Ninth September Blog. 22-9-14
Where does frailty start?
We are born. We grow, not knowing where our future lies. Some are unfortunate to fall at the first hurdle. It is not their fault. Nature throws them a curved ball, and they are either tossed by the wayside ( for which most of us are truly sorry though there is little we can do to help, unless we are part of the medical profession. In which case we may be able to shed some light, if not, then comfort if nothing else).
Others come adrift by accident or succomb to diseases that they otherwise would shake off and become immune to. Most of us do the latter. The bodies of some however, are affected by these diseases in their youth. Meningitis, for one, used to attack people and before antibiotics, there was not much of a cure. I contracted this disease at about 19 yrs. i was lucky. Antibiotics were around. When discovered, I was two weeks from death, so a 1920s medical book said and my parents were frightened I would die.
Bed rest, two lumbar punctures, penicillin and streptomycin, copious amounts of water, huge tablets like horse tablets of something I cannot now remember, plus lying flat on a bed for two weeks brought me to a stage where I was allowed to go to the coast to convalesce for another two weeks. Bringing me to mid-December. I was not well enough or allowed to go back to work until the following May. How much of this has changed now, is another story, but in the 1950s, this is how it was at my local hospital. Did that add to my health issues in later years? Possibly!
O.K. There are jobs, that some people have to do, that can affect backs which, in later life, can make a person’s health deteriorate. Road digging, house building and so on. Some people work at strenuous office jobs that eventually become very stressful. Stress is another debilitating illness that often follows through to later life. So it is not just physical work that strains the body, but mental work that can tire the brain. Then there are the ailments we bring upon ourselves. Type 2 Diabetes, for instance. Can be caused by stress but is often our indulgence in food that brings this disease on.
Modern manufactured foods are not what we should be eating, in my humble opinion. Filled full of additives, and untold chemicals which may add to bad health conditions for some. I have found this out the hard way, but am trying to combat it by following a Diabetically heathy food regime. Starting last summer, I removed most of the carbohydrates from my diet. No sugar rich white or wholemeal bread, of any kind. No pasta, no rice, no potatoes, no cereals which, if you scan the ingredients on a packet, you will find sugars quite high on the list. I also changed to lacto free milk, almond milk and sometimes coconut milk. Porridge, at that time, was also off the list but I am now able to have a measured amount of porridge with ground almonds.
Gradually, my very high blood sugar count dropped. As a bonus, so did my weight begin to get lower. What did I eat instead of those high carb. foods? Plenty of ovegetables, vegetable soup, eggs, meat ( and yes, bacon and fried veggie sausages etc.). Not every day, but rotated. Gradually as my sugar levels dropped further, my weight was keeping it partner. As time went on, I reached a level where osome potato was added, also a small amount of porridge, eaten with ground almonds that help disperse the sugars more slowly into my body. For bread, I searched for Low Catb. crispbreads. Months later I was able to have the occasional slice of a special bread with seeds, only 4 carbs. per slice. Again, not every day. I make up a sugar free jelly which I now eat with a couple of strawberries and Greek yoghurt, this is daily, after my early evening meal.
My sugar levels are much lower, sometimes a bit too low. My weight drops slowly now. It has come to a level I may have to stay at for a while. All due to cutting carbohydrates. Many manufacturers fill their products with sugar of one kind or another, often hidden in carbohydrates or badly descriptive words like LOW FAT, NO ADDED SUGAR. You HAVE to read the labels, and understand them. Please do not forget the often lauded FIVE A DAY. FRUIT contains high amounts of sugar, as does fruit juice. Some vegetables have more carbohydrates than others, carrots, root crops and so on. You must be aware!
I have been a Diabetic fior 18 years and it is only in the last year I have learned how the disease works, more, and how to control my diet to control or slow down the effects of the disease. You may be told lots of things about Diabetes. Learn to read about it. You will be told what might, for you, be untruths. I was!
So, getting back to the subject. When does frailty appear? The fact is, it can happen at any time during a person’s life. Luck of the draw for those whose health remains good for the majority of their lives. You are indeed, blessed. For others, life is a bitch and can make you frail at any tine, often through no fault of your own, or perhaps, a fault you did inot intend.
I hope you have not been too bored by a second health blog. Will try for something different next time. Take care people, and watch your backs.