Monday, March 31, 2008

The Round Truth.

Hello. My name is Hannah McD, and I am fat. Plus-sized. Thick. Round. Soft in the middle. I have had complete strangers ask me in public whether I am pregnant, because I'm one of those lucky girls who carries most of her chub in the midsection. I am certain if I was introduced to some people simply as a diabetic, they would assume I have type 2 unless my insulin pump was in full view.

So why is this coming up today? Why is it all coming out? I read this post from a guest author over at Big Fat Deal who is a fellow T1. She talks about how she gets frustrated sometimes reading TuDiabetes because so many people there seem obsessed with food and weight. She wonders how she can respond to the misinformation many diabetics [unfortunately] latch onto, for example, the folks who believe that eating a better diet can actually cure them of diabetes. Big Fat Deal is a fat acceptance blog, and most of the readers of FA blogs believe that it's about damn time for fat people to simply be treated as people.

I also think if we have diabetes, we should simply be treated as people.

We all know, no matter what type of diabetes we have, that we can control it, but it's always going to be there, lurking under the surface. No amount of eating or starving will make it go away.

I will say this...it is hard to NOT obsess over food, even once in a while, when you have diabetes. When you have to think about how much insulin you should be giving yourself for every morsel that passes your lips, it's kind of hard not to become food-centric. I think, to answer Sara's question, that it is really difficult to talk about how it's okay to be overweight when the majority of diabetics (the type 2's), think that if they could lose some weight, management might be a little easier. Truthfully, that will work for some folks, but it might not work for everyone.

Once in a while, you do need to come to that point where you can say, "I'm fat. I'm diabetic. Deal with it, because I, as a human being, am greater than my own problems."

As for me, I can't say that I'm happy with my weight, but I do know if I lose some of it, I am perfectly happy NOT being thin. I would be perfectly happy to fit back into those 14/16 pants, that size 18 shirt. When I talk about weight loss, I really want to talk about it for health reasons. Honestly, I don't get that much excercise. I could be in MUCH better shape. If I start a weight loss plan, and I don't lose much weight, so be it. Maybe I'm not meant to be thinner. The last time I was a single-digit clothing size, I was 13 years old, and that's okay with me. If losing weight can help me take less insulin every day, as an insulin-resistant type 1, I'm all for it; however, I don't want to be one of those people who beats herself up for eating some chips with lunch.

I don't want to be one of those women who goes on a diet for the sake of going on a diet. I don't generally like those kinds of women much. You know the ones--the ones who equate chocolate with Satan, the ones who look like they're about ready to kill if the restaurant doesn't have low-fat, low-cal dressing for their wilty salad. They make me nuts. They always have.

And let's not even get started on guys who will not date women because they are not as skinny as supermodels, or anyone who refuses to date someone simply because of their diabetes. These people are missing out on some great companions, and why? Because they're scaredy-cats? Because they're a-holes? It doesn't matter. These people probably aren't worth your worries.

Know this, diabetes friends...all that constant dread about food and weight loss that hangs over our heads? Try not to let it get in the way of what makes you really happy or really healthy.

Read the post over at BFD. What would you say to Sara?

7 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing this. As you know, I've been struggling with the whole "what should I really weigh" thing in order to control type 2.

    It doesn't matter how much I weigh, it's about the exercise and keeping a watchful (not close, but watchful) eye on what I'm eating that keeps me in control. But I still feel internal pressure to lose a few more pounds. If I have this control (5.5 - 6.0) at this weight, why wouldn't I have even better control at a lower weight? Ugh. Very confusing.

    Some of these issues contribute to my extended blogging break.

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  2. Thank you for sharing this. As you know, I've been struggling with the whole "what should I really weigh" thing in order to control type 2.

    It doesn't matter how much I weigh, it's about the exercise and keeping a watchful (not close, but watchful) eye on what I'm eating that keeps me in control. But I still feel internal pressure to lose a few more pounds. If I have this control (5.5 - 6.0) at this weight, why wouldn't I have even better control at a lower weight? Ugh. Very confusing.

    Some of these issues contribute to my extended blogging break.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh, this is such a tough one. I'm not obessed with my weight, but I always take it as a sign that I am going in the wrong direction when I put on the pounds.

    It's so hard to accept my own body image. Even if I lose enough to meet my bmi, I know I'm not going to be happy, because I don't have that flat stomach, or cellulite-free thighs.

    I think one reason we type-two's get caught up in the weight loss thing is we keep getting told that if we lose weight, we'll be less insulin resistant. I haven't noticed any difference after 30-40 pounds (curse those recurring pounds!), but I keep feeling like if I can just lose a bit more it'll finally happen.

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  4. YES! Thank you! I'm a type 1 that's overweight too. I feel the same way! It's extremely difficult to lose weight or go on random diets as a type 1. You have inspired me. And you're pretty funny too! :)

    Thanks for posting this!

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  5. Beautifully written Hannah -

    As diabetics & women,food & weight issues are many.

    I think we need to focus on our health, as in what - would be good for our health as a WHOLE, not just the diabetes part of us.

    I don't diet anymore, I just focus on eating MORE healthy than I used to. I also focus on MOVING more.

    Thinking this way, makes good health and lower numbers on all levels easier to attain.
    Your georgous, funny, and very smart, and you have a husband who is certifiably NUTZ about you!

    We need to focus on what we need to gain & maintain, as in good health & happiness, not what we must lose.
    k2

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  6. I read that post, too. I can't really speak to the diabetes end of it, since I don't have either type.

    I can say that I've been exercising a lot lately, and even with all that, have not seen any shift in the weight. I feel better, though, which I really like. I'd like to see some of the weight go away, but I have to say, I really like having all this extra energy.

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  7. Anonymous2:35 PM

    Losing 70 lbs doesn't make any difference, either. Lowering my blood levels of insulin and glucose (by cutting back on starches and sugar) cut my resistance in half. I only had to cut it back to ~150g carb per day not counting fiber. I cut it back farther than that and found out I feel better at a lower level but that didn't make a big difference in control or weight.
    I think people trying to lose weight 'for their health' is counterproductive. You need to find foods that you like that don't make you feel bad (alleriges, intolerances, digestive issues, etc) get a variety, plenty of protein and fat to support your metabolism, activity and appetite plus enough carb to make life worth living. If that makes you feel better you'll have more energy for more physical activity which will also make you feel better. That will all likely improve your health, it may or may not make you lose weight.

    ReplyDelete

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