It’s been months now and I’m still alive and still dealing with a diagnosis I was sure would never come my way. I’m fit and normal weight. And I’m still pre-diabetic. I think. It’s been over four months since my A1C was checked. I do have an appointment scheduled in a few weeks. I will see if what I’ve been doing is working.

Although I wasn’t overweight when I started this nonsense, I’m even less so now, having lost twelve pounds in the interim. Not that I’ve been trying, it’s just that without all the carbs in my life, I’ve shed some weight. I’ve been a little leery of this but my weights in the gym seem to be staying stable. In fact, if I had to guess, I would say my performance with Olympic lifts continues to improve. I know that my CrossFit Open old fart scaled weight of 35# thrusters seems to feel less crushing. I can get more reps in before I have to rest.

I’ve tried a lot of new foods. Some of them have been successful, some have not. I’ve tried desserts made with fake sugars and they all have a horrible aftertaste. I would rather not eat them at all than spend ridiculous amounts of money and effort to have something that tastes nasty.

I tried some zero carb “noodles” I found online. I couldn’t eat more than the original taste sample because they were so horrid. Even though I spent a lot of money on them, I had to throw them away. I tried Birds’ Eye vegetable pasta and it was unimpressive. It is not anything I would buy again, but I could eat it for one meal. It was as many carbs as a half serving of regular pasta with none of the taste.

I’ve always been fond of fruit and even that is a problem. So I have been measuring out portions. In fact, I’ve been measuring out portions of everything. Sometimes I believe the carbs are worth it and when they aren’t, I don’t eat the stuff.

For the first three month, was trying to keep my carbs around 100 – 125. I usually managed to stay in the 90s and never did get as high as 125. Then I finally went to a class for my condition and the dietician there said 45 – 50 carbs per meal and 15 carbs for each of two to three snacks. That is so much higher than I was doing that I stopped counting every damn carb. Well, I never did add the 4 carbs per day of milk I put in my coffee, but still.

I try to keep each meal in the 30-40 carb range so if I’m careless with my reckoning, it won’t matter because I have some leeway. I know my breakfasts are either 1 carb (days I don’t work out) or 17 carbs (on the days I do). My snacks are usually something healthy and may be slightly over the 15  count, but not ever more than 20 and I only have one or two per day, not three. I stopped trying to record every morsel of food.

My mother watched her fat intake to the point of making everyone around her a little crazy. She wouldn’t eat this and that and seriously limited her fat intake. She died of a heart attack anyway.

I’m looking forward to finding out if what I’ve been doing is enough or even too much. I’m pretty sure that no matter what my A1C number is, I can’t go back to just willy nilly eating anything and everything. It would just make it rise again for the next time.

I have given myself permission to eat one decadent piece of chocolate per day and figure it into my carb count. I have tried new and different recipes, some of them quite successful. I have cut back on breads, potatoes, and pasta without noticing too much of a problem. Pasta is the hardest of all these.

My biggest worry now is that I continue to lose weight although not as rapidly as when I started. Still, I worked really hard to build up this amount of muscle and my BMI is now 21.8. With my muscle mass, that’s an inflated number. Weightlifters really aren’t who those tables are made for and our numbers are skewed because we have higher than normal mass due to more muscle tissue.

I’ve tried to find out if there is any difference for diabetics regarding where the carbs are coming from. It seems we really don’t know that much about nutrition. Which is a shame, considering the state of our national nutritional mess. What I did see over and over again is that the more processed something is, the less healthy it is for you. Which makes all the “fake” food substitute things a little suspect.

Hopefully, I will find out that what I’ve been doing is working well. I can manage this without much problem. I’ve even figured out how to dine out. So, I guess I’m just going to get to keep all my toes. At least, I hope so.

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I’ve been not diabetic, as a diagnosis rather than a state of being, for nearly three months now. I know this because I’m soon going to have to get my prescription refilled and it was for 90 days worth of pills. After the initial shock, the reality sunk in and I’ve been more or less okay with the whole mess.

I say more or less because I can still cry over the dumbest of things. I don’t cry with each trip to the grocery store anymore, but I was still able to shed tears when thinking of all the Christmas cookies I couldn’t have and wouldn’t bake. It’s not that I really liked the baking part, but I sure did like the eating part.

Someone asked me yesterday if I couldn’t just cheat and eat some. I could. But the cheater and the cheated would be the same person – me. I know I could have one or two cookies without a problem, but the cookies I really like and am missing the most are the ones that Dick doesn’t eat at all. Candied cherries, candied pineapple, and dates along with the chocolate chips make it way outside what I should be eating by the recipe full. So, I don’t get them. I will live and I will be fine.

I’ve found some really good recipes and some sorta good recipes so far. I have purchased a variety of odd foods. I have fake sugar which is really so not Paleo as to be ludicrous, but there you have it. There are no foods we eat today that are the same as they were thousands of years ago, anyway, so I guess I’m just working with what I have. Broccoli used to be a flower. Almonds were never supposed to be milk.

I lost five pounds in the first couple weeks because I couldn’t find anything to eat. All the foods I love to eat are high in carbs. This is the whole root of my problem. I love French fries and Tater Tots. I love pasta. I love good bread. And I adore dessert. I have always built my entrée choices when dining out based on the dessert menu and what I wanted to eat later. Even the salads I enjoy most are filled with dried cranberries and candied pecans.

I’ve more or less stabilized my eating but have still managed to lose another five pounds. I wasn’t terribly overweight, and losing ten pounds has been an asset. If I lost another five, that would be okay. After that, well, I better find more to eat. But I haven’t gone a single day being hungry. I have to remind myself to eat more calories on the days I don’t work out. I don’t have all the calories I consume with my pre-workout stuff and recovery eating on those days.

I’m not delighted with this diagnosis, but it hasn’t been as horrible as I first imagined. On Thanksgiving, I ate carefully, but didn’t even really keep track. I just know what I had and what I didn’t eat and still had a great day. For my birthday, I will go to Kaminsky’s and I will get something decadent. I will not eat all of it and I will not bring the rest home. I will eat some and love it. I’m going to guess that with all that sugar in it, it would be a bit nauseating if did try to eat the whole thing. My body is no longer used to that stuff.

What I have noticed the most is how many of our easy, grab and run foods are full of carbs. Years ago, there were studies saying how fats were our enemies and making us obese. The sugar industry may have funded some of these. My diet has been fat heavy (isn’t that a ludicrous phrase?) and I’ve lost ten pounds only because I cut out the carbs (and not even all of them). Snacking has been the most difficult part of the process. I have some low carb snacks available now, but they were the hardest things to find. And they are always more expensive than high sugar foods. Apparently that high fructose corn syrup is so damn cheap, they can put it in everything and so – they do.

The internet has made this transition a lot easier, too. I can look up some keto recipe online and get hundreds or thousands or way too many hits. It has helped me to make some really wonderful new dishes that have been amazingly low in carbs. I made lasagna without noodles (using zucchini) and even Dick liked it. We had lasagna! For less than five carbs. I wouldn’t have ever thought of that by myself.

All in all, this is getting to be more of my routine and I’m growing accustomed to it. Even if my A1C number is better in another three months, I know I can’t go back to 300-400 carbs a day, what I apparently was eating before, without a problem. Even if my diagnosis goes away, I can’t pretend I’m not at risk. I am learning a lot with this new chapter, and I guess that’s really the important part.

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