We know that there are physical, genetic factors at play within every health condition we experience. But, sometimes the diseases develop, and sometimes they don’t, despite the genetic predisposition to them. Epigenetics has shown us that there are factors beyond our physical genes that determine whether or not the conditions we are predisposed to will become activated within us. These factors are many, and are centered around environmental toxins. But, I developed type 1 diabetes without a family history of the disease, which lead me to wonder: What are the possibilities for developing diseases that we are not genetically set-up to experience? My husband developed heart disease at age thirty-nine without obesity, smoking or a family history of the disease. Are we living in a world in which anyone is susceptible to any disease? Do our lifestyle choices determine exactly what diseases we will experience, or it is random? Do we develop diseases and health conditions based upon our mental beliefs and emotional states as we go through our lives? Or more spiritually, it is somehow written in the stars what are destined to experience? These are questions that beg answers because a one-size fits all treatment to stop symptoms simply does not work. Unless we can get to the root cause of the issues, they cannot be fully resolved. But, what are the root causes?
When I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, I was a already a practicing Natural Health and Holistic Nutrition Consultant, living a very natural and healthy lifestyle. Several well-meaning friends reached out to me offering their best advice for why I had developed it and what I needed to do to resolve it. I also saw several different alternative health professionals, who also offered their advice. From herbs to crystal bed therapy, I was advised to use natural approaches to stop the debilitating disease I had developed for no apparent reason as a forty-something-year-old, otherwise healthy person. Of course, as it is well-known, these will not end the lack of insulin issue in type 1 diabetes. And neither will the judgmental advice I received from several friends and one Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioner, which was that I had developed type 1 diabetes due to my controlling personality. I had actually paid $85.00 to sit in this practitioner’s office and be told that my energy was low and that he would not treat me until I developed a healthier lifestyle (Really? Me?) and stopped being so controlling. In truth, there was one thing that desperately needed my control and I wasn’t able to accomplish through diet and exercise or any amount of deep breathing that he wanted me to do – my blood sugar.
If I had let go of control, I probably would not still be here. If I had accepted that the root cause of this terrible disease is an aspect of my personality that I was being told is negative, then I would have ended up in the ER in diabetic ketoacidosis, which is a potentially fatal condition that occurs when blood glucose is not controlled and it goes too high. If I had believed that I was flawed because people who barely know me had read somewhere that diabetes (with no differentiation between type 1 and 2) is the result of having a controlling personality, I would have given up in my efforts to find a way to not end up in DKA. If the pancreas is unable to regulate blood glucose levels by producing insulin, then it is my responsibility if I chose to stay alive, to do it to the best of my ability myself. Likewise, for a type 2, if the body is being resistant to insulin, it is up to that person to do what is necessary to become more insulin sensitive (through diet, weight loss and consistent exercise) and stop the resistance so that the cells can uptake the glucose and use it for energy. If anything, diabetes requires us to access the part of our minds and personalities that allows us to be as responsible and controlling as possible in order to save our organs and our lives. Could it be that somewhere along the way, people misinterpreted ancient teachings, that instead said that the solution to diabetes and even some other health conditions is to incorporate as much positive control into our lives as possible? Control is not the reason for our downfall. For surely, if a type 2 diabetic had been controlling their diet and lifestyle well, they would not have developed type 2, even despite a genetic predisposition. And how can a tiny child who has not even begun its life on earth have a fatal disease like type 1 because they are over-controlling. None of it makes sense. It’s BS and this type of spreading of untruths hurts people.
I get really fed up with the holistic health and wellness community purporting ideas that are not based in reality. They will often leave science out of the picture and just pass on what they have been taught or have heard. They will tell you to do things without having ever experienced them for themselves. When I was first diagnosed, I followed Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s “The End of Diabetes” diet. It is a high carb, low fat, vegan diet. Mind you, I was already underweight from having type 1 undiagnosed. The more of these foods I ate, the worse my control was. I would spike high even with insulin every single time I ate. Dr. Fuhrman did not claim to be able to reverse type 1, but he did recommend the diet for type 1 diabetics to be able to reduce their insulin needs. This make no sense whatsoever. So now I was controlling my diet in completely the wrong way to be able to control my blood glucose levels. This is negative control. But, again, it isn’t the control part that is negative, it is the incorrect approach that is.
So, after about 6 months of living on the intense roller coaster of blood glucose and insulin from a high carb diet, I decided to find another way. I found Dr. Richard Bernstein’s Diabetes Solution, which recommends a high protein, low carbohydrate approach. Lo and behold, the spikes and the roller coaster completely stopped. But, if I didn’t completely adhere to the diet, I would spike again. This approach to control is positive. Spiking too high can result in DKA. Going too low due to giving too much insulin for high carbohydrate intake results in dangerous hypoglycemia. To me, this is simply living out of control, as many diabetics do.
The definitions of the word, control, do not imply negativity. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary provides these meanings of the word:
When we add the definition of positive, which is, having good effect, we end up with a type of control that is meaningful and helpful.
So, what is the root cause of my adult onset type 1 diabetes? I know that I’m not healing it or resolving it by the dietary approach I follow in order to keep myself safe. I do know that this control is allowing me to live a healthy life and protect my organs and nerves from being damaged by high blood glucose levels. But how am I to resolve the fact that my body is not producing endogenous insulin? If I knew the answer to this, I would be able to help every type 1 person, including myself. My intuition tells me that I had an exposure to a virus that is the root cause, but I have been unable so far to resolve the damage and to rid myself of the virus. But that doesn’t mean I will give up and stop trying. Is this negative control? No! I completely do not believe that it is.
If we surrender ourselves to the toxicity of this world, we are doomed to suffer, and our families are doomed to suffer. We have to rise up. We have to fight. We have to say, I will do whatever it takes to be healthy and to ensure a healthy life for my children and their children. We have to continue to learn. We have to listen to real, unadulterated, unbiased science. If we didn’t cleanse our water, we would die from waterborne diseases. Are we wrong for controlling our water cleanliness? Of course, we are not! We have to continue to find ways to rid our world of toxins and not add more to it. We have to take steps to prevent the diseases from developing that we carry a predisposition to in our genetics by living a clean lifestyle. And we have to do the best we can to navigate a world in which there exist so many toxic energies that can become entangled with our own and cause extreme suffering in our lives without our even being aware.
A few months after my diagnosis, my husband asked me to see the psychologist in the Diabetes Center office. After talking to me for forty-five minutes, she asked, “Why are you even here? There’s nothing wrong with you and there’s really nothing I can say that is helpful because you are doing fine.” I told her that members of my family believed I was in denial about my diagnosis because I was trying to resolve it. She told me that I was mentally healthier than most of the people she sees who refuse to take responsibility and control their lifestyles. She said that I was not in denial, I was just trying to stay healthy and not give up hope that there was a solution. Then she sent me on my way. Once again, affirming that control can be a positive thing.
I have worked with children and adults all over the world who are experiencing chronic health conditions. In each case, there has been a need to instigate positive control over their environments and lifestyles. If toxins have damaged parts of the body, we have to exert our control over them in order to detoxify ourselves, or they will overtake our lives. By the time people contact a health professional, the toxins have unfortunately already accomplished this. But we can still do the work to detoxify our bodies so that we have a chance to heal and to recover. I will never give up on myself to be able to heal. I will not give up on science to find a way to understand about entanglement and how it affects our health and well being. I will not give up on my ability to exert positive control over my life in order to create the healthiest conditions possible for myself to be able to live on this toxin-filled planet. And I will not believe any person that tells me that I am flawed or wrong for this.