Thursday, April 15, 2021

Going Pegan

 I was first diagnosed as Type II Diabetic in 2002. In recent months my waistline has baloon and with the lock down my blood gucose levels have made an A1C reading of over 13 "normal". 

That folks is not good.

I am taking over two hundred units of insulin per day and on other meds. Yes folks if you shake me I rattle and slosh with drugs. Add to that I have heart issues and early kidney failure.


A  few days ago I was watching PBS television while I waited for my wife to come back to our hotel, she was taking an extension exam to allow her to teach Home Economics in public school. On TV came a item by Dr. Hyman extolling the virtues of his Pegan diet.

The Pegan diet takes a plant based diet, similar to Vegan or Vegetarian diets and adds some elements of the Paleo diet, which adds some natural meat elements.

In his talk Dr. Hyman said the diet could reduce blood glucose levels and was not as restrictive as many perceived "Healthy" diets,  as you get to eat lots of fresh colorful fruits and vegetables, less wheat and processed foods, and have some meats which again are raised grass fed or organic as opposed to corn and soy fed.

I immediately ordered his book and told my wife about the program when she got back to the hotel.

We both agreed that the diet is worth a try and have set out a plan to try it until Christmas.

Giving the Pegan diet a good seven moths to check for any boredom and health factors.

We arrived home on Monday and began the diet on Tuesday.

One of my first meals, dinner on Tuesday was a salad, lettuce, tomatoes, free range eggs, all of which we already had in the fridge anyway, I do not like the normal salad dressings like Ranch or Italian I grew up in England with Salad Cream but have found it hard to obtain in the U.S. so have often used a handful of grated cheese as a salad topping, much to the amusement of friends and family. But it works. So don't knock it, it also fits with the Pegan diet though this grated cheese was not organic or grass fed, we can get that as we need later. Using what we have in the fridge right now.

Breakfast today was organic plain Greek Yoghurt with fresh strawberries and banana. Delicious low in sugar.

Also as another dinner we have eaten organic English Muffins ( a treat ) with free range scrambled eggs and fresh tomato.

MY first thirty six hours have found my blood glucose levels falling towards normal. From the three hundred level to a high of 172 and a low of 78.  Well within my control limits.

I am happy and hopeful that this program might work. It is early days, but  with more managed glucose levels, perhaps some weight loss I am hoping to bring down my levels of medication by a large amount.

I will keep you posted.

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Thursday, April 1, 2021

Moderna Corona Virus Vaccine: My Personal Experience

 When the Corona Virus first came about, I never imagined it would still be in the news headlines over one year later.

William wears a red Guide dogs for the blind baseball cap and a GDB facemask. He is looking dirctly into the camera

As an investor in the stock market, I weathered the crash of February and March 2020. I even got to make some nice profits, buying in mid March 2020. But that is for another post.

I followed the news of the vaccine development through last year. Back in September 2020 someone asked me if I would take the vaccine. I said that in all probability I would, though I had reservations. Having lung, heart and blood clotting issues catching the virus in an unprotected state would almost certainly be fatal for me. The vaccine might give me a chance of living a little longer.

My friend was an adamant no to the vaccine. Under any circumstances. His choice. But one I thought foolish. In our chat I guessed that I would not get the vaccine until at least May 2021, not even guessing vaccines would be licensed by Christmas.


Mid February came and I received a telephone call from my local blind center. They had Moderna vaccine available at the end of the month, if I wanted to take it.

I needed no second invitation. Better to have taken the chance and possibly die or not take the chance and certainly die horribly.

The day of the first vaccination dose came along. My wife drove me to the location where Leif, my guide dog, and I joined a very long line. We snaked through the building for about one hour. Stopping now and then to have forms filled out, or forms checked. Eventually we reached a nurse.

She had me choose an arm, I picked right arm as I am left handed and having heard the vaccine site can be painful for a while the right sounded best for me.

The injection itself was not painful. The fifteen minute wait for any sign of side effects was tedious. Then some more form filling and making an appointment for my second dose on March 27.

My wife and I then spent the afternoon on a drive around the mountains, just to enjoy the sunny weather.

About 8pm, some eight hours after the injection, I began to feel a tickle in my throat and back of my nose. By 11pm my throat felt on fire and sore. It was so bad I took some ice cubes in my mouth and allowed them to melt over the back of my throat. The burning in my throat and back of my nose continued all night. My sleep was fitful and on Sunday morning I was feeling like I was suffering a severe cold. By 9am however the sore throat began to ease  and my nose cleared. By noon about twenty-four hours after the vaccination all pain had gone and though tired I felt well.

My second dose of vaccine was scheduled for March 27 at 11am. I arrived at the vaccination center in good time expecting a line, but this time things went much more quickly. It took just twenty minutes to have my paperwork checked and to reach a nurse. I was again injected in the right arm. On both occasions the arm was sore for about four days with no real impairment to my ability to use it.

The fifteen minute wait for any side affects was tedious but tolerable. I was out of the center in an hour and fifteen minutes.

Expecting another night with a sore throat I had stocked up on some cold drinks.

After about eight hours I began to feel the tingle in my throat again. By twelve hours after the injection I began to feel hot all over and couldn't stop shivering. This became quite severe at about 3am Sunday morning. By 5am the shivering had subsided and I fell asleep. Waking at about 9am I was stiff and aching all over but without a sore throat or shivers.  It took me most of Sunday to stop aching, and an early bedtime and a long nights sleep on Sunday cured me of all tiredness.

So my experience of the vaccine was a positive one. Just a few hours of feeling ill is acceptable for me. The vaccine will be fully effective for me around April 9th.

I would recommend that everyone who can take the vaccine. It has been given to millions of people already. It works and it saves lives.

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