- in guest/interview , health by allan
How to master diabetes – Dr. Cyrus Khambatta and Robby Barbaro
Dr. Cyrus Khambatta and Robby Barbaro both suffer from type I diabetes. Through their research, they've found a plant-based lifestyle is key to managing diabetes. On episode 560 of the 40+ Fitness Podcast, we discuss their book, Mastering Diabetes.
Let's Say Hello
[00:02:23.830] – Allan
[00:02:25.210] – Rachel
Hey, Allan. How are you today?
[00:02:27.320] – Allan
I'm doing well. I'm back in Bocas.
[00:02:29.710] – Rachel
[00:02:33.890] – Allan
Sometimes it's just hard to know. Okay. There were a lot of incidents where I was dealing with the changes that have happened in the United States since Covid. I've only been back twice since Covid happened, since main point of Covid. And so much has changed to the way people treat each other, the way things work. There's a loss. We lost a great deal. I don't even know how to really say it any different than that, but the country is different than it was before Covid, and not in good ways. Not in good ways at all. But I'm moving past that. I'm like, okay, well, I can control what I can control. We're getting ready to go back up to the States in a few weeks because my daughter's getting married.
[00:03:23.300] – Rachel
[00:03:23.850] – Allan
So we'll be flying back up there for a wedding. Hopefully this will be a non eventful trip other than a wedding, and then we'll come on back. But there's one thing I wanted to say before we get too far into this episode, was that I want to start doing something cool as a give back to the audience. And so the only way I can know that you listen to this podcast is if you go and leave us a rating and review. So whatever apps you're listening on, be it Apple or Google or whatever, one of those that's just kind of a specialized tool, almost every one of them is going to have a way for you to rate and review this episode. So if you take a few minutes to do that, you can probably do it while you're listening to the episode. Just take a few minutes to do that. And what I want to do, I want to start doing is about once a month. So this is the 18th. So why don't we say about the middle of November, we'll take a break and we'll pick a winner out of the reviews that we get.
[00:04:26.680] – Allan
I've got a tool that I can see all the reviews in one place, and I'll go on that and see who the reviewers are. We'll pick a review, and I'll read it in the hello section. And if you hear me read your review in the hello section, you just message us. I'll tell you where to message us at the time, and I'll send you some slack.
[00:04:48.410] – Rachel
[00:04:49.730] – Allan
Okay, so this is going to be a way for me to know you're out there, see a rating and review from you, and then I'll give you a way to message. Just message me, and then I'll make sure you get that swag. I'll need an address, mailing address, but that's about it. And you get some cool stuff.
[00:05:05.700] – Rachel
Neat. That sounds like fun.
[00:05:07.910] – Allan
So how are things up there?
[00:05:09.900] – Rachel
Good. October is the best month of the year, probably for running, and I've got a lot of races on my calendar, so I've been outside quite a bit. We got the Detroit Free Press marathon is coming up. After that, we're doing a 30 hours run called the Cal crasher, so that should be fun. And then my local coffee shop is doing the Java Jog. It's a 5K, and there will be coffee on the course, so I'm pretty excited to run a fork.
[00:05:39.970] – Allan
You're going to get a PR. You're going to get a PR.
[00:05:42.530] – Rachel
I don't know. I'll be pausing a lot to sip my coffee, but I'm pretty sure yeah, right. You know I will. Yes. So I'm looking forward to that. So, lots of good stuff happening up here.
[00:05:55.230] – Allan
Oh, good. So are you ready to talk about mastering diabetes?
[00:06:00.030] – Rachel
[00:06:43.010] – Allan
Cyrus. Robbie. Welcome to 40+ Fitness.
[00:06:45.970] – Robby
It's very great to be here.
[00:06:46.960] – Cyrus
Thank you so much, Allan. I appreciate the invitation to be here today. I think we can have a lot of fun, talk a lot.
[00:06:51.780] – Allan
[00:06:52.340] – Cyrus
A lot of fun stuff.
[00:06:53.200] – Allan
Yeah. And this is a big one. This is a big one. I think you guys said somewhere in the book that people with diabetes, on average are spending over $13,000 a year on health care more than those that aren't. And at some point, a third of adults in the United States are going to have diabetes. That's astronomical. You start putting those kind of numbers together with millions of people, 100 million people paying $13,000 more per year for medical care, that's just insane.
[00:07:31.970] – Robby
[00:07:32.900] – Cyrus
It's absolutely bonkers. On one hand, you can look at the statistics, and you can get scared for humanity and think, oh, my God, how do we get ourselves into this position in the first place? But then, on the other hand, you can take a look at it and say, you know what? The food industry, the pharmaceutical industry, the sort of, like, general health recommendations that people are acting upon these days don't seem to be working, so let's find another way. And we like to approach it from that perspective and think, you know what? Okay, fine. There may be a problem right now, but the problem is not set in stone. The problem is very changeable, and there's a way to significantly improve your health using your food as medicine. And that's what we can talk about today.
[00:08:14.930] – Robby
The exciting part, which is really the cornerstone of our book, is that the solution has been known for almost 100 years in the evidence-based research. It's just not being communicated to the public, and that's what we're here to do.
[00:08:28.790] – Allan
Now, the book we're talking about is called Mastering Diabetes: the Revolutionary Method to Reverse Insulin Resistance Permanently in Type 1, Type 1.5, Type 2, Prediabetes, and Gestational Diabetes. Now, personally, I knew about most of them. I didn't know that there was a type 1.5. So I do kind of want to ask a little bit about that one. But type 2 I've known about. A lot of adults are dealing with it now. Children, prediabetes. Almost every client that comes to me at some level is pre diabetic, if not diabetic. And then I happen to know about gestational diabetes because my wife, when she was pregnant with my daughter, she had that. And so I was familiar with this. But it's kind of mind blowing how many people are affected by these things. Can you kind of talk a little bit about that and then talk about what the different types are and what they mean?
[00:09:26.780] – Cyrus
Sure. Okay, so let's think about it this way. In today's world, there are approximately 30 million people in the United States, plus or minus a few million people, so call it 30 million that have been officially diagnosed with some form of diabetes. So that's basically approximately, let's say, 1/10 of the US population. But of those 30 million people that have been diagnosed, approximately 90% of them are living with type two diabetes. And approximately 10% of those people are living with type one diabetes. So I have type one diabetes. Robby has type one diabetes, and type one is considered the juvenile onset version of diabetes that's actually an autoimmune condition. So 90% of them with type 2, 10% percent of them with type one. But here's the thing. There are 85 million more people who are living with prediabetes, and a lot of those individuals don't even know about it. They don't even know that they have prediabetes, they don't know that their glucose is elevated, they don't know their A1C is elevated, and they don't know that they're actually at an advanced risk for chronic disease. And that's kind of the scary statistic, is that most people who are living with prediabetes are just walking around as a medical liability, but just have never been told about it by their doctor.
[00:10:45.630] – Cyrus
They've never been tested, or maybe they haven't even been to the doctor recently, so the statistics can get grim again. But there are many different flavors of diabetes, and we can kind of like walk into each one of them relatively slowly and make sure that people get a full understanding. Type one affects people who are younger than the age of 30. It's an autoimmune condition, which means that your immune system, for any number of reasons, has been tricked into believing that the cells that produce insulin inside of your pancreas, called the beta cells, are a threat to you. And as a result of that, your immune system actually goes in, attacks and kills and commits programmed cell death to those beta cells. And as a result of that, your insulin production capacity goes from being normal or 100% all the way downwards of less than 20% less than 10%. And some people have effectively zero beta cell function. People who are living with type 1.5 diabetes have a very similar reaction. It's an autoimmune reaction, but it affects people older than the age of 30. So it's an adult onset version of type one diabetes that actually happens to be slow progressing.
[00:11:53.240] – Cyrus
So rather than going from a normal insulin production to a dangerously low insulin production over the course of 12 to 18 months, which is what happens in type one, people who are living with type 1.5 diabetes end up experiencing a gradual loss in insulin production over the course of three to five years. And some people actually never lose full insulin production capacity. It just kind of takes a long, long time, and it's kind of a slow grind all the way down to a dangerous level. So that's type one and 1.5. Now, prediabetes is the precursor to type two diabetes. Prediabetes occurs when your glucose has become elevated. And what that means is that your fasting blood glucose elevates beyond 100 mg per deciliter. So you can think of 100 as basically being the cutoff. If you're less than 100 in the fasting state, that's a good thing. That means you're likely non diabetic. But if your glucose starts to elevate between 100 and 124, that means that you could be living with pre diabetes. Another indicator that doctors use is they take a look at what's called your A1C value. A1C value is basically just a long term marker of blood glucose control, and it measures your average blood glucose control over the course of approximately three months.
[00:13:09.350] – Cyrus
And so a normal A1C value comes at below 5.7%. If you have developed prediabetes, that means that your A1C value is between 5.7 and 6.4%. So you can use one of two indicators either a high fasting blood glucose between 100 and 124, or an elevated A1C value between 5.7 and 6.4%. Okay, the next category is people who are living with type two diabetes. And type two diabetes is basically advanced prediabetes. So basically, people who have crossed through the prediabetes threshold and have now gotten to a more advanced state of the disease at that point, people are living with a fasting blood glucose greater than 125 milligrams per deciliter, or their A1C value is now 6.5% or higher. And finally, you have gestational diabetes. Gestational diabetes is a temporary version of diabetes that affects women who are pregnant. And women who are pregnant often find out about it somewhere around the 28 week marker. And that's when they're screened for predecessor for gestational diabetes. Women who develop gestational diabetes, usually it's the first time that they ever recognize they have a blood glucose imbalance. But what's important is that the lifestyle that they are living has actually set them up for diabetes during pregnancy.
[00:14:33.980] – Cyrus
And most of those women will go on to developing type two diabetes into the future after they deliver their baby. So that's the real sort of the scary part of it is that it's not just a form of diabetes that you develop when you're pregnant. Even if it happens to go away, more than 60% of all women actually will develop type two diabetes in the future. The most important thing to think about here is that prediabetes, type two diabetes and gestational diabetes are all results of another condition. And the other condition is called insulin resistance. And insulin resistance is the baseline condition that can turn into prediabetes that can then progress to type two diabetes and can also manifest as gestational diabetes in pregnancy. So really, in order to understand how you can maximize your health as a person with type one diabetes and minimize your risk for many chronic diseases, rather than worrying about all the different flavors and colors and shapes and sizes of all these different types of diabetes, just think about insulin resistance. We got to hammer home what it is, how it was created in the first place, and if you can really focus your efforts on reversing insulin resistance and becoming as insulin sensitive as possible, then prediabetes fades away into the background, type two diabetes fades away into the background, gestational diabetes fades away into the background, and type one and 1.5 just becomes much simpler to manage.
[00:16:02.960] – Cyrus
And as a result of that, your chronic disease risk can go down significantly across the board.
[00:16:08.150] – Robby
Allan, one thing I want to add to everything Cyrus said there about type 1.5, it's just like a public service announcement is, it is amazing the number of people who come across our offering and our coaching program who have been diagnosed with type two diabetes but find out through a series of tests that they are actually living with type 1.5 diabetes. So if anybody listening to the show, a couple of red flags. Number one is if you are underweight or at an ideal body weight and you've been diagnosed with type two diabetes, that's a red flag. You know what? I got to look into this a little bit further and really check into that's, like, the number one thing. So I just want to share that and make sure people know, because you hadn't heard of type 1.5 and a lot of people haven't, and then they might hear something like I'm saying or Cyrus is saying and like, wow, you can reverse type two. They're trying their hardest, but it's not being reversed because they don't have enough insulin being produced. It's just a really important thing for people to be aware of.
[00:17:10.230] – Allan
Yeah, the interesting thing is I had a client come to me, and we were talking about their doctor visit, and they're like, well, the doctor said everything's fine. I'm like, okay, well, we know that you're overweight. And I said, what was your A1C. And they said, 6.2. And I said, So what did your doctor say? And the doctor says, well, we just want to keep an eye on it. And I'm like, slapping myself in the side of the head. Like, what?
[00:17:37.840] – Allan
What you know what I think it is? Because it's getting so common to see people with pre diabetes that doctors have become numb to it. They're like, I can go tell them to work on their lifestyle. They're not going to do it, so I'll just have to wait until they're over the edge and then we'll start the metformin and the insulin. That's the answer they have.
[00:18:00.590] – Cyrus
I mean, it's such a backwards philosophy because it's like, imagine you have a car and you have a tire that's not fully flat yet, but it's definitely losing air pressure, right? A doctor saying, okay, we're just going to keep an eye on it. We're just going to keep an eye on your elevated A1C value. That's like you driving around a car with a low pressure and saying, oh, you know what? I'm not going to go put air in that tire, which I'm just going to see what happens over the course of time. But you know what's going to happen over the course of time, right? It's going to get flattered, you're going to lose more air pressure, and you're eventually going to have a flat tire. So it's not necessarily the recipe for success. And then secondarily, also, we're not here to talk smack about doctors in any way, shape or form because we love doctors and we know that they're very motivated to try and help people achieve better health. But when I hear this statement of, like, my doctor didn't tell me what to do because my doctor said that most people won't change, right?
[00:18:55.850] – Cyrus
If doctors find that most people aren't changing, chances are they're just not using the right methodology. They're not using the right words, they're not using the right motivational tactics to try and get people to make changes. It is absolutely possible to get people to make some significant changes, but if it hasn't been working for you as a doctor, then chances are you just need to modify their approach. And it's that simple. People want to change. There's no question about it.
[00:19:18.410] – Allan
I look at it more like the car analogy. I love that because that was what I used in my book. I look at it more like you're the passenger. The doctor is sort of like a passenger in the car and sees you coming up and sees that the car in front of you has hit their brake lights and decides not to tell you until you crash the car into the back of that other car. Yeah, that will repair our car rather than not hit the car in front of us. Because diabetes is really that big a deal.
[00:19:48.930] – Cyrus
No question. Great analogy.
[00:19:51.090] – Allan
Now, a lot of people, I've heard it several times, I want to say that Alzheimer's is related and they want to call it type three diabetes. What are your thoughts on that?
[00:20:02.250] – Cyrus
Yeah, this is a great question. So over the past ten years, actually, over the past 15 years, there's actually been a large body of scientific evidence that has made the connection between insulin resistance in your peripheral tissues. Peripheral is a word that you use in biology when you're describing everything that's outside of your head, anything that's outside of your central nervous system. So peripheral refers to your muscles, your heart, your vasculature, your liver, your kidney, your digestive system, your microbiome, and your sexual organs and beyond. So insulin resistance is canonically thought of and talked about and measured inside of your liver and muscles. Those are the two principal organs in which insulin resistance is generally talked about and can manifest easily and can actually be reversed. But insulin resistance isn't generally talked about when it comes to your central nervous system, aka your brain. But this body of research has actually uncovered that there is a very strong association between people who have insulin resistance in their peripheral tissues and people who develop cognitive decline, aka dementia and eventually Alzheimer's disease. And they say, Wait a minute, hold on. Why is there such a strong connection?
[00:21:22.090] – Cyrus
Metabolic dysfunction in your peripheral tissues is associated strongly with people who develop cognitive decline in the future. How is that the case? This body of research has actually gone a little bit deeper to see if there's any type of evidence that they can find for a cognitive decline at a younger age. And they actually find that you can develop insulin resistance of your brain. And this is fascinating information, because insulin resistance of your brain can then manifest itself in the future as cognitive decline and inability to properly process thoughts and decreased spatial recognition, decreased ability to speak. And as a result of that, it can manifest as dementia. And then dementia can, over the course of time, develop into full on Alzheimer's disease in many individuals. So because of this connection, people are the research community has said, you know what? Alzheimer's disease is actually type three diabetes. It is another version of diabetes that actually affects your central nervous system. And there's a molecular explanation for exactly what's happening inside of neurons inside of your brain. So it's a strong body of evidence, and over the course of time, I believe that it's going to get stronger as more evidence comes to light.
[00:22:45.950] – Cyrus
But the point is that insulin resistance, sure, it can affect your heart, it can affect your vasculature, it can affect your liver, it can affect your muscle tissue. But in addition to that, it also does negatively affect your brain today. You just might not experience any symptoms of that for 20 years into the future. And at that point, when you start to manifest symptoms, those symptoms are actually a result of many years of metabolic dysfunction inside of your brain that has accumulated over the course of time due to the insulin resistance pathology. Does that make sense?
[00:23:22.620] – Allan
Yes, it does. Thank you. Now, in the United States particularly, we don't do anything halfway. When they came out with the low fat kind of kick, everything started coming out low fat, and people were terrified of fat. It's like, Stay away from fat, stay away from fat. All these products came out. They pulled the fat out of everything and they replaced it with sugar. And then people were like, well, no, obviously it's not the fat, because we're getting fatter when they remove the fat from our food. So obviously, now everybody's kind of swinging way over to the other side of saying, well, it's carbohydrates, and now carbohydrates are the enemy. And to me, it's just as misinformed because it's looking for that simple rule. We love the simple rule. Why are carbohydrates actually not our enemy?
[00:24:12.990] – Cyrus
Okay, this is phenomenal question. There's so many ways we can go here. So let's go back to this idea that we tried to eat a low fat diet as a community, as a society, and a low fat diet didn't work. If you actually look at the data to try and figure out how low fat Americans as a generality became, americans never actually went on a low fat diet. We think we did. We talk about the fact that we tried a low fat diet as a community. It didn't go low fat. The actual percentage of calories that humans were or that Americans were eating prior to eating a low fat diet was 38% of calories. When they adopted a low fat diet, they went from 38% to 37% of calories. That's no change. As far as huge, massive change, let me tell you, right? So there was really no from a statistical perspective, from a biological perspective, there was no change. And just like you said, even though we think we ate a lowfat diet, we actually started eating a high sugar diet. And I use the word sugar very loosely there, because we actually started eating a high refined carbohydrate diet.
[00:25:23.370] – Cyrus
And what I want people to understand is that this carbophobia that has happened over the course of many years, that's actually been recycled many times since the Atkins diet first came out in the 1970s, it didn't really take hold. It got reinvented in the 1990s and all of a sudden became very popular. So in my head, I think of the low carbohydrate diet as starting in the 1990s, and then from that point onwards, it got recycled into the South Beach Diet, into the Zone diet, into the Paleo diet, and then into the Ketogenic diet, which is where we're at. So we're at, like, version four or version five of a low carbohydrate diet. And the messaging seems to get stronger and stronger and stronger every time it reincarnates itself. And the messaging here is that carbohydrates are bad for you. Carbohydrates will make you fat, carbohydrates will make you more diabetic, they will spike your insulin use, and they will lead you to an early grave. And the problem is that, number one, you can't take all carbohydrates and lump them into one category, because that is just biologically inappropriate and it's biologically inaccurate. I can go out into the woods and I can find carbohydrate all over the place, the trunks of trees made out of wood, that's a carbohydrate.
[00:26:39.720] – Cyrus
I can go into my bathroom and I can find toilet paper. That's a carbohydrate. I can pick up a piece of white paper right here. That's carbohydrate. So we have to be very clear when we're talking about what carbohydrate actually is, because you can't just say, oh, I ate a low carbohydrate diet. Well, technically speaking, I don't eat wood, so I'm eating a low carbohydrate diet, right, but it doesn't really make sense. So we have to differentiate between carbohydrates that are known to increase your risk for chronic disease and carbohydrates that are known to decrease your risk for chronic disease. The two of them are fundamentally different than each other. The ones that we know from a scientific perspective that actually significantly increase your risk for chronic disease, including diabetes and heart disease and obesity, are refined carbohydrates. Cookies, crackers, chips, pastas, sodas, sugar sweetened beverages, pastries things that come in packages and cans. Those are known as refined carbohydrates because they had to go through a manufacturing process in order for them to become edible, in order for them to become presentable for you to put in your mouth. Whole carbohydrates come from fruits and starchy vegetables and legumes and whole grains.
[00:28:01.670] – Cyrus
And those whole versions of carbohydrate have actually been shown by evidence based research time and time again since the 1920s to lower your risk for chronic disease, to lower your risk for diabetes and heart disease and obesity. So any time people say to me, I'm on a low carbohydrate diet, I say to you, what does that actually mean? Tell me what you're eating. What does it mean to you to be on a low carbohydrate diet? Because it's just a subjective thought. And the reality is that what most people will benefit from when they're consuming a low carbohydrate diet is to eliminate not just reduce, but eliminate the processed, refined carbohydrates. I'm in full agreement of that. Robby is in full agreement of that, and every single health professional I know is in full agreement of that. There isn't a single health expert that's going to say, you know what? You should be eating more refined carbohydrates. You should be drinking more soda. The reason why you're not losing weight is because you're not eating enough bear claws, right? Nobody's going to say that because that's an absurd thought. But the truth is that we all agree, regardless of whether you're from the Ketogenic camp or the low fat camp or the plant based camp or the paleo camp, it doesn't matter.
[00:29:17.100] – Cyrus
Everyone agrees, eat less refined carbohydrates. But what differentiates the Mastering Diabetes method and what differentiates the body of research that we have read is that people who come from the plant based world in general recognize that eating whole carbohydrates from fruits, starchy, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains is actually those are health promoting foods. And the increased consumption of those foods actually will lead to a reduced risk for insulin resistance, a reduced risk for diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and that is significantly going to improve your long term health and going to improve your short term health simultaneously. Does that make sense?
[00:30:03.670] – Allan
Yes. One of the things, one way I like to say it is if it comes in a bag, box, jar or can, you need to look out because whole food doesn't. Whole food doesn't actually even have labels on it. You walk to the grocery store and there's the vegetable section. There's seldom labels on there to tell you what's in that food, but you can go Google it if you really want to know. Now, of course, I'm a personal trainer, so as soon as someone gives me a reason to exercise, I'm like, really excited. You talked about insulin sensitivity and how important it is for us as we want to improve our health outcomes. How does exercise play into that?
[00:30:48.060] – Cyrus
Yes, I'm really glad you asked that question because just like you, I love to exercise. I will exercise voluntarily for absolutely no reason, just because it's fun and it's a great way to improve your health. But it's also just I find it enjoyable. Exercise does a lot to improve insulin sensitivity. So let's try and understand what insulin resistance and insulin sensitivity actually mean because those can be confusing contests for most people, and we have to kind of like drill into detail to figure out what it is first and then we can talk about what the solution is. So insulin resistance occurs when your liver and muscle accumulate excess fat. Now, most people in generally don't associate fat with diabetes. They don't associate dietary fat with insulin resistance. And so for a lot of people, they kind of listen to that and they're like, well, what are you talking about? Thought insulin resistance was a problem of consuming too much sugar. And I've been told my entire life that diabetes is caused by the consumption of too much sugar. And the answer is yes. You know what? Again, if you use the word refined sugar, the answer is absolutely.
[00:31:58.460] – Cyrus
You can certainly induce an insulin resistance state and certainly induce a diabetic state by the consumption of too much sugar. And I won't deny that, and neither will the research. But there's actually another thing, another component of your food that's actually going to make you diabetic faster. It's going to increase your risk for insulin resistance faster. And that thing is dietary fat. So I don't want people to misinterpret our words and think of us as being like those no fat guys or the fat police. Absolutely not. What we're suggesting is that we don't want you to eliminate your fat consumption. We just want you to reduce your fat consumption, but particularly your saturated fat intake. And the reason for that is because if you look into the biological research and you look at what happens in human beings who consume a diet that is high in saturated fat, what you will find is that the more saturated fat you consume, the more saturated fat is deposited inside of your liver and inside of your muscle tissue. And neither one of those tissues has a biological design to be able to store large quantities of saturated fat.
[00:33:04.630] – Cyrus
They can store small quantities perfectly normally, but they can't really store large quantities. So when you're consuming saturated fat from the outside world and that usually comes from animal products like white meat, red meat, fish, chicken, dairy products and eggs. When you're consuming a significant amount of those foods, the saturated fat that you're consuming actually comes locked up in this thing called triglyceride. Triglyceride is basically the storage form of fat. So you consume triglyceride molecules. Those triglycerides go into your mouth. They go down your esophagus. As they get inside of your stomach, they start to get processed through basically reducing the PH or a more acidic environment. And then eventually, they get inside of your small intestine. Inside of your small intestine is where it's basically a bio reactor where there's a whole collection of enzymes that are secreted by the walls of your small intestine plus your liver, plus your pancreas. So those three tissues effectively start to put digestive enzymes into your small intestine with the explicit purpose of ripping apart that triglyceride and taking carbohydrates and protein and breaking them down into smaller and smaller units. So the fatty acids basically get ripped off of the glucose or backbone.
[00:34:15.270] – Cyrus
And these fatty acids then get absorbed through the walls of your small intestine and they get put into these things called Kylo micron particles. The Kylo micron particles float around in your bloodstream and have one. Think of them as little spaceships. There's billions of them. And they absorb fat from your diet and they go to deliver fat to tissues. In an ideal world, if I had to redesign the human being from the ground up, what I would do is actually make those Kylo microbe particles deliver fatty acids only to your outermost tissue, which is your fat tissue because that's a safe place to store fat. Most people don't think of fat tissue as being a safe place. But from a metabolic perspective, it is exactly where fat is intended to be. Go put fat inside of your outer post tissue and keep it locked up there for a long period of time and everything's fine. And the reason for that is because the fat that goes into your outermost tissue doesn't go into your liver and doesn't go into your muscle. It's a safe place from that perspective. But when you're consuming a diet that's high in saturated fat, those catalomicron particles end up delivering fatty acids to your adipose tissue and then the spillover ends up going into your liver and into your muscle.
[00:35:18.890] – Cyrus
And that's where the problem starts. So when you have accumulated saturated fat that gets inside of your liver and muscle, then those two tissues recognize that there's too much energy coming inside of them. There's nothing they can do to block it. And as a result of that, they go, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. Where is all this stuff coming from? I didn't ask for it in the first place. I'm not designed to be able to store a lot of this stuff, so what am I going to do about it? So their response is to actually initiate what's called insulin resistance. They know that insulin is the single most powerful anabolic hormone in your body. In other words, insulin can promote more fuel uptake and more growth than any other hormone in circulation, period end of story. There is no other hormone, not testosterone, not growth hormone, not IGF one, nothing that can promote more fuel storage and more growth than insulin. And so as a result of that, these tissues say, okay, wait a minute, let's just think this through. There's too much saturated fat coming in here. I didn't ask for it, I don't want it.
[00:36:16.780] – Cyrus
I don't have the mechanisms to be able to store it. How am I going to block more of this stuff from coming inside? And the answer is, well, just ignore insulin when it comes around, because insulin knocks on the door of your liver and knocks on the door of your muscles and say, hey, I got some glucose in the blood. I got fatty acids in the blood, I got amino acids in the blood. Do you want to take it up? And tissues can respond to insulin by saying, sure, give me that stuff, I'll take it. But if you ignore insulin when it comes to knock on the door, then that gives you an opportunity to say, you know what? Don't put that stuff inside of me. I don't want any more stuff. I'm full. And so that's what these tissues do as a self defense mechanism to try and block more stuff from coming inside. And so this insulin resistance mechanism actually starts from the consumption, from the excess deposition or the excess accumulation of fatty acids inside of your liver and muscle. And in that state, that's where the problem really manifests itself. Because the next time that you try and eat something that's carbohydrate rich, like a banana or maybe a bowl of pasta or a piece of bread, those foods contain carbohydrates, like we talked about earlier.
[00:37:26.690] – Cyrus
And the carbohydrate molecules actually have to get broken down into glucose. And in order for the glucose to get inside of your liver and muscle, it requires insulin. So when you eat those foods, insulin goes, knock knock. There's glucose in the blood. Would you like to take it up? And both of those tissues respond by saying, no, I don't want to take it up right now. I got all this fatty acid stuff that came in here yesterday and came in here last week. I still have to get rid of this stuff. Don't talk to me right now, insulin, I'm not open for business. And so as a result of that, insulin accumulates inside of your blood, and you become what's called hyperinsulinemic. And then in addition to that, glucose can't get out of your blood, and you become hyper glycemic. So you have high blood glucose, high insulin concentrations, and that right there is classic prediabetes. I hope I'm making sense here. Where there's a metabolic traffic jam that was actually started from the excess consumption of saturated fat that then resulted in the blockade of glucose inside of your blood that then manifests itself as high blood glucose.
[00:38:31.110] – Cyrus
So the last thing I'll say here is that people who are living with prediabetes and type two diabetes, what they'll experience is that they'll consume literally one banana, and then they'll go check their blood glucose an hour later, and they're like, look, my blood glucose is high. I can prove it to you. The number is high. I guess the banana is bad for me. I shouldn't eat carbs because carbs are bad for me. But in reality, what they're not putting together is the fact that the banana is not to blame. It's everything that you ate before the banana that created the metabolic traffic jam, that made it so that the banana was no longer metabolizable. And that's the real problem. And that's the reason why insulin resistance begins in the first place. And that's how most people get fooled into believing that it's actually the carbohydrate. But in reality, that's not the problem. Does that make sense?
[00:39:17.090] – Allan
Yes, it does. Now let's take that forward and say, well, how is exercise going to affect that process?
[00:39:24.140] – Cyrus
Okay, so exercise can help that process in a number of ways. What exercise does as a sort of generality is exercise forces your muscle tissue. You're voluntarily creating a significant number of muscle contractions and elongations inside of your skeletal muscle tissue. So when you go exercise, whether you're doing push ups or whether you're doing pull ups, or whether you're running, biking, hiking, swimming, playing basketball, you name it, any of those motions, you're forcing your skeletal muscle to contract and elongate hundreds, if not thousands of times. So it's performing mechanical work. And as a result of performing mechanical work, your muscle tissue requires glucose and fatty acids for energy. Those are the two principal fuel sources during exercise. So your muscle tissue is going to basically say, where can I find glucose? And the answer is, it can find glucose in many places. Number one, it can find glucose as glycogen, which is the stored form of glucose inside of the muscle tissue itself. So great, it's going to go degrade glycogen. It's going to pull off those extra glucose units. It's going to then oxidize those units and get ATP for it, which is a good thing.
[00:40:30.440] – Cyrus
Then it's going to say, well, where can I get fatty acids? And fatty acids exist inside of the muscle tissue because like we've been talking about, they've over accumulated over the course of time. So exercise is a way to actually get to those that lipid droplet and start to pull off those excess fatty acids and send them to the mitochondria and turn them into ATP. And that's a good thing because ultimately what we're looking for is ATP. So your muscle tissue can burn, or oxidize, I should say fatty acids, and it can oxidize glucose. And that's a good thing. And what happens is that during exercise, you actually end up with a significantly elevated rate of fuel usage. So that means you deplete your glycogen stores, you can deplete your fatty acid stores. And that's a good thing because then your muscle tissue becomes very hungry after you're done exercising. And when I say hungry, I don't mean that your muscle tissue is basically telling you that you should eat food, but in reality, there are signals that then tell your brain, oh, wait a minute, now it's time to put nutrients back inside of your muscle tissue.
[00:41:27.190] – Cyrus
So what ends up happening is that the next time you eat food, you can eat food. And the glucose and fatty acids that came from that food can actually get put into your muscle tissue using less insulin. And that's the key. Insulin isn't as necessary to put glucose back into your muscle tissue. It isn't as necessary to put fatty acids back in your muscle tissue because in the 3 hours following exercise, there is an increased ability for both fatty acid and glucose uptake inside of your muscle. And that is a non insulin depending on process, meaning that insulin isn't required as much. So your insulin requirements post exercise go down significantly by as much as 50% to 60%. And that's a good thing because that means you can take in food for reduced insulin requirements. And then over the course of the next 24 hours in between your exercise sessions, you're still able to utilize and store more glucose and fatty acids inside of your muscle tissue than under normal circumstances. And at all points, you're using just a little bit less insulin than you normally would. So what that means is that you have now reduced your insulin requirements both during exercise, immediately following exercise, and as a generality.
[00:42:54.640] – Cyrus
And that's a good thing because it makes your pancreas work just a little bit less hard. And that's a good thing because the less insulin you're forcing your pancreas to make, the less glucose I'm sorry, the less work you're going to force your pancreas to do over the course of time. And that's going to preserve beta cell function over time. Does that make sense?
[00:43:14.280] – Allan
Yeah, absolutely. So now let's dive into your Mastering Diabetes method. Can you kind of give us an idea run down of how that works and what someone would be doing? Because there were a lot of really cool things that you do in that I think a lot of people think they're going to go into this and it's like, oh well, now everything changes. Day one and this is really hard, but you guys actually have a really solid way of kind of walking us toward a different lifestyle.
[00:43:43.270] – Robby
Thank you for asking. Allan. We do have a systematic step by step approach, which we lay out clearly in our book. And so just like you said, it could be overwhelming. It could be like, oh, my gosh, I've changed everything overnight. And the answer is, no, you don't have to. If you want to, you can. And Cyrus and I share this in the book, which is interesting that we actually did. That's our type of personality, and it worked out just fine for us. But most people benefit from making changes slowly, one step at a time. So during the book or throughout the book, we encourage people to change one meal at a time. Just start with breakfast, and however long it takes you to really master that and get it under control and be like, okay, I'm confident with my new meals. Then you move on to lunch. It could be one week, it could be two weeks, it could be a month. Whatever is important to you, whatever pace you want to take, it's totally up to you. So the mastering diabetes method includes four components. So the first component is low fat, plant based, whole food nutrition.
[00:44:43.330] – Robby
The second component is intermittent fasting. The third component is daily movement, and number four is decision trees. So I'll start with component number one here. So low fat, plant based health and nutrition. It's very simple. All right, we have created a traffic light system so people know exactly what foods to eat and which foods to minimize and which foods to avoid. So green light foods are fruits. So that's going to be bananas, mangoes, pears, peaches, papaya, apples, you name it, fruits. Then we move into starchy vegetables. That would be potatoes. That would be you put, like, squash in that category, butternut squash, acorn squash. Then we move on to lentils, peas, and beans. All right, it's a lot of different variety in there. And then intact whole grains with intact being the keyword here. So that's going to include brown rice. That would include pharaoh, millet, quinoa. So these are whole grains that have not been altered in any way. Then we include leafy greens. That's going to be lettuce, kale, Swiss chard, then non starchy vegetables like bell peppers, carrots, zucchini, cucumbers, then herbs and spices and mushrooms. So green light foods are foods you can eat at libitum on our program, which a lot of people think, wow, that's crazy. Are you serious?
[00:46:04.480] – Robby
You tell me I can use as many potatoes as I want, I can eat as many bananas as I want? And the answer is yes, especially as you're becoming more and more insulin sensitive. There are certain nuances when transitioning out of a very insulin resistant state into more insulin sensitivity. And we cover that in the book in detail. But I will say there's a couple of key principles there, which is that on our program we're encouraging, especially in the beginning when you eat these higher carbohydrates foods, you are, number one, simultaneously reducing your fat intake, which Cyrus just covered. Why that's so important? Why that's the cause of insulin resistance. But we also encourage people, when you're eating these foods include greens and non starchy vegetables. That helps blunt the bubbly and spikes you might be seeing when you're insulin resistant. We also encourage people to eat slowly. That makes a very big difference. A lot of people these days are wearing CGMs, and they can see how much of an impact the pace at which they eat their meals actually impacts their blood glucose levels. So that's a huge part. So that's the green light category.
[00:47:10.290] – Robby
Now the yellow light category, these are foods that we suggest you eat in limited quantities. So you want to be careful of how much you're consuming. It's not that the foods in the yellow category are unhealthy or we're saying don't have them. It's that it's the quantity that you have to pay attention to. So, nuts and seeds, fitness category, avocado, coconut meat, olives, and soy products. These are all foods that are whole foods. They're healthy, plenty of research showing the benefits of including them, but they're all naturally higher in their fat content, naturally higher in their calorie density. So the quantity that you consume, you have to pay attention. Whereas the green light category, these foods are all so low in their calorie density, so high in their quantity of water and fiber, that it's very difficult to eat too much. It's almost impossible. They're self limiting, whereas it's very easy to over, to snack on too many nuts and seeds. Okay? Very easy. Avocado is very calorie dense, very high fat. It's easy too much if you want to maximize your insulin sensitivity. Soy products are great. It's just that, again, they're higher in fat.
[00:48:24.110] – Robby
So all soy products are 40% of calories come from fat. Even Edamame, that's the most whole intact form of soy is 40% of calories coming from fat. On our program, we're suggesting that you keep everything under a maximum of 15% of calories coming from fat. Another way to look at that would be no more than 30 grams of total fat per day. And that would include all of the foods that you consume because there is fat in lettuce and bananas and mangoes. So that's the first part of the yellow light category. The next part would be foods that are just a little bit more refined. Okay? So even things like brown rice pasta, there's bean pasta these days. There are lots of new foods. These are great, great alternatives. It's just that they're a little bit more processed and it's better to have, have the whole intact form. So brown rice is going to be a little bit better than brown rice pasta. So we put in the yellow light category. The other food that we have in the yellow light category would be bread. Bread is another example. So even something like Ezekiel bread, that's a really great option.
[00:49:27.830] – Robby
It's one of the cleanest breads you could consume, but we still would rather have you just eat what that bread was originally made out of. There's a lot of really clean millet breads out there. Those are fun, those are great. But eating just whole millet would be a little bit better, especially for those who are looking to become more insulin sensitive. The third aspect of this green light category would be foods that are high in sodium. So fermented foods are great, lots of benefits, but excess sodium contributes to insulin resistance. You can't just eat that food at libitum. Right? So that's really the characterization between green light and yellow light and red light foods. These are items we're suggesting you minimize or just completely avoid, and that is animal products. Cyrus talks about foods high in saturated fat. Animal products are naturally, in general, high in fat. Cyrus talked a little bit about oils, I believe, already. So oils are the most refined foods you can possibly consume. All right. It's the most calorie dense food on the planet. You've taken out majority of the vitamins, the minerals. You've taken out all of the carbohydrate, all of the protein, all of the water content.
[00:50:31.580] – Robby
It's just pure fat. So it's better to have some olives than some olive oil. Again, if you want to keep your fat intake low. We also have generally processed foods, even some of the more modern day, there's like new plant-based burgers, there's all kinds of new plant-based options. And we're not suggesting that people eat processed food, really eat simple, whole foods. There's a lot of coconut products these days. Coconut ice cream, coconut this, coconut that. Processed bars are out there. So all these refined foods, whether they're considered healthy or even the obvious ones, like, we shouldn't be eating Twinkies and stuff like that. So all the processed food fits in the red light category. And so that's really the simple cornerstone of the nutrition component. Low fat, plant based whole food nutrition. Focus on green light foods. Eat those as the majority of your diet, when you're hungry, until you're satisfied. And we provide a bunch of recipes in our book. We provide recipes on our website, new recipe every week. So how to take those ingredients and trim them into something that's delicious, we make that easy for you and provide everything you need.
[00:51:41.550] – Allan
Okay. And then the decision trees, can you dive a little bit into that? Because I think that was pretty good too.
[00:51:47.110] – Robby
I'd love to talk about decision trees. So decision trees, that is our version of a diabetes logbook. All right, so anybody usually diagnosed diabetes, your doctor is going to ask you to write down some numbers so you can see how your decisions are impacting your blood glucose levels. Not very many people actually take the time to fill out their logbook. But the decision tree is so fun. Actually, maybe fun is not the right word, but it's so informative that it becomes worth it. So at Mastering Diabetes, we are teaching everybody the connection between your fat intake and your blood glucose control, all right? Your blood glucose levels. And so the decision tree is a simple tool where you are going to just simply document the facts that happen throughout your day. Okay? So you wake up in the morning, you're going to document your fasting blood glucose, okay? Then you're going to have breakfast. So what did you have for breakfast? You're going to write that down and you're going to include the total carbohydrate intake and the total fat intake. I will say, Allan, the decision tree is a little bit of a trick, okay?
[00:52:54.140] – Robby
Because in order to fill it out properly and put information in each one of the boxes, you have to log your food into nutrition software. So we recommend a software called Chronometer. It's free. And this is really the only way to get an accurate amount, an accurate understanding of how much total fat you are consuming in your diet. And the decision tree really opens up your mind to how much hidden fat is in the food you're consuming. And so when you document that and you say, okay, wow, look at what happens when I have this high fat meal and then my fasting blood glucose the next day. Look at what happens to if you're living with insulin dependent diabetes, what are my insulin requirements when I have that higher fat meal? And so the decision tree also has you log your things, like your activity, your medication use, and you're going to start to see the relationship between how your decisions impact your blood glucose levels, your insulin sensitivity, and it becomes very empowering. So I have done well over 1000 decision trees in my life, but there was a time when I did 365 consecutive days of documenting every single morsel of food that went into my body, and every insulin injection, and every blood glucose reading.
[00:54:12.950] – Robby
And it was so insightful. And once you take the time to fill out these decision trees, you end up taking this knowledge with you for the rest of your life. These are insights that you gain through going through the activity of logging your food, understanding what you're consuming, logging your medication use, logging your blood glucose numbers, and you now know that information and it's yours forever. So for people living with pre diabetes and type two diabetes, it's our goal that you use this tool to understand how to become more insulin sensitive and then you don't have to use it anymore, right? It helps you get to where you want to be and you're hopefully non diabetic. And it's gone. Now, for living with type one and type 1.5, this is a tool that's beneficial on an ongoing basis. Okay. The ratio of how much insulin you need for the carbohydrates you're consuming is going to be demonstrated based on these numbers. Right? And so anybody listening to the show about living with insulin, diabetes, you know that you got to be confident in your dosing if you want to get off the blood glucose roller coaster.
[00:55:22.700] – Robby
And the Decision Tree is going to help you get to that place. So it's sort of like a proprietary tool that we have. We give more details about it in the book, but you can also just download a document free off our website, print it out, and start filling it out, and it's really changed a lot of people's lives.
[00:55:44.000] – Allan
Yeah, I really like the amount of guidance that you put in the book and obviously the amount of research with over 800 studies and resources that you referenced in the book. But one of the cores of this, and this is really important, is you might talk to your doctor about it. They might have some questions about this, but you can find a doctor that will help you. But you guys give them the kind of that guidance to say, okay, because you're on these medications and you're going to start this change. And any time you make this change, you just really have to be on your Ps and Qs, because if you keep taking the same amount of insulin and you don't need it, or you keep taking the blood sugar lowering medications that you might be taking, and you don't start to look at it and say, well, what is actually happening here? So that's why I agree. I think the decision trees are really a big part of this thing, so that you can kind of make sure that you're making the right changes to suit yourself as you go forward, because you're going to change.
[00:56:43.580] – Allan
It's going to be different, and you got to have the tools.
[00:56:46.990] – Robby
Allan, I'm so glad you're bringing this up because this is the truth, and it can be scary. Being over medicated is dangerous, especially with insulin. And I don't know if we touched on this earlier in the show, but there is a type of diabetes called insulin dependent type two, and there are a lot of people who have had type two diabetes for a long enough period of time that their beta cells just got tired. It's not an autoimmune condition. There's been no autoimmune activity that has damaged your beta cells. You have just been producing excess, excess insulin for a long period of time, trying to overcome the state of insulin resistance that you get yourself into, that the beta cells just got tired, and they literally can't produce enough anymore. And so you have to produce. You have to inject insulin to compensate for the insulin production that your body just cannot produce anymore. So there's a lot of people. Who come into our coaching program, and they're living with insulin dependent type 2. And what that means is they still have a decent amount of insulin production. Okay? And when you start following this program, that is truly the most powerful method to maximize insulin sensitivity.
[00:58:04.210] – Robby
Your insulin requirements come down fast between 35, and we've seen 60% in a matter of weeks and actually can begin to reduce in a matter of days. And for a lot of people, this is literally doing the exact opposite what they think they should be doing for diabetes, and it blows their mind, and they're just not that confident. Well, I really should take that small of a dose of insulin, and the answer is yes. And like you're saying, Allan, the decision tree is what helps you understand that and helps you communicate with your doctor about what's happening in a very objective way, because you don't want to be, like, guessing, how much do I need? By documenting what you need, you will understand and become very clear and confident. And like you said, Allan, there's also a reduction in oral medications. There are injectable medications now for people living with type two diabetes, and these requirements come down quickly.
[00:58:56.830] – Cyrus
So, Cyrus, I define wellness as being the healthiest, fittest, and happiest you can be. What are three strategies or tactics to get and stay well?
[00:59:06.900] – Cyrus
Okay. I love your definition of wellness, by the way, and I would say that my definition of wellness is very similar to that. Number one, find what makes you happy. I think in the world in which we live today, there's a lot of people who are sort of feeling like their daily routine has to be work, and it has to be a job, and it's not fun, and it causes anxiety. But I find that there's the mere act of creating a lifestyle that's actually fun can go a really long way. Number two, move your body on a daily basis. Without question. I find that people who move their body and actually exercise but do it in a way, again, that's fun. They're just happier people. They have better mental health. They have better metabolic health, and it leads to lower chronic disease risk as a whole. And then, number three, I find personally that when I began eating a plant based diet, my mental health changed significantly in a great way. I found that prior to that, when I was living with type one diabetes, and I didn't fully understand what to be eating, I was an anxious guy in general, and it didn't make me feel good because I didn't exactly understand how to take full control of my health.
[01:00:13.880] – Cyrus
When I began eating a plant based diet, all of a sudden, my life started to unfold in ways that I couldn't predict. Not only was my metabolic health center better control, but I did find that I was just a happier guy in general. So that would be my third pro tip for somebody who's actually trying to improve their overall wellness. And it's the gift that keeps on giving. And I find that to be true not only in myself, but also in thousands of people that we've helped over the course of time.
[01:00:39.510] – Allan
Yes. Thank you. So, Robby, now I'll ask you the same question. I define wellness as being the healthiest, fittest, and happiest you can be. What are three strategies or tactics to get and stay well?
[01:00:51.500] – Robby
Okay, so I like to go with some super clear, objective facts, all right? Do this and just watch and see what happens. So, number one, I want your listeners here to try following a truly low fat diet for 30 days. Okay? Give it a shot. What that means is, on every 30 consecutive days, do not consume more than 30 grams of total fat per day. And make sure that you're eating whole foods. We have meal plans in our book. Just follow the recipe. So that's number one. Keep your fat intake under 30 grams per day. And then I would say I have to agree with Cyrus on number two here. It's just so critical is movement, all right? So in our book, we're suggesting that you move a minimum of 30 minutes every day. You lose your breath, you sweat. Like, that's real movement, and a lot of people might be just walking. That's great. That's awesome. Keep doing the simple stuff you're doing, but really bump it up for a little bit, all right? Get in that movement and truly start to push yourself. It is absolutely worth it for your physical health, for your mental health.
[01:02:01.760] – Robby
You'll sleep better. It's great all around, right? And then I would say number three would be to find a way to incorporate accountability in your life, okay? Whether that's going to be a program you're going to sign up for, whether that's going to be a family member, a friend, and say, look, I want to achieve X, Y, and Z. Goal. I'm going to do number one. And number two obviously just said here, and I'm going to do it for the next 30 days, will you hold me accountable on a daily basis? And that is going to help you become the healthiest, fittest, and happiest you.
[01:02:39.250] – Allan
[01:02:39.750] – Allan
Thank you. Now, someone wanted to learn more about you guys, learn about what you're doing over there at Mastering Diabetes and the book, Mastering Diabetes. Where would you like for me to send them?
[01:02:50.650] – Robby
Okay, so the best place to go to would be masteringdiabetes.org/book or just go to the website and click book in the navigation bar. But that's the best place to go and learn and see a lot of the information and quotes and endorsements from a lot of really amazing people. You can get the book everywhere books are sold. So Amazon, Barnes and Noble, if you're living internationally, you can get it from book depository and they actually ship you the book for free. We read our own audiobook, so you can find that on Audible, you can find that on Google Play. Wherever you listen to audiobooks, the Kindle version is out there. The Nook version is out there. So the book is everywhere. You should also be able to get at your library for free. It's in your town's bestselling book. It should be at your library, and that's really the best place to start. And if you want to connect with us other places, we have a podcast as well. Just type in Mastering Diabetes into any podcast platform and you will find us Spotify, itunes everywhere you listen to podcast. We are active on social media, on Instagram, on TikTok, on YouTube, on Facebook.
[01:04:00.140] – Robby
We do Facebook Live every Wednesday and Friday at 01:00 p.m. Eastern. Come and ask us questions. We would love to answer them for you. And our website is just full of recipes, articles, and of course, if you're interested in coaching, you just go to masteringdiabetes.org/start and you can schedule a call with an enrollment specialist so we can actually talk to you and make sure that you are a good fit for our program and that we can actually help you.
[01:04:24.640] – Allan
Well, yeah, I listened to the audiobook version. There's a lot of bonus content in there and updated little snippets here and there. You guys did a great job on that. Thank you. You can go to 40PlusFitnesspodcast.com/560, and I'll have links to all those things that Robby just mentioned. So, Robby, Cyrus, thank you so much for being a part of 40 Plus Fitness.
[01:04:46.710] – Robby
Thank you, Allan.
[01:04:47.930] – Cyrus
Thank you so much for having us be on the show today. I hope that what we described is kind of a simplified approach to finding a path to optimal health. And you're doing such a phenomenal job of trying to get the word out to people to try and significantly improve their health, and for that, I thank you big time. I feel like there's so much confusion in the world of metabolic health today, and you're doing a fantastic job of trying to keep it real simple, real straightforward, and try to get people practical tips.
[01:05:18.450] – Allan
[01:05:19.190] – Robby
Thank you, Allan. It's great to be here. Great to meet you. Keep up the great work.
[01:05:29.150] – Allan
Welcome back, Ras.
[01:05:30.530] – Rachel
Hey, Allan. That was a really neat interview and very educational for me. I thought I knew a lot about diabetes, but clearly I'm behind on a few things, such as the type One and a Half and some other things that you guys talked about that we need to talk about next.
[01:05:46.570] – Rachel
Yeah, they probably, in my mind, probably should have called it Two and a Half. I understand why they went One and a half is because it resembles Type One more like with type One, you lose the capacity to create the insulin, so your pancreas basically is dying. Type one, basically you're losing it for some other reason. For some reason, your body is not able to there's something attacking the pancreas and the beta cells and you're not able to create insulin, enough insulin anyway, so you have to start taking insulin. Type 1.5 is basically just a progression of type two. So type two is basically where you are able to produce insulin. But because the blood sugar is so high all the time, the insulin levels just go pancreas is killing itself. It should be a bit player in keeping you alive. And you guys have basically made it the superstar of the play, and it's not good at it. So he gets tired and wants to quit because it basically just wanted to be a background player. It didn't want to be the main one. Heart and lung sprain, yeah, they should be the top of the food chain of organs.
[01:07:09.010] – Allan
But now you've made the pancreas that workhorse for your show, eventually it just gives up. You can't keep up. And all of the cells are basically saying, okay, look, we can't take anymore. And it just creates a big problem.
[01:07:26.430] – Allan
now you're insulin dependent because if your body can't create it, you have to start taking it. So really, like I said, they probably should have. Just to me, they just call that a type two A and type two B or something, whatever doctors or whoever, they can call it whatever, they want to call it their profession. And then, like I said, I think there's a type three where Alzheimer's, because a lot of the things, the lifestyle things of 1.5 2.0, and then I'll say three and then gestational to a point. I think gestational is a lot is that okay? You've got that craving for Snickers, Dr. Pepper and a hamburger. True story. And someone has to stop at three different stores and a fast food place to get you what you want. Then you're eating all that sugar and there's cravings, there's the mental reason you're doing it. But yeah, that's where that comes from. You put on 70 lbs in eight months, then your body's got to adapt.
[01:08:29.830] – Rachel
It's going to struggle.
[01:08:31.150] – Allan
That's what it struggles with. So all of those are lifestyle related. But the cool thing is maybe 1.1 might be past the point of lifestyle correction entirely. But you can reduce your insulin dependence. You can reduce your metformin and other medications that you might be taking, and you can prevent yourself from losing a foot or a kidney or eyesight, all the other things that are part of this whole mess called diabetes.
[01:09:03.280] – Rachel
[01:09:04.040] – Allan
But one of the other cool things I took out of the episode was this concept of insulin sensitivity.
[01:09:11.510] – Rachel
Yeah, that's amazing.
[01:09:12.830] – Allan
And it is really important because it is something that's not talked about in the Keto community at all. What a lot of people in the Keto community know is, okay, if I stop eating the sugar and simple carbs, my insulin sensitivity should improve. And that's true to a point. But if you don't eat any carbs or you go very low carb, you're basically setting your body up to where the pancreas says, okay, I'm no longer a key player, and I'm hardly a bit player. I'm that guy that comes on the episode about once every five weeks. You know who I am, I'm funny, I do my little thing and I'm out. But they have such a little role that you go out and say. Okay. I'm full keto. And then you have a bad day. Or you go into a restaurant and don't know how much sugar or how many carbs are in something. And suddenly you feel horrible for having eaten it. And you don't have insulin sensitivity. So you're going through the spike problem of what's going on with blood sugar and all that. And if you do that frequently enough, your A1C is going to look like crap.
[01:10:26.580] – Allan
You basically go into prediabetes because you don't have the insulin sensitivity. So even though they promote a vegan lifestyle, which I understand is perfectly fine way to eat if you want to do that, because they believe the vegan lifestyle allows you to improve your insulin sensitivity and keep it improved and viable and able to handle a range of food. If you have some fruit, you can handle fruit if you have less than you settle down. I think they have a good point there. They weren't entirely anti keto, but they did fall into some of the major probes of this is what the 7th Avenue say and this is what Ornish says. And of course there's all this mercury in fish, and then of course, there's cancer risks and heart disease risks for the meat. And so they fell into some of those tropes. But they acknowledged that in the short term, if you're suffering from diabetes, the ketogenic diet will get you out of diabetes, will not cure you, but reverse your diabetes. But they still believe over the long term that's not a good way to eat. And so therefore, they don't advocate for keto as a way of addressing diabetes.
[01:11:53.510] – Allan
They are looking at it from coming at a plant based whole food way of eating, which goes right back around to the conversation we have every week. Eat real food. Real food, real food. It grew in the ground. It ran around in eight other things via other animals or plants or bugs or whatever, but they lived a natural, healthy lifestyle. And yeah, if you're getting farmed cattle and you're getting milk products and you're getting chickens that are shot up with stuff and in bad living conditions and you're eating sick animals, and sick animals make sick people. Our ancestors, if they saw a sick animal, they wouldn't eat it. They put it down and be done with it. They weren't going to eat a sick animal. We eat them every day. We just don't know they're sick. Because all we see is what the grocery stores are.
[01:12:46.580] – Rachel
That's right. Yes. Well, I appreciate that. We also agree that not all carbs are evil and that the refined carbs are the ones that we want to dismiss. And I appreciated, too, how he described your muscles as holding on to the glucose and the fat for energy. But we have too much of it. We have too much of it in our diet. So absolutely. The real foods, real fruits, real vegetables, real meats, and to alternate them throughout the day or throughout the week, you can't be stuck on the same thing every day. And also not too much. You can't have all that sugar laid in fruit, even in breakfast, lunch, and dinner, because then you still have the same problem, too much glucose and your muscles and not enough energy to use.
[01:13:34.370] – Allan
It in the short run. Yes.
[01:13:36.480] – Allan
But I dare say that if you went out and said, okay, all I'm going to eat for the next month is bananas, oh, my gosh. Okay. Now, if you were keto, your life would suck for a week or so. But if you're not Keto and you say, okay, just, I'm going to buy bananas and I can have bananas and plantains for my month, that's it. Okay. You're going to lose weight. Your blood sugar is going to actually regulate. You're going to get used to that. Now, granted, you're not getting the nutrition your body needs. So over in the long run, you're going to have some nutritional deficiencies, but in the short run, it's actually going to work for you. And here's what you're going to find. At the end of if you marked down on a piece of paper how many bananas, how many plantains they eat each day, you're going to notice at the end of the 30 days, you're eating a lot less. Yeah. And then you're still going to notice that you can't eat as much. So at first, you were eating more than you should have eaten because you were getting over full, and then you stopped getting over full, and you started trying to eat.
[01:14:51.440] – Allan
You ended up eating the calories that you needed. And then your body took the rest of what it needed from the amino acids that were already in your body, from the fat that was already in your body. And basically, you would start losing weight, and you'd probably regulate your blood sugar and maybe even see some other biomarkers that improved. Now, that said, I'm not advocating a banana diet, not at all. Don't hate it after me. I don't want to have anything to do with it. But I just want folks to understand that with whole food, your body is going to regulate how much it will eat. You need a variety because you need the nutrition, particularly today. But I would just say if you've ever sat down with 5oz of spinach and didn't put it through a blender to make a smoothie out of it and just sat there with a fork and maybe put some olive oil on it and a little bit of vinaigrette. But sit down and just try to eat 5oz of spinach.
[01:15:52.810] – Rachel
I think my jaw would hurt.
[01:15:57.790] – Allan
Yeah. It's nearly impossible to overeat whole food. Even if you did it with steak or chicken. You eat a pound of steak, you're full as a tick. I mean you're done. That's why they have that competition, bringing out that 72 ounce steak. And if you can eat the whole steak, the potato and whatever else comes with it fixing oh my gosh. They'll give it to you for free.
[01:16:21.870] – Rachel
[01:16:22.700] – Allan
They have the competitions where they're doing the oyster eating and it was so fun staying in a restaurant. This dude comes out there and they serve him 13 trays, 13 dozen oysters.
[01:16:33.960] – Rachel
Oh my God.
[01:16:34.870] – Allan
And he's like he believed in his mind at the time that he had broken the world record. And the person I was sitting with, the girl I was sitting with, I said, he's not even close. And she's like, what do you mean? I said, Someone's lying to him because twelve dozen is not the world record. But that said, he was not feeling well because I don't know, my best guess would be that a dozen oysters, depending on the base size of them, it's probably going to be a little over half a pound of meat for maybe two dozen would be about three quarters of a pound. So he's eating pounds of oysters that are almost totally all protein and minerals.
[01:17:22.350] – Allan
you just can't eat that much of it. So that's the whole point. Whereas you can sit down and kill Girl Scout cookies.
[01:17:30.710] – Rachel
I don't know about that either. But yeah, I get it.
[01:17:35.510] – Allan
You look at the calorie load of box Girl Scout cookies where serving is two and that's 100 calories. You're like, I could kill three 4000 calories of food with these refined carbs. You're not going to do that with whole food. You'll never be able to do that with whole food.
[01:17:57.620] – Rachel
Oh no. And I also appreciate it too that we've got markers that we can look at. We can look at our fasting blood sugar levels and look at our A1Cs and watch how those progress and then make the lifestyle changes so that they don't get out of control.
[01:18:14.690] – Allan
And you can wake up in the morning and ask yourself, how do I feel? You can go look in the mirror and say, how do I look? And then throughout the day, what's my energy level? And those are the best health markers that you can have. They're not going to pick up some things that are going on in your body. But in a general sense if we're in our forties and fifties and older, if we wake up feeling good and we look in the mirror and say, hey, I look pretty good. And you have energy for everything you need to do that day.
[01:18:46.970] – Allan
You're doing it right,
[01:18:48.160] – Rachel
suing something right, that's for sure.
[01:18:51.950] – Allan
It's fun to simple things.
[01:18:53.730] – Rachel
Yeah, it's funny at this age where eating some of those junk foods, like going to a fast food restaurant, that would just make me feel horrible. There's such a fast response for me when I eat such poor foods, especially fast food or anything like that. It's different now at this age than it was 20 years ago.
[01:19:16.010] – Allan
So you might have picked up on the fact that I was having some connectivity issues when I was having that discussion with Rachel and during our hello segment, not a good day for Internet in Bocas del Toro, so we got cut off. We didn't really talk much longer than that anyway, so I hope you enjoyed this episode and if you did, please do give us a rating review again, we got some prizes coming up for that, so please do give us a rating review. It's right there on your app. Click Rating review, leave us one and I'll be picking a winner in about a month's time. Talk to you then.
Before we close out this episode, if you're not making the progress you want because something seems to be blocking you, you need to check out the free quiz, What's Your Health Blocker at 40plusfitness.com/quiz. It's absolutely free. Self-awareness is a key requirement for lasting change. Knowing your health blocker is a big part of that. Learn what your health blocker is at 40plusfitness.com/quiz. You'll be glad you did.
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