In one chapter of my book I recalled several things from the history of diabetes. One paragraph from that chapter is given here:
"There were two schools of thought in the 17'th century. One theory proposed replacing the sugar lost in the urine by following a diet high in carbohydrates. The second school believed that carbohydrates should be restricted to reduce excess sugar. Eureka!!! That may have been the first time excessive carbohydrates was considered to be detrimental to diabetics. The first theory seemed to be much more popular, and the idea of restricting carbohydrates seems to have been lost for the next few centuries. I say that because treatments being proposed in the late 1800's included bleeding, blistering and doping, with no further reference to restriction of carbohydrates. What a shame!!! If the second school of thought had become the popular one, that may have accelerated the advancements in the years that followed."
In 1945, the year of my diagnosis, carbohydrates were never mentioned. I did not know about the effect of carbohydrates until the late 1980's. That was about 300 years after the initial proposal that carbohydrates should be limited in a diabetic's diet.
Why was the initial theory ignored for so long? I used to think about that a lot, and it made me angry!
There are many things that my doctors never told me and one of them was that I should follow a low carb diet. I found that tidbit in a magazine. My doctor assumed I already knew that, but I didn't. I am so fortunate to have avoided complications for more than 40 years while eating hundreds of carbs every day. I avoided sugar, but ate many, many carbs. Avoiding sugar was the only advice I was given for so many years.
In modern times, with all the technology that is now available, and all that is known about proper diabetes care, it is much easier to avoid complications. My attitude about my diabetes and the mishaps that happen, has changed. I can now laugh at things that used to make me mad. A sense of humor has totally replaced my former bitterness. That sense of humor has helped me so many times, in so many ways. I can now laugh about the carbs I should not have eaten, and I can laugh about the things I should have been told. Laughter is the best medicine I know!
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