Hello all, I have ‘hung around’ on the periphery of this site for a couple of months or so, only now feeling anywhere near strong enough to ‘declare my hand’ although have visited a number of the forums routinely. I now put pen to paper with expectation I will be challenged and possibly derided for my views, if not my story. I had a routine health assessment on the 29th April, with expectation of being told, you need to ‘shed some timber and oh your BP is a bit high’. Nothing, but nothing prepared me for the shock I had, and the ‘Life sentence’ I came away with – I was in absolute shock and completely devastated at the hand I had been dealt! I was, up to that point completely asymptomatic experiencing nothing of what maybe I should! Just to complete this part of the story, this was a private health assessment I needed for work. I had tried to get a ‘well man’ assessment through my GP, but was categorically told I was not entitled to one (I’m 51) – the best they could offer was a BP check….. oh that has now come to bite them! Needless to say all the private company could do was refer me back to my GP with their findings. Incidentally my fasting ‘finger prick test was 12 – which was subsequently increased to 16 when the blood tests came back – which freaked me out and sent me into meltdown, at that point I understood nothing of values and numbers etc! I will be completely honest – since that day I have (increasingly) struggled with what I now see is a ‘chronic lifelong condition’, and that I am an NHS statistic with a label, nobody would want or wish upon their worst enemy! I realise the enormity of what I have, and just how life changing / limiting this now is…. and the risks I now have to (literally) life and limb! Over the last 7 weeks or so I have to come to see myself as physically / emotionally and quite possibly mentally broken! Again being completely honest there hasn’t been a day gone by where I am not reduced or almost reduced to tears at some point either remembering the life I had and loved, or fear at what the future holds. Before my ‘gift’ I enjoyed life fully - which is undoubtedly why I am where I am (more of that later) and loved my food and drink, but now have become almost ‘food phobic’. Eating no longer holds any pleasure for me, and I freak at being presented with anything more than a salad or a few roasted vegetables and bit of chicken. I will not eat anything unless I’ve scrutinised it completely, and daren’t drink anything alcoholic (I soooo loved my Stella). On occasions when I have to go into Supermarkets I walk looking at the floor as it hurts so much to see the food I would so love to eat and enjoy. Equally I now use pay the pump at service stations – to avoid having to go into the shop which breaks my heart. About a month ago after a domestic argument I felt I couldn’t cope anymore and locked myself away with a kebab and 2 pints of lager…. Not caring if it did horrible things to me at that point – clearly it didn’t! I now want to talk about the anger I have for myself in all this. There is (as I now understand) a slight genetic link to my label – in that the only member of the family known to have it is my paternal uncle, so arguably there is a link. However I NOW fully accept that I am where I am because of my complete and utter ambivalence and ignorance to the warnings I should have heeded. Many years ago I was young and fit – and indeed was a qualified fitness instructor. Since then over the years a sedentary life, giving up exercise and consuming absolutely everything I shouldn’t in more quantities than anyone should, on many nights of the week i.e takeaways, booze, crisps nuts, pasties pies, chips etc (all Sugar and Carb loaded and 'broke my system') led me to a weight of 18st, a BMI of 33, and 144/98 BP with cholesterol at 6.5 ….. I can blame no one but myself! I hate myself for what I have done to myself…… and cannot get away from ‘if only’ …… realising it is all too late now! Turning now to the NHS – well from a complete beginning of absolute disinterest (not wanting to do a well man assessment), I have nothing but praise for the way they have responded. I have now had 2 GP appointments who confirmed the ‘good news’ with the hb1ac test (which was 11%) and a meeting with the practice nurse who specialises in ‘my kind’! They have all been incredibly supportive and can see just how I have and am struggling with this. I now have further appointments diaried with a nutritionalist and eye screening etc – in a short period of time I will have had more medical appointments within a 3 month period than I have had in the last 20 years combined!...it is all bewildering! As it stands I am currently NOT on any medication and desperately want to avoid being so, having been sent away to manage it on diet and exercise (more of that below!) My hb1ac will not be done for another 6 weeks or so, but when I met with the nurse (last month) she did the fasting finger prick test in surgery and my level was then 6.6 - a big change from 12 (I think???). We did discuss diet and monitoring, and whilst I think she is erring towards medication in the future, did not see the point of monitoring – yet. With regards to diet, both the practice nurse and the nurse who originally diagnosed me have both discussed the ‘lifestyle changes’ I need to make – which I completely accept, and I think is absolutely appropriate, and both have acknowledged the option of the LCHF diet (which I raised) which I know is heavily advocated here, and could see possible benefits of both. They both directed me to ‘the other’ UK Diabetes website and said this was excellent advice, which to be honest does not seem perhaps as ‘draconian’ as what I see here. I have a meeting with a nutritionalist next week and hope further perspective can be put on this – it is a little confusing. I know others who have posted in here have had very differing experiences with health care professionals and the NHS, however I do get concerned that it appears that there are a significant number of posts who quite literally deride any HCP as knowing nothing about our condition if they brook any differing views to an LCHF approach, and that this approach is the only way, in perhaps what I see is a little ‘puritanical’ – I stand to be corrected? The only genuine benefit I now see to the awful predicament is the metaphorical kick in the googlies I have had. As outlined above I do struggle to eat and have stopped drinking completely (currently), which I genuinely miss more than anything. Additionally I am now exercising (hard) 5-6 days per week, in the Gym / running / cycling / walking etc etc. As of today, I have now lost 2Ibs short of 3 stone, my BMI is now less than 30 (and reducing) and my BP is a respectable 109/70, my waist is now 6” less than it was (42 to 36) and I have a wardrobe that no longer fits me …… all heading in the right direction. So many people now comment on my weight loss and say I look soooo well (some have also asked if I'm ill given it has been dramatic!) – but inside I’m almost crying, because whilst they think I am well – actually I have never been more ill in my life! I conclude this by thanking the absolute best person in the whole wide world – my wife! Since my news and meltdown(s) she has been my absolute rock. Through my anger, my despair, my (sometimes constant) tears and everything else, she has been at my side literally. She has been to every appointment so far with me, and has spoken for me where I sometimes struggle to do so, and has embraced the new way of life I now need to lead significantly better than I, both the diet and the exercise (and she hated exercise). I am deeply embarrassed at just how much I have had to rely on her and the other vulnerable / emotional side of me she has now seen! – I love her soooo much and could not have made it this far without her, she deserves a medal! I am still struggling significantly with this, and hope one day I will be happier with my predicament – and myself – however I can’t see that on the horizon currently! I currently see my life here on in as denial of all the things I enjoy and a restricted way of living!I will now retire to my trench, pull on my body armour and helmet – and wait for the incoming Artillery barrage! Thank you for reading P.S. Please don’t point Daisy in my direction, there really is no need, I have read her comments many times now!