Defeat Diabetes Low Carb Program member success story Lucille Hopkins

"After going low carb my husband tells me I’m getting younger!" ~ Lucilles story

Weight loss: 21 kg
6.2 down to 5.3
In Remission:

As one of six kids, Lucille's childhood was unsurprisingly busy but full of laughter. With her father in the army, the young family were always on the move, travelling as far as Singapore, so it didn’t come as a surprise when she married John, also in the armed forces. Lu - as she is known to her friends - and John also spent their early married life travelling. Lu was an Endorsed Enrolled Nurse (EEN), working in hospitals and nursing homes, so she saw firsthand the rise of type 2 diabetes and the burden it was having on the healthcare system, not realising that she too would one day be affected.

“I have very good family genes in one respect. My great-grandmother lived to 97, my grandmother to 98, and my mother is now 92 and still living independently, so one side of my family is as tough as they come! Of my three brothers and two sisters, two brothers  now have type 2 diabetes. 

“I worked in medical, surgical, vascular and eye clinics and also nursing homes, and I often wondered whether I’d also get it due to my family history. Seeing the absolute devastation that it causes was terrifying. 

“My health problems started when I was young. I was 28 when I developed deep vein thrombosis (DVT), a clotting disorder. I also had a pulmonary embolism, which is when part of the DVT clot breaks off and travels into the lungs. It can be life-threatening, but somehow I survived! I had clotting issues after both of my kids were born, too. 

“Then, at age 35, I had to undergo a total hemicolectomy due to Ulcerative Colitis. As a result, I had a j-pouch procedure, which meant I had trouble digesting certain foods, and was told I had to eat carbs and food that would thicken my bowel movements.

“I thought that had to be the end of it, but I was 49 when I sensed something wasn’t quite right in one of my breasts. I insisted the doctor check it out, even though I was too young for the compulsory mammogram. Thank goodness the doctor spotted it. A large  lump hiding behind a cyst. I was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer and had chemotherapy, radiation and hormone therapy to stop the spread of the cancer. 

“I’ve always been slim, apart from when I had to take steroids for the ulcerative colitis, but all these health problems meant I had started gaining weight, and in March 2023, I was told I had pre-diabetes. My HbA1c was 6.2, but then a glucose tolerance test showed a glucose level of 13, so I was given the diagnosis I had dreaded: I had type 2 diabetes.

“I was initially devastated. I’d seen the path of diabetes, and I just couldn’t believe this was now happening to me. I’d treated patients who had gangrene and got them ready for surgery for an amputation. It was horrific. 

“I knew I needed to lose weight, and because of my other health issues, Metformin wasn’t an option, so my GP suggested I try diet and exercise. I did my research and found Defeat Diabetes on Google. I started reading and thought the recipes sounded wonderful, so I immediately signed up for a free trial and loved the food! 

“Switching to low carb wasn’t that hard, to be honest. I’ve never really been a ‘junk food person’; growing up with five siblings, there wasn’t any extra money for fast food, and we were raised on simple meat and veg. 

“John is the cook in the family, though, and he started making the Defeat Diabetes meals. We loved the Silky Salmon Curry and the Miso Butter Barramundi, and our usual breakfast is Dr Brukner’s Muesli with yoghurt and berries. Lunch is pretty simple: a salad or low carb wrap. When the new recipes come in, though, I’ll Air Drop them straight to John to make!  

“My digestive issues make it challenging to follow the Program exactly as it is. I’m not as low carb as it suggests, but I follow the principles and stick to lots of good meat and simple real food. I love the Three Seed Crackers, and will take them with us when caravanning and camping, where there are usually loads of snacks, dips and chips. I just avoid the chips and have my crackers with hommus and carrot sticks, although the last time we went, my friends ate them all, so next time, I’ll keep them for myself! 

“I started noticing I felt better pretty quickly, and eight months after being diagnosed, I was told I was in remission, with a HbA1c of 5.3. My GP was thrilled and wanted to know how I did it. I passed on the details, and he’s now a convert to Defeat Diabetes and has referred other patients.

“The thing I notice most is that I’m generally a lot brighter and happier. Daily tasks like putting on my shoes are much easier as I’m more flexible. I’ve always been a fast walker, but that slowed when I put on weight. But now, I’m back to my speedy self, John now trails behind and even commented that it’s like I’m getting younger.! Having said that, though he’s lost 10 kg, and his doctor is pretty impressed with him too!

“Since starting the Defeat Diabetes Program, I’ve learnt how different foods affect me and what to avoid. I miss pasta and rice sometimes, but I’ve found many great low carb options at the supermarket, like the Herman Brot bread. It’s a bit of a challenge with my digestive issues - I’ve found I can’t tolerate almond flour - but I’m discovering different low carb options that I can use. 

“My advice to anyone considering the program is just to try it and do your best. It’s proven to work - I’ve lost 21 kg! You’ve got nothing to lose. It’s so important to be in control of your health and make it work for you. Diabetes is a nasty thing to have, and if you can manage it with a few simple changes to what you eat, then it’s worth it.  I said I always thought I was like an alien with all of my illnesses but I’ve managed to beat all these other health issues. I’m just so grateful I’ve now beaten diabetes, too.”

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