I have a family history of type 2 diabetes through my father and grandfather. Because of this, I knew it was only a matter of time before I was diagnosed. Over the years, my A1c crept up until it finally crossed the 6.5% threshold, and I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. My physician immediately prescribed metformin and recommended I take classes on nutrition and diabetes.
During these classes, I learned basic information about reading food labels, but I ultimately found the class pretty unhelpful because it didn't provide me with any real tools for success. If anything, the class reinforced my belief that medications were the only way to manage diabetes. Looking ahead, I saw a lifetime of pharmacy visits, additional medications, and endless dosage increases. That future looked bleak.
Fast forward a few years, and the future I feared was becoming a reality. In addition to increasing my metformin dosage, my physician recommended I start taking Jardiance. I felt helpless and didn't know what else I could do. Around that same time, I saw a post on my company’s wellness portal, Take 5, about Virta. The article mentioned that my employer, Collins Aerospace (a Raytheon Technology subsidiary), was offering Virta to a small group of eligible employees to try out a new type 2 diabetes reversal treatment as part of a limited pilot program.
Growing up, I saw first-hand the devastating impact type 2 diabetes had on my father and grandfather. It seemed like both of them aged faster, looking 10 or 15 years older than they actually were. I didn’t want the same thing to happen to me. While I was skeptical of the idea of reversal having never heard of it before, I figured I had nothing to lose, so I applied for the pilot and was accepted.
The first 30 days were slightly challenging for me because it was a big adjustment from the lifestyle I was used to. I used to eat out every day for lunch at fast food restaurants, and I thought I would have to give that up. But support from my Virta health coach, Jenna, has been the key to my success. Jenna helped me find some great recipes and meal options, even when I am eating out at restaurants. Through Virta, I’ve discovered that I really enjoy salads. The best part is that I can keep my salads interesting and mix things up by adding something like bell peppers.
I have seen great results on Virta! My A1c was around 6.9% before starting Virta, and my latest lab results say that it has dropped down to 5.1%. My daily blood sugars now average 80-90 mg/dL, and I’ve lost almost 25 pounds. I used to have to buy my shirts in extra large sizes, but after Virta, I can fit comfortably into a medium. But the best change has been that I have been able to stop taking all my diabetes medications. My physician was absolutely shocked to see the changes I had made in such a short amount of time. He asked me what my secret was and my answer was simple—it’s all because of Virta.
My long term goals are to maintain my A1c and lose 10 more pounds. With the steady progress I’ve already made, I know that these goals are also within reach. Virta is a life-changing benefit, and I am thankful to Raytheon for providing this benefit to employees at no cost to us. My biggest fear was ending up like my father and grandfather, but Virta has shown me that there is a different path available and I am no longer scared of the future.
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