My life revolves around diabetes. I live with it, research it and work with it. I can’t think of anything else I’d rather be doing since my diagnosis. Working in healthcare often means teaching others more about the condition they live with and finding ways to empower them to manage their own health. As such, I’m more than happy to chat about diabetes and my experiences. But there are also times where I need to pick my battles.
I hear people make jokes too often about “diabetes in a bowl” when there is an impressive looking dessert when I’m out. Or people talking about being told to cut out sugar and carbs by their doctor so they don’t get diabetes. Misinformation around diabetes is rife! When it happens around people I know, I try to use those situations as an educational opportunity.
Then there are times where you can’t turn the discussion around. Like when a taxi driver told me about home remedies to improve my diabetes so I won’t have to take medication anymore. Despite my explanation about how I need insulin to survive because my body wasn’t making enough. He was convinced that eating bitter gourd and soaking my feet in its juice while I’m watching tele at night will fix me. Because you know…the bitterness will counteract with the sugar and balance it.
Times like these I need to switch off and resign to smiling and nodding to save my sanity.
I particularly enjoyed him telling me how he has managed his cholesterol by drinking warm water everyday to melt the fat inside of him. Similar to how you use hot water rather than cold water to wash greasy dishes. I did ask him why he didn’t just stop eating greasy foods.
“Oh but I have! But drinking the warm water dissolves the rest of the fat away see, so I feel so much better!”
At least he’s doing the right things even if his logic is slightly flawed.
Meeting these characters have definitely made me more appreciative of the people I hang out with who just get diabetes. We can relax and chat knowing that we won’t be aggressively face palming at regular intervals or needing to put on our advocacy hats too often.