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This blog is another opportunity to feel grateful and thank you dear Universe: You continue to bless me with recovery and overall health.
Note: I am sharing my 6 years of personal comprehensive experience with Diabetes as a rare and chronic patient.
Today, Diabetes has become a common household name with people having their individual approach to managing fluctuations in sugar levels however it was completely new in my experience post getting diagnosed with a rare disease, Isaacs’ Syndrome (a neuromuscular condition stemming from muscle hyperactivity), accompanied by chronic ailments like Lyme disease (a bacterial illness transmitted by ticks), Glaucoma (which damages the optic nerve), and Membranous Glomerulonephritis (a progressive kidney disease).
Generally, it isn’t easy to fish out of water when you’re in a completely new environment and suddenly there was so much address from my perception to the meaning of the disease, the treatment compliance, and new verbiage added to my long list of Medical Dictionary. I found myself in a tight spot as my knowledge was limited by this discovery which requires a continuously controlled lifestyle. For days together the signs of high blood sugar levels were misinterpreted by my rare and chronic diseases. It came as a surprise with a sense of overwhelming anxiety as it just made the situation far more complicated.
As it was quite unique to my situation, I called for a session with my General Physician to understand the basics of the term Diabetes (a chronic health condition that affects how your body turns food into energy) and how to make arrangements to deal with it. It was very clear that our body mechanics are designed to break down the food consumed into sugar or glucose and releases it into our blood. When the sugar levels in the blood go up, the mind signals our pancreas to release insulin (a hormone manufactured in our pancreas which allows our body to use glucose to produce energy and has several functions like balancing the blood sugar levels and indicating the body to store extra glucose in our liver). With Diabetes, this normal process is disturbed and our body is non-equipped to make enough insulin. Enough sugar staying in the blood for long causes serious health issues.
I was more of a Type 2 Diabetes Category.
Now what’s that?
Insulin is important to take the sugar from the food that we eat and convert it into energy. It is when the Pancreas (an organ that is responsible to produce the hormone, insulin) isn’t well equipped to produce enough insulin and the sugar levels aren’t normal it causes the glucose to stay in the blood hence causing the problem. Type 2 diabetes could be delayed or prevented with lifestyle changes.
Doctors had doubts that a wide range of therapeutic agents was abnormally affecting glucose tolerance hence causing Medicine-Induced-Diabetes as numerous pharmaceutical compounds are capable of altering glucose stability by different mechanisms. I was prescribed a couple of pills with a daily dose of insulin however was simultaneously asked to try some natural remedies to support the required sugar levels:
Ayurvedic: one needs to be persistent with this treatment as adequate results may take some time.
- A tablespoon of Fenugreek Seeds soaked in water overnight, to be taken next morning on an empty stomach.
- Incremental use of Turmeric Powder in food
- Use of Neem leaves as they contain properties that are known to manage blood sugar levels. I was prescribed to boil about 10- 15 leaves for 10 minutes, strain the water and consume it twice daily.
- Another recommendation was to have Karela (Bitter Gourd) Juice which contains compounds called charantin to lower blood sugar levels.
A complete no to using Artificial Sweeteners: as they could worsen the situation.
Jamun Seeds: it was suggested both to control the effects of diabetes and improve kidney function.
Say a no to the following Foods:
- Sugar loaded Beverages: sugar-free drinks, artificial juices, and beverages.
- Packaged food items: biscuits, cakes, cookies, and any product that contained processed wheat or flour.
- Limit the intake of Protein: both for the kidneys and for diabetes.
Regular Monitor and Maintain a chart with the progression, remedies, and effects: I bought a portable blood glucose meter called a glucometer at home to learn if the prescribed food and medicines were working in tandem. I lab tested my A1C test which measured sugar levels over the previous 3 months.
Managing Carbohydrates: I consulted a dietician as carb intake strongly influences the levels. Typically, our body breaks carbs down into glucose. Insulin helps our body to use and store this glucose into energy. When we eat too many carbs this process is obstructed hence blood glucose levels rise.
Exploring Nature: there are many plants and herbs with medicinal properties. I personally tried certain Ayurvedic home remedies that worked well in reducing the dosage of my Western medicines.
Stayed Hydrated: drinking enough water could help our kidneys to flush out excess sugar through urine. Though coconut water is considered a great option for staying hydrated however it adversely affected my sugar levels therefore sticking to water was the best option.
Worked on controlling Stress Levels: when under stress our body tends to secret hormones like cortisol which causes the blood sugar levels to rise. I was recommended to calm myself with relaxation techniques like mind-body meditation and mild exercises.
As the doses of Insulin were heavy, it was always recommended to keep some Glucose powder or sugar syrup handy in case of an emergency, be cautious of low blood sugar, and watch the following symptoms:
- Feeling weak than usual
It took 6 long years of struggle to get my sugar levels to normal and has left me cautious for life however trying Ayurvedic and home remedies, managing food and stress levels, and sticking to a disciplined routine were the fundamentals to my healing link. Having controlled the blood sugar levels instantly showed positive results by reducing tiredness, eye stress, and innate healing abilities. It wasn’t easy to give up on my favourite food, especially the dark chocolate smoothies puffed with cream however adhering to lifestyle changes and being persistent are important to manage things better.
The views expressed above in this article are the author’s own and do not represent any kind of medical advice.