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  • Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

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    Old 02-23-2004, 12:43 PM   #1
    MadScientist
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    Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    Well, to start off, I'm a very much overweight male (290lbs). I was recently on a round of steroids (prednisone) when I suddenly had an extreme thirst and an extremely high urine output. I then learned that steroids can cause your bs to skyrocket so I went to a Doctor. Blood and urine test results showed my bs at 300 and was told I was diabetic. The doctor later said the readings could be due to the steroids and that I might just be insulin resistant.

    I was given Glucophage which I took until I was off the steroids. My fasting bs was around 119 - 122 without any medication.

    I am now on the Atkins diet and mfasting bs levels run anywhere from 86 to 104. In fact, that's the bs range I get at almost any time of the day as long as it's been over an hour since I ate. I have noticed that the 14 pounds I've lost so far has made a difference in my fasting bs. I got off the diet last weekend and ate just about anything I wanted for 3 days just to see how it would effect my bs. I then tested my fasting bs and it was 110 - 115. I'm back on the diet now and the bs remains normal.

    My question to you guys is : Can weight loss reverse insulin resistance? Also, I think the doctor jumped the gun a little by saying I was diabetic. What do you guys think?

    Any help would be appreciated.

    thanks
    MadSci

     
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    Old 02-23-2004, 02:52 PM   #2
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    Re: Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    Your "fasting" numbers were too high for a non-diabetic.

    Steriods do tend to elevate blood sugar level and once off and out of your system the sugar level should drop back down.

    It is possible to "control" diabetes in a non-diabetic range by losing weight, exercising, and watching what and how much you eat and not be on meds. It is well worth working towards.

    They say, once diabetic, always diabetic, just a matter of being a controlled diabetic or not!!

     
    Old 02-23-2004, 04:05 PM   #3
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    Re: Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    I would go in and get a glucose tolerance test done. Steroids can wreak havoc on your blood sugars. My FIL was on them for a brain tumor and had an awful time with them for a month after he stopped taking them.

    In a sense, you can reverse the beginning stages of type 2. Most type 2's start out diet controlled. It is only after they continue to have high blood sugars or are unaware during the diet controlled phase that they require oral agents or insulin.

    I would insist on the test before I let them diagnose me. I applaud you for sticking with Atkins and I wish you the best with your weight loss and blood sugars
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    Old 02-24-2004, 01:31 PM   #4
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    Re: Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by MadScientist
    My question to you guys is : Can weight loss reverse insulin resistance? Also, I think the doctor jumped the gun a little by saying I was diabetic. What do you guys think?
    MadSci
    Short answer to what you ask is: Yes, I did it. My fasting glucose was 328 and 348 mg/dL when I was diagnosed at 227 lbs with a sedentary lifestyle. After losing 70 lbs, and continuing to exercise daily, my fasting is in the 80s, and its pretty darn tough for me to get my reading above 135 mg/dL. I will practically need to eat a banana split to drive it up like that. Judging by the response you have had with dietary changes, and the weight you can lose, I believe you have a good chance to do the same kind of "reversal." I certainly wish you luck and success.

    Some people will say its reversed, others will call it well-controlled. Marie is correct in that once a diabetic, always a diabetic. Of course, that statement is certainly applicable to type I, but type II is somewhat different in a majority of cases. I think in time you will see the linkage also shown between gestational diabetes and type II, where the prior condition is a hint of things to come if the necessary lifestyle changes aren't made. A recent California Dept of Ag study indicated that the rate was 50% for later in life development of type II. I follow the line of thinking that type II for many is a result of lifestyle and that type II is merely the "final" stage of insulin resistance. Ah well, enough of my beliefs...

    Currently, I eat just about what I want. Nowadays, I just control the portions and continue to exercise. Granted, I don't eat a lot of very high fat foods anymore, but the flexibility in my diet now is much greater compared to when I was diagnosed and relied on oral meds and diet selection to keep my blood glucose in range.

    Last edited by ubernier; 02-24-2004 at 07:42 PM.

     
    Old 02-24-2004, 02:08 PM   #5
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    Re: Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    Yes yes yes!!!!


    Ubernier..you are exactly right. You have defeated the demon and you are "cured" !!! Consistently eating junk would bring you back to diabetes (quicker than a "normal" person), but right now, your insulin sensitivity is like a never-had-it nondiabetic. Congratulations.

    I am exactly where you are, too. No blood sugar stabilizing supplements, no drugs...nothing but proper diet (this was tricky at first...too much misinformation) and exercise.

    Type 2 diabetes is a condition, not a disease. If you don't have the condition, you don't have the "disease".

    I guess the answer would be absolutely, positively, yes. This can be turned around!!!

    Edit: I guess I was a little excited, it sounds like your sensitivity is back to normalcy...I can't say that for sure, although mine is. Still, cogratulations!!!

    Last edited by davitude; 02-24-2004 at 02:15 PM.

     
    Old 02-24-2004, 07:50 PM   #6
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    Re: Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by davitude
    Ubernier..you are exactly right. You have defeated the demon and you are "cured" !!! Consistently eating junk would bring you back to diabetes (quicker than a "normal" person), but right now, your insulin sensitivity is like a never-had-it nondiabetic. Congratulations.
    Yes, cured to a point but, like you said, eating junk will bring me back faster than a normal person. Actually, I found that adding weight, and exercising half as much had my nightime baseline in the 100 mg/dL again. I wasn't going extremely high yet, but I knew something was up by the frequency of urination during the middle of the night. Once I got back home and started to lose weight and exercise, my blood glucose (on average) came back down.

    Quote:
    I am exactly where you are, too. No blood sugar stabilizing supplements, no drugs...nothing but proper diet (this was tricky at first...too much misinformation) and exercise.
    That's great. It's not the easiest road for sure, but I find it the most rewarding and hopefully, the one that will prevent further complications. Out of curiosity, do you exercise daily also?


    Quote:
    Edit: I guess I was a little excited, it sounds like your sensitivity is back to normalcy...I can't say that for sure, although mine is. Still, cogratulations!!!
    I understand the excitement My sensitivity is normal, provided I keep the weight down and exercise going as above. Long term, who knows--I do like to be optimistic about it. I can only hope my body holds up from all the exercise. Also, I should add, that yes, my diet did change. I did increase by a huge amount the vegetables that I eat. I also got away from red meats, hamburger, prime rib...those kind of foods. I could eat them now because I would eat smaller portions; however, I have already lost my taste for beef, so I continue on.

     
    Old 02-24-2004, 08:40 PM   #7
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    Re: Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    Thank you all for your responses and a big thank you for the inspirational stories some of you shared.

    I'm determined to lose weight and hopefully my response will return to normal also.

    Thanks again!
    MadSci

     
    Old 02-24-2004, 08:40 PM   #8
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    Re: Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    Above are your two approaches:
    1)Once Diabetic always"-AMA, ADA, Joslin,...etc.
    2) "Reversing Diabetes" with Diet, Weight Loss, Exercise" Whitaker, Bernstein, etc...

    ..But I think the issue is that some level of damage may be irreversible and no one is certain about what level. Amputaion an example. Blindness another. Neuropathy another. Damage to body functionality..to organs(?). The intestine, ankles, liver, kidneys, pancreas? Coincidentally many older type 2 have these problems. The question in everyones mind is diabetes or aging or both?
    Whish someone would spend more time notifying the healthy public of the nature of this "Diabetic Condition" B E F O R E we develop the pathology!!! BEFORE we suffer the LOSS!!
    It's a little like driving down a 4 lane hiway without a speed limit posting. Then being stopped for going 30-40 over the 100 mg/dl limit and being told you are guilty and it is a life sentence!

    Last edited by wa5ekh; 02-24-2004 at 08:41 PM.

     
    Old 02-24-2004, 08:58 PM   #9
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    Re: Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    This is why it is so important to know your family history and the risks for this condition. It is recommended that anyone over the age of 45 be tested AT LEAST every 3 years. Most type 2's walk around for years without ever knowing that they have it because if it isnt before them, they dont think about it. I know diabetes was the last thing on my mind when I was diagnosed. Then, by the time they find out, they have had years of high blood sugars contributing to the complications.
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    Old 02-25-2004, 01:34 AM   #10
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    Re: Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    Sooo many people have diabetes and don't know it. Two years ago, a coworker of mine who didn't even fit the "profile" just started feeling sick and got diagnosed with heart damage from type 2. He died a week later.

    I do exercise, 5-6 days a week. All of it weight training, for three reasons. First, nothing sucks up glucose like an oxygen-deprived contracting muscle, second, the bigger your muscles get, the more glucose they require, and so the more glucose receptors they express in order to "support" their size. More receptors = more efficient disposal, assuming your sensitivity is good. Third, your insulin sensitivity stays enhanced for hours after.

    Oh,and I hate aerobic stuff!!!

    If your doctor says it's OK, weightlifting rules!!!

     
    Old 03-23-2004, 04:04 PM   #11
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    Re: Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    Do you do alot of reps slowly or heavier weights and less reps?
    I love working out with weights, but am really unsure of which I should do.
    Do you also not take breaks in between to try to keep your heart rate up?
    I find that working with weights gets my heart rate up way higher than aerobic.....although I love my elliptical.

     
    Old 03-23-2004, 08:21 PM   #12
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    Re: Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by miper
    Do you do alot of reps slowly or heavier weights and less reps?
    I love working out with weights, but am really unsure of which I should do.
    Do you also not take breaks in between to try to keep your heart rate up?
    I find that working with weights gets my heart rate up way higher than aerobic.....although I love my elliptical.

    Hi, Miper

    I haven't been posting as much lately, been too busy.

    I change up my workouts periodically. Sometimes I do ten sets of ten with one minute rest in between sets. You use a weight at about 1/2 the amount you could lift once. You should be just barely able to get the last rep. This one exhausts your glycogen (muscle glucose) levels well, which is one way to increase glucose uptake. Sometimes I go heavy too (work up to 1 to 5 reps), the repair required helps dispose glucose, too. I sometimes do circuit training with moderate or heavy weights. Light weight circuits would keep me in the gym for a long time to feel like I've worked my muscles hard enough although that has it's merits, too.

    Oh boy, squats with 10 sets of 10 (w/1 min. rest) where you fail or close to it at the end will definitely give your heart rate a big kick!

    Typically, I work out a given muscle group twice a week.

    You got your new supplements what, two weeks ago or so? Have you seen any difference yet? Some of those won't go into full effect for a month or so. You can also increase the dose on the olive leaf without any toxic effects if you think it would improve your energy.

     
    Old 03-24-2004, 04:49 AM   #13
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    Re: Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    I actually had to quit taking one because I felt like it was making me go hyperthyroid. It was a supplement made just for the thyroid.
    I feel pretty good, just getting a little depressed because I now know what I am going to have to do to lose weight and get everything in check and I just don't know if I have it in me anymore.

     
    Old 03-25-2004, 02:31 AM   #14
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    Re: Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by miper
    I actually had to quit taking one because I felt like it was making me go hyperthyroid. It was a supplement made just for the thyroid.
    I feel pretty good, just getting a little depressed because I now know what I am going to have to do to lose weight and get everything in check and I just don't know if I have it in me anymore.
    I know it's hard. Sometimes you just get tired of trying...like that willpower muscle is just exhausted.

    Before you do anything (forget about my crazy diet plan for now), try weight training like I do for two weeks. It burns fat way better than anything else. I personally don't think that traditional aerobic exercise is that effective at all, actually. The fat loss is just so insignificant compared to weight training that I just don't bother anymore. It may be your least sacrificial option in that you might be able to keep your diet the same and start losing weight again. In fact, I really think you would.

    I know you aren't big on pharmaceuticals, but sometimes they can help. Your doctor is pushing metformin. And assuming you have syndrome X, that's probably the best option, medicine wise. Should you find new inspiration later (and I bet you will), you can get off of it without a problem.

    Another option that I've been looking into is bupropion, which is the generic for the antidepressants wellbutrin and zyban (the stop smoking med). One human study showed a dramatic increase in weight loss vs. a low calorie diet without it. It could also help with that drained feeling, and you can get off it too without difficulty (in fact antidepressants are often supposed to be temporary). It isn't approved as a weight loss drug yet, so your doctor may not be familiar.

    In regards to glucose control...it has been addressed. I saw several research abstracts from obesityresearch.org, but to see the full texts it costs money...it's obesityresearch d o t org, not d o t com...geez. I understand that they can't operate on nothing, but I think this info should be free, especially if the study is over a year old. Can't the cost of a free look be covered in the operating costs of the study? The big drug companies already have enough of our collective money to afford a free plug.

    Okay, I'm starting to rant...

    Just do the best you can, Miper. I used to have to be so careful, but it's so much easier now. I bet someday you'll be able to eat almost like a "normal" person, too.

     
    Old 03-25-2004, 05:55 AM   #15
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    Re: Can Type 2 Diabetes or Insulin Resistance be Reversed?

    You give me hope Davitude......thanks......and I'm going to keep you posted so that you can keep me on track ok? Just tell me to get lost if you want.....but I'll still come back....LOL!!
    I feel pretty good today. I'm going to jump on the weight machine in a few. What do I do....just up the weight resistance and keep doing all of the exercises until I'm exhausted? Do I really have to count reps. or just do it until I can't anymore? I know this is asking alot, but could you tell me what kinds of exercises you do with weights......
    ie.....
    squats with weights
    dumbell row
    bicep curls
    butterflies
    yadda yadda
    I really want to do this and I don't want to take anything unless I have to. If the weights work out.......great. I think I've not been using enough weights. I was always told to circuit train to lose weight. I guess this is a little more than just losing weight now huh?

     
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