Prediabetic and trying to figure things out...

By Laabaa Latest Reply 2013-04-19 07:30:23 -0500
Started 2013-04-07 22:03:48 -0500

Hello everyone!

I found this website today and I am so happy that I did! I am in my 20's and was diagnosed as prediabetic about four years ago. I have done a lot of research about diabetes, getting it under control, etc. and I am still having trouble.

Four years ago—I was on metformin 1000 Extended Release every day and that seemed to start helping…but after the first year, my hair (which used to be very curly) went completely straight and started falling out. After that came the loss of the hair on my eye brows and my eye lashes. It got to the point where I would just run my fingers through my hair and strands would come out by the tens. After three years, my GYN finally suggested that it might be wise to see a dermatologist and he is the one that actually discovered that it was metformin causing my hair loss…After that long narrative, now my real dilemma.

After that entire ordeal, I was obviously taken off of the metformin and my hair has very slowly started to return to normal. That was such a relief, but with the addition to hair, also came the addition to lots of weight gain as the metformin was no longer there to control rapid weight gain it as it had in the past…Now at this point I am almost 23, still considered prediabetic, have gained over 30-40 pounds, am at the heaviest I have EVER BEEN and am at a loss of what to do. As the weight has piled on, I have seem to lost all motivation and nobody in my family seems to understand that it is not as simple as just 'cut out everything bad for awhile and walk for 30 mins'…I came here in the hopes that there would be someone out there to help and give good advice. I desperately need other advice than 'lose weight, exercise, eat better'…How do you stay motivated? How do you do it every day? Did it take a wake up call to realize that you NEEDED to change your lifestyle?

much love and aloha

17 replies

BB42 2013-04-19 07:30:23 -0500 Report

Fortunately, I have little hair to lose. My understanding of metformin is that it can have bad side effects after a while. However, there are other medications you can take to fend off becoming a full fledged diabetic. So, see your doctor (preferably an endocrinologist). I was told I was prediabetic but did nothing for a long time. When I crossed over to diabetes, I was scared. I followed the South Beach diet and started walking and then going to the gym regularly. Difficult to do at first but my fear of what diabetes can do really got me going. Once I started, it has not been as difficult to maintain. I did it and so can you. There a few people less disciplined tham me.

Chopstix 2013-04-18 03:02:37 -0500 Report

Try watching what you eat for starters. If it is white, don't eat it. Whole grains are better for you as oppose to plain flour. Eat you vegetables and fruit. Learn about using herbs and spices instead of salt. Try to walk at least 30 minutes a day every other day to start. Then progress to 5-6 times a week. Yes, you can brake it up into 10 minutes, 10 minutes, 10 minutes or 10, 20 minutes. Brown rice, black rice and wild rice are better for you than white rice. Sweet potato is better than white. I think it was where I read that fermented foods are good for dibetics. If you like you coffee/tea sweet, give Stevia a try. You also might want to the doc check to see if you have enough chromium and/or magnesium in you body/blood. Oh, don't forget Vitamin D. The best of luck to you…

Laabaa 2013-04-11 21:36:23 -0500 Report

Hello Everyoneee!

I just wanted to give you all a big THANK YOU for the posts filled with welcoming advice, motivation, and inspiration. This is such an amazing site and community!

Just wanted to let you all know that I have been reading everything that you all have sent me and it is so inspiring. I've decided that I definitely want to turn this all around because there is so much that I want to do in life and do it all without limitations. I've been going to a new specialist, joined a gym, started cutting out the sweets/carbs, and even started talking to my family and boyfriend more about it so they understand where I am coming from. These are all baby steps, but important none the less so that makes me super excited! :)

I will definitely keep in touch and I really do appreciate all the support from everyone. It blows my mind that more support has come from total strangers in a few days than from people in my every day life…that is so amazing and truly special.

Wishing you all the best in life,
Much love and aloha!!

sNerTs1 2013-04-11 22:37:45 -0500 Report

Baby steps are the most awesome steps to take, in my honest opinion. If you reach too high too quickly and you don't quite make it, its such a let down. So you take those baby steps, and take a lot of them …

Why you ask? Well you didn't but I'm still going to answer ~ *LOL* because Baby Steps are the most attainable steps you can take. With each positive movement, YOU empower yourself to strive further and your goal comes into reach a whole lot quicker =)

*Hugs* Cheryl

PetiePal 2013-04-11 09:07:50 -0500 Report

That's crazy you've had hair loss. Without metformin my only way to go would be insulin.

I would say focus on a 10% loss in body weight, and modifying your diet. Look for support groups like here, but also locally at your hospital or diabetes center, regular meetings can do wonders.

Dr Gary
Dr GaryCA 2013-04-10 16:14:12 -0500 Report

Hi laabaa,

It's nice to see you here. I am glad you checked in. DC is the most amazingly supportive place, as you can see by all the support.

I am not a physician but I counsel people who are living with chronic conditons. It's not easy to stay motivated when you have had to contended with side effects like hair loss, and now the weight gain.

Like others, I encourage you to get support. Do you have people in your life who can just listen to you, and who can ofer you encouragement? I am sorry to hear your family is not so supportive. Are there friends that you can talk to? Support is power.

I would also encourage you to focus on the benefits of staying compliant with your treatment plan, how staying on the path can benefit you in terms of making what you enjoy in life that much more possible. Staying optimistic can make a big difference.

And if you are having difficult being compliant, or aren't entirely sure what you need to be doing, it might help to have another conversation with your doctor, or a dietician, and get some additional information. It may take some time and patience to get to an approach that works for you.

Stay in touch with us, okay!


Hueone 2013-04-10 09:34:02 -0500 Report

Try this its no side effect. Red Wine Vinager 4 teaspone, fiber 2 teaspone two times a day. Morning an night. It control's Ur diabetes as well as help u lose weight.

katcot2152 2013-04-10 00:31:58 -0500 Report

Hi Laabaa: Welcome to the group. I had been prediabetic for several years and never put on meds. for it. My doctors were after me to lose weight, but no matter how hard I tried, it just didn't come off. Everybody that knew me said I a\eat like a sparrow and didn't understand why I couldn't lose the weight. Then I had great difficulty with shortness of breath, so it impacted me walking or doing any kind of exercise. Ultimately, I had open heart surgery to replace 2 valves with mechanical valves. Then a year after my surgery, i was diagnosed with Diabetes. From that point on, i stopped drinking soda with sugar and drank mostly water. I occasionally indulge in a soda, but it is the diet soda. And just by doing that, my weight started to drop! In addition to the diabetes diet, I am also on a heart - healthy diet which in some instances they conflict with each other. For instance, the heart-healthy diet pushes 5 fruit per day, but the diabetic diet says that's too many carbs, so my nutritionist cut it back to 2 fruits per day. So, now that the weight is dropping, and my heart is beating better than it ever did, I can walk without shortness of breath. And I rode an exercise bike until I had to move in with my son - I had to put that in storage. But the point is, the exercise and watching the sugar, reading labels cutting way back on carbs, following my nutritionist's advice all helped me to start losing the lbs. I have lost 28 lbs. since new Year's Day…As for eating salads, I have to be careful of green leafy veggies because of the vitamin K, which clots the blood and i am on blood thinners the rest of my life so I don't get clots. Give yourself a gift - start watching what you eat or drink, and get the exercise eve if it is just walking. Do what you have to to get that weight down. You will feel better and most likely you can reverse the prediabetes, because once you get diabetes, you can control it, but it will never go away or reverse like prediabetes can. Do it while you are young because the older you get the harder it gets to lose the weight.


Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2013-04-09 12:11:46 -0500 Report

The only side effect I had with Met was upset stomach. I now take it with food and no longer have the problem.

I stay motivated because I like being above ground with all of my limbs and vision. Life is short I don't have time to dwell on my diabetes. I have diabetes, it doesn't have me. I also control my diabetes, it does not control me. Ever hear the saying "I have places to go and people to see"? Well I have places to go and people to see and I don't have time to be worried about highs and lows, being depressed, feeling sorry for myself and living in denial of being diabetic.

Far to often people say they need support and motivation. I am very good at supporting and motivating myself. I have never depended on anyone to be there for me. I don't need anyone to remind me to eat properly, to take my medication or to test my blood sugar. These are my responsibilities and I am not going to burden anyone to remind me to do things I know I should be doing. There are times those who you use to support or motivate you have their own lives to live and can't be there for you every time you need them.

I try to keep my head up and stay positive. I got rid of the drama queens in my life and my goal is to have fun and enjoy my life as best I can. Diabetes is not going to be my downfall.Take care of yourself and enjoy life. Good luck to you.

Kirk H
Kirk H 2013-04-08 14:19:03 -0500 Report

I guess I have been lucky with the Metformin. I have had really good luck with no side effects (so far). Being diagnosed was all the wake up call I needed. Day 1 I turned things around by changing my diet and and adding excersize. I know people have had many different results but I had no issues with weight gain using Met, in fact I found weight loss pretty easy. As a typical meat and potatoes guy my diet was a little tough at first, but I find eating healthy can be as enjoyable as ever. Good luck and dont give up!

tabby9146 2013-04-11 12:31:56 -0500 Report

me too, when I was put on metformin in the beginning (not on it now) I lost weight easier, and I had no stomach problems or anything, but then I was only on it for 3 months or so, I lost enough weight that the doc took me off. Then I lost the last few lbs. and have been controlling without meds ever since. good foryou, for making those changes!! I love to read stories like that. I tried so hard to lose weight before diagnosis, but I couldnm't, even though I was exercising 30 mins. a day 5 days a week on a treadmill and other times cycling.

sNerTs1 2013-04-08 08:36:36 -0500 Report

Hi Laabaa :)

First off … You are NOT alone and welcome to the forum and our little extended family.

I was on Metformin since diagnosed until last week. Metformin has made me sick sick sick to the point I was cancelling appointments, and not going far from home because I never knew if I would have to use the bathroom and face it … who really wants to experience THOSE times in a public restroom eeeeK!

There are a lot of factors weighing (lol, yes I typed that) in when you experience weight gain. First off, stress is huge and while you may think you have it under control, just the daily grind of keeping your diet intact, checking sugars and their fluctuations can seriously stress us, and most of us don't really notice it as it creeps in.

My take on this … Think more positively, YOU own your diabetes, don't let it own you. Diabetes doesn't mean the end of your life, it means you get to ride the rainbow in a new adventure and who wouldn't want to do that huh?

My motivation is this ~ I have soooo much to do like zip lining and taking another trip overseas. So, Im going to walk the steps instead of taking the elevator (and I have bad knees!). I'm going to park a little further away from the doors and take those extra steps. Start slow and work up to doing more and more. Challenge YOU!! YOU can do this and we are all here to help.

Happy Monday *HuGs* Cheryl

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2013-04-09 12:19:59 -0500 Report

Great post. Staying motivated and positive is the best thing for you in life. Never sweat the small stuff. Diabetes has been an adventure to me. At the beginning it was an adventure going to the supermarket. I never realized all the bad stuff I was eating prior to being diagnosed. In a way getting the diagnosis was a blessing. It changed how I eat and I am more active. I make jewelry and I want to learn a new process to make my own beads. I am going to have to buy things for this one at a time because of the cost but I can't wait to get started on the actual making of the beads. That in itself is going to be an adventure.

Have you ever heard of people saying they won't drive somewhere because they are afraid of getting lost. Now people can't drive a block without GPS. I have it on my phone but I rarely use it. I print out driving directions and if I get lost, that is an adventure because I find shops or restaurants I didn't know were open. I pull over and write down the name and address and keep it for future reference. Sometimes unexpected adventures are the most fun you can have in one day…lol.

I want to take my 14th cruise and go back to Hawaii and I can't do that if I don't stay positive, own my diabetes and take care of myself.

Harlen 2013-04-08 05:54:22 -0500 Report

Hello and welcome
For me Met didn't work made me sick.
Was on shots then the pump
What keeps me going is that if I don't I will cull my life short
I wish to keep my feet and eyes working so I keep my blood sugars inline
It's not ease to do and we are all different ,the hardest thing for me to do was give up the bread and rice O and the sweets lol
Best wishes

jayabee52 2013-04-07 23:19:23 -0500 Report

Howdy LaaBaa! Welcome to our world! Well you do have people who will understand and help you as much as anyone can, as while we like to know the theory of why it works, we have actual first hand experience at what works for us as individuals. However, what may work for me may not work for you in exactly the same way, or at all.

So I will suggest what has worked for me in managing my Diabetes Mellitus (DM) T 2 without the use of DM medications. I had been on oral DM meds, metformin, and others until my kidneys shut down in 2006 and then was put on low dosage insulin injections. (NPH about 15 U 2x/day) By accident I discovered that my pancreas was producing enough insulin of its own and I could keep my numbers normalized IF I ate very carefully. The plan I developed from that accidental discovery about myself led to the meal plan you can read here ~

Since you have "prediabetes" I suspect that your pancreas produces enough insulin to follow this meal plan. Please do me the favor of reading the plan carefully and commenting on it in that discussion, letting all who read the plan know what you think about it.

There are other courses of action to take should this not be the way your body needs to be treated, but I wish I had come to this way of dealing with my DM while early in my Dx and perhaps I would not have the raft of problems I have today. However I have learned a lot and wish to have my troubles benefit someone else and perhaps they will be able to postpone or avoid the same medical challenges as I now have.

Praying for your improving health

James Baker

locarb 2013-04-07 23:00:52 -0500 Report

As strange as this may sound, you're probably in the exact place that most of us started (regardless of gender). You're also right that "motivation" is a big issue. There seems to be trial and error in managing this condition and many people here have interesting and helpful suggestions. Just remember that most (or all) of us are not physicians and nothing here should replace medical care.

I managed to lose weight and control my BG with exercise and diet alone. I realize that may change one day. In the interim, try to get a little exercise each day. Eat healthy, test frequently, take your medication as directed (if prescribed) and trust that you can feel better physically and emotionally.