February 9, 2005

By Lionel Ketchian

I have been asked by a few people to share my success in overcoming diabetes. I thought I would write about my recent experiences. I have completely overcome diabetes and I am no longer taking any medication for it.

I was diagnosed with pre diabetes about a year ago. I have been going to an endocrinologist to control my diabetes. I was told to eat a diabetic diet, cut down on my portions and eat more frequent meals. I followed the prescribed plan but found my sugar levels became more elevated until I was informed that I actually had diabetes. I was then put on one prescription drug for diabetes, which didn't show any improvement and was told I would eventually need to be on a higher dose of medication.

At this point a friend told me about a new book that was just published in 2004 called the Atkins Diabetes Revolution. I found out that three out of four diabetics have heart attacks, and my doctor confirmed those statistics for me. Unfortunately diabetes has many adverse and negative effects. I became very motivated to do everything I could to overcome this dreadful disease. In a very short time, a period of just a few months, I have completely reversed my negative condition. I recommend that you read the book and decide for yourself.

I want you to know that I am eating very sensibly. I do not eat much fat and very little bacon even thought it is recommended in the book. In fact, I eat a normal and balanced plate of food; which includes some meat, chicken or fish, a vegetable, and some salad. I do not eat many carbohydrates. I try to limit the carbs to 30 grams per day.

I can also tell you that you must exercise regularly or it probably will not work for you. I have a pedometer and I walk 10,000 steps every day, which is about five miles a day. I have taken control of myself, which is exactly what I needed to do. You are the only one who can decide what is best for you and than take the right action.

I have not only beat diabetes, but I have reduced my blood pressure as well. I was on two medications for high blood pressure. I am no longer taking any medication for this condition. High blood pressure is the other side of the coin for diabetes. Exercise and eating healthier helped me fight this condition.

I was also on cholesterol reducing medication, which I no longer require. Even my good cholesterol, my HDL, has improved. In fact I was also on a medication to elevate my HDL but it did not work for me. The Atkins Diabetes program actually did the trick for me. I also take a number of vitamins every day. In the book the Atkins Diabetes Revolution, they indicate a number of vitamins that are beneficial. I now take a multivitamin supplement, you can purchase in any store, that is iron-free because it has been shown to improve blood pressure and blood lipids in diabetics.

I think the most important thing of all regarding the success I experienced was being happy and staying happy. Like all habits, you have to decide that changing the way you eat is what you want to do. When you actually do that, it becomes easier because you start to realize that you will succeed. I have been on other diets in my life, but the real difference is that I am doing this one by using the power of happiness. The real trick to this diet is that you do not make yourself unhappy no matter what happens. I may not lose weight as fast as I would like to, but I am happy while I lose weight slowly. Besides, the important thing is not being on a diet, it is learning to educate myself to change the way I eat and the way I think about food.

Being Happy has made me realize that it is not about losing weight. Who wants to lose something? It is about gaining health. So I am gaining health on the Happiness Diet. In fact, I have not lost that much weight. I lost about 10 pounds, but I have lost a lot of fat and inches. Since I have been walking every day I have gained muscle and lost fat.

My Happiness Diet is fun. If you're not having fun then you have to change something. You have got to be creative here. Start doing more exercise not only because it is good for you but also because you enjoy it and have fun doing it. You don't know if you like something until you start doing it. If you begin some form of exercise then keep it up for awhile and you may just get to love it. Start off slow and easy and do not over do the exercise you choose. If you do too much too soon, you will not keep it up. A little is much better than none. You must do it for at least 21 days to make it a habit.

This is your life! Remember that and choose a way of eating that will be beneficial for you. Find the right diet for you, one that you can stay on, one that can maintain your health and your happiness. I plan to eat this way for life because my diet has become a healthy and happy way of life for me.

Our next Happiness Club meeting will be on Thursday, February 17, from 7:00 - 9:00 p.m. The presentation will be, "The Happiness Decision!" It will be held at the Sullivan Independence Hall, Fairfield. Admission is free; everyone is welcome. Looking forward to seeing you. Come on down, meet some great people, get connected, and have a great year!

Lionel Ketchian is the founder of the Happiness Club, a Happiness Coach, and can be reached at PrintLRK@aol.com. The Web site is http://www.happinessclub.com/.