Hello, I’m Katherine, your Health Champion. My mission is to help you to improve your health and to be free of diseases and chronic conditions by using a holistic approach, natural treatment methods and alternative health techniques, improving your physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health.
I provide health education and coaching, considering you as a whole person and your lifestyle. I offer health information products online and individual health coaching and group health coaching, both face-to-face and by telephone.
I can help you to take control of your own health and educate you so that you can improve your health effectively without any nasty side effects and cost effectively.
I specialise in helping people with diabetes to achieve normal blood sugar levels, particularly those with type 1 diabetes or severe type 2 diabetes.
I have type 1 diabetes and I have managed to achieve normal average blood sugar levels, so I know what it’s like to have diabetes and I walk my talk. I have also been able to have mostly stable blood sugar levels, generally between 4.5 and 10 mmol/l (80 and 180 mg/dl) without any really bad hypos.
I define the normal average blood sugar range as HbA1c between 4% and 6%, as for people without diabetes, and the healthy range as HbA1c between 4% and 6.5%, i.e. no risk of long-term complications.
My health story
All through my childhood, I used to get ill a lot, generally with colds and viruses, all affecting the throat and glands. I had tonsillitis regularly and rather than boost my immune system, the conventional medical approach at the time (and often still is) was to take out the diseased/ inflamed part of the body. So, when I was five, half my tonsils and half my adenoids were taken out.
After that, I still caught just about every cold and other virus that was going round, but then I would get swollen glands instead, since my tonsils weren’t there to protect my throat. I also had regular headaches and a dull headache most of the time, plus I needed more sleep than most people, ideally about 9 hours a night, otherwise I would get headaches and if I didn’t catch up on sleep, I often then got ill.
When I was sixteen, in the run up to taking my ‘O’-level school exams, I had glandular fever (mono). I must have been more susceptible to getting ill as I was quite stressed with revising for the exams. I also had a boyfriend – it is called the ‘kissing disease’(!) – and things weren’t going well, so more stress. My mum got a homeopathic remedy for me and I recovered in a week, which is unusually quick for glandular fever.
I had a pattern of getting ill before and sometimes during exams, because of stress, so before my university bachelors degree exam finals, I wanted to boost my overall health. My grandfather had had a small stroke and angina when he was 63. His doctors predicted that he would only live for 6 more months. He was very proactive and wanted to live for much longer than that, so he went to see an alternative doctor who advocated a raw food diet plus herbal remedies.
So, before my finals, I went to see the same alternative doctor and within a few days, I changed my diet to 80% raw food and cut out milk and other forms of dairy. I had some detox effects of feeling sluggish and unmotivated to revise for a few days, which I now know was due to changing my diet too quickly. However, after that, I did feel better and I didn’t get ill for my exams, which was a record! I got a good result and went on to have a successful professional career.
I kept up the diet for a few weeks afterwards but I was going travelling to South-east Asia and I wanted to put on weight beforehand, in case I got diarrhoea, which did happen! I had always been slim and I had lost weight on the raw food diet. So I went back to a cooked food diet with more bread, pasta, potatoes, rice and sugary food. I now know how to keep weight on or put more on in a healthy way if you are slim and eat raw food.
However, I had noticed that by not having milk and other dairy products, I got a lot less mucous in my mouth and nose, so I continued not to have dairy, apart from very small quantities. If I did have any, such as an ice cream for a treat, I noticed the effect straight away.
During my twenties, I started to take multi-vitamin and mineral supplements and in the winter or if there were colds going round, I took Echinacea too. This helped strengthen my immune system and I didn’t get ill so often as before.
In 2001, I went on an excellent personal development course called Insight. One of the many useful maxims that they suggest is that if you have a problem or challenge, whatever it is, there is always a solution and you just need to be proactive and persistent to find it. Another great one was, ‘use everything for your learning, empowerment and growth’. Up until then, I hadn’t thought that I could be free of getting ill, needing a lot of sleep, feeling tired and having headaches regularly. So I did lots of research, seeing alternative health practitioners, reading health books and going on courses and I experimented with various types of alternative treatments and changed my lifestyle to be a healthier one.
Over the years, all my health actions had paid off and I very rarely got ill, I had plenty of energy, my head was clear and my skin was in great condition. My friends and family say I look about 10 years younger than I am – I’m in my early 40s. People I meet for the first time are regularly surprised when they find out how old I am and in recent years, a couple have even asked if I’m a student!
If you are interested in how I did this, I will be producing a holistic health guide that describes my approach and many recommendations regarding lifestyle and natural treatments. I have completed a draft and it will be ready later this year, 2010. You can join my newsletter to receive news of when this is ready, or check back on this website.
My diabetes story
In the summer of 2006, I was feeling good. I had been cycling round the city where I lived all summer and had been really fit. However, in September 2006 I was cycling home after an evening at a pub and I could barely move my legs to turn the pedals. I had eaten some pub food that evening with chips (French fries) and drunk orange juice. Within a few days, I could only walk slowly for about 5 minutes at a time.
I developed a variety of symptoms:
– very low energy
– very thirsty
– peeing a lot
– dry mouth
– losing weight
– leg cramps
– yeast infection
– mouth sores
– eye sight blurry (from January 2007).
I now know that these are all classic signs of diabetes. Through eating a health diet and having some energy healing, by December I was able to walk for about an hour, slowly.
In February 2007, I went skiing with a group of friends. I did actually manage to ski reasonably well for the first couple of days, at intermediate level (blue runs). I had previously been able to ski at advanced level (red and some black runs).
However, on the third day I fell over four times badly and was completely exhausted. I stopped as soon as I could and went back to the hotel. I then took it very easy, skiing very slowly the following days and felt quite weak. On the sixth day, this culminated in having a nasty ski accident where I hit someone and I was concussed for a short while. I was taken off the slope on a snow buggy and then taken to the medical centre. I said that I had been feeling unwell before then, but they didn’t pick anything up.
We flew home the next day and the following day I flew out to see friends in the USA. I had been feeling unwell for some time and particularly towards the end of the ski holiday. I was sick on the morning of my flight and thought I had food poisoning. When I arrived, my friend took one look at me and insisted on taking me to the hospital. I thought I was just tired but agreed to go the next morning, mainly to keep her happy. Good thing she was so insistent!
At the hospital, they recorded my symptoms, took a blood test and within half an hour, the doctor told me that I had diabetes. I now know that the symptoms I had are classic signs of diabetes. It turned out to be type 1, insulin dependent, which is unusual for an adult to get – I was 39 and it normally affects children and teenagers. I think the combination of hotel food and having lots of juice after I was sick pushed my blood sugar levels sky high.
It was quite a confusing, disorientating time for me, adjusting to having to inject myself with insulin and experiencing various transition effects – my eyesight going blurry so that I needed glasses, my hair falling out (not all of it, but a lot more than normal) and putting on weight on my tummy, even though I was still really thin everywhere else. My cousin, who has two children with type 1 diabetes, was very helpful and reassuring, telling me that I would soon feel a lot better. I did, which was a relief! My full energy returned and my eyes and hair recovered.
As I was already into good health through supporting my body with nutrition, exercise and non-invasive treatments, I soon started researching how to reverse the diabetes. Whilst the emergency care was great, my experience of the conventional medical advice has been quite poor, both in the UK and the USA, particularly related to diet and getting better. My UK doctors put me on the ‘gold standard’ insulin regime where you count carbohydrates to work out how much insulin to inject for each meal or snack, plus you have long acting insulin at night.
I now have an insulin pump, which makes taking insulin much easier and I can control my blood sugar more easily with very small doses of insulin that is infused through a cannula (small plastic tube) into my body very slowly. I am also looking at ways to cure the diabetes and there are a few examples where people with type 1 have cured themselves with a low carbohydrate diet, raw food, alkalising and cleansing.
It would have been much better if I had had my condition diagnosed much sooner. I had had very poor experience of conventional doctors and medicine before, so I didn’t have much confidence in them. However, they do know how to do blood tests, other tests and diagnose most things. I didn’t go to my doctor when the symptoms developed. I tried to help myself get better, with some success, but it wasn’t enough as I didn’t know exactly what the problem was.
So, if you have any undiagnosed conditions, please make sure that you get a diagnosis. Then it would be much easier for you to target what type of treatment would be appropriate.
My key strategy to managing good blood sugar control is only to eat a relatively small amount of carbohydrates at each meal and for snacks. It was a breakthrough for me when I discovered this and it removed a lot of the uncertainty and roller coaster blood sugar levels that I had before then.
I found this out through my own experience, from doing an exercise program at a gym. I put on a lot of weight round my middle but the rest of me was still skin and bones from the pre-diagnosis period. The exercise program included a very strict fat and protein diet along with intense strength building exercise. I did this for four weeks and at one point, I was able to reduce my night-time long acting insulin from 8 to 6 units and I only needed 1 or 2 units of short acting insulin during the day. I also managed to gain muscle and lose fat from my tummy.
Since then, I have used the same approach I used for my overall health of believing that I can get better from diabetes and being proactive and persistent to find out how to do that. I have applied most of what I’ve learnt, with very good success, as I have achieved normal blood sugar levels. I am always finding new avenues to explore with promising treatments, techniques or lifestyle changes.
After the first few months of diabetes and being diagnosed, I got back to being super healthy, apart from the diabetes. Initially, I gained weight because of the insulin and had to buy new clothes to fit and hide my expanded waistline, which I wasn’t happy about. With a healthy diet and targeted exercise, I am stronger, I reached my ideal weight and I have a nearly flat tummy. My friends and family often remark that I look very well and am glowing!
I would be delighted to help you achieve your ideal health. I will use a similar approach to the one I have used for myself, and the results will be much quicker that they were for me, because you will benefit from all my knowledge and strategies. If you have diabetes, I will be passionate in helping you to achieve normal blood sugar levels and possibly to be free of diabetes, particularly if you have type 2 diabetes. You can contact me via the Contacts page.
To your good health!