Diabetes Management, Miracles, and Size Shaming



I wanted to share this pretty much everywhere because I think it is vital information.

Trigger warning:
Discussion of diet and potential weight loss in context of treating a medical condition
Please note that I do not advocate low-carb dieting for the purpose of weight loss any more than I advocate reduced calorie dieting for said purpose. However, for a person who is not diabetic to follow the diabetic diet would be far less harmful than following fad diets which can result in malnutrition. My son, who is not diabetic, has been following the diet with me with a few exceptions, such as the fact that he likes to drink Ensure shakes occasionally because sometimes he either forgets to eat or does not feel like eating.
The American Diabetes Association diet is not the Atkins diet or any other such “low carb for weight loss” diet. The ADA does not approve of deliberately causing ketosis for the purpose of weight loss. Ketosis is, in fact, something to be avoided. It is very hard on the kidneys.
I was diagnosed with type II diabetes this week.
My blood sugar readings had been in the low 100s according to the test previous to this one, which showed full-on diabetes with a fasting sugar reading of 125. 
I was devastated.
I am now grateful for the diagnosis. 
A couple of things have happened, which I did not think were possible for me.
First, my cravings for refined sugar, which have plagued me for my entire life, have disappeared overnight.
I do not know if this happens for all diabetics, and I am not speaking for all diabetics. I am speaking for myself. I am not one of those people that’s going to go around telling others that their experience is invalid because I experienced this.
I have not been especially hungry. I have been satisfied after meals, whereas in the past I was not satisfied after even a large meal. I have a long history of emotional eating and of NEVER FEELING SATIATED. It is a horrible feeling. I do not know if the mode of eating that I’ve been forced to adapt would help other people. I am only speaking of what has happened to me.
I am NOT counting calories. Carbs are actually much easier to count. I keep myself below 60 at the absolute outside per meal, and it usually ends up being below 50.
Cheese, which generally has one carb to less than one carb per serving, has been my go-to snack. But where in the past I would have been capable of eating half a bag of string cheese and not stopping, I’m now satisfied with two sticks, maybe three if I’m feeling particularly peckish.
I am not saying that I am now one of the “holier than thou” and that people who are having trouble controlling their cravings or fighting with binge eating and emotional eating are “the lesser.” I am mad as hell at the way fat people are treated, and I will continue to be mad as hell about this, regardless of what I weigh. Here is something I want people to understand. Not all people are fat for the same reason. Not all fat people overeat. Some fat people have medical problems, and many fat people with medical problems have endocrine problems. As the kids today say, THIS IS A THING. 
Stereotyping all fat people as being lazy gluttons is narrow-minded discrimination, and people who engage in it are narrow-minded. They are either misguided concern trolls, or they are looking to cover up their own insecurities by finding a scapegoat. Either way, this is wrong thinking, and it MUST stop.
I speculate that treatment of my condition will lead to a degree of weight loss. Again, this is not a goal that I am actively pursuing, and if it happens, it does not make me superior to anyone who is larger than me. The idea that it would is erroneous and harmful. I really wish people would stop thinking this way.
What I fear are the triggering weight based compliments that will come if I lose weight. I think I will respond with something like “I appreciate that you are trying to compliment me, but I’m not a better person for having lost weight. I have a medical condition which has caused the loss. I prefer to be complimented on my actions rather than on my appearance.”
Another thing that has happened, literally overnight, is damn well miraculous as well. I have not had any instances of significant incontinence over the past day! For the past nine years, I’ve had to wear the maximum size incontinence pad, and had to change it several times a day due to uncontrollable loss of large amounts of urine. I would often end up having to change my underwear and trousers as well. 
Over the past couple of days, I’ve only experienced minor leaks, which might be considered par for the course in a woman my age. I would certainly be happy if this continues to be the case. If I could buy a smaller size pad and not have to change it as often, it would save me a significant amount of money.I have been spending at least $30 every two weeks for incontinence pads for the past nine years. This really adds up.
And now, some things I’ve read.
Individuals with type II diabetes are more likely to have larger physiques, although the disease does not strike only larger people.
People with untreated type II diabetes will have significant trouble losing weight.
The problem with many of the articles I read is their tendency to play the Blame Game, but rather than blaming the pancreas for malfunctioning, the patient is blamed for not being able to lose weight. Uncontrollable cravings are blamed on a character flaw rather than being seen as a symptom of pancreatic insufficiency. 
Again, I am not saying this is true in every case, but it seems to have been true in my case. It makes me furious that when I have tried to discuss this issue with health care providers, I have been greeted with a “just don’t eat that” attitude.
I assure you that had a significant change not occurred literally overnight, I would be having trouble managing these cravings, diabetes or no diabetes, knowing the consequences of consuming such large amounts of carbohydrates or not. These cravings are like drug addicts describe regarding their particular addiction.
 I do not want to go down the slippery slope of saying that refined sugar causes everyone to experience these kinds of cravings, but for certain people, like myself, who had untreated pancreatic problems, it very well may. I also want to reiterate that I am so sick of people being blamed and shamed for not having a body type that adheres to the very rigid social standards of beauty that I am going to puke all over the next concern troll or sanctimonious asshat (I’m talking to you, Maria Kang) who suggests that “fat people just don’t have enough self control, blah blah blah, oh look, I can talk out both sides of my mouth and my ass all at the same time!”
I have read that diabetes causes inflammation. I’m certain that it does, and that the inflammation it causes is detrimental to optimal health.
I now wonder if my pancreas may have been malfunctioning for years, in spite of the fact that my blood glucose levels were under the magic number of 100. I don’t have any real way of knowing. I always blamed my hypothyroidism for my cravings and the fact that my weight kept going up although I’m physically active. I have no way of knowing if it has been thyroid combined with pancreas, if my pituitary gland is messed up and causing both problems, or what the hell is going on exactly. I may never know.
I do know two things.
Thus far, I feel a lot better.
People who scapegoat fat people (or anyone else they deem unattractive) suck. 
There does seem to be a correlation between being heavy and type II diabetes. Let us get one thing straight–being heavy DOES NOT CAUSE DIABETES! From the less blamey-shamey things I’ve read, untreated diabetes and weight gain create a vicious cycle, much as hypertension and atherosclerosis create a vicious cycle. This article seems scientifically sound and does not have a blame and shame tone.
I would also like to address the matter of size shaming in the medical community.
Fat people will tend to avoid visiting the doctor when they know they are going to be shamed for their weight. Thus, important physical diagnoses, such as diabetes, may be missed, because if the person isn’t getting tested for such conditions, they aren’t going to know about them. Also, critical health problems may be missed by lazy physicians who, rather than doing what is necessary to make a real diagnosis, tell fat patients that their problems would all go away if they would just lose weight.
Health problems in thin people may be missed because lazy physicians assume that since the person is thin, they are healthy and there is no need to run a battery of tests. Thin people may also fall into the trap of thinking that their physique automatically means they are healthy.
A weight-neutral atmosphere is absolutely necessary in medical treatment.
Doctors need to believe patients who tell them that their cravings are uncontrollable rather than berating them and telling them to just bootstrap it up and not give in. That is lazy medicine which does nothing to get to the root of the problem.
Doctors need to believe patients who tell them that they are following the prescribed diet and they are exercising but still not losing weight.
Doctors need to stop trying to make Number Twelve Look Just Like You and start treating all patients with respect regardless of their size. They need to run certain tests on all people regardless of size. They need to listen to what the patient is saying. They need to TREAT THE PATIENT, NOT THE CHART!
Anything else is bad medicine.
In conclusion, if you are experiencing uncontrollable cravings for refined sugar, if you are gaining weight in spite of being physically active, if you experience uncontrollable, large losses of urine, your pancreas may be at fault. Insist on the proper tests. You are deserving of competent medical treatment and of respect.
This long post now draws to a close.
The Cheese
Cross posted all over the fucking place, because this is important information. Share it, but credit me.

Fat People and Tax Dollars


“As long as my insurance and tax dollars continue to pay for there [sic] diabetes, and heart disease, I’ll continue to feel justified in telling every overweight person I see that they need to lose weight. Shame is powerful and there [sic] fat is costing me real money”
Shame is powerful–okay! Then my being the Proper English Police should shame every nimrod who writes like this into using the proper word (THEIR) in sentences!
I only pull the “spelling police” card with people I consider to be irredeemable idiots. I do not pull it with everyday people who might happen to not have the best skills in this area. Not everyone has the same strengths.
Yes, please, fat bashers, show us the proof that fat people “cost more.” On a personal level, I have not called in sick to work in several years. I go to the doctor once or twice a year, and I pay for it out of my own pocket. The last time I was in the emergency room turned out to be for wax pushing against my eardrum causing me to have vertigo. Excess ear wax is not a problem that only fat people endure.
My hypertension is not entirely under control at this point–hypertension being a problem that many people of all sizes pushing fifty have to deal with. It is spiking at times–this in spite of the fact that I exercise more now than I did during the past five years and eat far less meat and more vegetables. I’m doing lots of things right, but because I’m fat, it’s obviously all my fault, although there are many fat people who aren’t dealing with hypertension.
Our bodies aren’t all the same. One cannot put all persons with the same body type into one category.
With this body type, I’m also supposed to have diabetes. I don’t. I’m also supposed to have heart disease. I don’t. I do have a mitral valve prolapse, which is not a disease, it is a structural malfunction. Mine is minor and does not require surgery. The worst complication from it is the heart palpitations, which vary depending on other factors such as the amount of rest I’ve had.
Both the hypertension and the mitral valve prolapse appear to be hereditary. My father wasn’t fat, in fact he was something of a healthist. Yet his life was devastated by a major hemorrhagic stroke at the age of 68. He ended up developing congestive heart failure and dying at the age of 74. His cardiovascular system was a mess. At the end, his body was bloated with fluids from the CHF.
My mother, who falls into the “slightly overweight” category on the BMI chart, also has hypertension and a mitral valve prolapse.
I am desperately trying to avoid the problems that my father (who again, was NOT fat) had. I do not want to die the way he did.
There are those out there who would say that all I have to do is lose weight and I will somehow, magically, live forever. Yet one of the nurses at the place where I work, who was a very tiny woman, recently died.
Doctors need to treat the patient, not their body type. As a wise EMS instructor said, “treat the patient, not the chart.”
End of rant.

Dances With Fat

“As long as my insurance and tax dollars continue to pay for there [sic] diabetes, and heart disease, I’ll continue to feel justified in telling every overweight person I see that they need to lose weight.  Shame is powerful and there [sic] fat is costing me real money”

So I read when I broke the cardinal rule of being fat on the internet and read the comments.

First of all, when someone brings this up I typically demand to see their list of things that their tax dollars pay for, broken down into things that they want to pay for and things that they don’t, and the interventions in which they are participating for each of the things they don’t want to pay for.  Nobody has ever produced such a list – I think that’s because this really doesn’t have anything to do with their tax dollars, it’s simply a…

View original post 1,146 more words

Eternal Death I


It may be a while before I’m able to get back to working on my domain. In the meantime, please check out my writing teammate Rose’s new book!

The Asylum

cover ed1

Find out more and buy the book here.

I’m really not the kind to toot my own horn, but if I don’t toot it, it ain’t gonna get tooted. I can’t afford advertising or book tours or any of that jumping jive.

I don’t really have much to say about myself, but I think the book turned out well. It better have, because I edited it obsessively to the point where the publisher finally forced my hand and made me publish.

Because I don’t generally have much to say about myself, this page is pretty quiet, but if you want to, you can follow me on Facebook.

You can also follow our team account for the Undead in the Netherworld and Living Dead blogs here.

Or, you can follow the Undead Team on Twitter @UndeadNether.

Please spread the word about my book, and yes, you can…

View original post 32 more words

Further Computer Woes



If I drank alcohol these days, I would be drinking it out of this glass in copious amounts until I passed out.

The glass can be purchased from the Avenue Q shop, which you’ll have to google at this juncture.

I will let this missive that I just sent to the folks involved with Ubuntu tell my tale.

While my generally socialist nature abhors the monopoly that Microsoft has over the computing world as a whole, and I have, in fact, donated a small sum to your project. I have a concern that I feel needs to be addressed for many of the potential users of the OS.
When you have an end user such as me, who is self-taught and has never used anything but Windows based software, I don’t understand a lot of the terminology. It seemed to me like it would be safe to install Ubuntu alongside my Windows 8 OS. It was very easy to do, your software walked me through the process. This is where the trouble began.
Reading about all the tweaks and fixes that people who know much more about programming than me were doing did not help because I did not even know how to begin with most of them. I write, create web pages (using a web editor) and do a bit of photo manipulation. I am not a programmer.
I could not even find Windows 8, or bring up the file showing what was on my hard drive, although when I installed the software I was told that I would be able to choose which OS I wanted to run every time the computer booted. This was not the case. Ubuntu took over.
Eventually I found something which would allow me to choose which OS I wanted to delete. I deleted Ubuntu. Then my troubles began anew. When the computer tried to boot back up, it kept trying to boot up. Back to the technician it went. I had it there last week due to virus problems, and it cost me $225. I expect it will cost the same this time. I am far from wealthy, and this is a sum that is hard for me to afford.
My point being that you really, really, REALLY, and I cannot stress this enough, really need to warn end users that they may face big problems if they attempt to run Ubuntu alongside Windows 8. Apparently the problem lies in the fact that Windows 8 does not run using a BIOS. I don’t know anything more about it than that.
I am actually planning to order one of your laptops, and I fully support the idea of giving consumers a wider range of choices with their operating systems, and not having to be stuck with whatever Microsoft decides. Your software is actually very user-friendly in many ways, and I would like the option of using it.
Again, I implore you to warn the less tech-savvy user, such as me, about the potential dangers they face in installing Ubuntu alongside Windows 8. It may install easily enough, but then the troubles begin, and if you aren’t tech savvy, woes betide you and expect that you and your money will soon be parted.

Here’s the upshot, Friends. If you aren’t pretty tech-savvy, do not do what I did. Do not install Ubuntu alongside Windows 8.

Last year ended not so well, and this one has started out not so well. I hope this isn’t a trend.

Me and my Netbook are (I hope) going into sleep mode for a while. I have several alarms set so I won’t be late to work.


Back in the Saddle for the New Year


Colourful 2014 in fiery sparklers

I am climbing back in the saddle here in 2014. I’m bruised (allegorically) but nothing is broken. My computer was badly infected with some sort of nasty, nasty virus which made it unable to “talk” to web pages even though it could talk to the modem.

Thom the Friendly Computer Doctor (Boulder Electronic Repair, if you’re in the area) had to wipe the hard drive. Now it runs smoothly. It is such a relief to have it back. All I had was a little Netbook which really is only useful as a word processor. Doing even basic blog posts was painfully slow.

So I am now installing Ubuntu alongside Windows 8, because there are certain things that I do that aren’t supported by Linux yet, or don’t support Linux, or what have you. I’m not a techie, I’m completely self-taught. So if I’m saying it wrong, apologies.

In the meantime, if you’re looking for storage space, music downloads, and other nifty stuff that I haven’t really explored yet, check out Ubuntu One. This is a “cloud” system, and you get 5 GB of space completely free.

I hope to get back to working on the website soon. Today I’m kind of taking it easy and enjoying having my tower back. It runs better than it did when I first got it!