It wasn’t too late for me to address my diabetes wholistically.*
I learned this scripture as a youth: “Train up a child in the way he should go: And when he is old, he will not depart from it” (Proverbs 22:6, KJV). I have also heard the proverb: “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” And, as far as I have seen, it has proven true for far too many folks.
You cannot make people change their established patterns of opinion and behavior especially when they get as old as 86, like I am. But thank God, this has not be true for me, at least not as far as my health is concerned. That is when my parental and church training provided the internal motivation for me reversing my condition of diabetes and high blood pressure (hypertension).
I grew up in a family with parents who were excellent role models. My father owned a bakery and faithfully served as a deacon at church. My mother served in many church ministries such as Sabbath School, Missionary Volunteers, and the Home and School Committee. They were Seventh-day Adventists, and were both involved in evangelistic activities, winning several persons to the Lord. But, it was my mother who practiced what we called health reform–a wholistic approach to diet, health, and lifestyle. She was a vegetarian, and died at age 90.
It is ironic that my two next older siblings were a registered nurse, and a medical doctor, respectively. They died in their early 80s and had been diagnosed with diabetes. My three other brothers, ranging from 84–88-years-old, have been diagnosed as pre-diabetic.
When Everything Went Left
Like my siblings and others who experience this condition, I gained weight. I really enjoyed ice cream, pizza, cake, soda, and other less-than-healthy foods. One day after reaching 86, I noticed my hand and elbow were swollen. That was abnormal and motivated me to get my doctor’s opinion.
My doctor reported to me that my blood sugar was 470 and sent me straight to the emergency room. After that evaluation, I was told I had Type II diabetes and was prescribed a 100 mg Junuvia pill to be taken daily. She also instructed me to change my diet to include more vegetables, nuts, and protein.
My swollen areas and hospital diagnosis were my rock bottom, like the Prodigal Son’s pig pen and coming to his senses moment, or an addict’s bottoming out epiphany. I had to change. As old as I was, I had to call on my former training to get healthy again.
I decided to reverse from a diabetic diagnosis to a healthier old dog at 86. My wife helped me to eat positive breakfasts, lunches and dinners while eliminating the sweets and starches mentioned above.
Praise God! My improved diet caused me to lose excessive weight. I lost 45 to 50 pounds. It was then that the doctor reduced my dosage from 100 to 25 mg, but as of this writing, I take no pills. The discipline of God and my revived commitment to prior training moved this old dog to reverse his death sentence.
Better Late, than Being the Late Paul McCleary
I hope you learn from my story that certain thinking and behaviors lead to disease and premature death, many of which are preventable with right training, no matter your old age. My departure from right health principles made me sick, and on my way to an early grave.
My return and continuance with God’s affordable health plan will keep me healthy, now at 87, until Jesus returns to remove all sickness and death, forever.
*Always consult with your physician to address your condition.