My Type 2 Diabetes Diagnosis
Last Thursday I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes; it was a shock to me, and it shouldn’t have been because the risk was always there, I just didn’t know it.
Over the past 12-months I started experiencing high-blood-pressure and my GP at the time said it was in relation to being on the contraceptive pill, I was then put on medication to manage the high blood pressure which worked. To rule out any other underlying conditions though, the GP ran a heap of different tests, including two that should have picked up my diabetes, but they didn’t.
I moved to the Gold Coast in February this year and I started to experience small bouts of dizziness and feeling nauseous, I decided to go to my local GP for another round of tests. This time my blood tests came back with high readings on a few different things including blood sugar, my GP organised new tests one of which was the ‘Glucose Tolerance Test’ I hadn’t had this test before; it involved fasting and taking 3 blood tests within 2.5hrs including drinking a high dose of glucose and seeing if my sugar levels continued to rise an hour after drinking the glucose. The test came back positive for Type 2 Diabetes.
At 39 I’m ashamed to say I didn’t know enough about Type 2 Diabetes when I was diagnosed, it had never really been an illness I put much thought into and that was my biggest mistake as I became high risk the moment my mum was diagnosed with it.
There are two ways to get Type 2 diabetes and that’s through genetics and or lifestyle choices, for me it’s both.
When you’re diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes you are given a ‘Diabetes Care Plan’ and appointments are made to see a dietitian, a diabetes educator, and other appointments such as a podiatrist and physiotherapist if needed. Already in the first week of being diagnosed I’ve learnt that Type 2 diabetes is a progressive diabetes, although it’s for life it’s also possible to put it into remission and if I lose the weight and focus on a clean and healthy lifestyle, I have the opportunity to put my diagnosis into remission . . . In the same breath I was warned if it’s purely genetics my blood levels might still be high and my diagnosis remains the same, but I’ll only know in 3-months once I’ve fought like hell to do everything I can to change my diagnosis.
I am now on oral medication (I don’t need insulin) which I take once a day, I no longer have any symptoms and feel remarkably healthy. Over the next 3-months I’m committed to a clean diet with no sugars, no carbs, no bad fats, no fried foods, no processed food and most importantly no alcohol. That’s all it takes to re-test for diabetes and that combined with daily exercise should hopefully see better results.
My only regret is that I didn’t know enough about Type 2 Diabetes, based on my mum’s diagnosis alone I should have been getting screened every year and adapting to more moderation in my lifestyle. My mum’s diabetes resulted in pancreatic cancer, and she lost her battle to cancer 6-years ago,
I’ll be forever grateful for being diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes because it may have just saved my life.
To anyone who shames someone with diabetes and refers to it as ‘The fat disease’ or ‘It only happens to old people’, you are wrong. Nobody wants diabetes no matter what their size or health, it is a misunderstood and underdiagnosed condition that is the fastest growing chronic condition in Australia. It affects younger people too and those that aren’t morbidly obese. No one should feel awkward or ashamed about diabetes, especially people who it doesn’t even affect. Instead of putting your head in the sand when confronted with a diabetes conversation, how about you ask questions to better educate yourself and just be supportive?