Episode 152 – Michael Griffith
What’s up everyone? I’m Drew Manning, your host of the Fit2Fat2Fit Experience Podcast. I just want to say thank you for being here on the Podcast today. I really appreciate it. Most of you know me as the Fit2Fat2Fit guy. The guy who intentionally gained 75 pounds on purpose and then lost it again, learning a lot of valuable lessons along the way. It was a super humbling process. I am grateful I did it. I’m glad that it’s over. Would I ever do it again? No, but I’m grateful for all the lessons I learned. It definitely changed my perspective of how to help people and it taught me a lot about empathy, respect and a better understanding. That’s what I try to bring to the Podcast, no matter who we are talking to. Today we are talking to a friend of mine. His name is Michael Griffith. A little bit about Michael, first of all we talk about his Type 1 Diabetes and how he manages that on the ketogenic diet. A lot of people think you can’t do keto having Type 1 Diabetes and keto can be bad for you and you have to watch out for ketoacidosis. We talk about all of that and how he manages it. So the next time you …. if you have Type 1 Diabetes or if you know someone who has Type 1 Diabetes, you are definitely going to want to share this Podcast episode with them. So they can learn more about how keto affects Type 1 Diabetics and how it can be beneficial if you do it right. Before we get into that though, a little bit about Michael Griffith. He achieved his Masters of Science in Physical Therapy from the University of Kansas Medical Center. He is a CS, as well. He has been published in Men’s Fitness and The Strength and Conditioning Journal, Diabetes Forecast and he was a contributor for The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Core Conditioning. He definitely knows his stuff about core. So, this is a very interesting episode. I think you guys will really be interested in learning how he eats and how he does keto for a Type 1 Diabetic. Let’s go talk to Michael.
Drew: Alright, Michael, welcome to the show, man. How are you doing today?
Michael: I am doing good. I am kind of new to listening to you! I have been missing out. I just love this guy. I love your story. I am getting caught up on the Podcast. I am almost there! It is great to be here.
Drew: Thanks man. I am excited to have you on. You are the first Type 1 Diabetic that I’ve had on the show. I can’t believe that I haven’t had anyone with Type 1 diabetes on the show because it’s so important. I get so many questions about it. But before we dive into that, I want you to take the opportunity to introduce yourself to my audience. Tell us a little bit about your background and what you did growing up that led you down the path of what you do today.
Michael: Yeah, I am a Physical Therapist and a strength and conditioning specialist with the NSCA. That’s why most of my background was lifting weights in High School and in college, that kind of got me started down that path. I like the therapy part about what I do. As far as just how I got into it, was just basically, not necessarily I didn’t have an injury. A lot of people kind of have an ACL or something that kind of gets them interested. I didn’t have any rehab. I just liked muscle function and muscle physiology. That kind of got me sparked into it. Just kind of what I do though, a little bit of a different approach. I like kind of like finding the pieces of a puzzle. I mostly work with athletes or people that have chronic injuries that aren’t getting better with traditional therapy. I kind of just …. by mechanics try to find the cause of the injury. Like say if you’ve got a knee problem, you know more traditional therapies, they are just going to attack the knee. Kind of maybe do some EMO training, maybe you are familiar with that? Most people have heard of that.
Drew: Yeah, can you explain that for everybody?
Michael: Yeah. It’s kind of a common theory that is out there, if you have patella femoral problems. So, you have the vastus medialis that is kind of a teardrop in your quad. There is this theory that it is out of balance so you have got to strengthen that. That’s kind of obsolete and I am like, instead of just looking at the knee, because by the time people come to me, they have already had therapy. They have done some of the traditional stuff and it’s kind of part way down the road. But not all the way to get them back to performance. I’m going to look at the knee is caught in the middle and you’ve got to look at the hip and the foot. That’s what feeds the knee. You know, what’s coming down from the hip`and the grab reaction forces coming up from the foot. So, usually I step away from the knee and look at those places to find out what is causing the problem there. So, I really just like the biomechanics and you know, trying to solve that puzzle. Most of the time I can do it, not always. It keeps me interested.
Drew: Yeah, it’s good to have challenges so it keeps you …. you know to learn new things and try new things. Otherwise, life would be boring if you knew the answers to everything. *laughing* Right?
Michael: Yeah, definitely. *laughing*
Drew: Yeah. Bring it back a little to what got you into this, you said you lifted weights in school, but when did you know you wanted to be a Physical Therapist? What were your passions? What did you see yourself doing before all of this?
Michael: Yeah, my undergrad was in ‘Pre-Med’, so I was already kind of geared towards that with all the science background. I was already kind of geared towards medical and I really liked the sports side of it, so that’s kind of what drove me there. I was a wrestler in High School, did some of that. I have Type 1 Diabetes. I’m sure we will get into that, but it was hard to cut the weight. Nobody wrestles at their regular weight. *laughing* At that point, I was like 160’s and I was wrestling at 138.
Michael: I just couldn’t cut it and I was getting beat out at my weight, so I didn’t last very long at that. But you know, just kind of having that sports background is part of it.
Drew: Yeah. I know, I wrestled as well. Cutting weight was the worst thing ever. It was so miserable, you know the methods back then? I wish I had the knowledge I had now! *laughing* But back then, it was like lose weight any way possible. We don’t care how you do it, just do it. *laughing* You know?
Michael: Yeah, ice was for breakfast.
Drew: I would have eggs and you know, the garbage bags underneath their sweats and oh man …. it was just miserable. I can’t believe they let us do that stuff. But, it is what it is. I think I’ve learned a lot of valuable lessons from wrestling like that. A discipline mentality of pushing through hard times. So, with Type 1 Diabetes, were you born with that? What age were you diagnosed with that? Kind of tell us that story.
Michael: Yeah, yeah. I was 9 years old when I was diagnosed.
Michael: I remember I had kind of like a virus or cold infection and that is what kind of initiated it. I didn’t know it at the time, but I still remember in third grade, in the classroom and raising my hand, ‘Teacher, can I go to the bathroom?’ ‘Teacher, can I get some water?’ It was just like an every five minutes kind of thing and then dropping some weight. Then one morning I remember I ate some oatmeal and threw it up, went back to bed and I couldn’t get out of bed and that’s when they took me in. My blood sugar was probably like 1200 then, just that insanely high.
Drew: Wow. Yeah.
Michael: Yeah, that was the start of it.
Drew: Wow. Ok, then what year was this? When you were 9, I hope you don’t mind! *laughing*
Michael: Well, I’m 53. *laughing*
Drew: You look young, man! You look younger than me, so you’re doing good. *laughing*
Michael: You are my model, so …. *laughing*
Drew: So, back then when you were diagnosed, what was the protocol back then?
Michael: Yeah, it was a lot different than now, because now we have blood testing for blood sugar and then they’ve got the CGM, the continuous glucose monitors. I don’t know if you have seen those? It’s the little pod that goes on your arm or your back. Kind of a game changer and very cool. But I had to do urine testing, so I remember I had this little test tube and this little dropper and would put a couple of drops of urine in there. Maybe two drops, five drops of water, I can’t remember the exact ratio. Then put this little pill in there and it would react. I remember it bubbling up and the tube would get super hot. You couldn’t touch it and it would change colors. I remember blue was negative and orange was really bad. But the accuracy was still very inaccurate compared to now. So, I could be negative on that test and you have a renal threshold that is about 170 mg now. So, I could be negative and still be at 170 blood sugar, which is very elevated.
Drew: Wow, yeah. That’s really elevated.
Michael: So, that’s how we did it until they came out with the glucose monitors.
Drew: Exactly. So, then what …. I’m assuming you had to be on insulin like all the time? Or what was your daily …. what did it look like in a day of a 9 or 10 year old with Type 1 Diabetes back then?
Michael: Well it was kind of good because I didn’t know any better. It’s like, ‘Well, you’ve got diabetes. You are doing to have to take shots.’ It wasn’t that bad, obviously my parents were very involved and helped me out. But I had to learn to take shots and practiced on some oranges. I started right away. It was two shots a day then. We had kind of a shorter acting insulin and this NPH which is kind of obsolete now. They don’t really use that now, most people don’t. Some people do.They would have peaks and I had to take two shots a day. I did that. So, it wasn’t too bad. I kind of went through a phase when I got a little bit older, when I kind of freaked out and got scared for awhile. My mom had to help me give the shot. It really wasn’t that bad. Sometimes I did miss out on some desserts and cakes and stuff like that.
Drew: That’s what I was going to ask you was, what was their nutritional advice back then?
Michael: You know, I really can’t remember what the advice was. I know what it is now. But, it really hasn’t changed that much.
Drew: Ok. Did you have to change your diet at all? Do you remember like you couldn’t eat things? Like you couldn’t eat birthday cake or whatever?
Michael: Yeah, they took all the sugar out. Yep, they took all the sugar out. You know, just …. I was going to talk to you …. the doctor who diagnosed me, Dr. Richard Guthrie in Wichita Kansas. I am not even sure if he is still alive. The guy saved my life. He gave me a vision for health and on how to control diabetes. He’s very strong at controlling it. He said, ‘If you control this disease Michael, you will not have …. ‘ He was kind of a voice in the desert. Because everybody else was, ‘Diabetes, your limbs are going to get chopped off and you are going to die.’ He said, ‘No. There are studies out.’ Even at that time, they were in the middle of one. Once the results came out, it was if you have tight control of your blood sugar, you don’t have to have the symptoms. It’s really not diabetes that’s the problem. Diabetes is just the name of the condition. It’s the ‘hypers’. You know, you have ‘hyperglycemia’ or even ‘hyperinsulinemia’, as a type 1, because a lot of people have to take so much insulin. And you know what that does to your body. So, if I control my blood sugars, I wouldn’t have the problems and today, I have no symptoms.
Michael: And I’ve had it forty-something years. And my favorite doctor is my eye doctor.
Michael: Yeah, the first time I went to see him …. I just wear contacts. It’s like I have to go every year to get it checked because I have diabetes. He said, ‘When I looked at your chart before I met you, I was like oh no. I’ve got this 50 year old dude with diabetes for 40 years. It’s going to be terrible.’ Because he sees it everyday. And then he sees me in the exam room and he’s like, ‘Ok, this is not what I expected.’ *laughing*
Michael: Then I told him my A1C’s were really controlled and they were in the like 5.2 range, which is really good. The eye’s have no damage. He said, ‘You know, Michael, a lot of people think the kidneys is where the damage first starts, because you have got these really small blood vessels that everything has to filter through. But in your eyes, it’s even smaller.’ He just came out one year ago with new technology, where they can actually see the periphery of your retina, which they haven’t been able to do before. He said, ‘You have no damage in your eyes.’ I’ve got one tiny spot, it’s been there. But he said that was there previously. I could see it. He said, ‘You’ve got no tissue damage this far, so you should be thankful for that.’ So, I thank my doctor that got me started down that path.
Drew: Yeah. As a teenager or a twenty year old, were there any scary moments for you or mistakes you made along the way? At what point did you discover keto and how to implement this to control everything? So tell us about that part.
Michael: Yeah those teenage years and your first years of college, I learned one thing. Alcohol and diabetes do not mix. It’s a total roller coaster. The scary thing about alcohol is it inhibits gluconeogenesis. So Drew, if your blood sugar would bottom out, your body is going to take … your body is naturally going to kick in some glucogen. It’s going to dump some glycogens and your blood sugar would come up. It’s just a natural hormonal response. But alcohol inhibits that.
Drew: Aww, ok.
Michael: So, as a diabetic, my blood sugar drinking alcohol, well it’s pretty much pure sugar. Your blood sugar is going to go up, but if you have got some insulin on board, it’s going to peak at that time. But it can come crash back down, but the thing is there is a bottomless pit. It can just keep going and people can get in trouble, get into coma’s and have severe hypoglycemic reactions. It didn’t happen to me, but I just had enough of that kind of lifestyle. I thought, I need to get my life straightened out and start working on my health. I needed to get my diet better. My diet was never bad, but I definitely tightened it up.
Drew: Gotcha. So, if you are Type 1 Diabetic, pretty much you need to avoid alcohol. For the most part, or be very careful with it, like very small amounts?
Michael: Yeah, you know you can have a small glass of wine or something. You’ve got to know how much insulin to take to control it, but you definitely can’t over consume it by any means.
Drew: Ok, gotcha. Then were there any scary points for you at any point in time, like in your 20’s where you tried to push the limits a little bit or no? Like with working out or anything like that?
Michael: No, not really any scary moments. I mean, with working out though, you still sometimes get the lows. You get hypoglycemic and you bottom out and then you are done. Like I am done. That’s probably the only frustrating thing I have when I work out, it goes low. It takes you about 20 minutes to recover and by then my workout window is done. *laughing* I have to come back another time.
Drew: Tell us about ketoacidosis. Here is the thing, for some people that are listening, they think ketosis is ketoacidosis and that’s why they freak out. They think ketosis is really bad for you. You could die and all these things. Tell us about Type 1 Diabetics and how to be careful with ketoacidosis. What it is and what happens in the body, if that’s ok?
Michael: Yeah, ketoacidosis is a severe condition. You can not get there by eating coconut oil. I tell you, some people, they still have this fear that if I eat …. if my ketones get too high, then I can still from nutritional ketosis, go into ketoacidosis and you can’t. It’s usually a pathological condition that’s instigated by an infection. And then your electrolytes can have some problems, it’s like sepsis or something very severe that causes it. My wife is a certified diabetes educator, she treats people in acute care and it can happen to Type 2’s as well. So, Type 2’s can get DKA, but they are sick or they’ve got like pneumonia or sepsis or they have got an open wound. They have got hyperglycemia, 300 or 600 blood sugars and they get an open wound and it’s infected. The reason they come is they have kind of ignored the wound, but they are DKA because of the infection. That is usually what drives it. You can not get into DKA from just being in nutritional ketosis, because the levels are so different. Like, somebody that’s in …. you know somebody that we would consider a high ketone level, like a 4.7, that is high. With DKA, they are in the 20’s, 25, you can’t get there by just fasting and drinking MCT’s or something like that.
Drew: Yeah, that’s what I want to make really clear so people …. I’ve seen some people get to the 5, 6 or 7 range after a fast. The highest I’ve ever been is like 2.5 and that was with like a ketone ester. I barely ever get above that. So, to get to like the 20’s, it’s almost impossible through nutritional ketosis and supplementation.
Michael: It is impossible.
Drew: With ketoacidosis, what happens is your ketones rise to those very high unsafe levels, but at that same time your glucose is on the rise as well. Because normally what happens when you are in ketosis, your ketones will go up and glucose will go down, right?
Michael: Yeah, it’s an inverse relationship.
Drew: Or vice versa, if you eat a ton of carbs, your glucose goes up and your ketones go down, right?
Drew: But, with ketoacidosis, they are both at very high and unsafe levels, right?
Michael: Yeah. There are some Type 1’s that just don’t take their insulin. I don’t understand it, but they haven’t taken it for like a couple of days and they go into ketoacidosis. They are severely high blood sugars, like 600-700 and it will kick them into that. The crazy thing is Drew, my wife works at the hospital in this acute setting and she will see these people, it’s like a revolving door. They will be DKA and they will come back two months later same thing, DKA. They didn’t take their insulin or maybe there is some drug use that drives that. So, it’s kind of a sad deal.
Drew: I just want to make sure that the average person out there isn’t freaking out thinking if they go keto, they might get into ketoacidosis, even if you are Type 1 or Type 2. But if you are on top of things and you are monitoring things and you are generally healthy, you should be ok, right?
Michael: Even for me as a Type 1, I am not worried about ketoacidosis even drinking MCT’s. But yes, if I let my blood sugar …. or I don’t take my insulin, then I am definitely in trouble. But again, that’s not from my nutrition, that is from poor control of diabetes.
Drew: Yeah. So, tell us about your transition into keto. When did you discover it? Did you do any research? Were you kind of skeptical or nervous? When did that happen and at what point in your life? And what was your thought process about that?
Michael: Well, I’ve been low carb for like 25 years. I think if you really want to control your diabetes, the logical conclusion is you can not do carbohydrates. It’s just too hard to control it. The amount of insulin you have to take with carbohydrates, compared to what I take now, is like 400% more than what I would have to take without carbs. So, it’s so much easier and it’s more consistent and less of a roller coaster. I don’t have the highs and I don’t have the lows. I don’t have these fluctuations. So, I’ve been low carb for a long time. I’m just training and I know with low carb, I am going to be leaner and stuff. Really, what drove me to go on the ketogenic diet was …. it was two years ago. It really wasn’t diabetes. I just wanted to see if I could lean out some more without starving, because I had to starve myself before to do it. I heard about some bodybuilders doing it, so that’s kind of what got me started down that path. But as a result of it, my diabetes, the control of it has just tightened up even more. There is less fluctuation and even more consistent blood sugars.
Drw: Was your approach, was it different than your traditional ketogenic diet of like 70, 25, 5, because you have more muscle mass and you are lifting heavier weights? Did you do higher protein at first? Or what was your protocol with keto when you got into it?
Michael: Yeah, I just kind of googled some stuff and had the keto flu and didn’t have enough electrolytes or magnesium, so it was torture the first couple weeks. *laughing*
Michael: But I started leaning out pretty quick. I think I was doing more of like an 80, 20. 80% fat, 20% protein.
Michael: That’s something that I changed. I increased my protein more, because I need it for training. That really helped. I tell you, just another quick story. I saw the difference, once I did get adapted, after being in ketosis for a couple of months. Every summer our church has this sports camp that we do and I always help out. I usually help out with the soccer component and it’s in the evenings. I usually work out really early, at 4 in the morning. Sometimes in the afternoon, I may do a little bit of cardio if I have been driving or something to get moving. But, it’s always been hard for me, Drew, to exercise in the evenings. Because it’s after my dinner and I have had my insulin. I’ve got these variables. I’ve got my insulin. I’ve got the food and I’ve got the exercise. It’s hard to juggle those sometimes and I usually don’t exercise in the evenings, so I’m fine. But with this camp, it was always a little bit challenging for me. In previous years, I would either …. so tonight am I going to be in soccer and are we going to be scrimmaging? If I am scrimmaging, I’m going to be running like crazy. I would have to lower my insulin, because if I don’t, I am going to be running and I am going to have low blood sugar and they are going to carry me out on a mat. But if I am just standing around, I’m going to have to take my insulin. You know, I never knew exactly what we were going to do, so it would be a guessing game. Sometimes I got it and sometimes I didn’t. Like sometimes my blood sugar would be like 50 or 45 and I would have to sit down and get a little snack. Or my blood sugar, I would come home and it would be 250, because I had to compensate and I overcompensated. So anyhow, once I kind of adapted and we had our camp, I just took my normal amount of insulin for my meal. I take like, at that point I was taking 2 units of this novolog. It was a short acting insulin. I would have, I can’t remember how many grams of protein I was doing, maybe 50 grams per meal.
Michael: Anyway, I took my normal amount. I went out and ran like crazy, did just insane stuff. I came back and went, wow, my blood sugar! I didn’t drop out! So, the next night it was just the opposite, we just had some coaching and some dribbling and stuff, kicking. We went through some material and stuff. I took the same amount of insulin and I came back and my blood sugar was normal. So, I think the theory that we have this fat burner and sugar burner and we know it’s not either or it’s both. But obviously, we burn fats more efficiently. I don’t burn sugar the same. I don’t worry about burning all my blood sugar off when I am exercising, because I use fats now in a different way than I did before. Obviously I use both and I still use the glucose and exercise does effect it, but it’s not like it was before. So, I have less low blood sugars. I have more of a cushion and I think that is one of the most attractive things to the ketogenic diet for a diabetic. I have seen some Type 1 groups that kind of ‘poo-poo’ the keto thing and maybe overreact to it. But I don’t know if they have ever adapted to it and seen the benefits of that.
Drew: Yep. Gotcha.
Michael: Just by adding a little extra oil can make a big difference.
Drew: Interesting. Did you talk to your doctor when you switched to strict keto? If so, what were his thoughts or advice?
Michael: Yeah. Well, I switched doctors.
Michael: I see a functional medicine doctor. I found a doctor that is pretty much just going to leave me alone.
Michael: Because I know how to manage this. I have got it down to a science and most of them now, they say well just keep doing what you are doing. Your A1C’s are good. They are not going to mess with it, because they know I’ve got things. But I do have a story for you.
Michael: It just happened two days ago. So, it was kind of perfect timing. So, two days ago, Drew, I went and saw a registered dietician at a endocrinology clinic. And man, I should have known better. I should have known better! It was a nightmare! I mean this lady was an ‘anti low carb, anti keto nazi in a skirt’.
Drew: Ok. *laughing*
Michael: I didn’t go there for myself. My daughter, I have a 12 year old daughter and a couple of years ago we noticed she kind of stopped growing. She wasn’t growing. So we went to her regular pediatrician and she was still on the growth curve, but on the bottom end of it. She wasn’t too worried, but I was worried. I said, ‘Let’s get something going here.’ And finally, she fell off the curve.
Michael: So, we got all of this blood work done and all the hormones and everything tested good. Then we had to go to an endocrinologist to get some more tests. He did the HGH, the human growth hormone test and the IGF 1, and sure enough, she was low. We got her started on HGG last November 2017. It has made a huge difference. She started growing again, but we had to monitor her calories to make sure she gets enough. I mean, she is pretty …. she is an athlete. She is really fit. She’s got some muscles I wish I had. *laughing*
Michael: This was just kind of a standard follow up visit with their registered dietician that they have at the endocrinologist. The reason I kind of …. my goal was to just kind of have somebody, a professional, to kind of back my wife and I up. To say, ‘The doctor says you need this many calories.’ The nutritionist says, ‘You need this many calories.’ Because it is a challenge to make sure she gets enough to keep growing. I don’t know if you have some kids, but some girls, they just eat like jello or something and it’s just not enough. We went to see her and first of all she kind of looks over things and she writes down the things she has been eating over the last few days and takes it in. The first thing she says is, ‘Well, you know you are not getting enough carbs.’ We said, ‘You know, we don’t have her on a ketogenic diet. She gets higher fat and we makes sure she eats good carbs. No grains, no sugars. She is totally health oriented. You know, like sweet potatoes, fruit and that kind of thing.’ Anyway, here is what she said, ‘You need to have cookies and milk every night for a snack.’
Drew: Oh my gosh. *laughing*
Michael: So, she kind of goes through some of her stuff and then here is the part where I was shocked. Then she starts asking me questions. So she works in a clinic, the endocrinologist office, she works with a lot of Type 1 Diabetic kids. So she asked me, ‘How much insulin do you take? Well tell me about your diet?’ So I told her I do low carb and higher fat. Kind of at that point I think I better not say keto, because that would be bad. *laughing*
Drew: Yeah! *laughing* There might be a cuss word or something.
Michael: Then pretty much what she said was, ‘Well, I think you need to model to her a normal diet as a father.’
Michael: ‘You need to eat …. since she’s not eating like cookies and stuff, you need to eat some cookies.’ She looked at my insulin, ‘You could do it and take this much insulin.’ She said, ‘What are your thoughts about that?’ And Drew, I was so …. I mean I was in shock. I was so taken back. You know, all the things I wanted to say, that I should have said, that I could have said, but I didn’t think about until afterwards. I don’t know if you ever have that? I’m just playing that conversation over in my mind. She said, ‘Well, what do you think about that?’ And I just said, ‘Well, it’s almost like against my religion.’ I couldn’t really think. I said, ‘Sugar is contraindicative for a diabetic. So, it goes against everything I’ve been trained. My physician trained me in this, he would not go for that.’ So, she spend the next 30 minutes trying to convince me. I need to do it. I’m not a good role model for my daughter.
Michael: It was …. at least it gave me some good material to talk about! But I think that’s probably pretty typical with the kids she instructs. What kind of diet is she giving them? How many carbohydrates? You know, I agree as a child, if you have a piece of cake at a birthday, that’s fine. Let’s have a little bit of balance with it, but to recommend it every day for a child and then for a Type 1 Diabetic to eat sugar? I said, ‘How much insulin am I going to take for that? How am I going to control it? What if I take too much and I bottom out?’ Well, she doesn’t have diabetes, she doesn’t have to worry about it. I think that’s pretty standard care that is in a lot of medical clinics, as opposed to somebody who is in our space or in the functional medicine.The people who really understand what we are doing.
Drew: And that’s what the scary thing is, is that your average personal doctor is not as educated and doesn’t have a background in this and doesn’t take the time to research it. They don’t know that, so they think well this person is smarter than me. They must know what they are talking about, so I better listen to them. And that’s how a lot of people have fallen into a lot of traps throughout the years, like in the 70’s and 80’s, the bad nutritional advice and look where it has gotten us. So, I think now with how much information is readily available to people, like for example, this Podcast, which people can easily download and listen and hear a different perspective, is really powerful. Then they can go to their doctor and say, ‘Hey, I was listening to this doctor on this Podcast, or whatever, who was talking about keto for Type 1 Diabetes. I did the research and I’ve done it. Here are my numbers and here is my blood work. What do you think?’ And then they are like, ‘Well, I was taught differently, but you can’t argue with numbers and results.’ So, I think that’s hopefully where the people can take the power back by gaining that knowledge. Doing their homework and doing their research and finding what’s out there for them. Rather than just listening to a registered dietician pound on them or telling them to eat cookies every night. *laughing*
Michael: Yeah. That’s why I love what you are doing, Drew. It’s so important what you are doing. Just keep spreading that word and it can make a difference. Because what she said was not based on literature. It wasn’t based on data. It was like ‘IMO’, this is my own opinion.
Michael: You’ve got some data to back this up? I didn’t think of it there because my daughter was there. She had an intern there. But yeah, I hear you, stuff like what you are doing can make a huge difference.
Drew: So, what other advice would you give? Because I am going to blast this out to a lot of people and make sure that Type 1 Diabetics listen to this to know that you can do Keto. You can be successful with Type 1 Diabetes on the ketogenic diet and here is a perfect example. What advice would you give to other Type 1 Diabetics that are kind of skeptical or maybe their doctor or dietician is telling them something different? What is some hope or advice you could give them?
Michael: Well, like I said earlier, the good thing about diabetes is that you can control it. Again, it is just a label. It’s your blood sugars that make a difference and if you want to have good control of your blood sugars, the easiest way to do it is to avoid carbohydrates. Just for example, so for my breakfast this morning, I had 4 ounces of salmon. I had a little bit of lettuce. I had another 7 1/2 ounces of roast beef and 2 tablespoons of olive oil. I do measure out my proteins. That is how I measure how much insulin I take, because if you change your protein, you will have to change your insulin. I took 3 units of insulin, 3 units of a short. Some people freak out about this gluconeogenesis. Like, what if I eat …. say I went from 11 ounces to 16 ounces.
Michael: I would have to increase my insulin, but maybe 2 more units is all. So, let’s put this in perspective, if I ate some carbs with that. Say, I ate toast, say I ate some pancakes. Typical breakfast, I ate 3 pancakes with it, which I could probably eat 5 pancakes, which is nothing.
Michael: I would have to take probably from 3 units, I would have to take probably 20 units of insulin.
Drew: Wow. Wow, man! That’s crazy.
Michael: And that is what carbohydrates do, that’s what they require. And then you are guessing and then you have more of a chance of going from a high, back down to a low. You are going to have more of a roller coaster effect. So, just remove the carbohydrates and you will have a lot easier time of controlling your blood sugars and less problems and less incidents of all these comorbidities that come with diabetes. Kidney failure, eye problems, neuropathy, retinopathy, all that kind of stuff.
Drew: That is awesome.
Michael: We have so much to offer. I mean you heard all the stories, I know you’ve had physicians on and they can reverse Type 2 Diabetes. They are reversing it! They are off their meds. They are off insulin. It is so encouraging. Just decreasing your insulin, right there can make a big difference right there for your life.
Drew: What does the rest of your day look like, you mentioned breakfast. Can you paint a picture for the rest of your day?
Michael: Ok, here is kind of a challenge with Type 1 Diabetes, I kind of get in ruts. So, I just recently switched from 3 meals a day to 2 meals a day.
Michael: A lot of people on this keto thing, they do one or two. You know, you don’t have to eat as much as you did before. I’ve kind of felt that for awhile, but I guess I was a little scared of change. Because I have my system and it worked. I call it the “TET’s”. Trial and error titration. It’s just going to be trial and error. I am going to have some high blood sugars and I’m going to have some lows. It takes a little bit of stepping over a hump to actually make yourself do it. It was like, I need to lean up a little bit and I want to feel better. I don’t need that extra meal. I’m going to give it a shot. I am just a month or two into it and I’ve had to do some changes. It takes a lot of work just to get my insulin right. I’m still kind of tweaking the protein, trying to figure out the right amount where I am not doing too much. First I was doing too little, way too little. I had no energy working out. I knew I had to change it. Ok, so 2 meals. I work out early. I get up like at 3:30. I know it’s crazy. I have to test my blood sugar first thing. I take a couple of units. …. Did you have a question?
Drew: No, no. Keep going with your day.
Michael: Then I take a couple of units before I work out. I work out fasted. I am not going to eat at 3 in the morning. I’m not hungry. But I still have to take insulin because you’ve got that ‘dawn phenomenon’ starting to break down some glycogen. It’s just your body reacts that way. So, I have some insulin on board, even before I workout or exercise. Because if I don’t, which I had to find out the hard way. If I don’t take any, I will come back from my workout and my blood sugar will be like 250. So, I have to take a little bit. I do my workout, come home and do my breakfast about 6 and then go about my day and just have a regular dinner. I test my blood sugar throughout the day, probably …. you know, just to make sure it’s on. I check it about an hour after I eat, a couple of hours after I eat. I check it in the middle of the day, just to make sure it’s on. Especially when I am changing my diet up, because I want to be sure it is on. Sometimes it will go a little bit high and if it does, I will take an adjustment amount of insulin, like one or two units to bring it back down. Then back for dinner and do it again.
Drew: What does a dinner look like for you?
Michael: Typically I’ve been going a little bit carnivore lately. I do usually some hamburger or some steak. Sometimes my wife will make a chicken dish, but again I try to measure it out so I get the same amount. Lately I’ve been doing about 12 ounces, like last night was hamburger. I got 12 ounces of hamburger. It was a little bit dried out. *laughing* Some of the grass fed roast beef is a little bit dried out. I put a little bit of butter on it.
Drew: So, no snacks during the day?
Michael: Nope. No snacks, I’ve just been trying to go with 2 meals. I don’t really need them. I’m not hungry for them, so I don’t need them. Previously on diabetes, when I was growing up and had these different kind of insulins on board, you had to do a snack every couple of hours because if you didn’t, you would be peaking.
Michael: And you had to have a snack …. really it is hard to kind of break out of that mentality. It’s taken a while to break out of that mentality, because if you didn’t have a snack and your insulin peaks, then you are going to have a low blood sugar.
Drew: Gotcha. That’s good. I think it’s really important to kind of paint that picture for people that maybe want to model themselves a little bit after you, once they get fat adapted. Or they do their research just to find what works for them. Because I think a lot of people might be scared. Even for me, going from 6 or 7 meals a day, even though I wasn’t a diabetic, it was still kind of scary for me. I was like, man I’m going to go from that to 2 meals a day? How am I going to maintain my muscle mass? How am I going to have energy, you know? But, your body adapts and adjusts, even for Type 1 Diabetics, it can work as well. Michael, I really just want to say thank you. I really appreciate your story. I think it’s a hope for those people out there who do have Type 1 Diabetes, that maybe are kind of in a rut. They are like, ‘I am stuck with this. It’s always going to be miserable.’ But, the last question I have for you, before we finish up, and I almost forgot to ask this. It’s about a CGM. Do you have a CGM in your body that you can create on an app or use any of that technology now?
Michael: No, I don’t and I know I should.
Drew: So you just prick yourself?
Michael: I just prick my finger. I got my stuff right here.
Drew: So, you are just used to it. *laughing*
Michael: Old school, but it really is a game changer and I need to do one. It’s mostly just total vanity. I don’t want that thing sticking out of my arm when I am at the gym. *laughing* That’s the only reason!
Drew: *laughing* Gotcha.
Michael: I know there is a PHD, I can’t remember what university she is at. I think her daughter has diabetes and she has been working on like a band-aid one. Those are going to be out before too long and I will be the first one to sign up for that.
Drew: There you go.
Michael: They do make a big difference for people. You’ve got it right there, it’s on your phone. Every 5 minutes you can check it.
Drew: You can see exactly like to the second when you eat, what you eat and how it’s affecting your blood sugar. I think it’s so cool and I think it’s great to have that kind of data, that feedback almost instantly, without having to prick your finger. Where can people find you online? What is your website and social media accounts and things like that, so we can put them in the show notes?
Michael: Yeah. My website is 3dperformancesystems.com. Everything is on there.
Drew: Where are you located?
Michael: Tulsa Oklahoma.
Drew: So if anyone is listening from Oklahoma, the Tulsa area, reach out to Michael. Next time you are in Utah, you will have to let me know.
Michael: Ok, yeah man.
Drew: I really appreciate you coming on and all the links will be in the show notes. Keep doing what you are doing, Michael. You are doing awesome at it.
Michael: I appreciate it, man.