Joe was 17 years old when he began experiencing mood swings, intense thirst, bed-wetting, and an overall decline in his mental and physical health. Having just had his wisdom teeth removed a month prior, he attributed many of these symptoms to recovering from the procedure as well as being a teenager with so many big life changes going on at once. Having just started his senior year of high school as well as having responsibilities like college applications, work, tennis, and maintaining relationships; he pushed his concerns to the side. Eventually, after a few weeks of increasingly intense symptoms, he went to the pediatrician and received news that would change his life forever. Joe was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, a turning point that re-defined his life going forward.
At first, Joe followed the advice of the endocrinologists. The same advice parroted to diabetics across the country when they are first diagnosed. The usual “eat whatever you want and cover with insulin”. While it did not make much sense to Joe and his family, they went along with the advice at first. After all, they are the “experts”. Plus, after a 4-day stint in the hospital, Joe and his family were exhausted and just looking for some answers. After a few months and about 30 lbs of weight gained, Joe and his family knew that something had to change. Luckily, Joe’s mom discovered the Type 1 Grit Facebook page and Dr. Bernstein’s Diabetes Solutions. While they did not know it at the time, the community and book that they had stumbled upon would allow Joe to live a normal life. A life that just a few months prior did not seem possible ever again.
With the start of college and all of the adventures that were to come just a few months away, Joe and his parents knew that they needed a better way to handle his blood sugars. The first step was limiting high-carbohydrate meals to just 4 a week. It was not easy at first but once Joe saw the positive impact on his A1C and blood sugars he made a commitment to wipe all cheat meals from his diet and start to fully commit to this new way of life. Flash forward almost a year after diagnosis and Joe was a freshman at Temple University getting dropped off at his dorm for the first day of college. Throughout his college years, Joe maintained an A1C of 5.0 and engaged in many activities most would not think possible in his situation. He spent a summer studying abroad in Rome, Italy, worked as the assistant to Temple’s fire marshal as well as numerous internships, and served as president of his fraternity (Pi Kappa Phi). This was all possible due to Joe’s strict diet and workout routine.
Today, Joe is a 23-year-old living in Philadelphia and working in commercial real estate. He competes in jiu-jitsu tournaments, and men’s league basketball has many hobbies and a large social circle. Joe eats a primarily carnivore diet and tries to be active every day. Joe believes that part of his purpose is to show others that being diagnosed with type 1 is not something that will hold you back from a normal life. He regularly engages with others on the topic and is always happy to answer any diet questions that a friend or another curious party may have.
Results are not typical. All viewers of this content, especially those taking prescription or over-the-counter medications, should consult their physicians before beginning any nutrition, supplement or lifestyle program.