Tonight as I was cooking dinner, I snacked on raw broccoli. The smell of it sent me back decades ago when my mother would cut up raw cabbage to snack on while she was cooking dinner. Suddenly, I remembered those moments of the brisk and flavorful raw cabbage satisfying my hunger. Tonight’s broccoli seemed to hold me over until dinner was fully prepared. We ate grilled chicken, steamed broccoli and four cheese ravioli.
I have been tracking what one of my girls has been eating to allow her to see not only calories consumed but to determine carbohydrates, protein and sodium intake. Her nutritionist encouraged us to walk down this path to track food using www.myfitnesspal.com.
After four days of tracking food and exercise, my daughter has been able to see some interesting data. For example, the syrup on her whole grain waffle this morning accounted for 210 calories. Her egg substitute, waffle and milk were great ways to start the day with protein and carbs, but the syrup added a lot of calories.
It has made me think that I also eat things that don’t add much nutritional value but pack on the extra calories. I think that it doesn’t matter at the time of consumption, but really and truly, it does. I see my doctor next week for my A1C blood check which he checks every three or four months. Last summer, my number had dropped to 5.9 then in December it had risen to 6.4. I had added 10 extra pounds from July to December. From March to July, I had lost weight which was the reason for my lower A1C which had begun at 8.6 in March of 2015. If the A1C number stays below 6, then it is considered in a prediabetic state which is better for my body than a number above 6. My type of diabetes is reversible if I will lower my A1C by losing weight and making healthful food choices.
So, the question becomes this: “At what point will I commit to lowering my A1C to a prediabetic or even non diabetic state?” I have been on a rollercoaster journey since discovering my 8.6 A1C last March and getting diagnosed with diabetes. This journey has meant that I have changed my diet from March to July of last year only to allow weight to creep back on through December. I went to the doctor today due congestion and a weak voice. I am being treated for a sinus infection and bronchitis. As always, though, I had to weigh. I am the same weight as I was in December. Hurray! If there is one good thing, it is that I haven’t gained weight since visiting the doctor in December. On the flip side, I haven’t lost weight. As a result, I am expecting my A1C next week to still be in the 6 range.
I have been exercising more as a Girls on the Run Assistant Coach and walking at the gym or using equipment for the past month. I have had to limit exercise while my left foot was in a special boot provided by my podiatrist. The foot gets fairly sore and it is truly a reason why I can’t exercise as regularly as I’d like. It has been feeling better, but I realize that it has an issue for which I am still seeking treatment from a new Orthopedic group. I am so glad that Spring is coming so that I can walk/jog with my family more and as my foot will allow. Limiting calories and exercising seems to be my way to lose weight. I want to continue the journey of becoming a healthier me and encouraging my daughters to make food choices that promote a healthful lifestyle.
For so long, I have allowed myself to eat when I was sad, eat when I was stressed, eat when I wanted something sweet, to name a few times. Unfortunately, I have rarely framed my food choices as ones that would affect my health. Now that diabetes is a part of my life and I check my blood sugar by pricking my finger, I am all the more aware of how food choices will determine my future and my family’s future. I am excited about my daughter’s progress in making food choices. She has had better choices because we brought home the right stuff from the grocery store! I have asked for her input on what we buy, but ultimately it is my husband and I who are responsible for the groceries that we buy. Our fridge is filled with berries, grapes, tomatoes, broccoli, sweet peppers and cucumbers. We haven’t been buying the extra snacks that we used to buy because we have to give an account in my daughter’s food journal for everything she eats. It is a reflection on us as to how she eats. I have realized that in the past, I would allow a bowl of ice cream, a bag of popcorn or a cookie for a treat or dessert for my girls. I will still allow them to have healthful treats a couple of times a month, but I now see that I made a mistake in the choices that I provided to them in the past. I needed to provide them with the best choices. I am providing those choices now. We can only look to the choices that we make each day and know that we own our outcome as far as we can control. My daughter likes to examine her data at www.myfitnesspal.com by screencasting it from our computer to the TV each night to celebrate successes with her dad and me and to set goals for tomorrow.
Not only is this journey that we’re on a natural one, but it is a spiritual one. I am paralleling the journey, or battle against diabetes, to the David and Goliath story. In 1 Samuel Chapter 17, the story is recorded of when David encountered a giant of the Philistine army called Goliath. I am also facing a giant. It is not easy to make healthful choices. I get hungry. I will call my giant “diabetes”. It is clear in 1 Samuel Chapter 17 that God chose David to be the one to fight the giant. Eliab, David’s eldest brother, was not qualified because he was filled with fear and anger when confronted with the giant. I have been like Eliab at times feeling angry about my diagnosis which has done nothing but bring on excuses and more fear about the complications of diabetes. David, unlike his brother, looked beyond the giant and saw God and was not overcome with fear. If I focus on the giant, then I will be fearful. I have to focus on God and his ability to give me the necessary mindset and abilities to overcome my giant.
David said to Saul, “Thy servant will fight the giant.” David shared about how he had been faithful in smaller battles which qualified him for the battle against Goliath. He told Saul, “I went after the enemy lion and bear who came after my sheep. I will do the same to the giant. The Lord who delivered me out of the hand of the paw of the lion and bear will deliver me from the hand of the giant.”
I have seen God help others to overcome and lose weight. Last year, I dropped 10 pounds so these past victories give me confidence for present confrontation. It takes planning and commitment to the plan. I know that God will help me to be victorious over little stuff before I can be victorious over the big stuff.
In addition, David didn’t rely on armor that was placed on him. He relied on God to provide the help and laid aside the armor. I also plan to depend on God because my battle, like David’s, is the Lord’s. God will help me overcome this giant. He will equip me with the tools. I’ve heard at this site that the slingshot was not a child’s toy. It had the precision and stopping power of a .45 calibur handgun when slung properly. It had a devastating effect on the one at whom stones were thrown. I also know that I will have to be laser focused and act with precision as I buy food and make food choices. Mama ain’t playing.
In Hebrews 6: 11-12 we are given another precious nugget which is my new favorite precept: It is through faith and perseverance that we inherit the promises of God. My battle will require faith and perseverance but I know that victory is certain. I will remind my family that it will take faith and perseverance to get us through to our goals of optimal weight and health without diabetes. Our faith and perseverance will inherit the promises of God. We will have to pray and ask God for His sustaining grace and support. I know that he holds and helps us also from Psalms 139.
Like David, I come to this battle in the name of the Lord. David had to sling the stones. I plan to keep slinging, keep making best food choices, keep recording food choices in www.myfitnesspal.com and keep seeing pleasing results. I believe that God is reliable and will help us.
The battle will be long but I know that victory is certain. Faith and perseverance inherits the promises of God. Faith and perseverance.
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