Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Guest Post: Denouncing the Charlatans . . .

Today I'm delighted to share another guest post from Rick Phillips, who was kind enough to write about Spring Rains here last month.  Take it away, Rick!

First, thank you to Karen for giving me another chance to do a guest blog. I was once told any time a lady says you can come visit again you have done alright. As a matter of fact thinking back on my 57 years that only happened once and I married her (though she did turn me down for a first date 3 times before she called and asked me). Ha go figure.

Today I stumbled on another supposed ‘cure’ for diabetes. This one a 28 day cure. These things always make me think of the awful situation my mother faced years ago right after her diagnosis with type 1 diabetes in 1962. In those days mom and dad were alone and struggling with how to go forward. Now mom knew about diabetes, her sister (my aunt) was diagnosed at age 7 and she lived 3 years (she did not die of diabetic complications), but still as a thoughtful person mom felt alone with big decisions to make.

My mother’s (Marjorie Hale Phillips) senior picture before her 1954 HS graduation, she was 17 and Valedictorian of her class when this picture was taken. (Mom skipped 3rd grade)

Of course we now live in a world of social media, something my mom never had, but she would have used if it were available. I think mom would have found virtual supporters and helpers, just as easily as she found supporters in her in regular day to day activities (there were many). The difference being that today, mom would have found both more knowledge and well to be generous more stupidity about diabetes.

Some folks think these miracle diabetic cures are the invention of the internet age. I know better. When my mother was first diagnosed in 1962 she was confronted with a choice. When diagnosed she saw a doctor who gave her a very precise diet, including a multitude of herbs and vitamins. She was told to stop insulin immediately and pick up this diet and in time (perhaps 6 months) her Type 1 diabetes would be ‘cured’. She rejected that idea in favor of insulin.

What I admire so much about my mom was that she always looked forward, never back. Once (15 years later) I asked mom about that diet. She said it was so tempting to stop insulin and do that rigid, unattainable diet. I asked her why she didn’t stop insulin. She said it didn’t make sense; the science just did not support it. Today of course mom would search the internet for this crazy diet, she would find supporters and detractors of that approach and a dozen more. I think she would come to the same conclusion however. I think she would still choose insulin over lunacy.

A site like Karen’s is a beacon for giving good information and we need to celebrate that. But we also need to be just as loud in denouncing the charlatans. Yes I want a special diet to cure my diabetes. I want Okra water to cure it; I want cinnamon to cure it. But the science just does not support it. As for me I will choose insulin and that is the best advice I can give a type 1 diabetic today. Well that is until we get a Cinnabon (eat 2 Cinnabons with extra icing a day) cure. When I get that specific diet cure I may follow along. (no don’t worry, not really)

*** Lawrence ‘rick’ Phillips Ed.D.  is a 40 year type 1 diabetic who blogs about diabetes, life and films at TUDiabetes.org.  You can also find him on twitter @LawrPhil.  He is a notorious misspeller of words, and sometimes he tells humorous stories.  He has been married for 37 years Sheryl and has two sons and three grandchildren which he will tell you about ad nauseam if you let him.  You can contact him at rphil2@yahoo.com. ***

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