How Diabetes Led Liz to Get Healthy

Liz Scanlon took charge after her diabetes diagnosis—and dropped almost 30 pounds! Here, she shares her weight-loss secrets.

Health Monitor Staff
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She shares some of her healthy eating secrets:

  1. Start with a satisfying breakfast. Liz’s favorite? An egg white rollup on a whole-wheat lavash (a thin, soft flatbread wrap, common in the Middle East; look for them in your supermarket), with mushrooms, peppers and salsa. It’s a perfectly tasty combo of protein, fiber and carbs that keeps blood sugar stable and her tummy full.
  2. Make meals zesty with homemade dressing. Use Liz’s recipe on salads, veggies and as a marinade: In a container with a lid, adds equal parts olive oil and any type of acid (lemon juice or vinegar), garlic, minced herbs (Liz uses whatever is available in her garden—like basil, cilantro, parsley, thyme, tarragon or mint), salt and pepper to taste. Shake and refrigerate!
  3. Help your heart with good fats. Salmon, walnuts, avocado and extra-virgin olive oil are Liz’s go-to sources. They can help control blood sugar and cholesterol levels.
  4. Amp energy with nuts. Liz pops a handful of unsalted mixed nuts every day. There are special dividends for folks with diabetes: A study reported in the journal Diabetes Care found that eating two ounces of nuts daily in place of carbohydrates improved both glycemic control and cholesterol in people with type 2 diabetes.

As she made changes in the kitchen, Liz increased the mileage on her runs and walks and continued to work closely with her endocrinologist. The combined effort paid off. By last summer, Liz’s blood sugar had returned to healthy levels. She’d dropped 28 pounds and her blood pressure and lipid levels were looking good, too. Best of all, Liz found a lifestyle she loves.

"Exercise is my stress relief," she says. "It's calming for me. It clears my mind and helps me feel good." Going from a size 0 to size 6, well that's just the icing on the cake!

April 2013