Steve shares secret to beating his diabetes in two simple steps
Steve Newth is walking on cloud nine, having successfully overcome his diabetes by eating better and moving more.
The 62-year-old retired groundsman, from Wroughton, reckons the reversal of his Type 2 diabetes is down to taking two simple steps – walking every day and overhauling his unhealthy diet.
Steve said: “It’s not rocket science, but my new routine has totally changed everything. I feel fantastic and my doctor has told me to stop taking the tablets for diabetes because my blood sugars are normal. I’m over the moon because I never thought it was possible.”
Steve’s recovery and regained good health is even more remarkable because his diabetes was undiagnosed for several years and had started to affect his sight and mobility.
He said: “When I found out, I didn’t know much about diabetes. Although I was warned it’s unlikely to be reversible, I was determined to keep it in check so I committed to changing my diet and starting to exercise – two things I had regrettably paid no real attention to in the past.”
Since ringing the changes last summer, Steve has shed five stone and feels fitter than ever.
“I used to have a walking stick but now I don’t need it. I go for a walk three times every day, totalling six miles, as well as doing stretches in my back garden,” he said.
“I’ve also cut out all the rubbish from my diet – no crisps, biscuits, pasties or anything like that. It’s all fresh stuff – lots of fruit and veg, with lean protein like turkey, chicken or fish. I never get hungry, I’ve just changed what I eat.”
Looking back, Steve can see how his general health gradually deteriorated after he stopped working.
He said: “I used to be quite active, cutting all the sports pitches, but after a spell of illness I had to take early retirement after 43 years as a groundsman. I ended up sitting at home watching TV a lot and eating too much junk. In hindsight, it was a recipe for disaster but you don’t see it at the time because it happens slowly.”
When Steve went to the doctors with a kidney problem, he was also diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes and prescribed medication.
He said: “I was put on the highest dose. But to help try and control it, my lifestyle needed to totally change, so I enrolled on Dietbusters – a 12-week course to introduce me to exercise and educate me on having a healthier diet. It was a revelation and all made sense, I just hadn’t thought about it before.”
Steve’s new routine soon started reaping rewards and as the weight fell off, he was able to step up exercising even further.
He said: “I could see the progress I was making and started enjoying it, which spurred me on more. These days I feel guilty if I don’t go for my regular walks and I don’t miss all that unhealthy food, except perhaps fish and chips. So I still have the odd portion of low-fat chips for a treat.”
The full extent of his recovery was revealed this month when the tests results for his diabetes check-up came back.
He said: “My blood sugar levels were normal and the doctor told me to stop taking my medication altogether. I couldn’t believe it, especially as I was an undiagnosed diabetic for so long. It just goes to show if you put the effort in, there’s still hope.”
Determined to make the most of his new-found health and energy, Steve has just started volunteering for Prospect Hospice and also plans to help other diabetics, who want to try to manage their condition through leading a healthy lifestyle by becoming a volunteer walk leader.
Steve said: “Once you get into the right habits, it’s not difficult. I’ve got so much more energy these days and enjoy being so active. Having diabetes and overcoming it has completely changed my life and I’m going to make the most of it.”
Diabetes affects around 1 in 16 people in the UK and an estimated 12,000 people in Swindon, in line with the national average. Increasingly common, in the past 10 years the number of people with the condition has more than doubled nationally. Type 2 diabetes is especially prevalent and closely associated with poor diet and sedentary lifestyles. To tackle this growing trend, people are being urged to reduce the amount of sugar in their diet, particularly from refined and processed products such as fizzy drinks, cakes and sweets, and incorporate more physical activity into their daily routine.
Cllr Brian Ford, Swindon Borough Council Cabinet Member for Adults’ Health and Social Care, said: “Steve’s story is truly inspiring and shows what a huge difference being more physically active and having a balanced diet can make to your health. I’m delighted that Steve feels so much better and hopefully his example will encourage others to follow in his footsteps. It’s also great that he has decided to give something back by helping at Prospect Hospice and volunteering as a walk leader to guide others in a similar situation.”
If you feel inspired by Steve to be more active, please contact the council’s Community Health and Wellbeing Team by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling: 01793 465367.
To sign up for the free Change4life Sugar Swaps visit the websitewww.change4life.co.uk
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