‘In all the years I’ve been a diabetic specialist,’ said the practice nurse sitting in front of me ‘I’ve never seen a diabetic patient with HbA1c levels like this. It’s twenty nine!‘
She looked at the screen again and shook her head a little from side to side.
‘When I first saw these results I thought that the test was wrong – until I looked at your recent history.’ She said, and then paused for a moment.
‘Your kidney function is also perfect, and so is your blood pressure. If you were tested for the first time today for diabetes it would come back as negative.’ She said looking directly at me.
‘It also says here that you aren’t taking any medication now. Is that correct?’
‘Yep.’ I replied. ‘As I mentioned to the last nurse two weeks ago its been about two months now since I last had any.’
‘That’s amazing.’ She said.
I’d actually been looking forward to getting my blood test results for two weeks. The HbA1c shows a historic view of what glucose is doing in your body, and is way more accurate than my home tests are.
These personal ones were just fine before I stopped taking my medication – but the HbA1c is the Rolls Royce of blood tests and there’s no-where to hide. If I’ve been naughty the searchlight will fall on me.
It wasn’t until fairly recently though (whilst talking to a friendly and learned pharmacist over lunch) that I’ve learned why. Unlike a finger prick test it measures the thickness of glucose molecules coating red blood cells and is very much like counting rings in a tree trunk to determine a tree’s age.
The thicker the coating, the bigger the problem over time.
In 2014 I was at 94 on this scale (around 10%)
The HbA1c target for people with diabetes to aim for is 48 mmol/mol (6.5%) (link) but mine is now down to 29 – which is below 5%!
I’m not even on the chart any more.
It’s just the payoff that I had been hoping for – and this result makes every moment of self denial, good choices, blisters, injuries, hard work and effort to remain positive totally worthwhile.
It would be fair to say that I live for these moments lately.
Angie, our Slimming World group leader refers to them as non-scale victories. As wins go – to me this moment is slightly more akin to planting my flag on the moon. I could not be happier.
The only fly in the ointment currently is cholesterol.
‘You need to cut down your fat intake.’ said the nurse.
Apparently my ‘bad’ levels had gone up slightly (now 4.3 – up from 3.4) and the ‘good’ ones were still too low – which has been the case for around 15 years.
‘I don’t have HARDLY ANY fat in my diet.’ I said. ‘All the meat I eat is unbelievably lean with the only exceptions being lots of fish for Omega 3.’
‘Better keep taking your pills then.’ The nurse said.
She has a point. I was hoping that my exercise would have an impact on this but it seems not. If I’m honest I’ve not been taking them when I should – or even every day.
Davey has been naughty naughty boy.
My doctor (and the nurse) think that I’m pre-disposed to crappy levels – but if diabetes is an indicator I prefer to think more positively. I may still be able to turn this around. I still have quite a bit of weight to lose yet – so you never know…
Either way I need to take my pills regularly and have more seeds and oily fish.
I thought I already had a fair bit of these but clearly I do not. Thankfully I flipping love all the foods that these are found in so I’m going to have to start engineering meals with them in more regularly (like every day!)
But anyway – one battle at a time.
Last night – despite my reservations about faux takeaway food I decided to use the Slimming World curry sauce from Iceland that a kind person put in Saturday’s slimmer of the week basket.
I made it into a Chinese style chicken curry with two cloves of garlic, baby sweetcorn, two chunky chopped onions, a bag of mange tout and some boiled long grain rice.
As I haven’t put any dinner pics on here for a while I thought I’d (parp) subject you poor souls to some visual exhibits of the rather (parp) delicious cause of todays rather rampant (parp) flatulence.
Eating this was worth every moment of locked down buttock clenching in public places (I was in a museum earlier – it was pretty tricky) and was utterly delicious. As with all Slimming World frozen food from Iceland the recipe is included – and I’m heartened by the fact that there’s nothing but natural ingredients in this dish.
I can make it again myself – which I plan to do.
As it’s been mostly overcast today pictures of lovely flowers have been hard to come by – but thankfully they’ve not been the only plants with an excess of personality on my travels.
It seems that others have heard of my self imposed photography task this week, and (despite their usually mundane status) Cacti are making their case for my attention.
Internet – it’s almost as if they’re watching me….