My Journey Into and Out of Diabetes HellsteemCreated with Sketch.

in #health7 years ago (edited)


The goal of this article is to help other diabetics find ways to more easily live with the disease

Especially, I want to share about some foods that I've found reduce the need for medication!

Near the beginning of 2016 I started noticing some strange symptoms. Random pain, tingling, and numbness. It began in my toes and feet and moved up to my calves, knees, and thighs. Muscle deterioration and weakness. Lethargy. Difficulty sleeping. Visual impairment. Cloudy thinking. Erectile dysfunction!

At first, I blew off these symptoms as the inevitable affects from aging

Over the course of 2017, all of the above symptoms increased in frequency and intensity. It got to where every day I took heavy doses of various over-the-counter pain killers in order to sleep.

In early 2017, I finally went to see a doctor.

My blood-glucose test showed above 400, where a normal number is around 100

I was sent to a lab for confirmation and diagnosed with Diabetes Type 2. They prescribed 850mg Metformin and 5mg Glibenclamide, to be taken twice a day. This combination regulated my blood-glucose levels quite well, as long as I also avoided sugar.

BUT - and this is important - over time, these medications began to lose efficacy

That's when my education about sugar really began. I spent the next few months trying different food combinations to figure out what worked best for my body.

First, some important basics

  • Your body turns carbs into sugar. This includes bread, pasta, potatoes, and rice!
  • Your body turns fruit into sugar.
  • Berries (strawberries, blueberries, etc.) are less damaging than bananas.
  • Fruit juices are far worse than fruit.
  • Splenda, et al, are no better than sugar.

Replacements I've found to work

It can suck to give up all the breads, starches, and sugars. Here are a few replacements I recommend:

  • Use Stevia instead of sugar.
  • Honey. Use carefully as this will affect blood sugar levels.
  • You can make flour from ground up nuts.
  • In baking, use bananas instead of sugar and eggs. Note: Bananas DO get converted to sugar in your body, so be aware of how much of those banana-sweetened cookies you eat.

Important supplements

  • Magnesium (Spinach, chard, pumpkin seeds, yogurt or kefir, almonds, cashews, black beans, avocado, figs, dark chocolate, banana, salmon, coriander, goat cheese, artichokes, and sea salt).
  • Vitamin B, D, and E (all the B's, especially B1, B2, B6, and B12) for nerve damage.
  • Alpha lipoic acid + Aceytl l-carnitine (must be supplemented by the vitamins above) for nerve damage.
  • GLA (Gamma-linolenic acid) for nerve damage. 250mg/day is normal. 400mg for diabetics.
  • Omega 3.
  • Flax seed oil.

The solution to a problem with vitamin B pills

You might have heard of the new type of vitamin B1 being produced, called Benfotiamine. It is a fat-soluble version of vitamin B1. What does this mean? It means this new form of vitamin B1 can be taken orally in large dosages and it will not flush out of the body the way ordinary Thiamine (vitamin B1) does. This is due to the fact that this type of B1 will be delivered into the blood stream where it can travel to the cells and be used.

Also available is Methylcobalamine (called Methyl B12). This is the form of vitamin B12 that can be directly utilized by the body. When regular B12 is taken, the body has to convert it into the Methyl B12 in the gut. Methyl B12 already comes in this useable form.

B1 (thiamine) is dependent on the other B-complex vitamins. Absorption of B1 into the body requires adequate supplies of vitamin B6, B12 and B9 (folic acid). A deficiency in Vitamins B12 can increase loss of B1in the urine, and vitamin B6 also appears to help regulate distribution of thiamine throughout the body. B9 (folic acid) is also necessary to activate the absorption of the B12. The body utilizes vitamin B2 to keep tissue healthy and to help accelerate healing of injuries. B2 protects the nervous system.

Warning! Please talk to your doctor before supplementing with B vitamins higher than the recommended daily value, as doses of B6 above 200 mg have been shown to actually cause nerve damage.

"Superfoods" that I've found to WORK to help manage blood sugar and pain

  • Spirulina!
  • Kale and spinach.
  • Cashews, almonds, pistachios, pecans, peanuts, et al.
  • Turmeric + pepper (must combine) for swelling-related pain.
  • Chia seeds.
  • CBD oil with THC - definitely helps for pain and sleep.
  • Ginger.
  • Cinnamon.

My most recent discovery, spirulina, has proven the most exciting. Merely adding a tablespoon of spirulina to my morning smoothie has caused a pretty massive drop in my blood glucose levels and reduced my use of Metformin to half of what it was before.

Experimenting with

  • Hemp protein powder.
  • Apple cider vinegar.
  • Coconut oil.

Next to experiment with (advice welcome)

CBD oil without THC for pain, sleep, and [hopefully] healing.
Note: This is NOT oil from hemp seeds. Hemp seed extract is healthy but does not have the purported healing effects of true CBD oil.


Do all you can. This helps a huge amount and is necessary if you want to improve your condition or at least sleep better. Don't exercise immediately before bed. Give your body time to "cool down" and relax.

Far from finished

This is an ongoing experiment. Expect to hear more as I learn more. And if you have information to share, my ears are open! Please also feel free to contact me through my site.


What a great post! My sister suffers tremendously from diabetes. Went into DKA twice. I ran and made her read this article. So caring of you to share these great efforts to control your health. Will most definitely follow. Be well.

Thank you! Please ask her if she has any tips for me! I'm still pretty new to this thing. Someone just told me that magnesium deficiency is quite often the cause, so I did a bit of research and then edited this article just now to include magnesium.

This might sound really strange, we saw an internal surgeon for a second opinion about a recommendation, and he said "no surgery, just poop everyday and see what happens" This was a huge game changer for my sister. Blood sugar came down, energy went up, no more stomach pain, actually gained weight which was important for her. Don't know how this relates, but when your digestive system is optimal it effects the diabetes so positively.

Hey Scott, look up chromium and vanadium as mineral supplements to support and help repair the pancreas. I've read a lot of good things. I just started taking a trace mineral supplement called Concentrace, which includes many more, but you can of course get these two minerals on their own.

Very interesting read. I have two friends with diabetes and both of them are unwilling to look for options, relying solely on doctors orders - pills and more pills.
One interesting idea that I want to share with you is the skip breakfast approach. I know there's even a book about that, but I don't have the link right now. I was interested by this idea as I've noticed feeling quite unwell on the couple of occasions I did have something for breakfast. Generally, I only have coffee in the morning. I know this goes against what doctors usually advise diabetes patients, but since you asked for points of view I thought I might share this with you.

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