Will Your Blood Sugar Be Better in the Mountains?

296 dead, said the headline yesterday morning. I arrived back to our apartment building after a jog along the lake. My neighbor’s copy of The Toronto Star awaited me at the front entrance. Its front page article told the story of a Canadian family who had moved to Ecuador. Saturday’s earthquake sadly killed the mother and son.

Four years ago, Nicole and I were consulting with an immigration lawyer in Ecuador. We were planning on moving to the mountain city of Cuenca. We thought the cleaner (and thinner) air, the slower life and lower cost of living would help Nicole manage her type-1 diabetes. Of course, once we started looking into their health care system, we found it not much better than ours. They had just as many dialysis clinics as North America. I realized what benefit we’d receive from the Latin American lifestyle would not make any big improvement in Nicole’s health.

And when you have a terminal disease (type-1 diabetes) that requires life support therapy (insulin injections) big improvements are exactly what you need. Not small ones.

Well, we never moved to Ecuador. Instead, here are nine “big moves” we made to get Nicole’s A1C below 5.5%:

  1. High-fat, low carbohydrate diet. Meat, butter, eggs, olive oil, cheese, coconut oil, vegetables.
  2. The insulin regimen outlined in Dr. Bernstein’s Diabetes Solution.
  3. Buteyko Breathing exercises combined with meditation and prayer.
  4. Physical exercise (especially walking with nasal breathing).
  5. Productivity and organization training (see recommendation below).
  6. Less media and social activity.
  7. Coffee enema (they’re really for cleansing the liver)
  8. Sauna therapy (at least 20-minutes every day)
  9. Core supplements (kelp, calcium-magnesium, vitamin D, chromium and cod liver oil)

Yes, changing our environment may support a goal to improve health. But unless you live in a candy factory, I think the above nine items will impact your blood sugar levels more.

Thinking Outside the Type-1 Matrix,
–John C. A. Manley

P.S. Sometimes people with type-1 diabetes think they can’t get better until they get more money. This may not be the case. Check out: Curing Type-1 Diabetes on a Tight Budget

P.P.S. For help balancing the many demands of life, I highly recommend David Allen’s Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity available from amazon.com, amazon.ca and amazon.co.uk.

About the Author: John C. A. Manley researches and writes about alternative treatments for type-1 diabetes and its many complications. His wife, Nicole, of 15 years has had type-1 diabetes for four decades. Together they have lowered her HgbA1c below 5.5%, regained thyroid function, increased kidney function and reversed gastroparesis. Read more about their journey out of the T1D matrix or subscribe to their Diabetic Dharma blog..