Why Weight Loss Can Be So Hard When You’re Diabetic

The Craving Cure

I was twelve years old. My parents were expecting company the next day. My Mother had spent the whole day preparing, including baking from scratch a delicious raspberry crumb coffee cake. I remember eyeing it lustfully as the amazing aroma of freshly baked pastry filled our kitchen.

“This is for tomorrow,” My Mother informed me sternly. At night, while the whole house slept, I crept downstairs, picking crumb after crumb off the top of that pastry, desperately trying to cover my tracks by rearranging the sparsely remaining crumbs.

My efforts were not very successful. When the morning light came through the windows, with shame, I faced my Mother’s exacerbated reaction as she gazed, horrified, at the naked shell of her cake—all the toppings and coffee crumbs, gone.

Why did I feel compelled to demolish that cake? I’m certain it was because I inherited a raging pre-diabetic gene on my Father’s side. My Mother, who doesn’t have that physical weakness at all, could never relate to out-of-control physical cravings for carbs and sweets.

Fortunately, for me, I did learn how to control those cravings—for 30 years now—and am grateful to say, I was able to ward off diabetes and completely turn my health around.

The change I made in my own life has been so meaningful to me that my life’s work has been to help others do the same. In 1990, I started my own Wellness Seminar company. Since that time, I have provided weight loss programs in over 75 hospitals and to the employees of 100+ corporations.

The success of my clients has been amazing. In fact, my client’s results have been featured on CNN, ABC-TV Nightline, Good Morning America, USA Today and The Doctor’s Show. Julie Evans lost 140 lb. and has kept it off for over a decade and Kathy was featured in Woman’s World Magazine for having lost 120 lb. with my gastric bypass hypnosis.

Why hypnosis? After studying nutrition, health and wellness for years, and through my own experience battling food addiction and weight loss, I came to see that ultimately it’s only by changing the way we think about food subconsciously, that we can achieve lasting results. The reason so many of us can try to lose weight for years, with no success, is because we still subconsciously prefer the foods that are harmful to us.

Ultimately, we have to break the habits of overeating, bingeing, snacking and emotional eating by tapping into the power of the subconscious mind to change our thinking.

The good news is that with the right tools, it can actually be easy. In 2010, 20/20 contacted me about a story they were doing on Gastric Bypass Hypnosis. This was a procedure being done in Europe to avoid costly and risky bariatric surgery. I was fascinated with the idea of helping obesity victims avoid the risk and trauma of gastric bypass surgery. I studied the technique voraciously and combined what I learned with my decades of experience providing weight loss hypnosis to over 100,000 people in hospitals throughout the U.S. I became one of the first hypnotherapists in the United States to offer Gastric Bypass Hypnosis.

My clients loved it and their results have been amazing. This past year, I had the privilege of being invited on PBS with my 90-minute show, Easy Willpower. The show is still airing on PBS stations across the country and can be watched here on PBS online.

During the first act, the audience celebrated Barbara who lost 90 lb. with my weight loss hypnosis program. I shared the story of how Barbara’s doctor informed her that since she had lost all that weight, her diabetes had gone into remission and they were actually making plans to remove her insulin pump!

So many of my clients have been able to get off their diabetic medications, with the help of their doctors after losing weight.

The great thing about my plan is that it’s all about healthy weight loss. People say that I give them a new inner conversation and it’s just easier to make healthy choices, with the self-hypnosis skills I teach them.

The gift I offer people is freedom. I remember the shame and guilt I felt when I used to overeat on a regular basis. I know how painful it feels to be out of control around food. The secret to permanent weight loss is in the mind and my message to anyone who is suffering is: it’s never too late to make that inner change that can lead to a life-changing result in your life!

About Rena Greenberg

Rena Greenberg’s success with weight loss hypnosis and gastric bypass hypnosis has been featured in 150+ news stories and have been reviewed and sponsored in 75 hospitals. Rena is the Author of The Right Weigh (Hay House Publishing) and The Craving Cure (McGraw-Hill Publishing).

Rena holds a degree in bio-psychology from the City University of New York and a master’s degree in Spiritual Healing from the University of Spiritual Healing and Sufism. She is also a hypnosis and NLP trainer and is board certified in biofeedback therapy.

Rena works with people all over the world, on Skype and in Florida, to improve their health, break free from addictions, lose weight, improve their relationships and achieve their goals.

Rena can be reached at EasyWillpower.com

East London NHS Foundation Trust

Increased metabolic and cardiovascular risk for individuals who suffer from severe mental illness

Research has argued that living with a severe mental illness is associated with an increase in an individual’s cardiovascular risk and a decrease in life expectancy. Service users who suffer from a severe mental illness often live a sedentary lifestyle, experience increased levels of social isolation and are less likely to access services, more specifically primary care services.

In addition to these social factors, individuals who suffer from a severe mental illness are often prescribed medication which can have undesirable side effects. These side effects can include increased appetite, weight gain, decreased energy levels and increased levels of sedation. More specifically atypical antipsychotic medications have been associated with the development of metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. Therefore in addition to lifestyle choices, the treatment service users are prescribed may be further contributing to an increased cardiovascular risk and mortality rate.

East London NHS Foundation Trust (ELFT) has acknowledged these concerning issues and has prioritised physical health as one of its four quality improvement priority areas. At ELFT we have adopted a trust wide approach to reducing the cardiovascular risk of service users who are prescribed psychotropic medication. This strategy focuses on two main streams of work: the assessment and monitoring of service users physical health and health promotion. Assessment and monitoring has primarily involved the introduction of physical health monitoring pods to all community services and teams have focused on finding ways to increase the number of service users having their physical health assessed/monitored.

The Quality Improvement work on health promotion has involved changes being made to the meals served in a low secure forensic unit. This quality improvement project began following concerns raised by service users about the quality of the food being served on the wards and a desire to prepare and cook their own healthier options. Many of the meals each week are now self-catered and following the success of this project, the self-catering work is being spread to the forensic medium secure unit. Watch the video below to find out more information about this project.

ELFT Quality Improvement Self-Catering Project

Furthermore teams across three different services in ELFT are running quality improvement projects focusing on physical activity. They are testing different ways in which they can encourage service users and staff members to be more physically active on a daily basis.

In addition to the work that ELFT is doing for service users who suffer from a severe mental illness, we have a diabetes specialist team who work across both mental health and community health services. This team has been actively involved in improving the care that service users with diabetes receive when admitted to a mental health ward and are currently running a quality improvement project focusing on housebound diabetes patients. This project aims to increase the number of referrals they receive from district nurses and to improve the care pathways for service users who have HbA1c levels greater than 75mmol/mol.

If you would like to learn more about the physical health quality improvement work at East London NHS Foundation Trust please visit our QI Microsite at: QI ELFT NHS or get in contact with the Quality Improvement team at qi@elft.nhs.uk.


Decadent and Diabetes Friendly Light and Fluffy Spinach and Cheese Strata

Guest post by Aviva Goldfarb, author of The Six O’Clock Scramble Meal Planner

It took me a few attempts, but I finally made the strata of my dreams. Strata is an Italian baked egg and bread dish that is perfect for a make-ahead weekend brunch, but we also love it for family dinner with some fruit or sliced vegetables and my homemade ranch dressing.

This recipe can be found in my latest cookbook, The Six O'Clock Scramble Meal Planner: A Year of Quick, Delicious Meals to Help You Prevent and Manage Diabetes, published by the American Diabetes Association.

The cookbook takes the stress and guesswork out of planning healthy and delicious dinners for your family, whether you are cooking for 1, 2, or your whole family, including kids. The book, features color photos for every dish, includes 160 delicious recipes that take 30 minutes or less to prepare, and 32 weekly menu plans complete with main dishes and sides—and an organized grocery list for each week!

Light and Fluffy Spinach and Cheese Strata

Thanks to Renee Comet for the use of the recipe photo.

Marinate Time: 4 hours Prep Time: 15 minutes Cook Time: 50 minutes Total Time: 5 hours and 5 minutes

  • 10 oz. frozen chopped spinach
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups nonfat or low fat milk
  • 1 cup shredded reduced-fat Cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded Swiss cheese
  • 1 tsp. herbes de Provence or thyme, or other Italian herbs
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 3 slices bacon, pork, turkey or vegetarian, cooked and diced (optional)
  • 6 slices ciabatta bread, about 1/2-inch thick, cubed, or use any day old bread (about 4 cups)

Defrost the spinach in the microwave or on the stovetop. Spray a 9 x 13-inch glass or ceramic baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and the milk. Whisk in the cheeses, herbs, garlic powder and salt. Stir in the spinach, bacon (optional) and bread cubes until the bread is completely moistened. Pour the egg mixture into the baking dish, smoothing it with the back of a spoon, if necessary. Refrigerate it, covered, for at least 4 hours and up to 24 hours.

When you are ready to bake it, remove the strata from the refrigerator and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Bake it in the center of the oven, uncovered, for 45 – 50 minutes until it is browned on the edges and cooked through in the center. (While it bakes, prepare the hash browns and cut the cantaloupe.) Cut it into squares to serve it.

Slow Cooker Directions: In the slow cooker, whisk together the eggs and the milk, then whisk in the cheeses, herbs, garlic powder and salt. Stir in the spinach and bread cubes until the bread is completely moistened. Cook on low for 4-5 hours, or on high for 2-3 hours. (Slow cooker cooking times may vary—Get to know your slow cooker and, if necessary, adjust cooking times accordingly.)

Do Ahead or Delegate: Defrost the spinach, combine and refrigerate the eggs and the milk, shred the cheese, if necessary, combine the dry seasonings, cut the bread, or fully assemble and refrigerate the strata.

Scramble Flavor Booster: Double the salt and add 1/8 tsp. black pepper. Add 1/2 - 1 cup diced ham or sausage.

Nutritional Information Per Serving based on 8 servings (% based upon daily values)

Calories 200, Calories from Fat: 90, Total Fat: 10g, 19.5%; Saturated Fat: 4.3 g, Trans Fat: 0.1 g, Cholesterol: 155 mg, Sodium: 420 mg, Potassium: 250 mg, Total Carbohydrate: 12g, Dietary Fiber: 1g, 3%; Sugar: 3g; Protein: 15 g, Phosphorus: 285 mg