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Leaving Korea Today
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Joined: 15 May 2004
Location: No longer in Korea - just lurking here

PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2016 9:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I left Korea 8 years ago, but still enjoy lurking here occasionally. I thought I could add to this conversation.

On Diabetes:

I was diagnosed with type II when I was 35 years old. I lost some weight but didn't take it too seriously as I was only on metformin. Went to Korea, and it got a little worse. I don't drink or smoke, but Korean sauces and foods have sugar in them, and I loved Ddeok Boki, Dduk Galbi, etc. By the time I got back to Canada, my metformin dosage was maxed, I was taking anti-cholesterol and high blood sugar medication. Finally the doctor put me on insulin, but even then, within 2 years of that my A1c was in the high 9's to low 10's.

Then I read an article about a bariatric bypass procedure called the Roux-en-Y and discussed this surgery with my Doctor. Fast forward - 2 years after being admitted into the bariatric program and 1 year, 2 months after the surgery, I am 120 pounds lighter; stable at 215 pounds (fit in XL clothing, rather than a 3 or 4xl), and my A1c is in the normal range. No insulin, no pills. I am able to walk up stairs without getting dizzy and out of breath and I've even started refereeing football games and running up and down the football field without feeling winded.

Of course, any surgery can have complications. There are always those who come out of the woodwork who knew someone who knew someone who died because of it (and yes, there is a .5% mortality rate) or had horrible consequences. But for me it was a success. I MUST take a multivitamin, vitamin D and calcium supplements for the rest of my life, but it's a small price to pay - lots of people do that anyway.

Also as a caveat, surgery also works differently for different people. There was only an 86% chance that my diabetes would reverse, so in 14% of the people who undergo the surgery, it doesn't help with diabetes, although they will still lose weight. There is another form of Bariatric surgery called a Duodenal switch, which has a higher % success rate in reversing diabetes (somewhere up around 95% I think) but also a 2 - 3% mortality and long term complications are higher as well.

If this is something you think may help you, or someone who is like me, I encourage you to pass this information on. I'm sorry the OP has gone from one of departure goodbyes to a different topic, but maybe it's fortuitous for a few people that this has been the case.

The Poet.
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Joined: 16 Nov 2008
Location: Back in Oz. Living in ISIS Aust.

PostPosted: Thu Mar 17, 2016 4:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sit Rep: I've been off sugar for three months. My blood sugar is down to 6-9 mmol/L range. There are days when it's lower/higher but I don't think my blood sugar metre is that accurate enough to warrant a concern. I used to get ulcers on my feet but that has stopped. I do brisk walk for 30 minutes every day. However, my weight is still 90kg, hasn't changed for a year now. I'll have to do a 'walk of shame' and go see a dietitian. Sad

Correction: I do not have type I, what I have is Type 1.5 the Late onset Adult Diabetes.
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