Many of you may know that I drastically changed my eating habits as a result of reading The China Study. When we moved back to the St Louis area, my cholesterol, triglyceride, and blood sugar levels were all approaching dangerous levels. I was put on nine or ten different medications daily. My weight was the highest ever.
So, about two years ago, after reading the book, I quit eating meat; for awhile this meant all meat and poultry. More recently I will eat poultry occasionally. I've had pork maybe two or three times. But I have had absolutely no beef/red meat. I do eat fish, however my diet is mainly plant based. I quit drinking cow's milk about 20 years ago when I discovered that was what was causing my IBS. I will drink/use soy milk these days. I don't ever eat ice cream and I have really cut back on the amount of cheese I ingest (I really need to decrease cheese even more).
I had uterine cancer when I was 32 as a result of untreated polycystic ovary disease. A complete hysterectomy took care of that; I was fortunate to catch it very early on and did not need any follow-up treatments. With the removal of my ovaries, my diagnosis was changed to metabolic syndrome, meaning I have the propensity to develop diabetes, heart disease, and other nastiness. I am devoted to not becoming another statistic! I am working very hard to curtail an unhealthy lifestyle and to turn things around.
Every three months I visit my endocrinologist and we go over my blood work. I don't have to test my blood at home, instead I visit the lab about a week and a half before visiting the doctor. In the past twelve months I have been able to lose a bit of weight (still working hard on that, but probably not hard enough since it is excruciatingly slow to come off), and I have lost quite a few inches. Here's the real impact though: I have been able to decrease about one-third of my meds. In the last six months I was able to stop taking one cholesterol medication and decrease the dosage of another. Well, this past week I had my regular visit to the doctor and we decreased the lipitor to every other day! When I return in three months we will discuss dropping another med completely (either the lipitor or the tricor).
I also had a bone density test this week and from those results we dropped another med. So, within a year I have gone from taking eight prescriptions every day to four daily and five every other day.
The moral of this story? What I eat really does matter. I have the ability to truly control my health and welfare. By taking control I can live a more comfortable, healthy, productive, and happy life. And, taking control really isn't that hard. I'm looking forward to 2010 being an even better year. Here's hoping for a happy, healthy, prosperous, and peaceful New Year for us all!