Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Your diet does make a difference....

This week I am inspired by my good friend Martin. Martin and I have been friends for over 10 years, somewhere along the way he was diagnosed with Type II diabetes. He takes two different pills to control his sugar levels, and like most type II diabetics, is to watch what he eats. Martin, like most diabetics, got a little lax recently on watching what he ate, and when he went to the doctor was surprised to hear his hemoglobin A1c was really high. Not good! His doctor gave him the option to try and better his score with changes to his diet, and if that did not prove to be successful then Martin was headed for insulin shots. That same day I got an email from him asking "can you help a brother out?". :0)

Of course I was eager to help! I love to tell other people what to do! LOL. So we started with testing his sugar more then once in awhile, Martin impressively tested for me 4 times a day. He was hitting high levels after eating both lunch and breakfast. So we took a look at what he was eating. Here's his typical day:

Honey Nut Cheerios

Bagel (white)

Stir fry shrimp and veggies
White rice

A few cookies

A lot of empty carbs, so we decided to switch those up and see if there was an improvement in his numbers. After much work on his part he stitched to:

Scrambled egg whites
1 piece whole wheat toast
2 pieces turkey bacon

2 slices whole wheat bread
turkey or ham lunch meat
low fat cheese

Veggies - steamed or stir fried
Brown rice or a smaller serving of white rice

OK now it took over a week to find this pattern, but the changes made his sugar levels drop down and remain impressively low. When he started having some sugar levels that were too low, he researched one of the medications he was taking and figured out he would be better off taking it at another time during the day. With this additional change his high sugar levels have disappeared! Martin is proof that you can take control of your health, you can work at it, tweak it, change it, and you can make a difference. His doctor gave him a decision, and he acted on it, and persisted until he had the outcome that he wanted - better sugar levels. He is proof that what you eat directly effects your health, every-single-meal.

He inspires me to do better and try harder at my own diet, not letting myself fall into a food rut. But more then that, about a week into our "project" he texted me that he was out to dinner with friends and he was having a margarita. And my heart sank I was so disappointed. Then the next day I got an email telling me about this wonderful dinner he had with great friends celebrating there birthdays at a great Mexican restaurant. And it was my turn to learn a lesson, and be inspired further by my friend Martin. He has taught me that life is too short to not stop sometimes and enjoy those special occasions with those we love, and the food we love along with that. It's just one meal, in the long run it wont make a difference to your diet - but the happiness and joy we get from friends and family is something that can never be measured.

Your diet makes a difference in your health and in your life. It goes both ways as Martin and I have proved. Watching things closer can bring you better health and help you feel better. And, letting loose sometimes to enjoy food with family and friends can help you truly live life.

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