The Diabetic Diagnosis That Changed My Life for the Better

By on February 6, 2019

I was an active teenager—I played volleyball, basketball, and softball—but after high school came work and kids, and I wasn’t getting any exercise. Over the years, the number on the scale crept up to the point where I became overweight. I just chalked it up to getting older. But then came the harsh wakeup call: During a routine exam in 2015, my doctor told me that I was pre-diabetic. He told me that if I didn’t do something about it—exercise and eat better—I was going to become diabetic. That scared me.

I started looking into different programs to lose weight. There was Weight Watchers, but going to meetings wasn’t for me. Nutrisystem was another option, but I didn’t want to have to order food from them for the rest of my life. Plus, who knows if it even tastes good! Then one day, I got an email at work about a digital weight loss program that our insurance provider was sponsoring for employees—free of charge. We would learn how to eat well and get the right amount of exercise—all without having to drive to meetings or join a gym. I thought, ‘I’m going to try this. I’m going to really pour my heart into this and if it works, it works. If it doesn’t, at least I tried.’ That was my goal. So I signed up for the Real Appeal program.

Diabetes DiagnosisI received the Real Appeal Success Kit a few days later. It was full of information and tools—including a food scale, blender, resistance bands, recipes—to help me start making small, healthy changes. I also had access online and through a mobile app to a live, personal health coach, who I’d talk with once a week about exercise and nutrition. I began walking for 30 minutes every day and even bought a treadmill so that I could continue my walks during the harsh Wisconsin winter. It was easier to stick with it than I thought it would be. That was probably what surprised me most: how I could stick with the program without relying on some massive amount of willpower. After a month, I lost 10 pounds.

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I didn’t set out to overhaul my eating habits all at once, but I felt so much better after making even some small swaps in my food choices that pretty soon what I put on my plate was a radical departure from what it had been. Instead of indulging in pizza and macaroni and cheese, I would reach for fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins. I tried cooking with spaghetti squash noodles instead of starchy spaghetti—and I liked it! Rather than eating on the fly and picking whatever was handy, I made meal-prep a key part of my routine. I set aside an hour or two on Sundays to peel and slice up carrots or peppers, make some hard-boiled eggs, and bake two or three big chicken breasts that I could eat, reheat, or slice up and throw on a salad throughout the week.

I’ll be honest that watching the scale slide downward was hugely motivating. After living my new healthy lifestyle for a year, I lost more than 70 pounds, which I have kept off. At 53 years old, I’m healthier than I have been in a very long time. Before, I would get winded just mowing my little lawn, but now it’s nothing! Best of all, at a recent exam, my doctor told me my blood sugars were down and that I was no longer pre-diabetic. She was really impressed with my results. Overall, I’m way healthier thanks to Real Appeal, and I feel better about myself.

Author Rochelle Williams

Rochelle is a proud mother who works in the health care industry in La Crosse, Wisconsin. She previously suffered from high blood sugar, high blood pressure, and borderline diabetes. Later in life she made the necessary lifestyle changes with digital weight loss program Real Appeal to improve her health, ultimately leading to the reversal of her pre-diabetic status.


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The Diabetic Diagnosis That Changed My Life for the Better