By Scott, On Virta for 11 months
I wouldn’t normally consider myself a “success story,” but in a lot of ways, my experience on the Virta treatment highlights how anybody can be successful on Virta as long as they are honest with themselves and their Virta health coach.
I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in 1999 when a family vacation ended with me practically flat on my back after my legs seized up while exploring caves with my family. A few days later when I saw my doctor, I discovered my A1c was in the high 14%, and I started medications right away.
As it turns out, not only did I have unchecked type 2 diabetes, but I also had what my doctors called an “extreme insulin resistance.” Over the years, I tried a wide range of diets and exercise plans to try and get healthy, all while adding more and more medications to my daily routine. And those medications only seemed to make my weight worse. By the time I discovered Virta, I was taking one of the strongest versions of insulin available and needing more of it than most—about 150 units per meal. I also weighed almost 100 pounds more than my target weight, which I figured was a side-effect of the medications.
I then heard about Virta through my employer, Commerce Bank, in 2020. The email I got from my benefits team said that Virta uses nutrition to naturally reduce blood sugars, which can help reverse type 2 diabetes without medications. Whatsmore, Virta was being provided at no cost as part of my benefits. I was all in for something new.
After applying and being accepted into the treatment, the first thing that impressed me were the credentials of the Virta doctors I spoke with. These were knowledgeable doctors with very relevant experience in diabetes care. The second thing that impressed me was how quickly I was taken off of insulin on Virta, though I’ll admit it made me a little bit nervous as well. Because I had been taking it for so long, daily injections felt like part of my identity.
My first few months on Virta were great. I stuck with the treatment, followed my personalized plan from my Virta coach, and kept a close monitor on my numbers. Before I knew it, I had lost over 40lbs, and my numbers were stable enough to stay off insulin.
But then life crept in, and I let the Virta treatment slip a bit. As expected, my blood sugar began to creep up and I gained back some of the weight I had lost. Previously, I might have been tempted to just give up, but what impressed me most about Virta was that they did not give up on me. My coaches were never upset. Instead, they would simply ask what I was struggling with the most, and they took the time to really listen to me. To help me along, they would try to find more Virta friendly alternatives in order to satisfy any cravings I might be having.
And that’s just it. Virta is not an all-or-nothing game. Virta is on your team and they customize a treatment that works for you. I am not perfect and I have a long way to go, but I am making steady progress every day. My weight is back down a total of about 40 pounds from when I started and my blood sugar has leveled off again. I was told that if it stays above 130 mg/dL, I would need to go back on medications, which I do not want.
All in all, I am remotivated. I know Virta makes me healthier, and I know that with Virta’s support, I can get the results I want.
To all of my colleagues at Commerce Bank with type 2 diabetes: stop waiting for the perfect time to join Virta.
Start that journey today, and know that mistakes are not permanent. Virta teaches you to look past missteps so you can focus on what to do in the future.