Growing up as a youngster, the things you really want to eat can be jam-packed with not only salt and fat, but sugar as well.
All the good events in the calendar year full of sweet treats; there's trick-or-treating on Halloween, the Christmas advent calendar is literally 25 days of chocolate, and let's not even get started on birthday cake - some of the best times in childhood are all about binging candy, buzzing around on a sugar high, plus the inevitable puking and crying that comes as a result.
If we're not careful, though, and bring that same sweet tooth to the rest of our lives without any of the restraint that comes with being an adult, we could very easily find ourselves with Type 2 diabetes, which afflicts millions of people around the United States.
It's fair to say that diagnosis can be pretty rough, but one woman repurposed bad news as inspiration, taking her illness and using it as a springboard for success. Erika Kerekes could have lost faith after being told she had Type 2 diabetes, but instead, she used food to defeat the disease, and turn her life around.
Back in 2013, Erika decided to start her own business, and alongside working full time and taking care of her two sons, she offset some of that stress by eating tons of pasta, pizza and french fries, all the while failing to exercise because she claimed she didn't have the time.
Soon enough, she was told by her doctor she had diabetes, but refusing to be crushed by the diagnosis, she instead went online to do some research, and found out something pretty interesting. In her own words: "I had blown too many opportunities to take care of myself in the past, and I refused to make that mistake again."
"One of the first things I came across was a TED Talk about 'reversing' type 2 diabetes. Research has shown that in some cases — especially early on in the disease — when people with type 2 diabetes shed weight, shift their lifestyle and eating habits, and stick with the changes, they may not need drugs to control their blood glucose."
It was a long shot, but Erika was determined not to let diabetes get the best of her. So she switched to a low-carb diet, and found some creative ways to beat her cravings. For example: when she wanted pizza, Erika made herself an eggplant and zucchini casserole with almond meal and mozzarella, recreating the "feel" of pizza, without all that pesky dough.
Along with a renewed desire to get out there and exercise, Erika oversaw at 49 years old an amazing change that nobody could have seen coming. Just three months after her diagnosis, she went back to her doctor, not only having lost weight, but with her blood sugar levels completely normal. That's right: Erika managed to reverse her diabetes in just three months.
"When I went back for my three-month checkup, my blood sugar levels were normal. Normal! My doctor practically tap-danced when he saw the results. I no longer needed the diabetes medication, and my doc was even able to cut down on the blood pressure meds I'd taken for 16 years."
Amazing, right? Erika puts the changes down not to what you or I would refer to as "dieting", but rather, being able to make her new lifestyle changes a permanent part of her daily existence. I don't know about you, but I think it's working. Here's to hoping that Erika carries on her amazing transformation, and uses her defeat of diabetes to achieve even more.