A 30 Day Plan for Conquering Depression.
I’ve been struggling for the past five weeks with a new diagnosis of adult onset diabetes type II. I was placed on an oral medication and promptly changed my diet. As a doctor, I know too much and I am highly motivated. Week before last, I began to suffer from low blood glucose. In fact, looking back on my daily blood tests, I have yet to have a glucose level over 120, and that was two hours after eating.
What this means is that changing my diet and exercising and losing weight have brought my glucose to normal levels. And, after two days of low glucose episodes one of which sent me to the ER, my doctor told me to get off the diabetes medication. Two days later, I was having heart palpitations. Back to the ER! All blood work was negative and I wore a heart monitor for 24 hours. The reason for the palpitations? My glucose was too low!
I had already been to the dietician and had added carbohydrates back into my diet but I was still having daily episodes of low blood glucose. This past Friday, I heard back from my doctor. Want to know what he told me? “Go eat a pizza!”
So, here is the irony. I lost weight and changed my diet to get my glucose back to normal and now, I’m having more problems than I did when I wasn’t aware I had diabetes! But, this is a GOOD problem to have! After reading up on the subject I realized that my body has to reach a new balance between my glucose levels, my diet, my new exercise program, my overactive pancreas, and my newly more responsive cells to insulin. It has not been easy. It’s a delicate balancing act and one that is pretty much trial and error. Balance the exercise. Too much and my glucose drops quickly. Too little and it will go high. On my snacks, too little protein and my carbs will make my glucose temporarily high and then the insulin spikes and I have a delayed low glucose. Too much carb and not enough protein, and so on, and so on.
All of this reminds me of our Conquering Depression Seminar. The Seminar is divided into four questions mirroring the sections in our book, Hope Again. The first question is: “What’s Wrong With Me?” Fighting all of these glucose ups and downs and the diet requirements is so frustrating, I just want to know what is wrong with me? Why am I so out of balance?
In our very first session we talk about an important scripture: “And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.” Mark 12:30 (ESV)
Our bodies are influenced by these four areas: emotions, spiritual existence, intellect, and our physical condition. I have to keep reminding myself the importance of keeping a good balance between these four forces. You see, depression is not just a state of mind. Depression is an illness that affects the entire body. So many people I have talked to seem to think depression is due to a failure of faith, or a brain chemistry imbalance, or an external situation, or lack of understanding of the process, or poor behavior choices. It’s really all of these.
The body is an enormous system of checks and balances as I have learned as I try and find the perfect balance for my blood glucose. So, to start answering that question, “What’s Wrong With Me?” you must understand the complex, interrelated causes of depression. In the coming weeks, Mark and I will talk about these issues in more depth. For now, don’t get discouraged. Instead, get in tune with all four of these forces affecting your depression. You can find a balance. Hang in there.
If you are in the Shreveport/Bossier City area, don’t forget Mark Sutton and I will conducting a Conquering Depression Seminar at Brookwood Baptist Church on Saturday, November 14th from 9 AM to Noon. Click on the SEMINAR tab to register and to get more information! We HOPE to see you there!