Monday, October 3, 2011

So Exactly How Am I Lowering My HbA1c?

My posts and replies so far only give a few specifics. It’s quite a laundry list. I don’t know exactly what’s working. It’s certainly some combination of what's listed below. I have some “science” that supports (for me) each of these things. You can find most of them in my online bookmarks. Everything is intended to either help with the autoimmune (type1),  insulin receptivity (type2), or stress (huge driver for both). But here’s a quick rundown of what I’m doing/taking:

-quit all alcohol (my acupuncturist said stress on liver = stress on pancreas)
-quit almost all caffeine (one study suggested it and saturated fat spike BS)
-quit animal saturated fat (no dairy, fatty meats have to be grilled, i.e. no pot roast)
-other than those, eating the kind of lean, low carb diet you see posted often. Slight differences from some, including limitless fruit and nuts, especially flavanoids like strawberrys and blueberrys, lots o cinnamon.
-eat constantly, every 3 hours or so, nothing after 7pm
-extremely strict adherence to all the above.
-15 minutes meditation daily (besides the stress relief, google Wim Hof - autoimmune)
-weekly acupuncture (stress, getting the pancreas “burner” going)
-perpetual motion (especially after meals, like 20 min walk after lunch, standing at work computer, stairs)
-supplements include: fish oil (autoimmune, inflammation), Alpha-Lipoic Acid (type2, BS control), B complex (stress, biotin source), Vitamin D (type1, autoimmune), NAC (type1, inflammation), GABA (type1, autoimmune - one mouse study showed both beta cell regeneration and reduced immune attack on them), Zinc (type2, amylin prevention)
-still taking metformin, quit the glipizide in August

CAUTIONS: It’s doubtful that any 2 individual’s lists will be the same. My doctor and nutritionist see no risks in this approach for ME. Don’t forget I’m LADA and have to work on both Type 1 and Type 2 aspects. Some things, like the fact that animal saturated fat spikes my blood sugar may be completely unique to my genetic makeup. Nobody else seems to have seen this. Don’t forget that I started skinny and that the activity increase and lean diet try to make me skinnier. I’m eating more fruit carbs along with my pounds of almonds to keep the weight on. Many of you Type 2’s probably wouldn’t mind the weight loss my regimen generates without those added carbs. But that’s mostly a quantity thing.

Please keep asking questions. This conversation will take time to tease all the details out. I believe the hardest parts are the mental changes. Giving up beer was hard, but truly being happy about it is harder. That’s why you here me saying things like “if you play the victim, this won’t work”. Stress is probably my biggest driver. It would take books worth of explaining to get at all of just my issues. Everybody’s different. For me, a lot of the stress was because I’ve a talent for being a bit of an a**hole. Learning to instinctually become a kinder person is MUCH easier said than done.

Is that any help?

Refusing The Needle: A Diabetic’s Natural Journey To Kick-Ass Health by Russell Stamets
ebook available for all devices at
and for kindle at
tags: type 1, type 2, autoimmune, diabetes, lada, natural, alternative, diet, supplements, acupuncture, meditation, lifestyle


  1. I Agree ........Wellness Coaching is the newest way to make the hard work of being healthy, easy.

    holistic approach

  2. It's true most people will need some kind of coach, be it spouse, friend, or paid consultant. It's hard even with help.

  3. HI Russell,
    Thanks for the videos and diabetic tips. I was diagnosed December 2003 as type II. Pretty much kept it under control until the last two years just taking metformin and glipizide. Last year the doc put me on longlasting insulin at night. That has not worked. Had an episode in January ended up in the hospital and those docs put me on short acting insulin and the long lasting insulin and stopped the oral meds. I came home mad and decided enough is enough. I have read about 10 books on how to reverse diabetes and finally took it to heart. 3 weeks ago I started juicing and eating steamed and raw veggies. I took the daily insulin for 3 days but decided to stop it and have been improving the diet for about 3 weeks. Today the doc said I need to take the insulin to lower my numbers (they are ranging in the 200’s) and said I could do this along with the diet and as my weight comes down we could back off the insulin. I had lost 11 pounds. I am about 40 pounds over- weight and will continue on this diet plan. I don’t want to get hooked on this insulin. So any advice that you can give about this situation?

    1. Hi Motivational,
      With the usual disclaimer that I'm not a doc and can only offer opinions based on my experience, here are my thoughts.
      You've already made the huge step of committing to change. Your doc's suggestion to use some insulin while giving the diet changes time to work is a reasonable option. On the other hand, my best reading of the evidence and my doc's advice was that as long as my A1c was trending down from the 11.1 I had originally, there was no need for insulin because the damage (complications) take so long to manifest. If you're eyes, heart, and other long term diabetic potential worries are not an issue now, than you have time to try the natural approach. I know people seem to get some quick results from the juice diets. I've opted for not that radical, something I can sustain forever without regret. Also, make sure you give as much attention to your activity level and stress. I'm pretty sure diet alone can't do it.
      Good Luck