Chef & Television Personality (pictured)
TV personality Rustie Lee shares her experiences of type 2 diabetes and how a tummy bug forced her to change her food habits.
When were you first diagnosed with type 2 diabetes?
About ten years ago. During a routine check-up I was told I was pre-diabetic. I thought that was good but within a few months, I was getting the bad news that it was type 2 diabetes.
Did you have any symptoms before you found out about it?
I had no symptoms whatsoever. Just going about my life as always. That was what caught me out, I guess.
…I then started taking it seriously. I cut down on fat, calories and carbs. At the next test I had improved, my readings were down a lot.
What lifestyle changes have you made since then?
Initially the doctor prescribed medication but that in itself did not make much of a difference. It brought the numbers down a bit, but it was not going away. So, I then started taking it seriously. I cut down on fat, calories and carbs. At the next test I had improved, my readings were down a lot.
Then in 2017 during a filming assignment in India, I caught a bug that changed everything. I developed gluten and dairy intolerance and had to change many of my eating habits. I’m not recommending catching a bug, and everyone has a diet that works for them, but the changes I had to make surely helped to bring my blood sugar levels down. Since then, I have lost four stone, feel and look a lot better. At my last appointment my blood sugar was at a normal level.
What was the best advice you received to help manage your diabetes?
I guess the best tip was ‘lose weight’. It is not easy for someone who loves their food I know, but ultimately even though I did it due to this tummy bug, it seems losing weight was the best way of managing my diabetes.