Pre diabetes- when will I feel better?

Jo.flowers

Member
Messages
9
Type of diabetes
Prediabetes
Treatment type
Diet only
Hi
I am Jo, a 58 year old retired Primary teacher. I’ve just been diagnosed with pre diabete. My HCa1 test was 46.
I had the test because I am so exhausted, often feel and shaky.

I have drastically changed my diet and am making sure I swim 20 lengths each morning. I have been doing this for 6 days. I still feel yuk!

if anyone has been through this experience how long did it take to feel much better?

I am so confused and bewildered by it all. I don’t start my Diabetes course until Monday 24th June.

Thank you

Jo
 

KennyA

Moderator
Staff Member
Moderator
Messages
3,153
Type of diabetes
Treatment type
Diet only
Hi
I am Jo, a 58 year old retired Primary teacher. I’ve just been diagnosed with pre diabete. My HCa1 test was 46.
I had the test because I am so exhausted, often feel and shaky.

I have drastically changed my diet and am making sure I swim 20 lengths each morning. I have been doing this for 6 days. I still feel yuk!

if anyone has been through this experience how long did it take to feel much better?

I am so confused and bewildered by it all. I don’t start my Diabetes course until Monday 24th June.

Thank you

Jo
Hi Jo and welcome. When you say you've drastically changed your diet - from what, to what?

An HbA1c of 46 is not far out of normal range. It should be possible to lower it reasonably smoothly. The fact it's out of normal range, though, means there is a possibility that you already have diabetic symptoms - I had quite a few when my BG was in the mid-40s. Unfortunately the medics will usually only diagnose from the HbA1c test these days, rather than from how the patient presents. The exhaustion and shakiness is often reported - I certainly had it.

I would strongly recommend two things: the first is to forget everything you thought you knew about "healthy eating". The diet pushed at us officially is very high in carbs and low in fats: high carb will elevate blood glucose levels and keep them high. High blood sugar levels over time is what can do a lot of damage. In contrast, the diet that works for many of us on here is low in carbs and higher in fats.

The second thing I'd recommend is to get hold of a blood glucose meter and start regular testing. I found that the pattern of testing directly before eating to establish a baseline, and then testing two hours later, works very well at providing useful information. It's not to see "how high you go" - it's to see how well your body dealt with the carb in whatever you ate. You would be aiming for the second reading to be within 2 mmol/l of the first, and also not above 8.5. If so, your system can currently handle that level of carb.

Good luck with the diabetes course. Some are good, some are bad, and some are mixed. I had a mix of a diabetic nurse telling us all to base all our meals on starchy carbs (which is of course still the official advice) and a dietitian who took the "carbs are totally unnecessary and low carb is the way to go" line. The same course supplied plates of biscuits for the tea break.
 

Jo.flowers

Member
Messages
9
Type of diabetes
Prediabetes
Treatment type
Diet only
Hi Jo and welcome. When you say you've drastically changed your diet - from what, to what?

An HbA1c of 46 is not far out of normal range. It should be possible to lower it reasonably smoothly. The fact it's out of normal range, though, means there is a possibility that you already have diabetic symptoms - I had quite a few when my BG was in the mid-40s. Unfortunately the medics will usually only diagnose from the HbA1c test these days, rather than from how the patient presents. The exhaustion and shakiness is often reported - I certainly had it.

I would strongly recommend two things: the first is to forget everything you thought you knew about "healthy eating". The diet pushed at us officially is very high in carbs and low in fats: high carb will elevate blood glucose levels and keep them high. High blood sugar levels over time is what can do a lot of damage. In contrast, the diet that works for many of us on here is low in carbs and higher in fats.

The second thing I'd recommend is to get hold of a blood glucose meter and start regular testing. I found that the pattern of testing directly before eating to establish a baseline, and then testing two hours later, works very well at providing useful information. It's not to see "how high you go" - it's to see how well your body dealt with the carb in whatever you ate. You would be aiming for the second reading to be within 2 mmol/l of the first, and also not above 8.5. If so, your system can currently handle that level of carb.

Good luck with the diabetes course. Some are good, some are bad, and some are mixed. I had a mix of a diabetic nurse telling us all to base all our meals on starchy carbs (which is of course still the official advice) and a dietitian who took the "carbs are totally unnecessary and low carb is the way to go" line. The same course supplied plates of biscuits for the tea break.
 

Jo.flowers

Member
Messages
9
Type of diabetes
Prediabetes
Treatment type
Diet only
Hi Kenny
Thank you SO much for your wonderful reply. So helpful and so much advice there for me. I thought I replied yesterday but know I look there is nothin there. Weird. How long did it take you to feel better? When you first cut out sugar and carbs.
Thanks
Jo
 

KennyA

Moderator
Staff Member
Moderator
Messages
3,153
Type of diabetes
Treatment type
Diet only
Hi Kenny
Thank you SO much for your wonderful reply. So helpful and so much advice there for me. I thought I replied yesterday but know I look there is nothin there. Weird. How long did it take you to feel better? When you first cut out sugar and carbs.
Thanks
Jo
Hi

It wasn't all at once. I started 20g/day in December 2019. I took a day off for Christmas, and then wished I hadn't - I felt so ill afterwards. That was the first point that I realised I was starting to improve.

My BG was non-diabetic and normal by April 2020, and in those months almost all of my symptoms disappeared as well. I hadn't lost a lot of weight by then, but in the years since I've lost somewhere around six stone. I'm not sure how much because I don't know how heavy I was when I started.

So I guess the answer in my case is that improvements happen fairly quickly, but I was not aware of them at first: I saw appreciable positive changes within weeks or months, long before i lost a significant amount of bodyfat, although that has happened since.
 
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MrsA2

Expert
Messages
5,947
Type of diabetes
Type 2
Treatment type
Diet only
Hi Jo
It might well be that you feel a bit worse before you start to feel better. Just think of it as your body ridding itself of all the nasties.
You might finding increasing your salt intake helps, especially if you used to have ready meals or processed food and have changed to real food. Our bodies needs salt.
Increasing water may help too.
But do stick with it, it's soooo worth it
 

oldminer88

Member
Messages
11
Type of diabetes
Prediabetes
Treatment type
Diet only
46 here too have no symptoms, been and 16 hr over night fasting and low carb for 12 months plus exercise after every meal come rain or shine made no difference at all. Agree get a meter and get some numbers and find out what foods send your glucose up. Another one for you have you started on statins. Mine all started from 6 months from starting them.Glad you getting some help nobody interested at my GP practice just asked me why wasting money on testing
 

Jo.flowers

Member
Messages
9
Type of diabetes
Prediabetes
Treatment type
Diet only
46 here too have no symptoms, been and 16 hr over night fasting and low carb for 12 months plus exercise after every meal come rain or shine made no difference at all. Agree get a meter and get some numbers and find out what foods send your glucose up. Another one for you have you started on statins. Mine all started from 6 months from starting them.Glad you getting some help nobody interested at my GP practice just asked me why wasting money on testing
Thanks for your message. Yes, I’m now using a meter. No, I haven’t started statins. Interesting that maybe had that effect on you. Oh go not bothered at all, just text me a letter and that I could join diabetes prevention course. When I said I wasn’t coping well and still feeling shaky I was just told to go to walk in centre! Few years ago I know they would have had more time to help me with it all, at least phone and tell me my blood results. It’s affected all my liver, kidney and lipid results too which I only found out because I can see the results on my NHS app . Nightmare
 
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Jo.flowers

Member
Messages
9
Type of diabetes
Prediabetes
Treatment type
Diet only
Thanks for your message. Yes, I’m now using a meter. No, I haven’t started statins. Interesting that maybe had that effect on you. Oh go not bothered at all, just text me a letter and that I could join diabetes prevention course. When I said I wasn’t coping well and still feeling shaky I was just told to go to walk in centre! Few years ago I know they would have had more time to help me with it all, at least phone and tell me my blood results. It’s affected all my liver, kidney and lipid results too which I only found out because I can see the results on my NHS app . Nightmare
P.S. my previous reply should say GP not go
 

Melgar

Moderator
Staff Member
Moderator
Messages
871
Type of diabetes
Other
Treatment type
Tablets (oral)
46 here too have no symptoms, been and 16 hr over night fasting and low carb for 12 months plus exercise after every meal come rain or shine made no difference at all. Agree get a meter and get some numbers and find out what foods send your glucose up. Another one for you have you started on statins. Mine all started from 6 months from starting them.Glad you getting some help nobody interested at my GP practice just asked me why wasting money on testing
I can relate to what you are saying @oldminor88 I went on a very low carb diet for 9 months, around 35 carbs max, along with a lot of physical activity. My blood sugars hardly moved. We are all different. I have never been on statins, but i hear they do raise your blood sugars. The Keto diet does work for a lot of people, with fantastic results, but not everyone. I’ve pondered the reasons why this very low carb regime didn’t work for me, because logically it should have reduced my overall blood sugars. I lost weight, in fact, I was under weight by the time I increased my carb intake. I mean reduced carb intake should translate to reduced blood sugars, and that makes total sense, but it didn’t work for me. So why did my blood sugars remain raised.

May be I should have reduced my carbs even further, but I was in nutritional Ketosis, so that doesn’t make sense.
Which brings me to fats.
Fats bring on nausea for me. I have never been able to tolerate fatty meals. Before I was diagnosed I rarely ate chips, crisps or anything with animal fats, even cheese, one of my favourites , I have to eat cheese in moderation.
Generally I eat chicken, fish or go veggie, I have red meat, maybe once a month. And eggs, 1 egg maximum, else I feel yuck. So the keto diet does not sit well for me. I’m guessing because of the high fat content.
And as an aside, I got quite unwell on the Atkins diet when I did it in 2010.

I’ve concluded, and I’m no nutritional expert, that for one reason or another my body is not able to utilize fat as an energy source. I am unable to become fat adaptive. Fat adaption is the key to the keto diet. So as I said earlier we are all different.

And as for GP’s not caring about people with T2 diabetics, sadly it’s all too familiar.
 

Melgar

Moderator
Staff Member
Moderator
Messages
871
Type of diabetes
Other
Treatment type
Tablets (oral)
Thanks for your message. Yes, I’m now using a meter. No, I haven’t started statins. Interesting that maybe had that effect on you. Oh go not bothered at all, just text me a letter and that I could join diabetes prevention course. When I said I wasn’t coping well and still feeling shaky I was just told to go to walk in centre! Few years ago I know they would have had more time to help me with it all, at least phone and tell me my blood results. It’s affected all my liver, kidney and lipid results too which I only found out because I can see the results on my NHS app . Nightmare
The GP thing is a thing it seems. It is shocking that so many GP’s, not all I hasten to add, but still too many, send newly diagnosed diabetics and those with pre-diabetes away with Metformin and or little or no support. Take these pills and see you in a years time. If you are lucky you get sent on a course. Even that is outdated, with an age old diet that simply keeps you in a diabetic state.
You found this site, make full use of the forums , populated with very knowledge people who have been where you are and have been successful in managing, reducing or even going into remission through lifestyle and dietary changes.
The advice given on these forums is tried and tested by those who have lived with this condition.
 
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Jo.flowers

Member
Messages
9
Type of diabetes
Prediabetes
Treatment type
Diet only
The GP thing is a thing it seems. It is shocking that so many GP’s, not all I hasten to add, but still too many, send newly diagnosed diabetics and those with pre-diabetes away with Metformin and or little or no support. Take these pills and see you in a years time. If you are lucky you get sent on a course. Even that is outdated, with an age old diet that simply keeps you in a diabetic state.
You found this site, make full use of the forums , populated with very knowledge people who have been where you are and have been successful in managing, reducing or even going into remission through lifestyle and dietary changes.
The advice given on these forums is tried and tested by those who have lived with this condition.
Great advice Melgar. Thank you. It sounds like this site could be more useful than the healthier living diabetes prevention course I’m going on. I guess it all depends on the coach you get.
Trouble is there are just SO many diets on line or diets friends or people I know telling me I must do. Overwhelming!
 

KennyA

Moderator
Staff Member
Moderator
Messages
3,153
Type of diabetes
Treatment type
Diet only
Great advice Melgar. Thank you. It sounds like this site could be more useful than the healthier living diabetes prevention course I’m going on. I guess it all depends on the coach you get.
Trouble is there are just SO many diets on line or diets friends or people I know telling me I must do. Overwhelming!
The stuff on-line is part of the problem. Much of it comes from people with something to sell. Some of it is second- or third-hand copy and paste from somewhere else, usually done badly. And a lot of the rest is just clickbait written by people paid to fill space on the internet. It's the sort of thing that says "A study has found that..." without referencing the actual study. I ignore these. There's also a lot of junk "science" around - as an example, a "study" on (eg) 10 people is much too small to tell you anything sensible.

This is a fun read, about the media and the lack of understanding.


The other thing is that there is no single solution that will work for everyone. One of the features of this forum is that you'll read the personal experiences and reactions of a large number of people with forms of diabetes/metabolic syndrome who have had varying reactions and experiences. What works for one doesn't necessarily work for another, but all the information is potentially helpful. It doesn't mean that one person is right and the other wrong. So be wary of anyone telling you you "must do" X or Y.

It does free you to find what works for you.
 

Art Of Flowers

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,289
Type of diabetes
I reversed my Type 2
Treatment type
Diet only
When I was diagnosed back in 2016 my blood sugar was 13. I was put on metformin and my diabetes nurse gave me an Accu Check Mobile glucose meter. The first reading I took was about 9.6 and over the first few weeks by fasting glucose reading slowly dropped.

The problem is that we have to relearn what is a "good food". I started reading the nutrition info for the food I eat, especially the carbs and sugar content. My favourite "healthy" Country Crisp breakfast cereal was 20% sugar with 66g carbs per 100g. My other favourite was Special K which has 84g of carbs per 100g, so more like rocket fuel for a diabetic. I stopped eating breakfast cereals. You can test your blood sugars using a glucose meter before and 2 hours after eating food. If the reading is over 2 mmol higher after 2 hours then maybe it has too many carbs.

I stopped eating high carb foods, one by one. I no longer ate potatoes or chips, rice, bread, pasta and fruits like bananas. I discovered the LCHF diet after watching this ...


It turns out that type 2 diabetes can be reversed on a diet low on carbs, but higher of fat. It is the excess carbs in your food that makes you fat, not any fat you eat. Good luck on your journey.
 
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JoKalsbeek

Expert
Messages
6,125
Type of diabetes
I reversed my Type 2
Treatment type
Diet only
Great advice Melgar. Thank you. It sounds like this site could be more useful than the healthier living diabetes prevention course I’m going on. I guess it all depends on the coach you get.
Trouble is there are just SO many diets on line or diets friends or people I know telling me I must do. Overwhelming!
This is why testing helps: anyone can say about anything on the internet, in print or in some course or other, but your meter will only tell you what is true for you, personally. When I started this journey I read very shouty books that told me I'd better do what they said, or I was practically dead already. Stumbled across Dr. Jason Fung, who took a far less militant approach, to put it mildly, but then I still had to figure out what worked for ME. Same as you'll have to do. Work out what works for you, take the time to. Use that meter, see what's effective for your metabolism and lifestyle, and what's absolute rubbish. Because there is indeed a lot of rubbish out there.

Take everything you read with a grain of salt, experiment when you think something sounds plausible, and put your trust in your meter. Unless the strips are out of date, it's not likely to steer you wrong. ;)
You've got this.
Jo
 

oldminer88

Member
Messages
11
Type of diabetes
Prediabetes
Treatment type
Diet only
Having similar problems with low carbs, struggling to maintain a healthy weight now down to a bmi of 20. Everybody says loose weight I cannot afford to.
 
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