Most helpful positive review
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
A Godsend for those with diabetes, family members & diabetic professionals
on April 10, 2012
As a psychotherapist who uses mindful eating techniques to help my diabetic & prediabetic clients, I cannot recommend this book highly enough. How to live and thrive with diabetes becomes very clear in every chapter. The normal fear after receiving a diagnosis of diabetes is dispelled as the reader is walked, step by step through the process of understanding what diabetes is. Then we are shown how mindfulness
"helps focus our attention and awareness on the present moment, which, in turn, helps us disengage from habitual, unsatisfying,
unskillful habits and behaviors. Engaging in mindful eating practices on a regular basis can help us discover a far more
satisfying relationship to food and eating than we ever imagined or experienced before. A different kind of nourishment often
emerges, the kind that offers satisfaction on a very deep emotional level."
Authors Michelle May, MD physician, and Megrette Fletcher, MEd, RD, CDE, dietitian and certified diabetes educator, present an easy-to-understand model of different styles of eating: Restrictive Eating (rigid dieting), Overeating and Instinctive Eating. They help us see how Instinctive Eating helps us learn how to listen to the wisdom of our bodies. People who have been diagnosed with diabetes often have come to mistrust their body. They feel that their body with its out of control hunger is the problem, the enemy. This book guides them artfully to listen for signs of hunger and then to notice when they are satisfied. They learn the importance of balancing nourishment with pleasure.
The reader is taught what diabetes is and how to manage it in simple terms so that it is not something to fear, but something to be in charge of. Knowledge and understanding create an internal state of safety and calm.
The reader is taught self-empowering ways of thinking. For example, under the heading of "Self-Defeating vs. Affirming", they write,
"I don't have the energy" becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy because if you don't exercise, you'll continue to have low energy.
Replace self-defeating thoughts with affirming ones like "I feel myself becoming healthier and more energetic each day"...It turns
out that exercise increases your strength and stamina, and it helps you to sleep better so that you become more productive and feel
Various triggers to eat when your body is not really needing fuel are addressed. These include physical triggers, environmental triggers, emotional triggers and Diabetes-related triggers.
Hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia are addressed with ways to recognize them and then comfortably deal with them.
Diabetes care is explained and made relatively easy with a 7 Day Fearless Blood Glucose Monitoring Log. Rather than running away from what is going on in your body, you are encouraged to be curious so that you can become aware of your body's subtle cues as to what different blood glucose levels feel like for you.
Guidance about what to eat, how to eat mindfully in order to be in charge of your diabetes responsibly and yet to not feel deprived are provided. The authors believe that
"The most effective way to make permanent healthy lifestyle changes to manage your diabetes is to learn to eat according to your
body's signals and to eat as healthfully as possible without feeling deprived. You can achieve this balance when you use reliable
nutrition information to make your food choices while still allowing yourself the freedom to eat what you love without judging
yourself or feeling guilty."
Guidance is also given about taking medications, making sense of carbohydrate confusion, exercise (including instructions for stretching & strength training), and how to stay healthy with diabetes.
There is so much more to this book. As a psychotherapist I really applaud the enthusiasm that is present on every single page. The reader feels like being in charge of diabetes is doable. Everything that you need to have a healthy, vibrant life with diabetes is presented in this wonderful book.