New Blog- KETO in Oswego
Jul 10, 2018 05:05PM ● Published by Jerry Bannister
KETO in Oswego
By: Jerry Bannister
This first blog is a bit long because I want to explain why I would share such personal information on the internet. I learned about the KETO Way Of Eating (WOE) through a friend’s Facebook post. It has drastically helped me, and I hope that sharing my story may help you or someone you know.
Now onto the backstory…
Around 1990, I wasn’t feeling quite right and had many of the classic symptoms of diabetes, which runs rampant in my family. Like most of us in Oswego back then, I went to a doctor in the stone building across from Dari-Hut. I told the doctor (hereafter known as “the quack”) all of my symptoms and said, “I think I’m diabetic”. He did a cursory exam and told me, “lose ten pounds and you should be fine.”
I wasn’t fine.
Jump ahead two years, and a life insurance test revealed my blood sugar reading was 465 (normal is 70-115). Yep, I was diabetic. But I was determined to stay off “shots”. I went on a strict diet, exercised at least an hour every day and lost 65 pounds; I was so skinny that size 30 jeans were too big.
I tried a combination of type-2 diabetes drugs to avoid shots but it was only a matter of time before I had to deal with the fact that I was a type-1 diabetic (unrelated to diet/weight/exercise), and my pancreas does not work, at all.
So I started insulin shots. Multiple shots per day. Shots with meals to knock down my sugars after eating, more shots to try to even out my sugars between meals, extra shots when my sugars ran high (combined with extra food when I over-shot and my sugars ran low); before long I was taking at least 5 shots per day.
Insulin is a hormone, so taking multiple shots per day with zero nutritional advice meant that I quickly gained back the 65 pounds I had lost, along with another 65 pounds.
I don’t blame this entire scenario on the quack. The 2-year delay in a proper diagnosis is entirely on him, but I didn’t always make the best nutritional choices, and exercise was getting harder and harder.
In my younger years, I rode thousands and thousands of hard miles on my bicycle, ultimately damaging my knees and ankles. Right now, every step I take involves at least some pain. Not always a lot, but enough that it sucks.
That’s the end of the backstory; let’s jump to December 2017 for the beginning of the new story. My weight was 266, which is the most I’ve ever weighed. Even so, my aerobic abilities weren’t horrible - on a recent vacation, I walked 9 miles with 30 lbs in a backpack (yes it hurt but I did it anyway). My cholesterol was excellent, though my HDL (good cholesterol) could use a bump up. Blood Pressure is 130/90ish, which could come down some.
This next number is critical to the story - my HbA1C score (A1C) was 7.2. That’s not great; it's not even good, but as a type-1 diabetic, it wasn’t horrible. (See links at the end of this blog to help understand type-1 and type-2 diabetes and the A1C test). But, I wanted it to be better.
In January 2018, a friend posted on Facebook about her weight loss and other health benefits by eating the KETO way. The photos were amazing and I was intrigued.
If I didn’t have type-1 diabetes, I would have jumped right in. But as a type-1 diabetic nothing is normal, so I had to research how KETO would affect me. I found a lot of good information about KETO/KETO-style diet and how it relates to type-1’s in Dr. Bernstein's Diabetes Solution: The Complete Guide to Achieving Normal Blood Sugars.
I started KETO on January 14, 2018. As of today, I have lost 42 pounds. I now weigh 224 pounds and my goal is 180, which I think is doable. My cholesterol is still excellent, my blood work is all within range, and the amount of insulin I inject daily is down dramatically and still dropping.
The biggest surprise is that my A1C is 5.1! That’s almost a non-diabetic number.
This Way Of Eating works, at least for me.
So, this blog is about my KETO experiences, along with the stories of several friends who are “doing KETO” too. There will be KETO-friendly recipes, KETO options at local restaurants, and grocery stores with KETO friendly foods.
I am not a doctor, a nutritionist, dietician, or anything else official. I’m just a guy who has tried a lot of things, and KETO is what’s working. But what works for me may kill you, literally. Do not try anything discussed or featured in this blog without consulting whomever you need and should consult with, including YOUR doctor!!!
My current doctor (not a quack) knows I am doing KETO, and I keep a regular schedule of appointments with his office to make sure I’m on track with my type-1 diabetes.
For emphasis- KETO can be dangerous for a diabetic, type-1 and type-2! In the early stages, and even later, hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) can be a real and persistent problem and must be monitored very closely. The book discussed above and linked below provides great guidance, as will your doctor! Don’t be dumb…
Some links to more information mentioned above:
The BEST KETO group I’ve found on Facebook:
Please note the above group is for adults only. The page conforms to Facebook standards, but I just wanted you to know that adult language is frequently used and there is a feature called “Freaky Friday” that may be off-putting to some people. The moderators and members are excellent and very knowledgeable. If you join, be sure to read the pinned post and all the links for answers to many newbie questions.