Serena’s Story: Reversing Type One Diabetes
Serena’s mother, Diane, has graciously submitted her daughter, Serena’s story for us to post. We hope you are as encouraged as we were after reading it. Her daughter, Serena was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in July of 2009, and with Diane’s incredible efforts, it appears she may have reversed the progression of Serena’s disease!
Serena was diagnosed with Type I diabetes July 17, 2009. A few days before her diagnosis, I noticed she was pretty whiny, tired and extremely thirsty. For a couple days I attributed this to a soccer camp she was attending. Being in the summer, it was hot and I just assumed she was tired and maybe a little dehydrated from camp. Those feelings changed on July 16th. She drank almost 3 water bottles in the span on a 90 minute movie. I knew then something was wrong.
I Googled excessive thirst, irritability and tiredness. Normally when you Google symptoms, many different things come up. To my dismay, only one disease came up: type I diabetes. I called the doctor first thing in the morning and asked him to check her blood sugar. His glucometer only read “high” which meant it was over 500.
The next 72 hours are a blur in my life. When one doctor leaves a room for a bit and then 4 walk back in, it’s never good. Serena’s doctor sent us down to “Rainbow’s babies and children’s hospital” in Cleveland, Ohio. They confirmed the diagnosis. I have all the blood work from our visit. Her A1C was 11.4, c-peptide was 0.2, GAD-65 antibodies were 83.4 and she had ketones in her urine. Islet Cell antibodies (CF-ICA) were 1:8 and the Islet Cell antibodies (ICA-IGG) were over 80. She was not in ketoacidosis even though her body was more on the acidic side.
We spent the weekend in the hospital with Serena. I was feeling every emotion a mother feels when her child has just been diagnosed with a disease. But I am an imploder not an exploder. I knew there would be time to break down later. As I was taking in all the education about how to take care of her, I immediately started questioning (to myself) how this “disease” was being treated. I watched them give her regular peanut butter with crackers. I remember thinking “gosh, doesn’t peanut butter have a lot of sugar in it?” They also suggested many sugar free items. I had known from the past that “sugar free” isn’t good for you.
We got home on Sunday July 19th and my feet hit the pavement. They told us on July 25th she was in the “Honeymoon Phase” because we had been decreasing her insulin everyday. They also told me not to get excited, it only lasts a very short time.
Call it mother’s intuition, wanting a better way, wanting a cure, being in denial or whatever you want. I was 3 days into learning about diabetes, but the whole treatment and nutritional suggestions seemed wrong to me.
I started researching all the idea’s on what causes type I diabetes… from conventional to alternative ideas. I knew she had a major flu 3 months earlier. So I already knew about a virus. But then I came across thoughts on maybe allergies to dairy or wheat. So I found a Naturopathic Doctor who tested Serena’s allergies. She did show sensitivity to dairy, wheat, and many more foods. She does not have celiac disease. I removed Serena from wheat and dairy. She still gets plenty of whole grains and calcium from vegetables and supplements.
The next study I found was from the University of Pittsburgh. They found they had a lot of success with removing dairy and adding 550 MG of Niacinimide daily to their diet. So I added Niacinimide.
I heard that Adrenal glands play a large roll in blood sugar regulation so I had Serena’s Adrenal glands tested. Serena’s cortisol was really low. When your cortisol is low, adrenaline is high. Adrenaline inhibits insulin. So the doctor put her on “Adrenal Response.” This is made by Innate and contains herbs to help regulate her adrenal glands. Since the liver is a component to many hormones, I had her liver tested. Her ALT and AST were extremely elevated.
Another item I came across was heavy metals in the system. I had her hair tested for heavy metals. Luckily, all were in the acceptable range so I removed this concern from my search.
My next step was to overhaul her diet. We removed every ounce of refined sugar, white flour, dairy and wheat. This is where I added another member to my “dream team,” Dr. Bob, an acupuncturist. He also practices traditional Chinese medicine. I had no idea what a huge impact he would play. He assessed Serena and found that she had many “deficiencies.” It went hand in hand with conventional medicine but viewed in a very different manner. Serena had been eating many foods very taxing to the pancreas. We switched over to foods that were very easily digested and nourishing to the pancreas. Serena still goes about 4 times a year to see Dr. Bob.
After digging really deep, I came across another concept. And even though it seemed, “really out there”, it made sense to me; parasites. In most of the information I have read, it is becoming more main stream that the pancreas can regenerate. So, in type I diabetes, the antibodies must continually destroy islet cells.
Believing that the human body is miraculous, I didn’t think it would attack for no reason. It’s too intelligent. I think, it could be trying to attack something foreign in the pancreas whether it be parasites, heavy metals, a virus that never cleared up, bacteria from cows milk, or allergies that leave the body in state of inflammation. And I believe with my whole heart, if you find the cause, you might be able to stop the attack of antibodies.
We did a parasite cleanse with an herbal product and after the second week of taking it, I forgot to give Serena her .5 of NPH insulin in the morning of October 25th, 2009. The nurse called at noon to let me know Serena’s blood sugar was a little low but everything was ok because she was on her way to lunch. This is where I finally had my breakdown, but it was a good one. Serena has been off insulin ever since. Everything was going to be ok!
So with the suggestions from her doctors, we have completely changed the way Serena eats. At first an apple would make her spike. Now we know to add a healthy fat and protein to that apple to slow down how fast that goes into her blood stream. We no longer count carbs. She has adapted to the “perfect plate” concept. She eats plenty of fruits, fresh vegetables, lean protein, whole grains (no wheat) and lots of healthy fats. I work on new recipes every day, and I keep a detailed journal of everything she eats.
The supplements we have her on:
- Multiple vitamin with extra calcium
- Cod Liver Oil-for vitamin A and D and anti-inflammatory.
- Niacinamide – 550mg
- Glucofunction made by Pure Encapsulation Inc. – helps regulate blood sugar.
- PGX Daily made by Natural Factors – slows down carbs into bloodstream
- Adrenal Response made by Innate
- Moducare for immune system
- If she is sick or her blood sugar is elevated for no reason: Diabetone plus made by Biogenesis
I just added Chlorophyll today as a new supplement. It has blood sugar regulating components in it. Plus, it is very alkalizing to the system. I try to make sure she doesn’t get too acidic. And the other supplement I added was Gymnema sylvestre. This herb is being used successfully overseas to help treat type 1 diabetes and keep blood sugars in a more normal range.
Her latest blood work from February 18: A1C 5.5, ALT, AST normal, C-peptide 2.8, Islet Cell AB CF-IGA normal 1:2, Glucose was 75. And all those allergies – gone, including wheat and dairy, even though I will not add those back into the diet.
Serena does see a regular Endocrinologist. She baffles him every time he sees her. He has confided in us that Serena is the “longest Honeymoon Phase he has ever seen.” But he is always telling me it won’t last. I would really like to prove him wrong.
Everything was smooth sailing until Serena started growing at a rapid pace (She is 10.) I was blessed to be able to have organic meat, whole grains and fruits in her diet but it seemed like when she started growing I couldn’t keep up. Her blood sugar was rising. A part of me thought, well, I had 2 good “honeymoon years.” But then the real me kicked in. I was going to go kicking and screaming if she needed insulin. Her pancreas needed a little extra TLC at this time.
This is when I found the Roman’s. They believed many of the same things I did. I started following [#TheRomanDiet] and Serena’s numbers settled right back down. You set yourself up for health and vitality. The Standard American Diet (SAD) is full of acidic, over processed foods. The Roman’s took me back to square one, and an easier way. It is very calming to the pancreas and to the system. I am blessed that Serena can have the next step in the transitional diet with whole grains and fruits but on days of sickness, anxiety, and growth, when I start to see her numbers climb… I reach for the Roman’s cookbook. Works every time! *
(* results may vary)
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