Nutrition therapy for diabetes


The story of a woman from Lapland

Hi Antti!

I can never truly express my gratitude to you. You’ve literally saved my life. I am a 23-yr-old type 1 diabetes sufferer from Rovaniemi in Lapland. I was diagnosed at the age of 16 when I was still living in Tampere (I had extremely high sugars of 61.6 despite traipsing back and forth to the doctor!). When we visited Tampere University Hospital, my mum, innocently and without any real understanding, asked whether there was any need for me to change my diet. She received a very definite answer: no. I think that this response was even repeated later on: "Sanna can keep on eating the same, normal food!"

I managed in the beginning, got used to the injections, and even found a balance. Three months later, however, I was completely broken; my stomach and thighs covered in bruises and sores. And yet I had to keep on injecting myself. Don’t even get me started about my fingers! Little by little I started to hate myself and diabetes, because I couldn’t treat it. I’d always been well-behaved and conscientious, but after I was diagnosed with Diabetes my whole life caved in (6 months after my diagnosis I also ended up having a heart operation in Helsinki) and I started to act out pretty badly. I gradually began skipping injections even though I knew my sugar levels were high. I started to get scared of the readings and, so, in the end, I skipped them too. My sense of self-loathing grew and I didn’t feel I had the right to ask my mum for help (the hospital told me that 16-year-olds should cope by themselves).

When I turned 17 I moved back to my home-town in Lapland in order to study. But it was hard to attend classes because of how unwell and tired I felt. At that time, I sometimes went for days without injecting, as the bruises and sores hurt too much. I even waited to inject a large dose of insulin until I felt so bad that there was no other option.

I felt like I was being made to feel guilty at my diabetes check ups and so I started avoiding them too. I hid just how bad my diabetes had gotten from my loved ones because I was so embarrassed. I felt like an adult who wasn’t able to fend for herself; in other words, a pathetic failure. My dearest little sister Sonja was the only one who knew the true state of my illness.

In the end, three years after my diagnosis I found myself feeling guilty and so concerned about further complications to my illness that I decided to get help with my injection problems. I asked about a pump at both Oulu and Rovaniemi hospitals but I was told that that the waiting list at Oulu was too long and that I wouldn’t even get to put my name down, and then at Rovaniemi they were of the opinion that I was too irresponsible to be considered for pump treatment. I was stuck. I wanted to be healthy so badly that I resolved myself to sticking to a new principle – "one injection a day." In my case, the injection was Lantus. It brought some relief from the persistent low mood and thirstiness, but the overall situation I was in was pretty bad.

I met my husband Jani that summer and I plucked up the courage to tell him about my secret. He was really understanding and had a strong desire to help. And so Jani started giving me insulin injections every morning: 30-32 units of Lantus and 10 units of NovoRapid. This made things a little bit better and I found it much more bearable when someone else was taking care of the injections. But this approach still didn’t bring about balance.

We wanted a baby right from the beginning but I knew that I’d never get approval to have a baby with my sugar levels, nor would it have been safe in any case.

The breakthrough came in summer 2011. While visiting our aunt’s house, my sister Sonja noticed your book about health and, owing to her interest in health matters, started reading it. She could barely contain her excitement when she called me to say: "Sanna! You won’t need injections anymore!" There was no end to my own interest; I immediately wanted to start your diet. Sonja found the part of your book on "treating diabetes by making dietary choices" and I gave it a go. In just a few weeks my blood sugar normalised and the long-term dropped from 15 % to 6.9 %! My Lantus dose also went down to around 18-22 units (even the stinging it caused disappeared because the dose was lower). I was so happy that I cried about it with Jani – that I, this useless diabetic had been able to find balance without blood, sweat, and tears, and even without a single meal-time injection.

Since then, my long-term blood sugar has been between 5.3 and 6.9 %; and not once above this. The only thing I have regrets about is not having found your book sooner. I’ve wanted to send you my story for a long time, but I couldn’t think of a way to do it. It’s great that you now get to hear my story and I sincerely hope that it encourages you to carry on the wonderful work you do despite all the slanderous attempts to ruin you. Thanks to your diet my personal prognosis may be better than that of an average diabetic. My blood sugar has stabilised and peaks and troughs only happen rarely. I even get positive comments from my diabetic friends about my excellent sugar levels.

I own almost all of your books and I’m really excited about your new book on diabetes – it’s a great help to me and my family. It’s sad that I missed your presentation in Rovaniemi, but hopefully you’ll come back again some time!

P.S. I got the go ahead to get pregnant straight away and our beautiful, healthy, and full-term 2.5 kg baby daughter was born on midsummer 2013, almost exactly a year after our wedding.

On behalf of my mum, my sister, my husband, and my daughter I’d like to say THANK YOU!!

The story 46 years old nurse Sari

Sari is a nurse and today she is 46 years old. In her youth she was at the top level in competition swimming. After marrying she stopped her sport. She had four children. During her second pregnancy she was diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes. Despite the high risk of diabetes she had two more children. After four pregnancies Sari was remarkably obese. She had type II diabetes, high blood pressure, disturbed lipid metabolism, fatty liver disease, reflux disease, IBS, constant headaches, joint pains, eczema, mood swings, insomnia and sleep apnoea. She is 158 cm (5 foot 2) tall and weighted those days 130 kg (286 lbs). She was so obese that she could not even lift her leg up to step over the curb of the pavement.

She had so many different medicines that she could have opened her own pharmacy, as she expressed her situation to me. Quite soon she was prescribed insulin by her doctor, which made her situation even worse. She lost the rest of her glycaemic control completely. Despite medication her blood sugar went up and down from 2 mmol/l (36 mg/l), to 23 mmol/l (414 mg/l).

She kept putting on weight and started to get hypoglycaemic attacks, which made her life even more miserable. Despite this immense programme of medication, her blood pressure still remained too high. For constant pain she used NSAID:s which exacerbated her stomach problems and therefore she had to take stomach medicines as well. Her liver enzymes were elevated and kept rising.

She also had continuous infections. Many courses of antibiotics in turn led to many fungal infections. She was in a vicious cycle of destruction. She was desperate for help. The official advice did not help her at all. She was treated twice in intensive care due to complications and blood sugar imbalances.

One day a leading professor in nutrition visited the hospital where she was trying to work. The professor recommended a Very Low Calorie Diet (VLCD) for her. Sari had a nurse friend with same kind of problems and so they both decided to start the VLCD. The diet worked well in bringing their blood sugar and weight down, but at the same time Sari’s liver problems got worse, her liver enzymes went up and so did her blood pressure, which skyrocketed to extreme levels and no longer responded to medication. The situation was much worse for Sari’s friend, who eventually died of liver complications.

Sari heard about my book and read it. As a registered nurse she was sceptical of everything that was different to the official recommendations, but she had no other choice. She decided to try something that was against everything she had been taught before.

A miracle happened. Three days after initiating this diet her blood sugar levels were under control. Two weeks after this she stopped injecting insulin. About two weeks after that she discontinued all blood pressure medication with the exception of one which she stopped two months later. Within a few weeks all her aches and pains were gone. Here weight went down steadily by one kilo (2 pounds) a week. Over the next year and two months she lost all her excess 70 kg (286 lbs). Her liver started to recover. Within three months all the values from her liver laboratory results were back to normal, and her fatty liver disease had disappeared. She was extremely pleased when her children were happy and saying that they had got their mother back. Sari had lived in a drug-induced fog for many years.

Today Sari is living a normal life without any medication. The joy of living has made her very active. She cycles regularly for hours and practises martial arts with the big fellows, who she throws lightly on to the floor as if they were puppets stuffed with cotton wool.

The most interesting point in Sari’s story is that I only met her for the first time a year after her recovery. She did all this completely by herself. The only support that she got was from my book. I was very pleased because my initial intention was to give people simple instructions to empower them to revolutionize their lives. I am writing in plain language for ordinary people, avoiding complex terms. I’m tired of medical publications. They do not publish anything that is different from the mainstream believes. I think that what people really need is information that can be applied to their own lives. For those who are horrified by the current medical situation, I say that the biggest revolution at the moment is taking place in food stores. People don’t want junk food anymore. Vote with your feet!