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Blood Glucose, MGUS, Myeloma & Metformin (Part Nine)

Home/About Pat, Caregivers, Inspirational, Nutrition, Research, Side effects, Support, Tips, Transplants/Blood Glucose, MGUS, Myeloma & Metformin (Part Nine)

Blood Glucose, MGUS, Myeloma & Metformin (Part Nine)

A lot has happened since I ran two of the final installments about the importance of controlling blood glucose by Danny Parker:

Blood Glucose, MGUS, Myeloma & Metformin (Part Seven and Eight)


ASH, unscheduled trips to the ICU, Iowa City drama. A lot went wrong in December. I’m still having trouble bouncing back from my second autologous stem cell transplant (tandem) in less than six months. But on the myeloma front, the news was great! My PET scan showed no active myeloma. No new lesions. No active myeloma hanging around in any of the old ones.

Christmas, New Years, feverishly (literally running a fever from time to time, including tonight) working on preparations for this year’s Pat’s Myeloma Beach Party Event.

I’m afraid I lost track of Danny’s project. He reminded me about it last night as he graciously agreed to speak and lead activities in Fernandina Beach April 1st, 2nd and 3rd at the gathering. So exciting to see old friends again; people I email with more often than family. Heck my readers are my family!

The thing is, I think Danny’s ninth and final installment is his best. You do a great job wrapping things up with a big red bow for us, Danny.

His belated holiday gift to us. See what you think:

What to do While we Wait?

What to do while we wait for more definitive data on whether metformin or ritonavir might be possible treatments for us?

Firstly, we watch and use the other FDA approved drugs becoming available under guidance of our doctors to help ourselves. But clearly, from my perspective, it seems prudent for myeloma patients to watch their blood glucose carefully—and to keep an eye on clinical trials and other developments regarding metformin and myeloma.If your blood glucose is high and you have myeloma or MGUS, it might be advisable to see an endocrinologist.

Danny-Parker-Two1-150x150You can also help yourself without metformin: none of your doctors will complain about your personal efforts to control your  blood glucose through diet and exercise. Even if not a magic bullet, there is ever more data showing that this is likely a good idea for those of us suffering multiple myeloma. Indeed, it is a good idea for just about everyone on the planet in the Western World where the epidemic of obesity and Type 2 diabetes seems to grow each year.

In particular, recent rigorous clinical trials published in the Lancet (Ley et al., 2014) have shown that individuals embracing a Mediterranean diet, with foods such as olive oil, whole grains and leafy vegetables and fruits, have a lower risk of developing diabetes.

In the study, complex carbohydrates foods such as oat cereal, yogurt and low-fat dairy products, green leafy vegetables, grapes, apples, blueberries and walnuts and limited alcohol consumption were associated with reduced diabetes risk. Drinking coffee and even decaffeinated coffee were also associated with lower type 2 diabetes risk.

And the unhelpful foods?Sodas and other sugary drinks, red and processed meats and refined carbohydrates.Candy, ice cream and pastries.And particularly bad would be heavy carbohydrates and sugars eaten on an empty stomach.
Disaster for breakfast?glazed donuts…or pancakes with lots of syrup.

And there is a lot of data to suggest that exercise is important in helping to control blood sugar as experienced within Type 2 diabetes. I just picked out a recent meta-study. There are lots:

The main enemy?—a sedentary lifestyle.More important than the type of exercise appears to just be the choice of exercise versus surrender to the coach potato life.

So, not only watch your diet, but in consultation with your doctors, get out and move!

Me? Walking is always good– fresh air and a new perspective. And, while I haven’t seen a study yet, I’d bet daily walkers have better mental health too…

Oh, it has been done!

Spanish office workers who are regular walkers report better sense of well-being:

Who could be surprised?

Be well everyone. And thanks for your patience and attention over the last weeks while I try to make my case that blood glucose could be important to us.

OK, I’ll admit it: I tricked you. How else to set you up for a healthy dose of Danny’s tough love!

By the way, fresh blueberries were on sale today at our local market. $3 for a pint.

Feel good and keep smiling! Pat