.  Actually sometimes I’m glad to get back to the fasting, because it makes me feel more in control.  Don’t get that wrong, I enjoy my eating and look forward to my eating periods, and I’m certainly not in danger of developing a eating disorder.  I seriously want to be able to eat enough to satiate my hunger and to give my body the nutrients it needs, but also to not overeat.  I find overeating to be more likely the longer I fast.  The 24 hour and even the 36 hour fasts do not seem to turn me into an eating machine.  Maybe when I have achieved my goal weight and fixed my pancreas, I’ll be able to maintain with the shorter fasts and handle my eating periods better.

CONTINUOUS WEIGHT LOSS – NOT!!

I’m finding that while I’m losing weight pretty quickly and averaging just over 1/2 pound lost each day, I do often gain a little back during my eating periods and then drop that gain and lose more when I fast again.  I also know that drinking lots of water helps me to continue losing weight. And I found out that drinking a diet root beer contributed to me not losing weight during my last eating period.  So sodas are definitely off the menu for a long time – hopefully forever.
Here’s the daily weight lost from day 6 through this morning.  You can see the days I overate and gained weight then started losing again.
2.0
0.8
1.2
2.4
0.8
1.6
-4.2
2.6
0.8
-3.4
4.6
0.2
1.6
0.6
1.6
1.6
1.0
-2.4
2.6
-2.8
3.6
0.2
0.4

KICKING MY INSULINS

As for getting off my diabetic medications and curing my diabetees, since Day 20, I’ve been mostly off both my long and short term insulins.  Ocassionally I’ve had to dose a few units when I eat too much or to bring my dawn phenomena readings down.  But as I look over my spreadsheet, I see that my blood glucose readings in the mornings when I wake up have been slowly trending downward.  Here are my morning numbers from Day 6 through Day 34 – this morning:
213
207
205
161
143
163
226
178
186
171
159
180
150
158
197
159
198
193
154
237
188
257
152
I’m still taking my metformin in the morning and evening and my one statin drug.  I can’t wait to see my A1C numbers and the results from my metabolic panel next week.  I have lab work done on Tuesday and see my general physician next Friday.  Boy is he going to be surprised.  I should be down over 20 pounds since he last saw me and of course off practically all my insulins.  I’ll be taking new pictures of myself this weekend too.  Every 20 pounds of weight loss, I’m going to snap a few as Dr. Lam suggests to show my progression.  I’ll post a before pic and then an after 20 pound loss one for my next post.  (much as I hate pics of myself – I’ll do it).

STAYING MOTIVATED?

A motivating image of climbers
A motivating image of climbers

I’m finding that I’m staying pretty motivated to continue you till I reach my 3 goals.

  1. Get off my diabetic medications and cure my diabetes.
  2. Lose down to a normal weight of around 145 pounds.
  3. Get up out of this wheelchair and walk.

Doc Manny (Dr. Manuel Lam) is very supportive and says a lot of encouraging words and that helps.  My daughter who has been visiting has been very encouraging also.  My husband I believe is finally coming around and starting to approve also.  He still has moments he indicates he doesn’t want me to hurt myself doing this, but I keep telling him what I’ve been reading and I’m going to make a believer out of him.  I like to read the testimonials by those who have changed their lives for he better via intermittent fasting.  Here’s a few links if you want to read a few great stories.

Here’s a link to an article I read about researchers seeking FDA’s approval for IF treatment of cancer patients.  It caught my eye since I worked for FDA for 33 years.

I also came across this blog which is a good example of what NOT TO DO.  Check it out and decide right now not to fall in the trap this young lady did.  Remember, when eating, eat healthy to feed your body what it needs to be healthy.  Then you will feel great AND look great.

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 will be sending out a monthly newsletter starting in January 2017.  If you would like to receive that email newsletter, you can sign up here.

– Shirley

My Fasting Ups and Downs

Each Day Has its Own Ups and Downs


I continue my journey with IF (intermittent fasting) to cure my diabetes and to lose weight.  Today is Day 22.  I’ve had such awesome success these 3 weeks of fasting for my health.  I have lost just under 15 pounds, reduced my insulins from 182 to 10 maybe (even one day with 0 insulin), and lost 6.7 inches off my body.  I’m averaging a little over .5 pound of weight loss each day.  Until yesterday, Its been pretty much all progress, but yesterday I had to use a little of my insulins because my bgl (blood glucose level) went up and I didn’t lose weight at all – I gained 2.5 pounds.  I was certainly disappointed with that.  (I blame my overeating the day before for this).  However, overall I’m very pleased with my progress.  I feel good, my pain level is much reduced and its getting easier to get up out of my wheelchair and even walk a little with my cane.  My hunger level has been pretty tolerable during my fasts.  I have hardly any problem with 24-36 hour fasts; but I am finding that during the 72 hour fasts, I do have more hunger and have to push myself to continue fasting.  Also, if I eat too much on my eating days I have some tummy issues afterwards.  When I eat smart and not too much, I do great.

 

My Eating Days

On the days that I eat, I’m finding that breaking my fast with something like cottage cheese is helpful; also broth works fine for me.  Then I can eat some meat or fish and vegetables.  I try hard to hold breads and sugars.  My body still reacts to sugar consumption with my bgl’s rising quickly. So the less sugar containing foods I eat, the better.  I tend to eat the dinner meal on my eating days rather than breakfast or lunch.  I find that eating dinner is part of my social life and I enjoy it more than lunch or even breakfast.  Eating dinner on my eating days allows me to feel not so deprived because of my fasting.  I have been able to go to the indoor pool a couple of times, which is nice, because the exercise will bring my normal morning highs (dawn phenomenon) down quite a few points.  Hopefully I can continue this 2 or 3 times each week.  That’s pretty much all the exercise I can get in my wheelchair.  I do try to do stretches and crunches and a few other exercises I can do laying down or in my chair – but all are pretty mild as exercise goes

Victory Over Temptations

Some of the things I find that are temptations to me are:

  • Am image of Asian appetizers
    Am image of Asian appetizers

    Cooking for my husband who is NOT fasting.  I tend to feel hunger when I fix his meals and especially if I stir or scrape food from a pot or bowl, I have to watch myself to keep from licking the spoon – lol.

  • Slow cooker cooking.  I notice that when I cook in my crockpot, which I love to do, the smell is extremely tempting and the house is filled with delicious smells for hours.
  • Going out and sitting at a table with just glasses of water/tea or a cup of coffee while others at the table eat their meal.  I have managed to do this when visiting my mother-in-law at her nursing home, but it was difficult.
  • Ignoring real food.  Cookies or candy are not as tempting to me as “real” food like chicken or beef or even bacon and eggs.
  • When Mel and I do go out to dinner on my eating days, I’m finding it hard not to want to order an appetizer.  I’m learning that many appetizers are not good candidates for low carb style eating because of the breading or sauces with carbs and sugar.

Spreading the Word

I am so happy with the results I’ve been getting from this eating style, I want to tell everyone about it.  Especially when I see another woman who is overweight or I know struggles with diabetes also; I want to grab them and extol the benefits of IF.  I keep reading more and more articles about intermittent fasting and how it has helped many people with their health issues and weight loss.  I love to read fasters’ testimonials – I understand how they feel when there is something great to share about their health.  I’m finding that I’m already beginning to feel like a new person.  For so many years now, I’ve not worried very much about my appearance – mostly doing what is the most comfortable for me.  I find myself looking forward to the day I need to purchase clothes in smaller sizes and especially wear clothing that isn’t black and actually has some pattern in it.  I’ve gotten used to avoiding lighter colors and busy patterns because they are not slimming.  I’m also looking forward to the potential of being able to get out of the wheelchair and walk on my own again.  I don’t know that this will happen, but I’m certainly hoping that

when I lose sufficient weight, less stress on the discs in my low back will allow me to walk again.  Talk about a dream come true.

An image of dollar signs
An image of dollar signs

Another positive for me is the fact that I’m using so much less medication.  I’ve been injecting two different insulins for years now and none of them are cheap.  At one point, I was spending between $500-$600 every six weeks on my insulins and that was my share after my insurance paid their part.  I can think of several nice things that I could do with the thousands saved each year.  Think “Hawaiian Cruise” or “new living room furniture”, or “art lessons”, etc.  And just the fact I’m injecting insulins less is exciting – no one loves needles!

A Long Way to Go

I keep telling myself that I still have a long way to go to know I will not need any insulins at all again, and to lose the over 100 pounds I still need to lose.  However, just knowing that both those dreams are a part of my future reality is inspiring me to continue on.  It will take months for me to reach my goals and then to figure out how to maintain the “new me” without backsliding.  I will continuing blogging my progress regularly and for those of you who are considering the IF lifestyle, I’ll be glad to share my ups and downs and what I’m learning along the way.

 

Thanks

I want to thank the members of the Wefast Intermittent Fasting Community on Facebook who have encouraged me and shared their own journeys and especially Dr. Manuel Lam (Doc Manny) who is helping me so much on my journey.

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 will be sending out a monthly newsletter starting in January 2017.  If you would like to receive that email newsletter, you can sign up here.

– Shirley

My Cure is in Sight!

My Intermittent Fasting is Definitely Working


I just finished fixing my husband a brunch of bacon, eggs and toast.  And all the time I did not crave food.  I’ve been fasting now for over 42 hours and I did not get hungry while cooking his meal.  Overall, this is the easiest “diet” I haven undertaken to date (and I’ve tried many).

An image of a scale with tape measure.
An image of a scale with tape measure.

I’m on Day 19 of my journey with Intermittent Fasting (IF) to cure my diabetes and lose weight.  I began this journey on December 11th after reading Dr. Jason Fung’s book “The Complete Guide to Fasting: Heal Your Body Through Intermittent, Alternate-Day, and Extended Fasting”.

I managed to make it through the holidays well and its working.  I started out weighing 260 pounds and this morning I weighed 246.8 pounds.  13 pounds in 19 days.  I’ve averaged a loss of .6842 a day (a little more than a half a pound per day).

How Can I Do This?

I must say that without some support, I’m not sure I could have done it.  But fortunately for me, about 4 days in, a doc in one of the Facebook Intermittent Fasting Groups took me under his wing and began helping me.  Doc Manny (Dr. Manuel Lam) has been wonderful and invaluable in this journey.

I’ve done several fasts of varying lengths:  As follows they are:

20.8 hours
23 hour
42 hours
44 hours
46 hours
22.5 hours
49.5 hours
42 hours
72 hours (which I am in the middle of now.

That’s almost 362 hours of intentional fasting.

Since I’m a Type 2 diabetic, I had lots of questions about how to reduce my insulins during this time.  I was previously taking about 182 units of insulins per day (including both my short and long term insulins).  I did not want to experience any lows and have to eat something during my fasting periods and thankfully Doc Manny (Dr. Manuel Lam)  has been giving me awesome advice about how much to take.  I had one low of 65 before he started helping me, but since then I’ve had no lows at all.  Yesterday, my total insulin used was only 10 units of my long acting Lantus last night.

I haven’t had to deal a lot with hunger during my fasting times.  Whenever I start to crave eating, I drink some no carb organic broth or eat a spoonful of coconut oil.  That seems to work well in keeping me going on my fasting period. Otherwisde, during my fasting periods, I drink coffee, tea and water only.

My fasting schedule right now is fast on Monday-Tuesday-Thursday-Friday and eat on Saturday-Sunday and Wednesday.  On my eating periods, I’m usually only eating one meal (dinner) but occasionally two meals.  I’m trying to keep my calories during my eating times to <1000.   That’s a pretty low number but I’m treating this like Dr. Fung said, basically its like I’m undergoing bariatric surgery without the surgery. Once I’ve lost the weight and am off all my diabetic meds, I hope to maintain with only 2 fasts of 20 hours each week, eating Paleo style when I’m not fasting.  Of course, I’ll have to see if that works when the time comes.

Right now, during my eating periods, I’m sticking to a paleo/whole food eating style.  Low on carbs, high good fats and medium proteins.  I think that helps with my hunger during my fasting periods.  I’ve found that if I eat a normal diet with too much sugar I don’t’ feel well at all that night and I experience more hunger during the next fast.

Exercise?

An image of women doing water aerobics
An image of women doing water aerobics

For 18 days, I did not exercise at all and I’m pretty sedentary, in my wheelchair all day.  Yesterday, I began doing some water exercise,and I plan on doing that at least 3 days a week from now on.  My BGL (blood glucose level) was 193 before I went to the pool and after my exercise of two hours, it dropped 40 points.

I have always had high morning levels (the dawn phenomena).  You can read about that here.  I’m finding that so far, my morning BGL readings are still higher, but overall they are coming down, even in the morning testing.  My meter is showing an average of 164.  Before I began IF, the average was well over 200 (my diabetes was not very well controlled).

Continuing

I’m so happy with the results I’ve had so far, that I intend to keep on until I reach my three goals:

  1. Getting off all my diabetic meds
  2. Losing 125 pounds (I would weigh 145 at that point)
  3. Getting out of this wheelchair if possible

I’m already achieving significant loss of pain (from my fibromyalgia and hip).  Time will tell and I’m praying my will-power and determination will stay the course.

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 will be sending out a monthly newsletter staring in January 2017.  If you would like to receive that email newsletter, you can sign up here.

– Shirley

 

Success With Intermittent Fasting

Success at Last!


An image showing weight loss and thinner waistline
An image showing weight loss and thinner waistline

I’m continuing on my journey with intermittent fasting (IF).  Since I started this journey on December 11th, I have lost almost 10 pounds (from 160 to 150.8). I’m also noticing that my tummy is becoming a little flatter (so nice!).   But the best result is that my insulin requirements have dropped dramatically.  From taking my former regiment of:

Lantus 1/x 70 units
Novalog 30/42/40 (breakfast/lunch/dinner)

Total Insulin = 182 units

I’m now taking between 20-50 units total each day. I modify my amounts depending on the number of meals I expect to eat the next day and my blood glucose levels when I test. At this point if my bgl is >180 I’m taking 5 Novalog units.  As for my long term Lantus, each evening I take 30 units w/2 meals next day; 25 w/1 meal next day; 20 w/no meals next day.  I’m really not doing days with 3 meals at the present time.  Its very easy for me to do just the 2 meals a day and surprisingly enough, having only 1 meal a day is pretty easy in itself.

A graph image of my insulin usage.
A graph image of my insulin usage since December 16th.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It is so amazing that I have decreased my insulin injections so much in just 15 days.

Getting Support During Fasting

I’m finding that having support during my fasting is truly motivating and helping me a lot.  I’ve been reading lots of posts in several different Facebook fasting groups and the assistance I’m receiving from Dr. Manny (Dr. Manuel Lam) on the Wefast FaceBook group is totally amazing.  He is monitoring my bgl levels and insulins very carefully and encouraging me to continue.

Its so nice to have encouragement and not criticism.  I’ve found that over the years and my many attempts at losing weight (all fails), my husband has become very much a skeptic.  I do get encouragement from my sisters and my daughter; although they too have questions about the fasting and is it “healthy”.

I have a long way to go before my body becomes a true “fat burning machine” and this 100 extra pounds goes away, but right now I’m pretty pumped about the results I’ve had so far and I’m going to continue on.

Dr. Jason Fung’s book which started me on my “journey to a cure” is:

The Complete Guide to Fasting: Heal Your Body Through Intermittent, Alternate-Day, and Extended Fasting

While I have not experienced a lot of really hungry moments, I have had some temptation moments and periods when I feel not so great.  During those times of temptation, I’m making sure I drink more water, tea or coffee.  I’m increasing my water consumption and I notice the pounds are coming off faster as I do that.  Whenever I’m feeling slightly queasy or hungry, I’m eating a spoonful of coconut oil or occasionally drinking a cup of bone or organic broth.  I’ve always felt better after I do that and can continue with my fast.

So far, I’ve only had one bad experience.  I broke my first 46 hour fast by eating 3 meals the next day totaling over 1800 calories.  That was too much and I was sick at my tummy that evening. Since then, I’ve been eating more modestly after breaking a fasting period and I’ve felt fine.

Overall, I must say that my energy level has increased and I feel better each day.  I’m also finding it easier to get up from my chair or my bed.

Recordkeeping My Journey

I’m doing some recordkeeping of this journey, including this blogsite to record my experience/success with IF.  I have set up a spreadsheet on a google drive and record my bgl testing (up to 5 times a day – waking/breakfast/lunch/dinner/bedtime).  Also weighing each morning and recording my weight,  In addition, I record my hunger level at each testing time (on a scale from 0-10), my insulin amounts and my calorie consumption each day (I use myfitnesspal.com to determine this). Dr. Manny has added his own sheet to mine and created the cool graphs.

When I consider I’ve been able to do this over a holiday period, I’m very much surprised and happy.  Its going to take months for me to get where I want to be, but I now know its possible and one day I may have to change the name of this website from “Growing Old With Diabetes” to “Growing Old after Diabetes”….Ha, Ha!

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.

– Shirley

Curing My Diabetes!

Will this Cure Me?


An image of a woman walking dogs
An image of a woman walking dogs

This week I decided to cure my diabetes.  This disease has disrupted my life over and over and I have suffered lots of pain, frustration and even fear over the years.  Plus treating it has been pretty expensive both money wise and time wise.  I discovered a book by Dr. Jason Fung titled “The Complete Guide to Fasting: Heal Your Body Through Intermittent, Alternate-Day, and Extended“.  Dr. Fung claims that intermittent fasting (IF) has healed many of his patients.  I read this book and the testimonials of many of the patients who lost weight and got off all their diabetic meds and normalized their blood sugars.  It was very encouraging and I decided that I wanted to try this approach myself.  The one statement in Dr. Fung’s book that made up my mind is that

 

“…fasting is just like bariatric surgery without the surgery”

Continue reading “Curing My Diabetes!”