Your doctor cares about your health and wants the best for you.
Still…You may have wondered…is Your Doctor Making Mistakes with Your Type 2 Diabetes?
They may also be too busy to offer a lot of advice for your Type 2 Diabetes. Hopefully, they will refer you to a dietician for dietary advice and give you some pointers about the next steps. Making healthy diet and lifestyle changes can bring relief to your most annoying and painful diabetes symptoms.
Most doctors have to see a certain number of patients in an hour. This can cut into time they might have spent talking to you about other things you can do to manage your Type 2 Diabetes.
I’m sure they wish they had more time with their patients, but sadly they don’t. It’s not up to them usually, it’s up to the insurance companies and the companies they work for.
“Take these medications and we’ll recheck in 3-6 months.” That’s what I was told. The standard of care for Type 2 diabetes in the US is to prescribe medications first, and that’s ok.
When I was diagnosed with Prediabetes, my doctor prescribed Metformin and told me to come back in 6 months for new lab tests.
But, I wanted more guidance. I read that there are some other things that we can do along with the medications.
If you’re like me, you may be wondering if there is more you can do while you wait for your next test results. Yes, there is!
In order to make sure that your Type 2 Diabetes doesn’t get worse, you need to take charge of your health as quickly as possible.
It is very possible to put the diagnosis of Type 2 Diabetes into “remission.”
“The concept of Type 2 Diabetes remission, which is getting increasing attention from researchers and doctors, also goes by other names, including diabetes “reversal, ”resolution,” and even “cure.”
But a consensus of experts led by the ADA in 2021 agreed on the term remission as being most accurate.”1
Does your doctor’s office or healthcare system have a diabetes educator? You are very lucky. Get scheduled with them as soon as you can.
If your doctor’s office doesn’t have a dedicated diabetes educator, then you can learn a lot from following the latest research. You can also join this free educational Type 2 Diabetes Facebook Support Group. (click here to join)
Remember, that medical professionals may not have the latest research on lower-carb diets. If they do, that’s wonderful! Lower carb diets can help you get into remission.2
Why didn’t your doctor tell you how to change your diet?
Unfortunately, most doctors don’t give any lifestyle or dietary advice. They may not have the time to get into it or they may not have the training in nutrition. It’s common to hear “stop eating so much sugar.”
That’s what my doctor said to me. This was good advice but I had to figure out what exactly that meant. It was challenging.
Did your doctor send you out the door with a prescription and zero lifestyle advice? My doctor did this when she diagnosed me with prediabetes.
I walked out of the office thinking that the prescription was going to solve everything. In fact, there was so much more I needed to do.
I needed a plan. I wanted to put my Type 2 into remission.
My doctor didn’t even tell me that was possible. I had to do my own research. That’s how I learned how to put my prediabetes into remission, and stop it from becoming Type 2 Diabetes. I’ll always have it but, my lab tests for A1C and Fasting Blood Sugar look great now. The disease is not progressing anymore.
Does your medical team have a plan for your Type 2 Diabetes? If so, then you have a good doctor and team. They have goals for you and hopefully instructions on how you can reach those goals.
But first, you need to know the plan. Does it involve medications only? Did they also give you exercise advice? If not, you might need a dietician or diabetes educator to work with your medical team.
“People who are physically active for about 150 minutes a week have a 33% lower risk of all-cause mortality than those who are physically inactive.”4
Before you leave the doctor’s office, ask them some questions:
One question you can ask is: “How can we work together to get my Type 2 Diabetes into remission?”
If they tell you the plan, and it involves lifestyle and dietary changes, then you can ask:
“Is this a plan that you’ve helped other Type 2 Diabetics achieve?”
You deserve the best treatment possible. This disease is reversible.
When people follow the recommended diet and lifestyle changes, they can often get off of all medications. That’s exciting!
It’s also fine if you need the medications for life. Changing your diet and getting some exercise can prevent damage from Type 2 Diabetes.
I know that my own doctor did not catch my Prediabetes soon enough.
2 years ago, my fasting blood sugar was 104. This should have been the warning sign. I didn’t know at the time I should have been concerned.
One year later, it was 117, and my A1C was 5.9. This was solidly in the Prediabetic range. I wish that she had told me at least a year earlier when the signs were already there. I could have started working to get into remission back then!
The second visit was when she told me to “try the Mediterranean diet, and make sure you get enough fish oil.” That was it. Nothing else.
I had to find all of this other information by researching, reading a lot of books, and also interviewing some people that I know who are experts in Type 2 Diabetes. Thank goodness I knew them and got the most up-to-date information available!
My fasting blood sugar is now under 100, and my A1C is way down! I have accomplished this by intermittent fasting and doing a healthy high-fat Ketogenic diet.
Continuous Glucose Monitor
I love my continuous glucose monitor (CGM)! It’s a small wearable device that is applied to the back of my arm. It reads my blood sugar levels in real time, 24 hours a day. I hold my phone up to it and get my current levels. So easy!
Ask your doctor for a prescription for a Continuous Glucose Monitor. Due to certain insurance company policies, some doctors won’t prescribe a Continuous Glucose Monitor. They may think your insurance won’t cover it and they don’t want you to get denied.
If you have a PreDiabetes or Type 2 Diabetes diagnosis, ask to see if your insurance will cover a Continuous Glucose Monitor.
This makes it very easy to track blood sugar over time without having to do finger pricks all the time.
If you don’t get a continuous glucose monitor you might stop tracking your numbers as much as you should. This can cause you to become discouraged. A lot of people hate pricking their fingers. It’s common to have a fear of needles. It’s understandable that we won’t test as often when it causes pain to do so.
Remission of Type 2 Diabetes?
A little bit of walking makes a big difference if you want to get your Type 2 diabetes into remission.
If your doctor tells you that diabetes is a progressive disease and that you will be on medications for life… then you might need to look at more current information.
According to the American Diabetes Association, remission of Type 2 Diabetes is possible!
“People with type 2 diabetes should be considered in remission after sustaining normal blood glucose (sugar) levels for three months or more, according to a new consensus statement from the American Diabetes Association® (ADA), the Endocrine Society, the European Association for the Study of Diabetes and Diabetes UK jointly published in Diabetes Care, the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, Diabetologia, and Diabetic Medicine, respectively.”3https://diabetes.org/newsroom/press-releases/2021/international-experts-outline-diabetes-remission-diagnosis-criteria.