by Dr. Stefan Ripich, ND, CNP
and Jim Healthy
HOW THIS PLAN WORKS
Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it. HELEN KELLER
TOMORROW, you‘ll begin The 30-Day Diabetes Cure. I hope you‘ve found these introductory chapters helpful in understanding diabetes and what it takes to reverse it. Today, I offer an overview of my 30-day plan so you know exactly what to expect. First, let me briefly explain how I've structured The 30-Day Diabetes Cure into three distinct phases...
PHASE ONE: BLOOD SUGAR "BOOT CAMP"
This is the strictest stage of the plan. During the first 10 days, you’re going to go "cold turkey" off all the diabetes-causing foods, beverages, and bad habits that have been making you sick and threatening your life.
For the next 10 days, you won't be consuming any sodas, sugary beverages, fruit juice, candy, or refined carbohydrates (including breakfast cereals, chips, cookies, ice cream, and energy bars). You'll also abstain from bread, rice, potatoes, pasta, whole grains, and baked goods. No beer, wine, or alcohol of any kind. You won't even eat any fruit. And you'll eat no restaurant meals of any kind.
Before you freak out, know that you will be eating three regular meals a day, plus two healthy snacks (whether you feel like having them or not!). I want to reassure you that you'll never feel hungry during this initial period – or ever – on The 30-Day Diabetes Cure.
You‘ll be enjoying a satisfying variety of delicious and filling foods, from meat, fish, and poultry to dairy, eggs, veggies, and cheese. Plus, your withdrawal from the diabetes-causing foods will be gradual over the next 10 days and you'll be able to reintroduce many foods (though not all of them) in Phase Two.
During Phase One, you‘ll also re-learn an essential skill, one with which you were born: how to distinguish between true hunger and mere appetite, the latter being a psychological desire for certain tastes.
If the cold-turkey approach to quitting certain foods seems harsh, let me explain why my patients and I have found this to be the quickest, most effective way to halt the progression of diabetes and start reversing it:
Cutting back just doesn't work. Study after study shows that gradual withdrawal from cigarette smoking, alcohol dependency, and other drug addictions just doesn't work. The same is true for food addictions – and that's basically what people with diabetes and blood sugar irregularities
have developed over the course of their lives. "Cutting back" is like giving a hungry wild cheetah a can of cat food. This only aggravates the animal‘s hunger, driving it to kill and eat anything it encounters. Your eating habits, along with the particular tastes, appetites, and desires you've developed over a lifetime of consuming food, are not unlike this ravenous animal, and they aren‘t swiftly changed by gradual withdrawal.
Imagine asking a heroin addict to limit himself to just one injection every 24 hours. Or allowing an alcoholic just one drink a day. Try telling a lifelong smoker she can have just one cigarette every 24 hours. It's impossible to succeed this way because consuming smaller amounts of any troubling substance simply feeds the desire for more of it.
Think about eating just one potato chip. Remember the advertising campaign "Bet you can't eat just one‖? I absolutely don‘t want to set you up for failure – a sure thing with any slow withdrawal method – because it can lead to feelings of guilt, low self-esteem, and ―justification‖ for quitting the program entirely. In the long run, it takes far more willpower to limit your consumption of these disease-causing foods every day than to simply say "absolutely no" to them.
Your body needs time to recondition. We human beings are creatures of habit. And the older we get, the stronger these habits become – sometimes taking on a life of their own. If you're accustomed to curling up on the couch and munching an after-dinner snack while watching TV, your mind and body will come to expect this night after night. Many of our urges and habits are triggered by our subconscious and we generally obey them without question.
Saying no to the list of diabetes-causing foods for the next 10 days will break one of your enduring habituated patterns. It will also weaken your dependency on (and sometimes even an addiction to) certain strong flavors, whether it's sweet, salty, greasy, gooey, or alcoholic. While it may be challenging for the first few days, these bad patterns will diminish relatively quickly. With determination and commitment during these initial days, you'll find yourself in charge of your subconscious habits and urges, instead of the other way around. And like many of my patients who have worked with this plan, you‘ll discover that this gives you tremendous confidence to keep moving forward.
Most importantly, Phase One will change you internally. That‘s because every night, during the eight hours you sleep, your body's biochemistry becomes a clean slate, returning to what we call "baseline." It's as though every morning you're given a new chance. Your goal in Phase One will be to maintain this baseline state by keeping taboo foods out of your system.
You'll break the vicious "carbohydrate craving" cycle. Eating bad carbs creates the desire for more, and by eating more, you continue the cycle over and over, like an endless feedback loop. This isn‘t just a psychological phenomenon. It‘s actually very physical. You see, when you eat a food that quickly breaks down into glucose – as all simple carbohydrates do – your pancreas triggers an insulin spike to quickly remove the sugar from your bloodstream. So, first you get a jolt of energy from simple carbs, but this is followed by an equally strong valley of fatigue …and hunger all over again as your bloodstream and brain chemicals actually crave more carbohydrates.
Your blood sugar will normalize. Cutting out these bad carbs during Phase One will relax the near-constant demand you‘ve been placing on your pancreas. This means its insulin-producing beta cells can take a much-deserved vacation from being overworked. Quitting simple carbs will also re-sensitize your cells to insulin so they‘ll need less of it – even if you have Type 1 and take insulin injections. If you have Type 2, this re-sensitization will start to reverse the insulin resistance in your cells. And that means your doctor can lower your dose of medication.
You'll lose weight without trying. Before Phase One, when you fed your body all that glucose in the form of simple carbs, your body couldn‘t use it all. Anything extra was turned into fat and stored on your belly and hips. Eliminating bad carbs from your diet will not only halt the fat-storage process, but can reverse it. Without a constant supply of glucose-producing foods, your fat cells will be forced to release their contents back into the bloodstream, where they're reconverted into fuel for energy. That‘s why, by the end of Phase One, many people on The 30-Day Diabetes Cure experience a loss of between two and six pounds. And that's without dieting.
You‘ll be surprised how quickly these 10 days move along. And while the first few days may seem challenging, once you get beyond them, the rest of The 30-Day Diabetes Cure is relatively easy. As your food cravings drop away, everything gets a lot easier.
During these first few days, if the going gets tough, I urge you to return to this chapter and re-read the description and benefits of Phase One. It will remind you of the importance of these first 10 days and firm up your resolve.
PHASE TWO: INSIDE THE BUBBLE
Phase two is a bit like being a newborn in an incubator, where you‘re relatively safe from temptations and distractions that can undermine your progress.
Once you‘re able to eliminate your cravings for bad carbs and other diabetes-provoking foods, you‘ll gradually reintroduce many of the foods you‘ve come to enjoy – but in healthier versions. You'll be able to eat bread and baked goods ... pasta ... pizza ... potatoes ... rice ... fruit ... dessert ... and even alcohol in moderation. But no restaurant food just yet.
The goal of Phase Two is to re-educate your taste buds so you actually enjoy and desire meals and foods that heal your diabetes. With our menu selections, this shouldn‘t even be a challenge. All meals are based on the flavorful, brilliantly-colored Mediterranean Diet, perhaps the healthiest way of eating on earth. The emphasis is on plenty of fresh produce, including the most luscious vegetables; tummy-filling whole grains, beans, and legumes; succulent fish and healthy meats; flavorful olive oil and monounsaturated fats; heavenly nuts and fruit; and moderate amounts of fresh eggs and dairy foods.
Phase Two will also introduce you to the specific vitamins and supplements that have been shown to be especially helpful for people with blood sugar problems.
Finally, because uncontrolled stress is particularly bad for people with diabetes, you‘ll discover how to de-stress your nervous system and de-activate the hormones cortisol and adrenaline, which actually push your blood sugar to dangerously high levels.
You'll also notice an acceleration in your weight-loss. By the end of Phase Two, most people lose between eight and 15 pounds – again, without even thinking about dieting or weight loss. If you‘re like my other patients who‘ve employed this plan, you‘ll begin to notice that your clothes fit better. In fact, at this point, many people are able to slip into outfits they haven't been able to wear for years.
But more importantly, your weight loss is confirmation that you‘re well on your way to reversing Type 2 diabetes and insulin resistance. In addition to losing weight, people who have Type 1 should be able to significantly reduce their insulin dosage (with their doctor's permission, of course).
PHASE THREE: READY FOR THE OUTSIDE WORLD
After 20 days on The 30-Day Diabetes Cure, you'll be ready for the real test: The outside world and its relentless enticements to eat and drink as you once did. After spending almost three weeks inside a "bubble" of protection while you learned to replace the foods and beverages that harmed your body with those that can help and heal it, you'll be well prepared to snub the seductions.
During Phase Three, you'll learn how to conquer the biggest temptations a person with blood sugar irregularities must face. You'll discover proven strategies for surviving dinner parties, restaurants, travel, gas stations, airports, the food court at the mall – and even fast-food menus. Remember those two daily snacks? They‘re an integral part of moving into Phase Three.
Think of this as your ―advanced training.‖ You'll gain valuable insights into the subtle ways some people sabotage their progress so you can avoid these pitfalls altogether. You'll learn how to identify where to find friendly support for your new mission. You'll read about special nutritional supplements that can help elevate you to the next level of natural glucose management – and possibly even support and repair your damaged beta cells. And you'll see how easy it can be to add more lean muscle to your physique, which will help your body utilize insulin much more efficiently.
MEET THE NEW “YOU!”
In just 30 short days, you're going to transform your mind, your body, and your biochemistry. You'll go from being sick, feeling tired all the time, and relying on multiple medications ... to being a ―younger,‖ stronger, leaner, healthier, and more energetic human being. How will you change? Let me count the ways ...
1. Right off the bat, starting with Day One, this program begins to reverse your cells‘ insulin resistance, the root cause of Type 2 diabetes.
2. You'll discover a wide variety of delicious foods and non-strenuous physical activities that actually increase your cells‘ sensitivity to insulin.
3. Your pancreas won't be flogged into producing as much insulin – and this alone will protect the health and longevity of your beta cells, as well as your entire body.
4. This improvement naturally leads to weight loss as your cells begin to empty out their stored fat, using it for energy.
5. Less sugary glucose in your arteries means they won't be so inflamed (the number-one way heart disease develops). And by consuming more antioxidant-rich foods and supplements, you'll begin to heal the damage that past inflammation has caused. Result? In addition to healing your diabetes and insulin resistance, you'll also be reversing the process of heart disease ... Alzheimer's ... and quite possibly cancer at the same time.
6. Less fat in your bloodstream will make your blood platelets less sticky, which can dramatically improve your circulation. At this point, more oxygen-rich blood and nutrients are reaching the tiny capillaries in your eyes, your brain, and your extremities. All of this greatly reduces the underlying problems that lead to the most horrific complications of diabetes – vision loss, dementia, and Alzheimer's, plus the horrible amputations that are so common when insulin and glucose are out-of-control.
7. Better circulation and nutrition also means more energy gets delivered to all parts of your body. As a result, you'll feel better … have more energy … and find you‘re more lighthearted because the "happiness neurotransmitters" in your brain will be getting fed.
Bingo! In a relatively short time, your metabolism will be acting ―normal‖ again, just as long as you don‘t go back to the crazy foods and lifestyle that triggered your disease in the first place. It's actually that simple and straightforward.
AND IT REALLY WORKS!
Day by day – in a simple, systematic way – you'll remove the diabetes-causing substances and habits that threaten your life and happiness. And, one by one, you'll replace them with the life-affirming foods and behaviors that can repair, regenerate, and revitalize your entire being from head to toe.
By the end of my program, you may not be completely free of diabetes – but you will be well on your way and absolutely grounded in the Diabetes Healing Lifestyle that can conquer Type 2 and reverse insulin resistance, while normalizing your blood sugar and hormone balance.
Those of you with Type 1 should find your need for supplemental insulin significantly reduced as your body becomes better able to utilize insulin. Best of all, your risk of nasty diabetic complications will be dramatically reduced.
WHAT IF YOU SLIP UP?
I've planned for that, too. We're only human, after all, and sometimes we fall back into old habits. If this happens to you, you'll quickly recognize you're in trouble by the junky stuff you're eating again … by the tired, half-sick way you feel ... and by the pounds and inches creeping back on your body.
Should the slip occur, just go back to Phase One and start with the first day. It will be easier this time, because you‘ve already followed my plan once. Stay there as long as you like, but at least until you get things back under control.
Keep in close touch with your doctor. If you fall off the wagon for a lengthy period, you may need help with medications temporarily until you can regain your balance. But keep in mind that you will never, ever be able to return to the lifestyle that upset your blood chemistry in the first place and damaged the beta cells in your pancreas as a result. The 30-Day Diabetes Cure is not a magic bullet that allows you to go back to a life of junk food, sodas, and rich desserts. That path will always lead to diabetes and other serious health complications.
More than anything, The 30-Day Diabetes Cure is a lifestyle, not a temporary fix. As they say at Alcoholics Anonymous: "It works if you work it." So work it, friends. I have every confidence you can.
MAKE YOUR DOCTOR YOUR PARTNER IN THIS
I strongly urge you to seek your doctor's help and support in implementing this program – especially if you're on any medication. Never discontinue any medicines without your doctor's approval. If you‘re self-administering insulin, your blood sugar reading will be your best guide as to the dose you need. But always advise your physician of your progress.
Many doctors are skeptical of the power of natural healing, nutrition, and lifestyle modifications, so be sure to explain everything you're attempting on The 30-Day Diabetes Cure to your physician. Your success could open his or her mind and perhaps even trigger a significant change in the way your doctor treats diabetes as a result. (Wouldn't that be nice?)
Occasionally, you'll encounter a physician whose beliefs are so rigid that he/she refuses to entertain any unconventional therapies. If this describes your doctor, you may want to reconsider whether this clinician is right for you.
Always remember: Your doctor works for you – not the other way around. If your physician isn't supportive and cooperative, find one who is. Modern medicine is changing rapidly, so it shouldn't be difficult to locate a physician or health practitioner who is willing to incorporate new ideas, as long as they aren't dangerous (or nutty).
In fact, the reverse is often true. Many doctors are excited when their patients make a commitment to getting well using steps like the ones in my plan. The truth is, physicians just don't see that many patients who want to try. Imagine how depressing it is to try to save the lives of patients who won't lift a finger to save themselves. In many cases, doctors have to fight just to get a patient to take his or her medications. No wonder they get so discouraged.
YOU’LL BE A HERO TO EVERYONE AROUND YOU
But you're not that kind of patient. You‘re going to be a "diabetes warrior." You're going to fight for your health as if you're life depends on it (because it does!). You‘re going to turn your condition around, starting tomorrow on Day 1 of The 30-Day Diabetes Cure. You're going to inspire your doctor and your friends by your example. You‘re going to be the poster child for self-healing. Are you smiling at the prospect?
You're also going to declare your independence from the greedy corporations that run the food, insurance, and advertising industries, as well as our corrupt medical system. And in doing so, you're going to help change the world.
You've already read in Chapter One about the numerous studies that prove the effectiveness and superiority of simple lifestyle modifications over drug therapy. As I've said before, the deck is stacked against you. Everyone will be pushing diabetes drugs on you, including TV ads, the ADA, your local pharmacy, and, most likely, your doctor.
Corporations – especially drug companies and food manufacturers – are counting on Americans to take the lazy way out. They don't believe we‘re strong enough to take real responsibility for ourselves. They‘ve watched us go soft in just two generations, and they don't believe we‘ve got the grit to resist their junky foods, insipid television programs, heavy-handed politics, and their sneaky undermining of democracy and our individual freedoms. This is your opportunity to prove them wrong.
THIS IS ALSO YOUR CHANCE TO TAKE BACK YOUR POWER
Diabetes isn't a contagious virus you catch. It isn't a genetic aberration (except in the case of Type 1, and new research is beginning to cast doubt on this theory). And it isn't some unpredictable accident, like a car crash or falling off a ladder. Rather, 95% of all diabetes is something we give to ourselves. It doesn't begin in your blood or pancreas. Diabetes begins in your mind. And that's also where the real cure resides.
There is no doctor, drug, or treatment that has more power over this disease than you do. Saving your life requires changing your life. It means taking the next step up the stairway of evolved thinking and discovering a smarter, stronger, happier, and healthier you. It‘s like the line in the Bob Dylan song: ―Them not busy being born are busy dying.‖ You're never too old to get better. Now, just one more thing before we get started…