Weighing 291 pounds, I knew I was very overweight. I felt unhealthy, and for years I suspected I had Type 2 Diabetes.
I finally made an appointment to see Dr. Joseph Reynolds and Registered Nurse/Health Coach Susan Hellman at the HealthQuest Health Center, my employer-sponsored medical center offered by the State of Kansas.
My A1c was over 10 and my fasting blood sugar level was over 300. I have seen my mom give herself insulin shots. The shots look awful and something I don’t think I could handle doing daily. I knew that would be in my future if I didn’t make changes. I also have a 2-year-old son and want to make sure I’m in his life as long as I can be.
Dr. Reynolds explained that even though Type 2 Diabetes is a lifelong condition, it can be managed with a healthy diet and exercise plan. He informed me insulin shots only become necessary when the condition goes unmanaged for a long period of time.
One of the biggest changes I made was related to what I drink. I drank four to five cans of soda a day. Now, I only drink water, and if I opt for something else, it’s still zero sugar. I limit myself to 1700 calories a day and pay attention to nutrition facts. To keep track, I’ve been using a food diary and I weigh my food to ensure accurate portions. I work out six days a week.
The hardest step is always the first. But it’s not as hard as you think it’ll be. As someone who loves eating and hated exercise, it really never was the struggle that I imagined it’d be. Start slowly and ease yourself into making changes, and next thing you know, six months will have flown by and you’re down 90 pounds. My A1c dropped to 4.6 and my blood sugar level is now under 100. I’m definitely in the best shape I can ever remember. — Codey Burton