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My life since discovering LCHF

Discussion in 'Low-carb Diet Forum' started by poshtotty, Nov 6, 2014.

  1. poshtotty

    poshtotty Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I thought I'd post an update of progress since I discovered this forum earlier in the year and converted to low carbing on the strength of the success stories here.

    I was diagnosed with T2 and rheumatoid arthritis within a short space of time and no medical professional ever mentioned a connection between these two autoimmune diseases.

    Having always been fit, healthy and with a happy disposition, never having been in hospital (except to give birth three times) or needed medication, and hadn't had a cold or flu in 15 years, my health suddenly deteriorated and was in quite a bad way healthwise at the start of this year. I'd had an operation cancelled which was to realign joints which had become deformed through a rapid deterioration in rheumatoid arthritis. I'd been unable to wear heels for about 2 years because I couldn't bend my toes sufficiently to walk in anything other than flat shoes and was told I'd never be able to wear heels again. So last year, with a heavy heart, I sold my lovely Russell & Bromley heeled shoes, boots and party shoes on ebay.

    The operation was cancelled when my blood sugars at the pre-op assessment were considered too high to operate and I was referred to the dietician at the hospital who gave me my first glucose meter and showed me how to test my bloods by finger pricking. At 11am, the dietician recorded them at 13.9. My HbA1c was 85. The dietician also gave me a home monitoring diary, telling me only to test on alternate days.

    I was already on Metformin by this time, having been prescribed it in late December 2013 when my HbA1c was 89, (in August the same year had been 97)

    This told me that the Metformin alone wasn't having much effect and I was looking for ways to help myself, and return to my healthy state of mind and body, when a chance suggestion from a friend to give up bread, led me to this forum.

    After reading about LCHF I converted overnight and within about 3 days my energy levels were returning and the mental fog cleared. I had none of the carb 'flu I was warned about, perhaps because carbs hadn't featured too much in my diet as I've never been fond of pasta or potatoes but bread and home-baking have been weaknesses. I rarely drink alcohol except on special occasions and never more than a single glass of anything, which is only really to be sociable.

    While other posters here were recording impressive weight loss and lowered fasting bs readings, these two were slow to respond with me, but daytime readings have averaged between 5-7 with the occasional 4's and a few highs when I've experimented to see what I can tolerate in the way of naughty food and soft drinks but I always drop back to 6-7 within 2 hours of consuming anything bad.

    Apart from losing just over a stone in weight, the most noticeable improvement has been in my rheumatoid arthritis. Since commencing LCHF in March this year, I noticed my inflammed joints were reducing in size and were less painful, so I tried giving up my weekly self-administered injections of methotrexate (a high dose of 25mg). I suffered no ill effects so gradually I gave up the other medications which were supposed to complement the Metoject - Salazopyrin, hydroxychloroquine and Folic Acid.

    I then noticed I was once again jumping out of bed in the mornings like Tigger, with a return to the energy levels I'd always had before diagnosis, and I wasn't in any pain from my joints. So I began to wean myself off the 8 Co-codamol tablets I'd been prescribed daily.

    This wasn't too pleasant and for about 3 nights I didn't sleep well due to an overly alert mind, but I think I got away lightly after reading some horror stories of withdrawal symptoms.

    I had already stopped taking 40 mg of Simvastatin after consultation with my DN who agreed to trade off the statins against a higher dose of Metformin. After a 3 month "holiday" from the statins, she has agreed I have no need to go back on them. My last review in September this year showed my HbA1c had dropped from 59 to 51; my cholesterol was slightly up at 5,1; LDL was slightly up at 2.6 but HDL and Trigs were 1.77 and 1.6 respectively.

    I consider I now have a grip on my diabetes and my arthritis. I no longer walk with a limp, but with a spring in my step and am a keen Nordic Walker, swimmer and cyclist. A frozen shoulder type pain which I'd had for months and was picked up at an ultrasound scan as an inflamed tendon and shoulder joint has completely healed and I have regained full use and movement of my arm and shoulder, which before I couldn't lift above the shoulder joint, or carry any weight or even a handbag in that hand. Dressing was difficult with only the use of one arm, as was showering and hair-washing

    On Monday this week I went to my GP and requested a review of all my medications after confessing I had stopped taking everything on my 2 page prescription except Metformin. He told me never to apologise for giving up medication as it was my body and I was making informed choices. He could see from my blood results that my diabetes was now controlled and he was greatly impressed with my latest HbA1c results.

    He explained in some detail why our daily bs readings are not important but went into graphic detail of the hidden damage diabetes does to our organs

    Today I went for my 6 month rheumatology appointment, carrying a large shopping bag full of used sharps from earlier in the year, and 5 months worth of unused injection needles filled with the nasty Methotrexate drug.

    The nurse practitioner showed me my blood results on the screen and told me there was a marked improvement which meant the increased dose of methotrexate must be working….. Hmmm! She also checked my joints for inflammation and noticed the improvement. She asked me to rate on a 0 - 10 scale my pain. I rated it 1. Previous recordings have been 8-9.

    I then confessed to not taking any of my medications since commencing LCHF in March. She looked a bit bemused and said that the methotrexate would stay in my system for 3 months and was probably still working. I mentioned that it was well 8 months since I had taken any, and she agreed, saying well, diet will help you too…..

    So I asked her to compare today's results with those in March.

    My disease progression score in March last year was "off the scale" according to the nurse - a scale which runs from 2 - 5.00. In March mine was 5.02. Today it is 3.75 and is considered to have dropped to mid-range.

    The inflammation of my joints which affected both hands, ankles, one shoulder and both feet have all improved - most are pain free with little or no swelling, except for both my ring fingers, but these are slowly returning to normal.

    Yesterday while have a general autumn clear out, I found my favourite pair of heels which I was too attached to, to sell on ebay. Out of curiosity I tried them on. They slipped on easily and more importantly I walked easily in them! I CAN once again walk in heels. Great news since I have my son's wedding in January!

    I'm sure the LCHF sceptics out there will find reasons to deny these massive improvements in my health and quality of life are not associated to my lifestyle changes, but the simple fact is that apart from gradually giving up a lot of medication, my food choices are the only changes I have made. There has been no detrimental effect on my health, only improvements.

    I wouldn't advocate anyone else should give up medications without professional advice or supervision. I didn't intend to, but I couldn't ignore the improvements in other aspects of my health which I wasn't actually addressing. It was purely accidental. It is only after giving myself 8+ months to test that this was actually happening, that I began returning the unused medications and confessing to the medical professionals involved in my treatment.

    I accept that I have 2 serious, aggressive (RA) and progressive diseases but the improvement in my joints, and feeling my mind, body and general health are once again all in sync. This more than compensates for my stubborn fasting blood readings and slow but sure weight loss, and removes any temptation to obsess about numbers on a monitor. The proof for me has been in restoring my health to where it was up until diagnosis almost 10 years ago.

    So to any newcomers who may wonder if LCHF works (other eating regimes are available!) or who are becoming despondent by comparing their results with the results of others, don't be despondent. Don't obsess about numbers or weight loss. Always look at the bigger picture - is your quality of sleep better? Has your mental clarity improved and your physical energy returned? Do you have other health conditions which are improving? Is your complexion glowing again?

    I can answer yes to all of these and there has been no other change in my life except a dietary one.

    I also want to thank everyone who has supported and encouraged me, some on a daily basis, and those who have shared the benefit of their wisdom and experience to explain, motivate and inspire me.

    LCHF is now a way of life for me, and something I am totally committed to for life. I could never have imagined that a simple change of food choices and exercise could have such monumental effect on my overall health.

    A huge thank you to all
     
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  2. douglas99

    douglas99 I reversed my Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Congratulations, an inspiring story.
    It's a good job you couldn't bring yourself to get rid of those boots :)
     
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  3. poshtotty

    poshtotty Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Thank you. There are some advantages to being a sentimental old tart! ;)
     
  4. zand

    zand Type 2 · Expert

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    Yes Diana thanks for sharing this. Well done :)
     
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  5. msmi1970

    msmi1970 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    where's a happy, clappy smiley when you need one? :)

    thanks for sharing! truly remarkable..hope you continue to feel better.
     
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  6. cold ethyl

    cold ethyl Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    So pleased for you as I remember reading your struggles on here when I first registered. Hope the improvement continues and you get a killer pair of heels for the wedding x
     
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  7. Winifred12345

    Winifred12345 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Lovely story, exactly what I need tonight
     
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  8. Robbity

    Robbity Type 2 · Expert

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    Well done! It must feel like a minor miracle to be feeling fit and flexible again. Sorry about all those lovely shoes that you need not have sold though....

    I've had one wonky knee for over 30 years (no medical reason found!) and the other had been playing up a bit since I retired. I take glucosamine to help with the stiffness & intermittent pain. But since starting low carbing early this year I've noticed that they're not nearly so bad now and I'm managing the stairs a lot better, so although it's nothing like you must have been suffering, my new diet has helped me immensely too with my poorly joints.

    Robbity
     
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  9. Scandichic

    Scandichic Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Maybe you could change your avatar after all! ;)
     
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  10. Scandichic

    Scandichic Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Here's a song for you to dance around the lounge in those killer heels.......
     
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  11. jack412

    jack412 Type 2 · Expert

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    what would you have said 12 mths ago if someone told you not to eat those healthy grains and eat artery clogging fat :)
     
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  12. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 (in remission!) · Guru

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    Thanks for sharing your story Diane. I'm so pleased for you. Big clap from me. :D

    Just don't fall off those heels and break your ankle!
     
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  13. Adelle0607

    Adelle0607 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Congratulations @dianagrace, I'm glad you're feeling much better with your RA...I have a friend who has it and understand the daily battles she has to go through with severe pain and I'm happy you've found relief with lchf :) I'll share your story if you don't mind. Well done Diana! Xx pleased with your improvement and results. :)
     
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  14. lizdeluz

    lizdeluz Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    So pleased for you, Diana. Well done for being so determined and getting such fantastic improvements! Have fun selecting new shoes to replace the ones you had to lose,:) .
     
  15. poshtotty

    poshtotty Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Thank you so much. I still struggle but staying focused on the bigger picture definitely helps. Thank you again for your encouragement x
     
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  16. poshtotty

    poshtotty Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Thank you @Robbity I'm glad you are noticing relief with your knee and joints. Keep up the good fight:)
     
  17. poshtotty

    poshtotty Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Ah, go on then.......If you insist.;)
     
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  18. poshtotty

    poshtotty Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Thank you @Adelle0607 Please share with your friend. It makes complete sense to me that if one auto-immune disease responds to a change of diet, then the other condition will too. Just wish I'd realised it earlier and made the changes sooner. Thank you for your kind words. I hope your friend finds relief soon too
     
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  19. Scandichic

    Scandichic Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    What's with the killer heels? Where's the whip?! ;)
     
  20. Kezzer4321

    Kezzer4321 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for a really expiring story
     
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