Dr. Ali Irshad Al Lawati’s story started when he was seven years old and diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. His parents followed the doctor’s advice and treated him with insulin and a low-fat, high-carb diet as prescribed. By the time he was 15 years old, carrying all the extra weight the excess insulin had encouraged, Dr. Ali noticed that one of his grandfather’s friends who had previously been extremely overweight with many health complaints and severe pain, had lost the weight, looked years younger and was smiling for the first time in years. He asked the man what he had done, and was handed a pamphlet on the low-carb, high fat diet (keto).
Of course, he was at first extremely sceptical and believed his grandfather’s friend was playing a risky game with his health. However, the more he researched it, the more convinced of the diet’s healthfulness and power he became.
He visited endocrinologist after endocrinologist, and (this being 17 years ago, although it could very well be today) every one of them told him this was an extremely dangerous path to follow and he would end up dying of heart disease before his T1D killed him.
Not to be dissuaded, he was so convinced by his research and desperate to lose the excess weight that he chose to do this alone. He followed the guidelines as he had understood them from the studies he found. His results were outstanding.
He started with HBA1C readings around 8/9 per cent, on a daily dose of insulin of 84iu. His blood glucose values were completely erratic, and he suffered frequent hyper and hypo glycaemic episodes, making his life almost unmanageable. He also had the first signs of nephropathy in the form of proteinuria for two full years and compromised kidney function.
As soon as he began the low carb diet, he reduced his insulin dose. Initially by half, and within three months to a total daily dose of 30iu. His HBA1C reduced to 6 and eventually to a solid and safe 5. Within five months of doing keto, his proteinuria entirely disappeared, and his weight loss continued, leaving him at a healthy weight for his age and height.
He will always be a T1D, but he is no longer a slave to his blood glucose. His lifestyle and overall health have dramatically improved, as well as his self-confidence. All because he took the time to do his own research, read the mounting science and handled his health with wisdom rather than pills and needles.