A recent blood test showed that my hemoglobin A1C level had crept upward from 5.4 to 5.9. What a wakeup call! Time to get to work. Here are the changes over the past 6 weeks.
1. Re-read Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s The End of Diabetes.
2. Cut out every bit of processed flour — ramen noodles (the comfort go-to), breads, chips, bagels and all the other tempting fanfare available at the office.
3. Started my first food journal ever, noting not portion sizes but the quality of the food.
4. Started writing down the time that I stop eating for the day, aiming for 5:00 pm; writing it down helps to stay on track and get away from night snacks. The eventual goal is earlier dinner, and 15 hours between dinner one day and breakfast the next. Exception: after an evening workout at the gym, I need a little protein and healthy fat. Tonight it was two handfuls of almonds in coconut cream.
5. Started writing down exercises done every day. That added motivation to go on stair-running breaks every hour or two at work.
6. Switched from Trader Joe’s dark-&-milk chocolate almonds, to their all-dark chocolate almonds, then to Trader Joe’s bittersweet chocolate with almonds. That comes in a brick slightly over one pound. I bought one a week ago and shared it with my co-workers; we chipped off little pieces, which is the whole idea — it takes considerably longer to eat a brick of chocolate than the equivalent amount of chocolate almonds. I had about four squares of that a day all week with high-fiber raw vegetable meals, and was careful to not bring it home at night. Today I ate the last two squares, didn’t buy more, and at snack time substituted two dates instead. We’ll see how that goes.
7. Set a goal to have a new A1C test in 3 to 6 months. I’ll give the results and the food journal to my new primary care provider.
8. Started a new pep squad silent cheer. This week at the office generous folks shared frosted donuts, pastry, peppermint Jo-Jo cookies, pfeffernusse cookies, a huge cream cake, chocolates, and more frosted donuts. Every time, I consoled myself with my new cheer: “A1C! A1C! Every bite counts in my A1C!” That’s let me steer around all the treats so far.
8. Set a goal to be very very careful about social interactions and events (and their refreshments) that leave me feeling lonelier than ever. That is the most vulnerable time of all for bingeing out. Christmas will definitely be a no-party no-potluck zone for this year at least.
9. Worked up some new recipes. This one is a high-fiber dessert.
One jumbo carrot, finely grated
Beet, small leftover piece, finely grated
Handful raw cranberries
Two tbsp fine silky celery pulp (strained from making celery juice)
Two tbsp old-fashioned rolled oats
Tbsp chia seeds
Dash of rice milk
Blend it all in a food processor. Stir, so chia seeds & oats soften up overnight. Add carrots on top for fiber and prettiness.
Next time instead of the oats I’ll add coconut and/or almond meal, and more celery pulp. Probably easier to digest that way…
Tonight at the gym my weight was 176, down from 179. Onward!