Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Reversing type 2 diabetes with a plant-based diet

My passion is inspiring others to take responsibility for their own health by providing information which enables them to make informed choices.

It thus makes me feel very happy when I receive messages like this from one of my Facebook followers, Maria McConnaughey, who transitioned to a plant-based diet last year when she discovered she was suffering from type 2 diabetes.

"Just wanted to let you know I went to the doc today..no evidence of diabetes! Yay! Thanks for spreading the word :)"

Maria has done brilliantly and I asked her to share her story to encourage others, so here it is in Maria's own words.

Maria McConnaughey cured herself of type 2 diabetes

In 2010 I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes; my blood sugar was 660 mg/dl (36.7 mmol/l). I didn't even know I had it.

I had been taking psychiatric medication for bipolar disorder, which I think had a lot to do with my poor physical health because before I took those medications I was at a normal weight and active and healthy.

So after listening to the psychiatrist for too long, I decided if my physical health was better, my mind would follow.

In June 2012 I weighed 240lb (17 stone 2lb, 109 kg), height 5 feet 2 inches (1.57m) tall. My BMI was 44. I could barely walk to the mailbox without losing breath even though I joined a gym as soon as I found out about the diabetes.

I quit the gym (I actually gained 20 pounds!) and invested my money in a treadclimber. I also bought a beginner yoga DVD.

Moving my body was hard but I kept doing it.

In January 2012 I stopped drinking everything except water. No juice, no soda, I even gave up coffee.

I stopped eating meat as the main part of a meal then by June stopped meat altogether.

I made a rule not to eat in restaurants, no fast food. I also made a rule to park far away from where I was going and always take the stairs.

My son and I have been drinking homemade water kefir. It’s easy to make and pretty tasty if you add some berries. I think it helps a lot.

Water kefir with lime and ginger

A doctor told me to give my son probiotics so we went for kefir. No more colds, no more allergies. We've been drinking it for about four or so months now. Also, no refined stuff like white bread, no junk food.

I started losing weight right away and yoga and hiking got easier.

By March 2013 I weighed 203lb (14 stone 7lb, 92 kg).

By December 2013 I weighed 164lb (11 stone 10lb, 74 kg). I can hike for hours, all day in the desert and I don't lose my breath. I drink lots of water. Sometimes people don't believe I drink at least 100 ounces (6 pints, 3 litres) a day, but if you add up every drop you drink, soda juice, coffee, it adds up. Replace those with water!

I still have a way to go but as of today, 6 January 2014, no trace of type 2 diabetes.

I take the minimum amount of any medication and my doctor says I should be off them altogether in a few months.

I try to tell as many people as I can about how much better life can be if you are serious about what you put in your body.

We all deserve to feel good, we should only put "worthy" food in our bodies. Everyone should do as much research as you can on the benefits of a plant based diet and try to get off medication if it's safe and you're being monitored by your doctor, as I am.

For years I thought I would be physically miserable forever for the sake of sanity. But I feel great mind and body and life will only get better from here.

If you don't like the way you feel then change your life. You are worth it!

Updates from Maria 

18 March 2014

Hi, it's Maria, today was a doctor day. My cholesterol went from 160 to 142, a1c still down. Total weight loss since June 2012 81 pounds. My doc says lose 18 more, she's going to take me off the medication! And yay she said I can eat grapefruit:) and I got strawberries cause you posted them. Once again, love your posts!

1 April 2014

I have 15 pounds to go!

8 July 2014

Hi, it's Maria:) just a status update. Altogether lost 90 pounds. Down six clothing sizes( 3X to 10) and my feet are down a whole shoe size. Doctor said I can stop metformin as a trial. My wrist is pretty much back to normal. I can run with my dogs and do modified yoga! The dogs make me run, two big ones, one medium, they drag me but I don't get tired. I share your pictures of fruit and veggie art, and am encouraging my friends with kids to try out new foods. I got my friend's daughter hooked on grilled corn on the cob because I let her help make it. And every time she comes over she asks for peaches. My friend is now going dairy free, red meat free and trying veggies They aren't veggie lovers, but I told her just keep trying and you'll start liking them. Hope all is well! Keep on inspiring everyone like you inspired me!

18 July 2014

Latest A1c 5.3 lower than my husband's. Doctor said not even pre-diabetes range

Thanks so much Maria for your inspiring story. If you have any comments or questions please leave them below.

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