How I Try to Stay Focused Part One

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How I Try to Stay Focused Part One



There are enemies to fight in the battle against my diabetes. Speaking for myself, the biggest one is somebody telling me “all you have to do is….” Really? That’s all? And “all you have to do” covers lots of things, from my family to “tips” in magazines. Particularly tips that just tell me the obvious like “eat more fruits and vegetables” and “avoid fast food.” I’m as sick of them as anything else. In my opinion, there’s more of a stigma about being a diabetic than almost any other disease. You are seen as being a lazy person more with diabetes than any other chronic condition. I think that people with diabetes are seen as more to blame for their problem than even smokers. Most of the time, people with diabetes are overweight (I was) and the stigma just is that if you’re overweight, you’re lazy. Even if you’re not overweight, there is still the perception that if you have diabetes, you're lazy. And there is (rightfully so) very little sympathy for lazy people. I’ve never been drunk, nor have I smoked. I liked chocolate the first time I tried it. Does that make me lazy? I was fat for a year when I was a kid, but I wasn’t overweight as an adult until I hit my late 30’s. But the thing is, I was a competitive power lifter so even though I was way overweight, inside my own brain I thought I was “in shape.” The shock of finding out I was diabetic was unbelievable, and the worst part was I feared that everyone I knew would think I was lazy. I am in semi-denial to this day, meaning that I can’t stand telling anyone I’m diabetic, but I decided to bite the bullet and talk about it if it helps other people. The reason for writing this is to share some things that have kept me motivated and my blood sugar under control without medication. Let me say right now that I don’t think being diabetic in this day and age is all the fault of the diabetic. If it was, there wouldn’t be an epidemic of diabetes. The reason for the increase in diabetes is because of a huge increase in the availability and portion size of food that tastes really good and is really bad for you. These people are the enemy I can hold on to. It doesn’t really matter if the makers of pre-packaged cupcakes and fast food burger chains are to blame for my condition or not, I’m holding them halfway responsible. The important thing is that they are somewhat to blame. They’re just as much to blame for my diabetes as tobacco companies are to blame for someone’s lung cancer. They produce a product that is physically addictive, just as much as cigarettes or cocaine. These guys are selling poison. And I’m not gonna let a poison company beat me. I don’t like toxic waste being dumped in my water supply or my body. So I hold on to blaming the fast food and processed food companies for inspiration whenever I need to have something. Feel like eating something bad? No, that would let the poison companies win. Don’t feel like working out? No, that would let the poison companies win. There’s no way I’m letting those guys beat me, nor do I feel like hearing ever again from someone who would tell me “all you have to do is….”



Comments

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I think that it would shock any to find out they had any type of ailment, especially of you have taken really good care of yourself. Just like no book can actually tell you how to be a parent....its the same for diabetes. There is no real book that can tell you how to deal with your illness. They can only give you tips and ideas on things. Each person deals with their illness differently, therefore, I think things work or apply to people on a case by case basis. Until a person actually goes through something, they really do not know how to deal with something unless you are experiencing it personally.

Jul 30, 2013 - 1:18 AM by Kelley W

Brian, my grandma was overweight and was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes at age 50. But she was NOT a lazy person: has been working all her life - at local stores and at home. In fact, she is the most diligent person I've ever met. I am also angry at the wide availability of bad(nutrition-less, high fat, high sodium, high sugar) food and the Diabetic epidemic in the US. My grandma stopped eating those food about 15 years ago. She has also been exercising regularly. Since then her diabetes(type 2) has been under control and her health has improved greatly. She always says: "I cannot let myself or my loved ones down."

Aug 20, 2012 - 12:10 PM by Ariel T

Ariel, staying angry is one tool in the box, but it's a big one. There are so many things that we diabetics need to be defiant about. Advice from our doctors of course, is not one of them, but our image, and the food that is available to us are two of the big ones. Staying defiant is a way to keep it in mind when temptation arises to have that motivation not to indulge.

Sep 07, 2012 - 10:11 PM by Brian W

Brian - Thanks so much for your very insightful story. I agree 100% about the stigma associated with people who have diabetes. I can tell from the passion in your story that no one will beat you in your fight and that is great. I have traveled out side the US for work and I can tell you that only in America are the portion sizes so large. I agree if we did nothing more than reduce the size of the portions we eat, that would be a good start. I would be interested in hearing about some of the "good" foods or recipes that you enjoy. I have noticed that snack food companies are beginning to address this problem by starting to make more healthier snack foods. I would also like to hear about the kind of "Good" snacks you enjoy. Also, what do you think about these "No Carb" diets that seem to be a big thing now? I for one am glad you are ANGRY! Diabetes is an epidemic that needs to be stopped. Lets use this community to get everyone angry about diabetes! Again, thanks for your story and I hope you become a very active member of healtheo360 -- Great job, stay Angry!!

Aug 19, 2012 - 8:47 AM by David D

David, what I have found is that the recommendations for how diabetics should mix their intake of carbs and protein don't take into account the time of day, which for me is very important. I usually only take my blood sugar once a day, because I eat the same thing at night regardless of what my sugar is. Usually, this holds my sugar down so I wake up in the morning feeling pretty good. If for some reason, I mess up, then I eat very few carbs at breakfast. As far as recipes, I'm a fairly basic eater, at least when it comes to my own cooking. Of course what I eat depends on how much time I have to fix it. That's why protein shakes on the go are important, at least for me. If I eat cold cereal for breakfast, I don't take too long before I drink a protein shake in about an hour. If my sugar is high before I start, do five minutes of hard shadowboxing and then the protein shake and that's it, Then I do another protein shake soon. As far as snacks, I try to stick to nuts, fruit, and the protein shakes. Another trick is to make a big salad andmunch on it all day.

Sep 08, 2012 - 6:11 PM by Brian W

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