Cameraperson: Athar Rather
Video Editor: Abhishek Sharma
When Sandeep Singh (43), a corporate employee in Delhi, was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in 2017, his sugar levels were skyrocketing, crossing the 500 mark.
For nearly three years, he failed to bring his blood glucose levels under control. He even start developing other side effects of diabetes like vision blurring and was on the verge of being diagnosed with liver cirrhosis.
Now, in 2023, he isn't just fitter but has been taken off diabetes medication too. Singh has reversed the condition and is leading a much healthier life.
How did he bring his sugar levels under control? FIT decodes.
Reversing Diabetes Only Through Lifestyle Changes
Singh had been suffering from diabetes for three years, when he decided to take things in his own hands and seriously make an effort.
This realisation hit him when he noticed that he was constantly feeling lethargic and weak, his wounds weren't healing properly, and he had gained a significant amount of weight.
His mood swings, thanks to the side effects of diabetes, had not just been affecting his work or family life, but his mental health too.
It was during the lockdown in 2020 that he went on the internet to find help and enrolled with a health-tech company called Breathe Well Being to guide his journey towards remission.
But, hold on a second, is remission of type 2 diabetes even possible? Turns out, it is.
Dr Amrita Ghosh, Consultant Diabetologist at Delhi's Fortis Hospital, told FIT,
"This kind of remission of type-2 diabetes is achievable by approximately 15 percent of weight loss. Any person with type-2 diabetes who is overweight and obese and who has had diabetes for five years or less is the perfect candidate for such kind of remission. But it will require proper guidance from your nutritionist and diabetologist."
And Singh Did Just That!
The very first thing that Singh did was overturn his diet. He says, "I used to have an unbalanced diet. I would eat paranthas. I would even eat pizzas or burgers on the weekend."
But when he decided to take his health seriously, Singh started with switching to a balanced diet. He tells FIT,
"I started eating salads for nutrition and fibre. I fixed a time for all my meals. And I started working out."
Working out, though, was the difficult part. At least, initially. But with time, Singh developed stamina.
Aerobics at home turned into gymming which finally gave way to yoga. The latter is what Singh swears by now.
Lifestyle Changes Worked Wonders For Singh
It took all of three months of a healthy diet and exercising to bring Singh's sugar levels under control. He confides into FIT,
"I brought my H1 levels down from 9.3 to 4.7. When my doctor noticed these changes, they reduced my medication slowly. And within two months, they took me off the medication."
Not just that, Singh also lost 10 kgs of healthy weight. He says he started feeling much more energetic, fit, and happier.
It's now been three years and Singh still religiously follows the same lifestyle. He still does yoga and eats sada ghar ka khaana every day, with a cheat meal every now and then.
"When I was first diagnosed, I thought, 'Okay, now I only have a few years left to live.' At that time, I lived to eat. Now, I eat to live."Sandeep Singh
(This article was first published on 1 August 2023. It has been republished from The Quint's archives in light of World Diabetes Day.)